WOW – Illustrator and Principal Lecturer Jake Abrams

It’s sometimes a hard job, a full time job, just waiting for that dream client to get in touch. All that pacing up and down that studio, all that stress, all those fingernails bitten right down. You’ve sent out all those samples, made those chirpy calls but they are taking their time  to really find you. You’re feeling unused and unloved and your talent is left dorment and smouldering. The volcano surges, churns boils within you, ready for that final.. .am I overdoing this, er perhaps I am..sorry.  

It’s just that I’ve been there, we’ve been there and it’s not always easy. It can be arduous, however much you struggle. You can feel unrecognised demorolised- it can be hard to keep going, keep up that cheery pecker and , of course, survive without regular income.Yet, people have done it, people do do it  and some do it by interspersing what they do by doing it themselves.Let me explain, instead of waiting for them to remember your genius, your poetic artistry, instead of waiting for them to commission you, how about pitching creative stuff at them. No- not just dragging that wretched folder around to them once more – it’s coming up with ideas and regaling them with  them. In what is rather grandly referred to as, ‘Authorial Illustration’, artists (that’s you) proactively promulgate their own creativity; pitching ideas to publishers, art directors, editors, clients.. whoever. It doesn’t always work but it’s surely worth a go.

If you’ve got characters, stories, scenarios, strips, a sketch book full of drawings of moustaches, madcap machinations.. then why not flog them. And, those clients, they thrive off of it, they need your clever ideas, your sultry talent. It makes them happy – it makes their projects clever, unique, different. Lots of editorial, lots of publishing, advertising, TV and design rely on seeing the subject this way around. Some of the very best work out there was never just commissioned- it was handed to them on a plate and then commissioned!

Jake Abrams 2012

Principal Lecturer in Illustration and Animation at Kingston University
Prolific practicing artist and illustrator

Jake Abrams is Principal Lecturer in Illustration & Animation at Kingston University, London, UK. He is a prolific practicing artist and illustrator working for Newspapers and magazines. He is a ‘National Art & Design Media Fellow’ in the UK.  

Check out Jake’s amazing work here: www.jakeabrams.co.uk

See all WOWs – Words of Wisdom HERE


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