In my last blog, I mentioned (ok, shouted) about not making any money from my caricatures at Paul Henry's Art Gallery two Thursdays in a row. Today, I am hatching a plan to get some sales by offering some original art everyone can afford: caricatures on blank business cards.
If this sounds familiar, you're probably acquainted with Hugh MacLeod, the Internet cartoonist famous for his "cartoons drawn on the backs of business cards" and his blog www.gapingvoid.com. I am also inspired by Northwest Indiana artist Sophia Rapata, who specializes in "spooky", ethereal art (that's the best way I can describe it) and who sketches people on the first Thursdays in the month when I'm not there. Sophia has put out this little basket full of her unique sketches that she sells for $2 each; it's sitting on the glass case across from where I set up my caricature table.
What I'm doing now is making celebrity caricatures on blank business cards, for practice and to show as examples. My theme is "Daytime Talk Show Hosts"; so far I've done Steve Harvey, Kelly Ripa, Michael Strahan, Rachael Ray, Ellen DeGeneres, Katie Couric and Bethenny Frankel. Now I must decide how to color them: colored pencils or colored markers? I'm leaning toward colored markers, but I always use them, and I am trying something new. I'll give colored pencils a try.
I can do quick little sketches in black & white for $1 and in color for $2; I'm sure most people can spare at least one dollar. If they're short, I'll take 75 cents for black & white--I want to sell my stuff any way I can. It's a great way to get myself and my work out there. Business card-sized cartoons fit into a wallet and can be pulled out for a little laugh break anytime.
Another inspiration: Meg Evan Zold, a regular at Paul Henry's Acoustic Thursdays, once bought a cartoon card from a bunch that I had printed from my computer. It had my waitress character Lizanne jumping up high when her boss Marty yells, "MOVE like you got a PURPOSE in LIFE!" At the PHG Halloween party, she told me she uses that card to jumpstart herself when she feels like slowing down. Cartoons do have their practical uses.