On Tuesday, six previous Stockport college students came to talk to us about what they had been up to since graduating. I spoke to Rose Lloyd, Chris Madden and Natalie Wood; all of whom were really open and honest about their work. They had some great advice to offer and talked us through the work they had produced. Something they all advised was to approach companies yourself and not just sit at home and wait for the work to come to you. Working as a freelance illustrator is a hard profession and you need to get yourself out there in order to achieve success. Rose Lloyd stated it is useful to build relationships up with art directors as they may choose to use your work more than once. She said it is vital to meet deadlines; your reputation could be quickly ruined if you fail to meet the completion date. Rose also said that an increasing number of people have bought prints of her illustrations. This new venture may provide a more steady income as companies choose to cut their illustration budgets.
All the graduates said the hardest parts of working as a freelance illustrator was the tight deadlines and not knowing where the next paycheque was coming from. Chris Madden advised to send work to multiple design agencies. Although they take a cut of your payment, they have access to prolific companies which otherwise might be unreachable on your own. He is represented by Eye Candy illustration agency which have provided him with a number of jobs.
Although I would like to do editorial illustration, my passion is pattern and this may be more suited to the increasingly popular market of prints, cards and stationary etc. We'll see what the future holds!!