Forum > Webcomic & Art discussion > Advice on crowdfunding and working with another artist?
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"Advice on crowdfunding and working with another artist?", Two weeks ago, 5:08 AM #1
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Hi gamers! I've been gone a few years, but I've matured and am returning with 100x more seriousness about my comic than ever before. I'd super appreciate if you can be my sounding boards for my crazy plan which actually may be pretty normal. I've usually worked alone until now and I don't generally enjoy working with other peoples' money, and I do not want to mess this up.

(In case you remember my comic, no you don't, I'm making a new plan and starting fresh)

The biggest thing that stops me from feeling like professional-level comic creation is feasible is the thought of drawing backgrounds. I can draw neat backgrounds, but it's the furthest thing from what I enjoy. So, why don't I get an artist to assist with BGs? (Edit: Yeah, I've spent years finding shortcuts for BGs and have made massive progress, it still doesn't stop being just as painful to me lmao)

Today I started formulating a plan: to pay an assistant artist by crowdfunding each 1-2 chapters. Unfortunately, I've only crowdfunded something once and want to be as secure as possible in this decision, which is why I'm looking for everyone's thoughts before I start making moves towards it. I'll have more specific questions at the end, but I'm laying out my plan here.

So first, I'll figure out how much money I'll need for a single chapter. This may be after I pick an artist and discuss payment with them, or else I'll estimate a good budget to shoot for.

Once I have a target, I'll make the crowdfunding campaign; I have a decently sized twitter following and can imagine it having the chance to fund one chapter. (I hope, or else I'll have to start saving HARD)

IF the campaign goes through, I'll pay the lovely artist to work with me for however much of the comic I can afford. At whatever point seems reasonable, I'll launch another campaign to fund the next 1-2 chapters. Does this sound right so far?

If the crowdfund doesn't hit the goal, np, everyone gets their money back. If I don't have money, the artist doesn't work. If the artist doesn't work, I just do the BGs myself. Providing there are no obvious problems I'm blind to, I don't see why I wouldn't try. This is all assuming I even find an artist, which I don't expect with 100% certainty, but there are millions of people out there.

As for the drawing process, my plan is the following:

1. Insert all the borders for a page or chapter, 2. thumbnail the scenery with enough detail to provide a clear understanding of what the end results should look like (perspective, rough sketch of scenery, include instructions), 3. sketch my characters in and add speech bubbles, 4. hand it over to the artist to properly sketch the BGs, then 5. take it back, line/color the BGs and finish drawing my characters in. The process may vary but that's a rough idea.

Again, I'm not experienced in working with others, so let me know if you see any potential issues! That aside, here are my more specific questions.

1. Do you have a recommendation as to where to host the crowdfunding campaign? I am only familiar with Kickstarter, and it seems like it'd work but don't want to miss something better.

2. What are your recommendations for writing the contract, like websites to use? Does anything crucial come to mind that we should add?

3. (providing the artist is flexible regarding payment), How do I ensure I'm paying the artist a correct and fair amount for the work they do? As far as my understanding goes, pricing by the hour is difficult for work like this, where a dishonest artist could claim they're spending way more time working than they actually are. (Not that I've met an artist like this lol, I just don't want to leave any room for potential problems.) Beyond asking the artist themselves about how to approach payment, I'm not sure what to suggest or expect.

Thank you so much guys! I feel a step closer to finally creating the story that's driven me nuts since 2014 <3

More importantly, I have over 690 posts in this forum, nice!!!
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Two weeks ago, 5:31 AM #2
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I think it’s awesome you want to start your comic again. I don’t want to naysay but I wonder if it would be an attractive idea for artists. I don’t know anything about you or your reach on various platforms, but I can’t image an artist waiting on the sidelines for the project to hopefully get funded on a chapter by chapter basis - especially when it’s not a project they necessarily have any creative control over.

I’d imagine you’d likely get flakey or pretty inexperienced artists- because it’s not particularly lucrative to wait around for funding and even with a contract, I just can’t see someone signing something to agree to work for x amount of time or chapters with money being so up in the air. Would they be expected to help crowdfund? How would they be paid if they are attached to the project but a chapter doesn’t get fully funded? Would there be an expectation that they not take any major projects while attached to your project? If so, are they getting paid for that? If not, what happens if their own gigs run into when things are funded and they need to work pre planned gigs alongside yours?

I’d say especially since you’re doing the work of rebooting a whole comic and because you have some really basic level questions about crowdfunding and paying artists (not meant to be rude, everyone starts somewhere) and you’re saying you don’t have money to fund yourself that you would be better served finding ways to render your backgrounds yourself in ways that don’t make it a pain. Folks find all kinds of shortcuts, and a free solution might be more feasible given your constraints.
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Two weeks ago, 5:51 AM #3
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All very thoughtful concerns, thank you so much! All of those questions are things I have answers to, the tl;dr being that the artist will have all the freedom in the world, and I plan to be extremely communicative and straightforward (long before they sign the contract) regarding the tentative/inconsistent nature of the project and everything else. To finding a willing artist will be a long search if it succeeds at all, and if no one's interested, no one's interested. No problem and I'll suffer through BGs myself. (Why in the world would they be expected to help crowdfund, btw...?)

Because I can draw BGs, I can minimize their workload and any risks regarding their time or level of commitment.

I've been lucky enough to find tons of BG shortcuts recently, been chasing them all my art life. Still don't enjoy it at all lol.

I see how #3 sounded like a basic level question, but I'm a longtime commission artist myself; I've only priced by complexity though and never by time, so I'm just shooting my shot and seeing if it's even a thing that happens. No biggie either way.
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Two weeks ago, 6:06 PM #4
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I'm wondering more about the potential backers of the funding campaign. This might be just me, but I wouldn't back a webcomic project even if the premise sounded interesting to me. Webcomics are so notorious for getting abandoned. How would I know this one will keep going? How would I know the actual comic is as My Cuppa as the premise/synopsis?

I've backed printing campaigns for finished webcomics/ finished portions of webcomics that I already read and enjoy. I don't actually like having printed copies because they take up room. But I like that I'm giving money to a comic that I already know and like. That's a big difference to me. But yeah, maybe other people are more adventurous?

As for potential rewards, you could offer a free commission, and/ or a cameo opportunity in the comic?
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Forum > Webcomic & Art discussion > Advice on crowdfunding and working with another artist?
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