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A Snippet in the World of a Con Artist

Okay, so I thought I was being original with that title….turns out, many convention artist call themselves “Con Artists”….back to the drawing board. haha

I wanted to make a post that describes what it’s like to be a Con Artist, because there seems to be so much confusion.  Of course, I’m really just starting out, so I’m sure I’ll have to revise at some point. For now, here are my thoughts.

Different Artists

There are a couple different types of artist:

  • Spare Time Artist – this is the artist that has a full time job and does art and conventions on the side for the love of it and for some spare cash.
  • Full Time Artist – this is the artist that lives, breaths and eats art.  This is their full time job and their primary means of living.
  • Local Conventions  Artist – this is the artist that only attends the conventions they can drive to.
  • Anywhere Conventions Artist – this is the artist that will travel to the ends of the earth if they here it’s a great convention.

Then there are different types of media/style:

  • Comic Book Developer – the artist that’s creating and marketing their own comic book.
  • Comic Style Artist – the artist that tends to stick with comic book style characters
  • Anime Style Artist – the artist that tends to stick with anime style characters.
  • Crafter Style Artist – the artist who’s main medium is something like jewelry, plushies, clothing, keychains, clay figures, buttons etc.
  • The Author – the artist that’s trying to get exposure for their new novel.
  • Fan Art – the art that only really covers characters that are already have major fan fare – like comic book characters, or popular movies/tvshows etc.
  • Original Art – the original, non copyrighted work of any artist.

Some artists can be a mix of some, and they usually are.  For example, I sell buttons, charms, bookmarks and art prints of both original and comic book style characters.

My Fav Part About Doing What I Do.

It really doesn’t matter what kind of artist you are, what matters is that people understand what it’s like to be an artist.  I think my favorite part about being a Con Artist is when children (with their families) come up to my table and ask for advice on how to be a professional artist!  Especially when you can clearly see that the parents are supportive!!! One kid I talked to had an entire portfolio of anime style characters to show me.  It was awesome!! Normally, I give them tons of advice, do drawing demo’s and when you can see that their brain is about to explode from all the incredible info, I send them off with a free pin and a smile!  Even though I’m not making hundreds of thousands of dollars (yet), I absolutely love what I do, and I can see that I actually touch people with my art.

The Many Hats of an Artist

The down side (sorta) of what I do, is that I sometimes encounter people that don’t really understand the amount of work that goes into my job.  In order to be successful, I have to be the following things, often on a daily basis:

  • An artist! Duh! – I have to have a product to sell.  This doesn’t just mean I sit and draw all day.  I also take classes to continue to better my skills.
  • A marketing specialist. – I have to be able to get my product out there for others to see, otherwise I’m just drawing for me (I do this too). I also research new trends and new color schemes (did you know that every year a new color palette trend is released – notice how everything is pastel pink and blue this year???).
  • A business woman. – I have to register for conventions, work with printers, research permits, book flights, book hotels, book airport parking, plan logistics, organize appropriate display setups (this list could go on and on and on!!!). You get the point.
  • An accountant. – YUP! There’s a LOT of tracking to do with expenses.  Did you think you just get to pocket the cash you made at those conventions? Nope! I have to account for everything.  What I spend, what I make, the mileage on my car, the phone usage, the processing fees, etc etc. I also have an actual accountant, but I’m the one that logs everything, not her.
  • A webdesigner. – A lot of these conventions actually vet and research the artists that they select for the conventions, if your sites look horrible, you may not get selected.
  • A social media expert. – This might be part of marketing, but I still consider it a job on it’s own.  I have to learn to be an expert at Instagram posting, Tumblr Posting, Twitter Posting, Facebook (we currently have beef) Posting…and lets not forget any new popular apps that suddenly develop! Yup, I’m looking at you Snap Chat!!!
  • Commissions – Lets cover this separately!

