We artists have noticed something: communication with some of our clients (new and old) has not been very good, of late. While there are still many art directors, creative directors, and business owners who efficiently and effectively communicate with us, there are seemingly just as many who are in need of important tips on how to properly assign work or manage projects. Please note: I do not blame these individuals — not one bit; hiring artists for projects is not usually something you are taught in school, and there is no Communicating with Artists for Dummies book, as far as I know.
Therefore, here is a guideline that will lead to improved communication, fewer revisions, better artwork, and fewer headaches for all involved.
1. Your first email to an artist should not read: “Hey, are you available for a job?”
This kind of email is a waste of everybody’s time, because all of the important information is missing: description of the job, timeline, and budget. In order to reduce the back-and-forth between the individual requesting the creative work, and the artist, simply take a moment to include the important information in the initial email request. For example: “Dear Ms. Granger, we are publishing a story in our magazine about the ongoing conflict between hedgehogs and walruses. We will need a cover, a full page, and two spot illustrations. The deadline for sketches is March 1st, and the final artwork will be due March 8th. Our budget is $3750. Are you available / interested in working with us on this assignment? Please let me know by 5pm today. Thank you.”
With one email, you have now given the artist all of the info needed to decide whether or not to accept the job. As an illustrator, most of the emails I received ten years ago read just like the above. Lately, this has not been the case. I’m not sure what happened, but let’s fix that.
2. Please do not expect artists to read minds.
Details are very important. When sending emails about your job, give as many relevant details as possible to an artist, if the assigned artwork has specific requirements. Artists are great at solving creative problems, but we cannot guess what you are looking for if we are not told up front. For example, if you tell an illustrator to draw “a car on a street,” then the illustrator will assume the make and model of the car are not important. The illustrator will also assume the street can be any kind of street. Therefore, it is not fair to the artist to reject the final art because you expected a vintage Porsche on the Autobahn. Please be sure to communicate all required elements of the art in your earliest correspondence with your artist, and it will be smooth sailing for all.
If you tell an artist you need a mural of a vineyard painted on a wall in your restaurant, do not wait until the artist is half finished with a stunning, 20 foot scene with bright morning light casting cool shadows over the grapevines, to tell them that you need the time of day to be sunset. Not only is this a problem for your timeline, but the artist must be paid for all the changes that need to be made because the communication was not clear from the beginning.
Sometimes, you love the portfolio of a certain artist and you wish to give this person artistic freedom when commissioning a piece of work. Let us not confuse this wish for unbridled creativity with a lack of relevant information. For instance, the recent recipient of the Richard Gangel Art Director Award, SooJin Buzelli, is famous for giving her editorial artists a lot of freedom. But, when she assigns work, she actually has spent a good deal of time figuring out a way to distill a complex article down to its essential message or theme. She then sends this one or two sentence summary to a carefully selected illustrator, providing that individual with a perfect launchpad from which to create a unique visual solution. This is good communication. The artist comes away with enough information to be creative and daring without producing a piece of work that completely misses the mark.
3. Please Don’t Leave Us Hanging
This is just common courtesy. I often get asked if I am available for an illustration and I then respond in the affirmative with some questions about the assignment or the budget or some other detail. Then, no reply ever comes. A week later, I will see another artist blog about completing the very same assignment that was initially emailed to me. While I understand that everybody is very busy, and emails are flying around at the speed of light, I urge you to please remember that it is unprofessional and rude to simply leave an artist hanging. We often will put other things on hold or rework our weekly schedule to accommodate a project that we think is moving forward. A simple email to let us know that you will be working with somebody else, the job is cancelled, you need to consult with a coworker before moving forward, etc. is all we need to move on and stay on top of our other jobs. There is a popular misconception that artists are free spirits, day dreaming on a hillside and waiting for inspiration to strike, checking emails from paint smattered laptops touted around in burlap sacks … or whatever … but hey! Artists who make a living making art are working. They’re working all the time. Keeping an artist in the dark about the status of a project upsets their productivity in a major way. Please don’t do this.
