Comic Portfolio Basics

Do you have a Comic Portfolio? The dream of any aspiring comic artist is to be discovered by a big Comic Book Publisher, the challenge you face is there are numerous other artists out there. Here at Online Comic Heroes I would like to help you get noticed.  The classic portfolio is still the best way for you to convince editors that they need you and your skills.  The portfolio is your resume, your lasting impression on editors and must be your very best work.

The black portfolio case is great, but no longer a must.  What you do need is something easy to carry and easy to go through. Conventions are one of the best opportunities for an artist to show off their work.  Publishers have review sessions at almost every convention.

You must demonstrate you can draw anything and everything.  Show a full range of subject matter within a five page sequence. City scape, buildings, streets, vehicles and people.  The stories (art) should speak for itself, without any dialogue bubbles.  It is recommend that you work from a published script.  You can find examples of scripts on line.

Comic Portfolio for Pencillers

For the aspiring penciller sequential art should be the focus of your portfolio.  The tips I have read, indicate six pages should be a good size.  I have also read that you include short stories, about three pages in length.  They need to show your range and versatility.  A single hero story, a team of super heroes and a non-super hero character.

Comic Portfolio for Inkers

When demonstrating your inking skills, it is recommended that you do not ink your own penciled pages.  You can arrange to get sample pencil pages or have someone you work with do the original pencils.  Bring copies of the pages you started from, so a comparison can be made.  The same tip applies for colorists.  Have someone else provide you with the inked work.  You need to show a strong understanding of the color pallet.

Bring tools to help you, pencils, markers, a note pad and tracing paper.  During a portfolio review, the person will likely illustrate points or tips where you can improve or do something differently.  Take notes and understand that these people will be viewing dozens of portfolios during the day.  They need to be objective and do not have a lot of time for each review.  They want to help you so take what they say seriously and not as an attack, do not be offended and do not offer excuses.

Whenever you have a review of your portfolio, have something you can leave with them.  A photocopied booklet of your work.  A visual resume of your work.  Just like a resume, have your contact information clearly contained on the copies.  A final note, always, always have your most current work in your portfolio. 

Comic Portfolio: Additional Tips

There are a number of tips I have picked up.  When you are submitting art, cover art or the splash page are not helpful to your portfolio.  Yes they are fun and can show you can create an action pose.  Unfortunately they do not show your true skills off.  Always lead with sequential art.  Story telling is key to being noticed.  Show buildings, rooms, vehicles and animals.  It has been suggested the most challenging animal to draw is a horse.

There are some important things to remember.  The editor reviewing your work sees stacks of submissions every day.  Do not send an over whelming amount of work.  Focus on the very best you have.  Do not get stuck on your favorite piece, focus on the work that will get you noticed and remembered.  The editor must see in a very short time period, that you have the potential to help their company.

With digital media, remember file size.  The suggested file size should not exceed 4 megs.  Send small PDF or links to your website.  If you are sending the editor to your website, make sure it is easily to navigate.  Always remember time is limited and you do not want to make it challenging for the person you are trying to impress.



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