There’s enough here to make a person go crazy.  So, if you think that being an artist is all daisy’s and drawing, you’re cray cray!!!!  And if you have a full time job (not as an artist) on top of this…!


Even as a beginner con artist, I can’t explain how many times I get messages or requests for commissioned work.  This is awesome right!!!!? Normally, I would say so, however, most often, those people don’t really understand what it takes from the artist to do those commissions.  And because I’m still small potatoes (with few followers), my prices are cheap!!!  Here are some notes!

  • Yes! That art print that you loved so much is only $15 dollars!  NO! I cannot do an personal commissioned piece of you, your 10 family members, 8 pets, all hanging from a family tree, in three different colored schemes for the same price!!! Why? Because two weeks of my time is not worth $15 dollars. My art pieces are priced low enough so that people can afford it.  That way I can sell more than one and it covers the time it took for me to make it.
  • A typical commission (for me) is usually a back and forth project.  Sometimes you want changes, and I’m happy to do them!! I want you to love your piece, but all of that takes time.  And as you’ve seen above, there are MANY other things I could be doing with my time.  So the prices are set!
  • If we agree to work on a project together, that doesn’t mean that I drop everything for your project right now.  I’m always very clear about my time lines upfront.  Fortunately, I’ve had some awesome customers who are very understanding!!! THANK YOU!


In the digital age, I know that I’m going to get ripped off eventually.  But another fun part about being an artist is dealing with it if/when it happens.  There are a couple of ways this works:

  • Someone blatantly steals from my table….it happens, and I’m not about to chase after you (assuming I even notice it before I do inventory counts). Ugh!
  • Someone gets right up to an art piece and snaps a high res photo.  I’ve seen 6 different people do this at my last convention.  I’m glad that you like my art enough to want to take a piece with you, but that’s why I’m selling.  Otherwise, I’d just upload all the high res images on the web for you to download for free.  Really, what you’re saying to me (to my face) is that you like my art enough to steal it, but not enough to pay me for it. Ugh!
  • Then there are online takers.  There are many places for me to post projects that I’m working on.  Heck, this website is one of them.  It’s marketing! I want to be able to post great photos for you to check out, but there’s always the worry that it will be taken.  And I’m not talking about copying it and using it as your screen saver.  I’m talking, stealing it, sending it off to the printers, and then selling it on your own!!!  Yes, people, that’s a real thing.  How do they sleep at night!!! Ugh!

Other Aspects

There are many other aspects of being an artist, but I think I’m going to do a whole new post on what you need to consider if you want to be a Con Artist specifically.  It will/should cover things like:

  • Are you ready?
  • How to register.
  • What do you need.
  • Where do you print your images.
  • How many should you print.
  • The different booth styles.
  • What to expect when you get to the convention.

…and many more.


For now, thanks for reading!!!


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So, obviously it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything in my blog.  All I can say is that I’ve been grinding to get everything together before my first convention.  And then once I completed it, I was hooked!! Since then, I’ve been registering for one convention after the other!!!

I’m going to start posting all of the conventions I’m applying for, so be sure to follow my schedule!!!

In the mean time, enjoy a view of my booth at ModestoCon



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Wonder Woman


IMG_4306wonderwoman Wonder Woman

I really enjoyed working on this piece.  I want to say that Wonder Woman was a major icon for the generation before me.  So, although I was well aware of her awesomeness, I was more of a Shera enthusiast.  However, lately, I’ve been diving back into the greatness of this icon.  I’m especially excited about her presence in the latest Batman vs Superman movie and what they are going to do with her character in future movies.

As for drawing her, I found that this piece went so much smoother then some of the other comic book pieces I’ve done lately.  It’s a simpler style of digital art that I think comes out so much cleaner.  Not to mention that it’s quicker to put together.  Eventually, I think I’ll link in a youtube of the creation of one of these characters.  However, in the mean time you’ll just have to enjoy the quick picture snippets that i attach.

