Congrats to @mitch_tom, @polyblow and
@sebastibo @3x3mag #illustration #illustrations
We’ve been representing Katy Lemay for about 16 years now and I am still her biggest fan. #illustrator #illustration
Illustrators, have a look at Varrom Magazine.
February is one of my favorite months of the year. I have so many wonderful things to celebrate in February. My first daughters birthday, Valentines Day, our annual Work for FREE promotion and the month in which Anna Goodson Illustration Agency was founded.
Seventeen years ago this month, I decided to start an illustration agency. What was I thinking? I had no idea what lied ahead. I was young, ambitious and very passionate. I was also a bit naive, which in hind site was probably a good thing.
I never really realized just how hard it would be. In the beginning, no one knew who I was and when you are a complete unknown, its hard to get people to believe and trust in you.
So if you can imagine, I had a hell of a time, trying to get illustrators to represent. It seemed like every time I approached someone they turned me down for one reason or another. I spent months trying to find illustrators that would take me on.
Finally, after several months, I managed to put together a team of about 6.
I could never promise that I would get them work but I did promise them that I would work my but off. This still stands true today.
Mid way through 1996, someone came to me and told me that I needed to get a website for the agency. I had no idea what they were talking about but I had a vision and believe that having a website was a great thing to have.
Back then, almost non of our clients even had access to the internet, let alone an email address. I still felt it was a good thing to have, even if I wasn’t completely sure why.
My office was in a second bedroom in an apartment that I shared with a room-mate. There was no air conditioning, so in the summer, I worked in my underwear and bras. I made so many phone calls to clients, that I would get pimples down the side of face. I barely made any money and accumulated a big debt.
My parents who were concerned, would give me rolls of toilet paper and canned tomato soup when I would go and visit. My father always told me that if it didn’t work out, I could also go back and work in advertising.
Going back was not an option for me, neither was failing. My dream was to have one of the most respected international illustration agencies in the world and I was not going to settle for anything else.
For the next 5 years, all I did was work but my work was also my passion, my love and my hobby. I ate, slept and dreamed about the illustration industry.
Soon, all the hard work, dedication and passion would start to pay off.
Our agency grew and so did our international reputation. Clients and Illustrators alike, started to seek us out and our services. We were working regularly with some of the most prominent magazines, advertising agencies and newspapers in the USA and in Canada.
The debt I had accumulated was finally paid off and I no longer need to go to my parents house for food and toilet paper.
Sylvie Hamel joined the agency in 2001 and with her help, my dreams for the agency started to become a reality.
We have been so fortunate to represent and work with such talented illustrators over the years. Many of them have been with us since our humble beginnings.
As much as things have changed over the years, many of the important things have remained the same.
We love what we do and really care about the people that we represent. We also really care about the illustration industry and do our best to help promote the idea of commissioning original illustrations.
These past seventeen years have been amazing!
There is however nothing more gratifying than to know that because of our hard work, many, many illustrators have been able to make their dreams come true.
Thank you to everyone who has been with us, supported us, worked with us, hired us, laughed with us and cried with us, these past seventeen years.
Look out, we’re only just getting started!
For the fourth year in a row, the Illustrators of AGM want to help out any way they can and are offering to work for FREE. The exclusive offer is available to non-profit organizations and charities that wouldn’t normally have the budget to commission original illustrations from the Montreal-based agency. AGM Founder Anna Goodson said: “We’ve been very fortunate and wanted to give something back to the industry. There are so many organizations out there that don’t have the budgets to spend on original illustrations. That’s why we wanted to help and offer our services for FREE.” Founded in 1996, AGM is a boutique-style International agency that serves the global marketing needs of the visual arts community. Today, AGM’s illustrators work alongside some of the world’s leading advertising agencies, design firms, magazines, publishers and newspapers. Anna continued: “Our exclusive offer is only available to non-profit organizations and charities, until February 28th, 2013. If you’d like to find out more, please send us an email or just give us a call.
