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Other forums like this?

Shadowdragon

Registered User
Validated User
Other than here of course, are there other forums, web sites, google groups, etc that people use to both advertise themselves and find others who can help with given projects? Like, if I wanted to advertise myself as a layout designer, or if I wanted to look for artists and illustrators to help with some projects, where should I go? Are there certain places people tend to favour over others?
 

Ilya

No creativity for titles
Validated User
It depends on the kind of work. I can't help much with advertising design services because I've never looked for it or advertised as one. I know that a lot of designers put out their work in places like Behance, but I don't think RPG companies look for designers there. I suspect you might have some luck using social networks, but that's just a suspicion not based in any concrete evidence.

But I know a bit about advertising artworks and locating concept artists and illustrators, and I can help with this one.

One of the best places to find illustrators of late is Artstation. You can see if the artist is open for freelancing on their profile, and PM them through their built-in system. Their search function is pretty decent once you turn off the "Show PRO first" option. Many artists also include links to their personal portfolios there, which is a plus.

Although there's a lot to shuffle through, you can still find professional artists open for freelacing at deviantART. There's no dedicated section in the profile for their freelancing status, but many announce their status and contact means in their journal, and it also has a handy PM system.

Then there are unconventional places like Tumblr. Surprising, I know, and I honestly don't know how things are now since they bungled their ToS update. There is a PM system, but it's not exactly reliable and can be disabled by the blog owner. It's not curated or easily searchable like Artstation or deviantART, but some bloggers like to create curated blogs to signal boosting the works of other artists, and those are terrific places to find new artists! You usually can get a better insight of how one artist works and their specialties by visiting their blog, something you don't get to see in their portfolio.

I suspect networks like Instagram and Twitter are being used in the same manner Tumblr was, so it's worth taking a look there as well.


How to contact an artist
Look for their personal portfolio and contact them through their preferred method, usually listed in their contact or about page. Yeah, many places have inbuilt PM systems... and these systems may not work very well, failing to notify people through email.

Worse still, a lot of people send artists fan mail and PMs about other subjects. If you send an inquiry through there, you risk having it slip through the cracks. If you want to make sure an artist will see your inquiry, go to their portfolio, grab their email address or whatever page they direct you and contact them through it. It's not guaranteed you'll get a timely reply, but it increases the chance of having your inquiry read.


The best places to advertise from an artist POV
I'm on this road for quite a while. The channel I get most inquires culminating in actual work is through email, followed by Tumblr. I get a lot of fan mail at Tumblr too, so I do my best to redirect people to my portfolio and contact page so I don't miss inquires.

DeviatART comes in third place in messages volume, but, it's not a really good place to find work. I get many requests, true, yet few people there are willing to pay my rates. Then, Artstation. I don't have clear metrics there because I'm closed for commissions most of time and set it on my profile, but I still get inquires there.

Oh, and I didn't mention LinkedIn because I barely maintain it, but I've got the odd message there too. Add Facebook to the "not really worth mentioning" list too. I used to keep a fan page there and managed a quite decent following, getting an expressive number of inquiries, but the interaction with the public was rather weird and I didn't get many requests leading to actual work, just like deviantART.
 
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