View Full Version : Is crowdfunding worth considering?

Another User
12-04-2018, 06:58 AM
I'm a wannable comic artist and I want to delicate my life to creating comics. I don't mean to be stinky, but I want to profit a bit from what I create. I'm still writing a comic now, but I need to choose how to present my comic when it's finally done.

Recently I'm interested in crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter and Patreon. But I'm afraid I won't be able to survive on those site because they both require me to be able to hand out suitable "rewards" for my backers, and I'm afraid I won't be able to think of a good reward that will motivate people to back me. And also I have heard a lot of scandals from people who fail to deliver their products on time, and I'm too afraid to be another internet scandal (my perfectionistic side is showing again :cry:).

Now onto specific details of the sites, I'm confused which sites to choose:

Kickstarter: You can earn a lot of money in a short time with it, but it's an overnight thing, meaning that you only get money for the project you want to back and that's it. If I don't have any more project then no money for me.
Patreon: You get to earn money monthly, but the chance of someone giving you money is lower than Kickstarter. Also because you are earning money monthly, you are forced to constantly update stuff, produce new products, and have rewards readily available at all time. It is good when you are able to produce contents on a daily basic like a webcomic artist or a Youtuber. But the kind of comics I write are one-shots, which need a lot of time to come into existence. I'm afraid I won't be able to produce contents as frequently as Patreon wishes.

So these are some of my concerns. Do you have any advice for me?

12-04-2018, 08:11 AM
Kickstarter is likely the better option if you're producing bigger finished projects, but it's not really a good option for new creators. Most such projects only get funded because friends and family pay the money. Strangers won't know who you are and they won't know your work. They can't be sure if you can finish projects when it's your first project.

Patreon has similar issues in that it's difficult to get patrons if no one knows who you are and you have no finished projects.

To put this in context, I do have some finished projects. I'm not popular enough to run a successful Kickstarter campaign. My Patreon covers my website bills, but it's not the vast riches people often imagine they'll earn. If you can find some other way to earn money, that's likely to give you a better start. Art commissions and/or an art shop would be possibles and also give you time to work on your style.

12-04-2018, 09:21 AM
The trouble is, you are unknown. If you had fans, the 'rewards' would be simple enough:
actual hard-copy scenes from your comic. Signed hard copies. For higher levels, add the image of backers into a scene, as bystanders, etc. (I have a friend who would love to be a villager (or a dungeon monster) in 'Slackwyrm'.

I suspect that you would have to find a platform, even your own blog or website, so that people could see what your comics are like.

Another User
12-04-2018, 12:58 PM
Could you suggest other ways for me to get my comics some publicity? I'm working on a comic right now and I need to find a way to let it be known.

12-04-2018, 04:32 PM
This isn't something I've been involved in personally, but comics lend themselves to blogging. A beta friend I trust has told me that if you can publish a comic consistently, you'll build an audience. I have no idea what the minimum publishing schedule would be, whether daily or weekly.

There won't be any money in it, but you'll get eyeballs on your work. That could lead to an audience for books. Or you could monetize your blog with advertising if you get enough traffic.

At the beginning, it's hard enough just giving your work away. But you can set up a "tip jar," and folks might contribute to that.

12-04-2018, 04:46 PM
You have to work on gathering fans first. Social media presence and all that, to get the crowds interested. After that, it doesn't matter which form of funding you will use. A "reward" can be something really simple for a comic book artist, a doodle may be greatly enjoyed if somebody is a fan. But you have to make them be your fan first... Patreon is more about supporting your favourite artist while Kickstarter is more about supporting a project, something being made. So with Kickstarter people will expect to see a result in a reasonable amount of time while in Patreon they may just be happy to see you at work. On Patreon you can have updates and that's still rewarding to a supporter.

12-04-2018, 05:38 PM
I do support an arist on Patreon, and he does comic strips, along with other art (he's in the middle of a graphic novel at the moment). But I was a fan of his writing first, and got to know his work through that first. He offers rewards with supporters, yes, but it comes in what he does best: drawing, in fact he's just done some gorgeous Christmas cards with the characters from his novel.

I agree you need to be seen in order to get support, though. My son does digital artwork (my avatar is one of his) and he'll ask authors if they'd like a free drawing of their characters, or he'll ask if anyone wants a free drawing of their choice. It takes up time, but it's got him drawing jobs for bloggers who pay in the process.

Good luck with your comics!!

Maggie Maxwell
12-04-2018, 06:02 PM
Blogging, social media, webcomics. Either that or be skilled enough to get hired on a pro-level comic/convince Image or another company to publish your stuff. The very first things you need to do are 1) get your name and art out there and 2) prove you can deliver. A webcomic you update regularly. A twitter feed you keep full with new work and works-in-progress. Instagram. Connect with other similar artists on those medias. Once you've built a following and proven yourself, then you can crowdfund. It's a lot of unpaid work at the start for the love of it. If you try to crowdfund first, you're going to end up empty-handed.

12-04-2018, 11:16 PM
Could you suggest other ways for me to get my comics some publicity? I'm working on a comic right now and I need to find a way to let it be known.

The webcomic idea can work, but I can also see downsides, as it doesn't lend itself to all comic styles. If your plan is to have a completed comic to sell as a book, you currently don't have anything to promote. This is like authors trying to start a blog where they talk about the book they haven't written yet. Publicity comes when there's something tangible to talk about.

What you can do is promote yourself. That's why I suggested doing other art things, such as one-off drawings, because it can build a following for you as an artist. Then when you have a book to sell, you promote the book.

Should you end up trying a webcomic or single comics/pictures, do make sure you work big, so that you have the files for printing later. You can downsize them for internet display, but you can't easily make them bigger again without redrawing.

Another User
12-05-2018, 01:20 PM
I have been toying with the idea of creating a blog even before I came into contact with Patreon and Kickstarter. I want to update one chapter/some pages once at a time. Would it be a good idea for a one-shot comic?

Thank you all for replying anyway :)