In thinking about my New Years Resolutions for 2010, I have been reflecting back on 2009 and what I wanted to accomplish. My main goal was to get into art licensing. If you are also interested in licensing, here are some things to consider:
What kind of product would your art look good on? I spent countless hours researching on line and looking at companies who use licensed artists to design their products. I looked at artists' web sites, trade magazines, catalogues, and in stores to see where my artwork would fit.
Find what you need to know about contracts, fees, royalties, copyrights and everything else. I attended seminars on art licensing given by artists and manufacturers as well. I also invested in books about how to get started, and read every blog I could find.
Decide what works best for you in your life today. Do you want to go out on your own or work with an agency? For me, an agent was the best way to go. I would rather spend my time designing and let someone else handle the trade shows, contract negotiations, art submissions, etc. It's worth it to me to split the royalties!
Pound the Pavement:
Whether you're looking for a great agent or trying to find companies who want to license your artwork, you need to get out there and find them. I attended The Atlanta Gift Show to look for companies, and tried making contacts on my own before deciding I wanted to work with an agency. I researched a lot of licensing agencies, submitted artwork, had telephone conversations, and then made a few appointments to meet with them in person at Surtex.
Be a good listener:
I went to Surtex on the last day of the show hoping it would have cleared out by then and the agents wouldn't be too busy. I had scheduled appointments with some, but there were others who I just met for the first time that day. A few didn't want to talk to me out of respect for the artists they represent, but most of the agents I spoke to were more than happy to take a look at my artwork and give some advice. I heard some of the same comments consistently from different agents, so I took notes and made revisions when I got home. I sent artwork back to a few of the agents I felt were promising, and was lucky enough to find one to represent me! I now have a licensing deal in the works for a fabric manufacturer, and my licensing agency will be launching my new collections at the Atlanta Giftware show this week!