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A Break from the Comic World

fish hair2

fish hairfish hair 1
fish hair2

Original Art vs Fan Art

As much as I love working on fan art, there’s always a time where I need to break from it and express my own art.  This is actually one of the things that I’m curious about when it comes to the Comic Conventions.  I feel like there will be more appreciation towards characters that people can recognize, but maybe not so much appreciation for original work.  Since my first Artist Alley experience will be in June, I’ll have to do a followup and let you know how well my original stuff sells.  Of course, there’s also the “conflict” between art styles.  Would it be that my original art sells better in an anime/manga world vs a comic book world?  Who knows.  This year will be a big year as far as convention selling goes.  I’m excited to start getting some answers to my questions!!!!

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Guardians of the Galaxy/Batman vs Superman

Guardians of the Galaxy, Gamora

Guardians of the Galaxy, Gamora, Comics, Comic, Purple Hair, Hero Guardians of the Galaxy, Gamora


Guardians of the Galaxy

While prepping for the Wizard World Con, I’ve been doing some more exploring of comic book characters.  I’m already a huge fan of the characters that I choose to draw, however, while researching and exploring, I’m discovering a new found love of comic book characters in general.  I can’t express enough, how excited I am to see the new Guardians of the Galaxy movie.  And although I tend to love the female characters more, I must say that Chris Pratt definitely adds to my top reasons for watching the new movie!!!

***SPOILER*** On a side note, I finally got around to seeing the new Batman vs Superman movie last weekend and I although my butt started to hurt from sitting for so long, I have to say that I truly did love the movie.  I think Ben Affleck did a great job as Batman, however, I’m so used to seeing him as a bad-ass that I was a bit disappointed that he wasn’t worth much in the final fight.  

Although I don’t usually pay much attention to the previews, I have to say, there are so many incredible comic book movies coming out.  Suicide Squad, X-Men, Captain America. I will definitely have a busy movie watching/fan art drawing summer.  So excited!!!

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Catwoman – Meow!

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catwoman digital art on wacom cintiq 13hdcatwoman digital art catwoman



Come on, who doesn’t absolutely love this character!?!?!  In my opinion, Michelle Pfeiffer is the absolute best Catwoman there could ever be.  Not to say that all the other actresses were horrible! But when I picture this villain, it’s Michelle Pfeiffer that I see and love.  I think my next fan art design will be a truer representation of Michelle, with her short, wild blond hair and everything!

Of course, I’ll definitely be selling Catwoman prints at the Wizard World Comic Con this June in Sacramento.  If you happen to be there, stop by and say hi!  I’ll make sure to update when I have more information on what booth number I have. Etc.

“A kiss can be even deadlier if you mean it!” – Catwoman

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Harley Quinn

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Color Blocking Harley Quinn Fan Art for Wizard World Comic Con 2016
harley quinn testing digital designs Harley Quinn Comic Con Fan Art


Harley Quinn

Even though I have a deep love for all of the Gotham characters, the badass rule-breaker, Harley Quinn, has always been my all time favorite villainess!  In preparation for the Sacramento Wizard World Comic Con, I think I’m going to make a bunch of different Harley Quinn designs.

On a related note, the new Suicide Squad movie looks so awesome, I can’t wait until August to see it.  After watching the trailers, I think Margot Robbie is a perfect choice for Harley’s part!!!  CAN’T WAIT!

“Don’t you want to rev your Harley?” -HQ

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New Pieces for Wizard World Comic Con 2016

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Creating poison ivy fan art on wacom cintiq 13hd creating poison ivy digital art on wacom cintiq 13hd
poison ivy digital fan art final piece
As a fairly new digital illustrator/character designer, I’m super excited to say that I have finally registered for my first comic convention! Sacramento Wizard World Comic Con 2016 – Here I Come!!!!  In preparation for this, I’ve started working on some super cute fan art.  Poison Ivy is one of my favorite comic villains.  She’s a sultry vixen with huge ties to mother nature (a passion I have recently found here in the hippie Bay Area).