Research is the key to finding the perfect Agent or Rep that’s right for you.
There are many agencies out there and you need to find the right one for you.
The relationship between an Illustrator and an Agent is a special one and not everyone is suited for each other.
Do your research and source out the ones that you feel would be a good fit with you and your style.
For example, if you are a Children’s Book Illustrator, then look for an agency that specializes in Children’s Books.
Find out as much as you can about the agency before contacting them. I always like to hear that an illustrator knows about our firm and did their home work before contacting us.
I hate just being cc. on a long listed email that goes out to many Agents or Reps at the same time.
Make sure that when you do find an Agent or Rep that you are interested in, that you proceed to contact them in a very professional manner.
Don’t ever address your emails to Dear Sir/ Madame or To Whom it May Concern, get the name of the person you are trying to contact. Its not very hard and if you can’t find the person’s name, call up the agency and find out who you should be addressing your email to. When I get emails that are not properly addressed to me, I just trash them.
When you write your email, be clear and precise and tell that person why you want to be represented by them. Example, you feel that you fit in with the style, you have heard great things about the agency etc.
Don’t be too familiar either. Best to stay very professional. I get emails some times that start with, ” Hi There, Hey Anna… and some times end with hugs and kisses or your friend ….
We are not friends and being overly familiar is not the way to proceed in business.
Keep your email short and too the point and include a link to your site. If you don’t have a website ( personally I think that all professional illustrators who are NOT represented should have their own site) send a few low rez jpegs.
Don’t send high rez and don’t send compressed files with loads of images. Keep it simple.
We don’t have time to read a long story about how when you were a child you always wanted to be an illustrator and your dropped out of school to persue your dream. Sorry to be blunt but we don’t really care about that. We want to see that you have a passion for your work and that you are professional at what you do. So be clear, short and procise but the intention of your email.
Be honest and be yourself.
Since we Agents are some times bombarded with emails from illustrators wanting to be represented, it can be very difficult and time consuming to reply to all representation requests.
Please d’ont take this personally. I use to try to reply to all the emails I received but it just got too difficult with the amount I receive.
If the Agent or Rep is interested in your work, you can be sure that they will get in touch with you. It may not be right away but they will or at least I do.
If we don’t then follow up in a few weeks with another email, it shows you are on top of things.
When I am interested in someone, I get back to them and send them a copy of our contract to have a look at.
Its important to get the agreement down in writing so that both parties involved agree on the conditions of the contract.
Contracts should cover the territory, the commission and the duration of the representation agreement.
If you are asked to sign a contract, make sure you understand what you are signing. If you are not sure, then don’t be afraid to ask questions.
Commissions are pretty standard in our industry at 30%.
If you get lucky and find an Agent or Rep that is willing to take you on then remember that you are entering into a relationship that goes both ways.
Both parties are expected to invest their time, finances and energy into the relationship to make it work.
Its not because you have an Agent or Rep that you just sit back and wait for work to come in.
You need to be pro active, involved and work even when commissions don’t come in.
I love when my illustrators come to me with ideas and show me work they have been working on when times are quite.
We work in this wonderful industry of illustration and if you know how to get yourself a great Agent or Rep, then I can assure you it could really give your carrer a boost for the better.
HALLOWEEN IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER!
Come and join in the fun and take part in our AGM Annual Pumpkin Carving Contest.
Be as wild and creative as you’d like! If you can’t get a hold of a pumpkin, feel free to use any vegetable or fruit – the important thing is that you carve it yourself.
To submit a pumpkin, please click HERE, where you can register and post a photo of your pumpkin to the site.
You can also vote for your favorites and comment on the pumpkins!
Voting ends at 12pm on November 1st, 2012 and we will showcase the top three entries on the AGM website during the first week of November.
Pumpkin Contest website: agoodson.com/pumpkin
Follow us on Twitter @AGMpumpkin