Please dont be silly and ask questions that are here
read first then send a note, ok? Liz's possibly interesting FAQ
- Where did you go to school?
- What software do you use?
- What do you do for a living
- What sort of freelance do you work on?
- How do I get clients?
- How do I get people to notice me?
- How do I market myself and my work/merch? How did you?
- How do I get gallery work?
- how did you get on TV
- How to you do your work? Is that the only medium you use?
- How do you do hair??
- How long does it take you to finish something?
- Is your art anime/manga style? Is it meant to be?
- What exactly is Miss Kika for?
- Tell me about Miss Kika :3
- Will you help me?
- OMG Hows u do dis? Give me tipz!
- Who do you use to make your (blank) ?
- How to you make your urban vinyl stuff? How do you get it?
- Can we use your art on PSP tubes? Will you join our PSP tube site?
- Can I draw you a fan art, make something inspired by your art, etc?
- Will you draw something for me?
- Will you draw something for me FOR FREE or TRADE? Added LONG LONG LONG question about merch and selling your work!
Well, I was going to do this later this week anyway....but with the flood of new watchers + a mailbox filled with the same exact questions, I thought it was time to make a FAQ about me. I'm just going to answer stuff people have asked several times, so hopefully enough of you will find it of some interest
If you want to ask a question I did not list here, please ask it down below and I will add it to the FAQ! This will be a link on my journals from now on Where did you go to school?
I went to Ringling School of Art and Design (RSAD) here in Florida for 4 years. In 2006 I graduated with a BFA in Illustration. What software/medium do you use?
Adobe Illustrator CS2 for vectors and acrylic paints are the once I use the most. I know and can use many mediums, but I like those two because of the crip lines they give me. What do you do for a living?
what you see here! I work with freelance clients from my home and am trying to push my personal work "Miss Kika" as well.What sort of Freelance?
Little bit of everything, I work with lots of clients right now~ and hopefully many more soon! I do textile designs, illustration for products, packaging, portraits, editorial, anything my work seems to fit into really that I get approached about. I like to try everything at least once
that's what I love about freelance right now. For a client list just look at lizlorini.com I have a few posted there in my "About Liz > Client list" if you hunger for some specific samples.How do I get clients? How did you?
Most of you who have been watching me since last year may remember reading all this
I got a lot of paid listing services on places like hotlist and portfolios.com, plus any free directory listings I could find. Yes I has to shell out, but it got my work seen right away. I must have spent 4-5 months in "limbo" hunting everyplace I could online for freelance~ and while I waited I drew like crazy and sent out lots of E-mail to anyplace that could need freelance! I think I did a new piece of art almost every week, it really helped me develop my style a LOT after school got out.
and after limbo time
After that time, I had a BUNCH of quality work to show off in my digital portfolio that was geared specifically to the work I wanted~ not just the 4 from thesis. Clients started sniffing around....sending e-mails and stuff. Finally I landed it with two really sweet clients who still use me regularly as of now, and that helped a lot with word of mouth~ got new jobs through them and so on. Now I have a decent client list (still nothing amazing though, but its a good start) so most people contact me, I have not had to hunt since I got started.
For anyone who is asking, my best advise as of now.....still being a n00b myself....is to press on and build the work up. Its kind of like rolling a snowball, its really small and hard to get started at first~ but after a bit you can roll it larger and build onto it with ease! Flexibility and a target genre/audience seem to also play an important role in everything as well~ if you don't take the first few crappy jobs, then you will not have the experience to impress the clients you want for larger jobs that may pay the best
ALSO, don't expect to make a lot of money right away! Steady work and high paying jobs don't come as soon as you start! I still cant fully support myself, and its been almost a year at it~ but I am finally CLOSE....and can fully support my art expenses now. This is where having a understanding family really helps
Thankfully I was blessed with one that let me just draw my own work for 4 months while I was in limbo.How do I get people to notice me?
NETWORK!!!! Myspace, facebook, here, galleries, friends, anyplace! Some of the best things that have happened to me are because of constantly networking......sadly I have myspace networking to thank for many new opportunities that have come my way recently
Get business cards, get a website, and start showing people what you have! You never know who many be friends with someone that can be a great help to you!How do I market myself and my work/merch? How did you?
Marketing is SOOOOOOOO easy, but in the end you will still only profit if people like what you are doing. If its not selling no matter what you do, you work/merch may just not be something people like. First, rather than appeal to everyone~ try and find your niche market, people that you KNOW will love your work and products. Mine is made up of pop art, urban vinyl, and a lot of anime/manga fans - so I make sure I at least appeal to those set crowds.