Welcome to Dead House - Have you ever moved to a new home? Stay Out of the Basement - Are you hiding anything…? Monster Blood - How tall are you? Would you change your height if given the chance? Say Cheese and Die - What is your favorite photo of yourself? Could you share it? The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb - Do you believe in curses and bad luck? Lets Get Invisible - Have you ever wished you could trade places with someone else for a day? Night of the Living Dummy - Do you constantly try to one-up your siblings? If you don’t have siblings, do you constantly try to one-up other people? The Girl Who Cried Monster - Can you recall a time that people did not believe you about something, even though you were telling the truth? Welcome to Camp Nightmare - What lengths have you gone through to pass a test? The Ghost Next Door - If you could choose how you were going to die, how would you go and why? The Haunted Mask - What do you consider to be a “symbol of love” in your life? Be Careful What You Wish For - If you had three wishes, what would they be? Piano Lessons can be Murder - Do you have any musical talent? What kind of instrument(s) can you play? The Werewolf of Fever Swamp - Would you adopt a stray animal? Have you? You Can’t Scare Me - What is your biggest fear? One Day at Horrorland - Do you enjoy rides? What is your favorite ride? Why I’m Afraid of Bees - Do you kill insects or let them outside? Deep Trouble - Do you like to swim? A pool or the ocean? The Scarecrow Walks at Midnight - Do you have any bizarre family/close family friends? What do they do that’s so out of the norm? Go Eat Worms - Have you ever ruined someone else’s hard work? Ghost Beach - Do you have any unusual hobbies that other people may judge you for? Phantom of the Auditorium - Have you ever been to or been in a play? What play(s) have you gone to/been to? Attack of the Mutant - Who is your favorite comic book Super-Villain? My Hairiest Adventure - How did you react when you reached puberty? How about when you started to grow hair in weird places? A Night in Terror Tower - Have you ever traveled to another country? Where did you go and what kinds of things did you experience? The Cuckoo Clock of Doom - If you could go back in time, where would you go and why? It Came from Beneath the Sink - How often do you compliment others? How often do you insult others? The Barking Ghost - Are you a dog person or a cat person? The Horror at Camp Jellyjam - Have you ever tried so hard to win something that you realized wasn’t worth winning in the first place? Revenge of the Lawn Gnomes - Have you ever been accused of something you never did? A Shocker on Shock Street - What is your favorite genre of movie? What is your favorite movie of that genre? The Headless Ghost - Do you enjoy scaring others? Or do you enjoy being scared yourself? The Abominable Snowman of Pasadena - Do you prefer the cold weather or the hot weather? How I got my Shrunken Head - Do you own any rare or bizarre artifacts? Bad Hare Day - Are you into magic tricks? Can you perform any? Egg Monsters from Mars - What is your favorite holiday? The Beast from the East - What is your favorite outdoors game to play? Ghost Camp - What is your favorite summer-time activity? How to Kill a Monster - What are you allergic to (if anything at all)? Legend of the Lost Legend - Have you ever gone treasure-hunting or geocaching? Attack of the Jack'O'Lanterns - What is your favorite Halloween costume (that you’ve worn or seen someone else wear)?
Vampire Breath - Are you forgetful and often misplace important things? Calling All Creeps - Have you ever received and answered a strange call from an unknown number? Beware the Snowman - What is your favorite thing to do in the snow? How I Learned to Fly - Do you wish to be famous? Do you think being famous would ruin who you are? Chicken Chicken - Have you ever done something that has caused you to regret it once you received the consequences? Don’t Go to Sleep - What keeps you up at night? The Blob that Ate Everyone - What kind of things do you like to write about (if anything at all)? The Curse of Camp Cold Lake - Do you treat others with the same respect they treat you? My Best Friend is Invisible - Do you believe in ghosts? Have you ever gone ghost hunting? The Haunted School - What is your favorite subject in school? What is your least favorite subject? Werewolf Skin - Do you feel comfortable in your own skin? I Live in your Basement - Are your parents extremely over-protective or are they under-protective?
Hello! Maybe think of some really funny (or cute) Goosebumps headcanons? .3.
