This is My Origins Story

Help An Illustrator

Residing in the dark depths of East London; Daniel dwells in the shadow of his drawing board, illuminated only by the glow of a computer monitor. Once with aspirations of grandeur; he dreamt of money, fame and the adulation of his peers.

Now his days are consumed one-by-one. Alone in the din of the big city, he counts the hours by a tally of hot beverages and focuses his pencil on character design and illustration.

…he is happy.

But the journey to get to this point has been arduous and non-linear.

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Fuck You Internet

Late Night

It may have gone unnoticed as the weeks and months have peeled by, but this is to be my first addition to the BiccyBlog in some time.

I wish I could excuse my prolonged absence by recounting some intriguing adventure in distant lands. This would not be true. Nor have I been engaged in a deep introspective endeavour; tackling the grand existential questions and reconnecting with one’s ever-elusive inner child. This also would be a work of fiction as I still have yet to discover my spirit animal…

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Ownership, Licensing and Creative Control

Picasso in the Park

Legend has it that Pablo Picasso was sketching in the park when a bold woman approached him.

“It’s you, Picasso, the great artist! Oh, you must sketch my portrait! I insist.”

So Picasso agreed to sketch her. After studying her for a moment, he used a single pencil stroke to create her portrait. He handed the woman his work of art.

“It’s perfect!” she gushed. “You managed to capture my essence with one stroke, in one moment. Thank you! How much do I owe you?”

“Five thousand dollars*” the artist replied.

“B-b-but, what?” the woman sputtered. “How could you want so much money for this picture? It only took you a second to draw it!”

Picasso responded, “Madame, it took me my entire life.”**

I’m not quite sure where I first heard this – nor am I sure if this incident actually ever occurred – but as a parable it serves an important purpose to illustrate a few key points about commissioning creative content, whether dealing with artists, writers, actors, or musicians. As an illustrator, I will not profess to speak for other professions in which I am not qualified, but this tale indicates that the fee for a commission should reflect its value, and this is not solely based on the working time of a project. In this blog entry, I will discuss intellectual property and licensing, as these are often subjects I have to tackle with first-time commissioners or people who are unaware of the position of an artist.

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Customise Christmas to show you care

So we emerged from the festive period a few pounds heavier in the gut and a few pounds lighter in the coin purse. Still reeling from the excesses of this annual ritual of self-abuse, I find myself back at the drawing board reflecting on a job well done.

Each year, as the nights draw longer and the decorations start to go up in other people’s houses (as I don’t have space for a tree) I find myself again striving to perform this most intricate of balancing acts: conforming to the social and emotional obligations of the season while surrendering as little of my sparse material wealth as possible. Many may say that I go a little bit ‘Scrooge McDuck’ when it comes to spending over the holidays, but I assure you it is purely out of necessity.

That being said, this does not mean that my nearest and dearest go unnoticed or neglected. There are plenty of things that can be done to demonstrate appreciation to those you love with sufficient sentimentality as per the themes of any Christmas movie. The trick to this is to make use of your time and resources as efficiently as possible. Create, craft and improvise.

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