Go to events!!!! JUST GO! Its how you build your name and learn what sells right away. I went to a bunch of cons this year, and every con I kept close attention on what sold and what did not. Normal printer prints were everyplace at cons, and because of that I could only sell them at the same prices the other artists were selling at...but making $2 a print is not worth my time at all, so I came up with a way to package my art better, keep the price low, and displayed them in a way ( with a deal if you buy 5) that it encourages people to buy more than one of my prints. Now, by only printing 2 sizes of my art...a very small cheap version, and a very large more expensive version, people that like my work will gladly pay the $50 for the larger print, since I do not offer any other sizes in between.
As for merch, all you have to do is invest in some things~sell~ and reorder what sells the best. Bags were made in canvas and red, both sold well, BUT canvas always sold completely out at every event I sold them at. Rather than buy both designs, I retired the canvas and bought double red because I know it will make me money. Its important when trying to sell a new product that you "test sell" it first to see if its worth a large order.....otherwise you could be stuck with 5,000 shirts and nobody wanted them. In an emergency with a failed product you must AT LEAST be able to make back what you spent.
Example, remember the first set of bags I did last year that the printer messed up and they came out at a poor quality? Well since people at cons like deals (I learned that $5 is the magic con number) I threw them all in a box and marked them at $5. All 70 crappy bags completely sold out in ONE day~you carry stuff around at a con, so who could say no to a cheap canvas bag? I made enough to recover my cost, and a bit of profit as well....granted I could not sell them at the $20 I originally wanted, but the important thing was I made back my investment.
Now for the whole package, people like things to look professional
...it makes them feel better about spending money on your product. I am the same way, I like things sealed up when I get them~ and I adore nice packaging art! I make sure that everything I can possibly do has some sort of nice packaging. How do you get the extra money to do this? Well the best bet is to buy in bulk, my acid free backing boards cost me about $175 to order, BUT per board that broke down to only .04 cents per print on a nice acid free board. You just work it in the cost and think about how much per UNIT something costs to make.
Last tip, and this goes for cons a lot... dont whore your work out!
Yeah the person next to you is selling $1 drawings, but think about how much time it is going to take just to make that $1....its not even worth the ink wasted. If you price your things good to start, bring them down slow by the end of the con....if something is not selling good I may sell it to you for $20 instead of $25, but not for $5. You must have respect for the true value of your merch, I have had people bawk at $20 for a tote bag, but come right back at the end of the con. Also, MAKE DEALS
if they are not sure about buying something. Everyone loves a deal, even throwing in a button with a print will help and a button is only .10 value to you, but worth much more to someone buying How do I get gallery work?
I really don't know, I'm still new to it myself! Having something that people find appealing helps, networking, and just attempting to participate in group shows! Galleries have them all the time, and it can be easier to participate in a group show with one piece then to hunt and press to find someone willing to dedicate a whole show/space to you right off the bat. Right now I plan on hanging, participating, or just attending any event the will let me in at
I love to go, I love to participate, and I love to meet new people!
To make it simple, Have work they like~ contact them~ get in to group shows to start. Thats all I can say, its up to the gallery in the end. How did you get on TV?
Looks like lots of new users read my old journals and saw that NBC "Good morning America" thing in old posts. My personal work as not on TV, but work I did for freelance was. It was something I has worked on for a client, so the client was featured on TV~ and since I did the work the client was selling that's how it happened! hehe It was a bit of luck and good timing~ they only brought a few examples on the show....and out of a set of maybe 20 pieces I had made around 15! So almost all the work shown (except one piece I think) was something I had made.How to you do your work? Is that the only medium you use?
I usually come up with a sloppy sketch in my sketch book first....I am NOT one of those people with awesome sketchbooks that could be framed
I use mine to jot down ideas/concepts/colors/elements I could find of some use sometime. When I find a piece I want to do, I scan it in and use Adobe Illustrator CS2 and a Wacom Intuos to work. Sometimes I do use photo reference of my own, but not always~ usually only if I'm stuck with an arm or hand pose.
Illustrator is not the only medium I use, but the one I am the strongest at + my preference~ so that's why that's 99% of what you see here. I do like to paint with watercolor and acrylic/airbrush (I LOVE doing custom vinyl figures) but even then, my acrylic is still sharp like vectors anyway
I also like to sculpt and sew, but at a small scale~How do you do hair??
So many people note me and ask about this
I have no real secret, I just LOVE doing hair~ so I guess my work shows that! lol! I start with base shapes and just keep on adding more and more detail to give it interesting flow and shape. How long does it take you to finish something?
Usually I work on something on and off for around 3 days~ I like to take breaks and come back to work sometimes. I can work really fast if needed, the quickest I can pump out a semi decent vector is one hour usually. Is your art anime/manga style? Is it meant to be?
A million times NO. I consider my work "east meets west pop-art" since I am a fashion illustrator. I have spent long periods of time in Korea and Japan, so the Asian ascetics you see in my work come from those experiences~ What exactly is Miss Kika for?
