I do occasional commissioned work for clients who want a comic or illustration for a very specific person or group. Some of these pieces aren’t designed for public consumption, and contain inside references that might only make sense to the recipient(s); the below (excerpted) piece, which was commissioned by Gary and Vicki Glant on their son Adam’s 30th birthday, is one such example.
My process for creating commissioned comics usually starts with a conversation in person or over the phone to brainstorm and collect information about the subject at hand. Once the concept and fee has been settled on, I can work up a rough version if the client wants a chance to weigh in before a final version is executed. The end result can take a number of different forms – original art, prints, and/or a digital file (if the work is intended for online use only).
Since projects like these vary in terms of complexity, the fees I charge vary as well. Factors that influence the price include the size of the project, the timeframe, and the amount of research involved. For more information, or to discuss a particular project you have in mind, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call my landline at 206.568.5059.
Below are some examples of commissioned work I’ve done over the years, with a bit of explanatory context for each piece.
Above: In 2008, the nonprofit organization Arts Corps asked me to draw the above invitation for Festa, Arts Corps’ annual fundraising event. The comic strip aspect was my suggestion – the only directions given to me were to include the information that appears in the captions and word balloons.
Above is my comic-strip interpretation of a talk by novelist Geraldine Brooks, commissioned by Seattle Arts & Lectures in 2016. This nonprofit organization occasionally hires me to attend one of their events and record my impressions in graphic form. Below is another example, of SAL’s Helen Macdonald lecture in 2017.
Above: “Ezzie and Pru,” commissioned by Wendy and Patrick Nazarro in 2015. Wendy and Patrick won a commissioned comic from me in 2015 via Seattle Arts & Lectures’ annual fundraising auction. We brainstormed over coffee and came up with the above concept: their two cats discussing their owners’ art collection. All of the examples in the comic are based on photos I took in the Nazarro’s home.
Above: from the blog In Yr Shoes, 2011. In 2011 Margot Case Kahn hired me to illustrate various shoe-related anecdotes in comic strip form for a blog project. Another example is shown here below.
Above: in 2006, Buster Benson, the proprietor of Seattle’s McLeod Residence bar and gallery, commissioned the above drawings for an imaginary astrological system on McLeod’s website. Patrons of the bar signed up for year-long memberships and were assigned one of the 12 categories above (“sensual golden octopus,” “creative blue fox,” etc.) for the site’s social media feature.
Above: a comic commissioned by Jennifer Trygstad for her partner Keeley’s birthday. During the course of chating with Jennifer over coffee, I learned that Keeley was a big fan of “I Love Lucy,” and decided it would be fun to insert the two of them into an imaginary episode of the show. The cats and dog in the second-to-last panel are the couple’s real-life pets.
Above: the logo for “Love is Queer,” the title of an album by Seattle band The Glasses.
Above: an illustration commissioned by Nadine Wood for her nieces and nephew. I drew three symbolic characters based on her suggestions representing her sisters’ kids’ astrological signs; the dates on the banners they’re holding represent their birthdays. I had gicleé prints made of the drawing for Nadine to present to them as gifts.