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I want to start writing a webcomic, but as my talent as an illustrator is limited, I would only write the scripts and let to someone else the task to bring my script into picture. The only problem is that I don't know anyone who could do that.

The question is twofold:

  1. Where is it possible to find illustrator? (Is it the right term, by the way?)
  2. What should I prepare? I mean some people wouldn't agree to collaborate if I can't prove I'm serious about it. How many scripts should I write in advance? Should I write Character Design? If yes what kind of information should be in?
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This seems like it's more a question for an art SE, not a writer's SE. –  Ralph Gallagher Jan 18 '11 at 16:18
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@Ralph: I do not agree, I'm interested in the writer's point of view. For example: what are the preparation and amount of writing made beforehand? How to make sure that you convey what you want? I think that this question has as much a place here as on a art SE, as it will both generate different answer, but each are worth considering. –  Eldros Jan 19 '11 at 7:36

2 Answers 2

up vote 5 down vote accepted

In nearly all cases where you're writing a webcomic, you are going to want a true collaborator. Comics are a visual storytelling medium, as evidenced by the fact that you can have a comic that has pictures but no text, but you can't really have a comic that is text without pictures. This person is going to be helping you to tell your story and should ideally have some freedom to make contributions of their own. The artist is going to be providing a service that you can't provide yourself, so you will want to find someone you can trust to not just follow your instructions, but know what is going to work visually.

In addition to Craigslist and Deviant Art, there are some sites and forums around that help writers and artists find people to collaborate with. A search for something like "comics artist collaborate" should turn up some possibilities. The person who draws the comic is usually just referred to as the artist; I don't see "illustrator" used as much in this context.

I would suggest having between a week's and a month's worth of strips written before you seek out your collaborator. Aside from helping to show a potential artist that you're serious, it's just a good idea to have a lot of material ready in advance, just in case something comes up that prevents you from writing new comics for a bit. I don't know if you need to do complete character designs, but you will probably want to write short descriptions of all of the main characters and settings so the artist knows what he or she will be expected to draw.

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DeviantArt is a good place to source talent relating to Art and Design. –  JFW Feb 16 '11 at 14:00

Are you really looking for a collaborator, or just someone to illustrate your vision? That can affect how you search.

Sometimes I hire illustrators and I have something very, very specific in mind that I simply want executed. Other times, I have a general guide and I want them to put their own spin on it and give me options, come up with ideas. Being clear up front with exactly what you want is the best way to find a good fit.

Either way, Craigslist is always a good option to start. The "gigs" section will let you post ads for free, and a lot of freelancers in that category watch those pretty closely. Potentials should be able to provide you with a link to their portfolio so you can get a feel of their style. You can also find a lot of talented artists on Deviant Art -- though they vary in experience and many may not be set up to handle a professional partnership.

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