Miss Kika is what I wanted to do to separate my fashion work from my personal work. I wanted to make something that I would love to do, but people would actually want to buy and hang~ so I thought of everything I enjoyed and loved myself
so there ya go! She is intended to appeal to the lovers of whole designer vinyl art movement~ crisp work, interesting colors, tad sexy, and a little bit of Asian inspiration. I want people to notice it, maybe the don't LOVE it...or even like it....but they notice it and remember who I am. The reaction offline has been very solid and encouraging (with all ages~ female and male) so I have been pressing on to to a whole portfolio in this style so I can approach places about prints and shows later on.Tell me about Miss Kika :3
um...she is supposed to be somewhat innocent and unaware of her suggestiveness
if that makes sense. Her name is from my first pet cat "Kika" because I always loved the name and my cat had a nice quiet/calm personality like the character~ Her boyfriend is named "Teddy" after my first dog, who was also very sweet and gentle. So a cat and dog
hehe. I prefer to draw Kika in panties with long straight hair, but she can wear both any way she wants~ its more fun that way. She is not intended to be Asian, but she does have narrow eyes because I love the gentle look it give the character! Her accessories are there because I LOVE drawing them, and her hair piece is kind of inspired by a geisha Kanzashi which I had to recreate during my Advance Japanese History class as RSAD. I did a lot of research and fell in love with them~ So I tried to make something with a similar twist when I came up with Kika's "Kanzashi Candy" Will you help me?
I get mails all the time asking for me to plug people, hook them up with a place I work with, promo them on my journal, etc. The answer is NO, NO, NO. Do your own hard work to find places, watchers, jobs, etc. I do help and hook up people, but not people who ask~ if I think something helps someone I know here I drop them a line, but not to people who just ask because they need an easy hook up. As for my journals, I dont really pimp other peoples things unless I feel like it or they are my friends~ My journals are already super long
Please dont ask me though, you are on DA...so promo yourself. OMG Hows u do dis? Give me tipz!
read my FAQ. If the question is not on the FAQ, then feel free to ask. Who do you use to make your (blank) ?
* I have my own button press, they cost about $300 in the end for the parts, cutter, and press.
* Bluecollarpress.com does my shirts/ bags right now. they cost from $200-$600 to get made
* My Web site was made by
and no, he does not work for free~ but he was worth it!
* My printers are an Epson R200 ($100) and an Epson 3800 ($1300) for my prints and canvas work.
* My Tablet is a Wacom Intuos 3, cost about...ughhh $180 I think? How to you make your urban vinyl stuff? How do you get it?
I get the toys wholesale through hookups I have in bulk, so I have to buy many at a time. I paint them with airbrush, Sharpie poster markers (those are great!), and just normal paint. I coat them with a clear spray or glitter coat. The toys I like to paint are called "Tamos", but I also have painted BUDs and Munny dolls. Can we use your art on PSP tubes? Will you join our PSP tube site?
I swear to god, I say no to these places at least once a week~ and its always the same damn 4 psp tube sites/ clubs asking it seems. NO, NO, NO!!! Make a note of it!! Miss kika- NO! I don't care if I can make money on your site, I do not want my art played with by someone else, because its mine and not stock art for you to mess with and make banners or whatever. I think its pretty stupid really, but thats just my opinion. Also, don't steal my pieces and sell them as your own to PSP tube places~ that has happened 2 times already and it has lowered my opinion of these places even more. Can I draw you a fan art, make something inspired by your art, etc?
Sure! Let me know and I'll post it on the fan art page
If its for school thats fine too, but ask your teacher and be sure to give me some credit if you are turning it is as a project. This goes even more so for younger students who redraw pieces I have made, its fine for school~ but just make sure people know its based off another art piece
The only thing I have to ask, is if you are going to do a piece based on my work or a fanart (that clearly is or has been noted as such) that you do the polite thing and not sell it as prints or as a piece....at least without asking me first. I just find it kind of rude to make money off of my concepts/style when its obvious you used them as the basis for your piece :/ at the end of the day I cant do anything, but it really just is poor manners. Will you draw something for me?
Sorry, I don't draw unless its for a commission or a friend because I feel like it~ Sometimes I will open up for sketch commissions, but it depends on my free time, so just keep an eye out if you are interested. If you wish to commission me at my normal freelance rate for a private piece please drop me an e-mail~ but the rates are dramatically higher than what was posted on DA~ just a warning Will you draw something for me for FREE or as a TRADE?
For free- Hell no. Do you work for free? These things take time and I need to pay my own bills and feed myself, if you like my art enough to ask, RESPECT it enough to not ask for something for nothing....its really rude. Also, "credit" is not as good as getting paid. I dont need your promo as payment, I need PAYMENT so I can pay my bills and keep on drawing the art you enjoy.
For a trade- I only trade with my close friends or artists I really enjoy and watch. Right now I am too busy to even trade with my friends though.