YESSS I’m only gonna do the slappies
Book!Slappy is a funny guy but a cruel prankster. One time he put the red shirts with the whites in the washing machine. The white shirt were pink!
TV!Slappy loves pranks with frogs! He put about 6 frogs in his slaves bed while they were sleeping. He laughs hard when he hears them screaming.
Movie!Slappy does prank phone calls! He called Wally one time and said ‘your 190234 pizzas are ready!’ Wally would be confused and then he heard knocking at the door,he opens it only to be tackles and chewed by 20 puppies that Slappy sent over.
Nobody in my life has ever known me the way you do. Nobody in my life has ever made me feel as good as you do. You know me, you know everything about me, and when you leave me, you’re going to be leaving the real me, the me nobody else has ever seen, that’s who you’re going to be rejecting.
favorite trashy books. favorite book #5 ( in no order ) Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie with Denise Bidot as Minerva ‘Min’ Dobbs & Oscar Isaac as Calvin ‘Cal’ Morrissey
Bringing the steaming hot cup of coffee to his mouth, Hide recoiled when the boiling liquid touched his sensitive lips. Licking his lips, Hide blew at his coffee until the mist ceased to nothing. When he finally got the bitter taste on his taste buds, Hide couldn’t help but groan; it tasted so good when it was made by the scaley hands of his best friend.
It was rare for Hide and Kaneki to get a quiet day off from the hectic duties thrown at the King and his right hand man. At that moment, Hide was sitting in the kitchen enjoying his coffee, and Kaneki was in their study reading “How to be a good king” for dummies book or something like that. Hide snorted at the thought.
Suddenly Hide felt a pair of strong arms around his neck and a weight on the top of his head. Kaneki was probably done reading his dummy book.
“What’s gotten into you?” Hide was half curious. Kaneki has become more open about his feeling for Hide, but it was still rare for him to be physical. After Kaneki took chunks out of Hide’s flesh, Kaneki was hesitant to place his hands on Hide. It took a lot of coaxing from Hide for Kaneki to feel assured.
There was a serene silence. Hide let himself be held and Kaneki’s arms felt like a fortress. It was like only they existed.
“I love you. I want you to know that.” Kaneki buried his face into Hide’s unruly golden hair.
Hide felt his throat tighten and heart swell. tears building up, Hide tried to compose himself, fighting the urge to let out a sob.
“I love you, too, you big loser,” Hide said as he tilted his head back and kissed the love of his life.
I kinda feel bad for Book!Slappy: gets less attention out of the 3 Slappy's and he's such a grumpy-grumps ...would he like it if a slave just stayed home with him and give him attention and kisses and snuggles? He needs looooveeee
Try to think of some really cute Goosebumps headcanons! I'd love to see what you might come up with! x3
Book!Slappy secretly owns a pair of pink slippers with adorable bulldogs. He loves them a lot.
Tv!Slappy likes it when his slaves treat him nicely and sometimes there will be rare times where he shows thanks to the slaves by doing nice things for them but he acts all tsundere about it
Movie!Slappy is a very huggable! He won’t admit but he loves being hugged by his slaves (that is if his slave isn’t scared of him) but if he really likes his slave, he would hug them back
Wally wood likes to wear sweaters and scarfs during winter, he likes being warm. He owns 50 of each (most were stolen from his past slaves)
Rocky sees Dennis as a grandson. They would do things that a grandad and a grandson would do like play ball,watch movies and other things.
Dennis tries different ways to keep his head on but he would like some help from the humans he likes (like amy) one time he tried using glue but it didint work it just made a mess. Dennis would feel guilty for the mess and say ‘sorry’ in the cutest way
So apparently Adventure Time had a big cliffhanger finale and people are really excited
Hope you don’t get your hopes too high. Adventure has notoriously been shit with writing conclusions to arcs-both plot and character wise. The only reason Simon episodes (the only half decent episodes of that show anymore) turn out good is because Rebecca Sugar is able to briefly contain the garbage fire, and no one has written an actual ending to Ice King’s problem. Because when they do they’ll probably write down the first hallucination they see after drinking 3 year old milk and add some psychological shit they found in a philosophy for dummies book.