Well, so much for finishing mid-February, but it’s still earlier than last year!
The 2016’s survey netted 650 responses (down from 2015) for over 250 different conventions (way up from 2015!).
Because of time constraints, I stopped writing long, detailed, individual convention reports at the end of 2014, but since mid-2013, I’ve been co-running the How To Be A Con Artist blog with fellow convention artist, watercolorist, and SCAD Sequential Art grad Becca Hillburn (Nattosoup).
There, we share resources we come across, including our own and others’ con reports, and answer dozens of questions a month about tabling at conventions, producing merchandise, printing, and other related topics.
In three years, we’ve made over 800 posts and more than half of them are answered questions. I’ve always been pretty long-winded with my con reports, so who knows how many words that is in answered questions??
The blog has been a great way for me to continue participating in the Artist Alley community and to engage in general convention-related discourse outside of con reports. I come across AA-related resources on a regular basis, so having a place to store and share all of them is very nice. I also really do enjoy answering questions, even if some of the persistent, repetitive ones get a bit tiresome. (Please stop asking where to get stuff made and just use The Google, omg.)
I’ve been told by lots of people over the years that they’ve found my con reports helpful, and I’m glad for the opportunity to continue being helpful by sharing insights and answering questions on HTBACA.
So yeah! This is a just a post here to let you know about HTBACA because I guess I’ve never formally mentioned it, though I’ve referenced it here and there. If you have convention questions, please take a look at our extensive archive over there, and if you can’t find what you need, send us your questions! :)
After many delays due to a hectic convention season, the 2015 Convention Artist Survey results are here!
Following 2014’s survey and report, the 2015 survey was expanded to include more questions and to accept responses for all North American conventions, regardless of size or genre. In total, 670 responses were collected for over 160 different conventions. That is a lot of data!
For 2013 and 2014, Devastator Press and The Beat put together a survey for comic convention exhibitors about costs and profits. The results are pretty interesting. I really wanted to see similar data for artists at anime conventions though. Though they’re two sides of the same coin and are similar in many ways, there are still huge differences in the convention cultures at comic and anime shows, and I wanted to see the figures for it.
So I made and ran a survey myself and used the Artist Alley Network International and How To Be a Con Artist communities as launch pads to collect data. The survey was live for about a month and collected 195 responses for 13 conventions from an unknown number of artists. The results are compiled in the first PDF linked below, along with some of my observations and commentary.
I know there are many more ways to analyze and sort the data than what I’ve done though, so the raw data is also provided, sorted by convention, and sans timestamps to maximize the anonymity of respondents.
The 2015 survey is now also live, with some additional and modified questions, which will hopefully help provide additional insight!
The Important Stuff:
I think I originally had a lot more to say, but I’m currently in the middle of three back-to-back conventions and am very tired. :’) I really wanted to get this report published though, especially since we just had one of the biggest convention weekends of the year! I hope folks will find this report enlightening and that there will be more respondents for the 2015 survey. More data is better data!
About a year ago, I was invited to beta test ArtistsnClients.com and to provide feedback for its development team. I did so with more gusto than expected.
AnC is basically a reverse Elance for the hobbyist and semi-professional art market. I want to call it the “fandom art market,” which I’m sure is a very poor term for it, but you know what I’m talking about. AnC is aimed primarily at the artists that have, over the years, peddled their wares on sites like Livejournal, deviantART, FurAffinity, and most recently, Tumblr. It aims to provide a better platform to facilitate commission transactions, which are frequently rife with problems, many stemming from the simple fact that none of these other sites were made to handle commissions.
The site launched to the public in late July and has been growing quietly since then, adding and implementing new features on a fairly regular basis. In January, deviantART launched its own platform for commissions — it’s pretty awful, but dA is the big fish in the pond, and people will use their platform because they’re young, poorly-informed, and already on the site. AnC is the little fish, and while it’s also not a perfect platform, it’s off to a far better start. So I think it’s worth talking about, because there really does need to be a better way to deal with commissions on the Internet.