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  • artists + illustrators

    SURVEY

    2014

    PIKALAND

  • The Pikaland Artists & Illustrators Survey 2014

    When I set out to do the Pikaland Survey 2014, I

    didn’t know where to start. I’ve been doing (al-

    most) yearly surveys to find out more about my

    audience – who was reading, what they were inter-

    ested in, and who needed my help.

    I’ve come a long way, and with each year I dig into

    my data – I unearth new findings, and discover

    new ways in which I can be of service to my read-

    ers. From the different type of content that is re-

    quested to the kind of projects that you wanted to

    see, your comments and suggestions were all read,

    digested and some were earmarked for me to im-

    plement.

    And so this year, I decided to try something differ-

    ent. Instead of making it just about Pikaland, I de-

    cided to try and make the survey more about YOU

    instead. So I did a survey that invited you to share

    your income along with questions on what worked,

    and at the end of it, to publish what was recorded.

    To tell you the truth, I was really nervous when I

    gave this project a go. I knew there was a line and

    I wasn’t sure that it was mine to cross. But I did it

    anyway. They say that the best way to learn is to

    do it, and boy did I learn.

    I learned that pushing the envelope is hard.

    I learned that it’s okay to make mistakes.

    I learned to be hopeful.

    I didn’t add a conclusion to this survey as I wanted

    you to make up your own mind about where this

    data can lead you, but I hope that by the end of

    this you’ll feel hopeful too.

    A note before we begin.

    All of the data collected during the survey is kept purely for the purpose of the survey, and will not be shared with any individual or company. We place great emphasis on privacy!

  • The Pikaland Artists & Illustrators Survey 2014

    Doing a survey that crosses international borders

    is a challenging one. And while I knew that running

    this survey was ambitious, it was something I had to

    try. I got a few emails after the survey that gave me

    great suggestions and raised questions – and I learnt

    a lot. My promise to you is that I’ll make it better the

    next time round.

    Here are some of the issues that I faced when it

    came to the portion on income:

    Location + Currency

    How much one person earns might be enough for a

    family of 4 in Asia, while the same amount might not

    be able to feed one in the UK.

    Quantity

    While location is a primary consideration, personal

    choices are also difficult to define. For example, 2

    persons living in the same location have different

    ideas about what constitutes a comfortable income.

    Goals

    In the same vein as location and quantity, everyone

    has different goals and thus it also boils down to

    what they need, and what they want.

    So while I’ve shown the average income one makes

    in the included charts, the above 3 reasons come

    into play before one can decide on a conclusion –

    al of which are very subjective. I’ve also included

    examples of income that they’re currently earning

    through various projects. This would allow for a bet-

    ter viewpoint of earning potential which will also

    open up possibilities and conversations on the ways

    that an artist and illustrator can earn alternative in-

    comes in the modern landscape.

    On income + money

  • The Pikaland Artists & Illustrators Survey 2014

    This survey isn’t perfect. There were a few errors that happened in the sur- vey program that led to problems such as looping (forms were not submitted and instead got looped back to the beginning) and a number of uncom- pleted submissions (which were discarded).

    Be more diligent I realise that I had made a big error when the field to gather data for where the responsers were based at wasn’t complete (I did not include Africa in the list of options). Rookie mistake!

    Giving an out for certain questions For sensitive questions, I should have provided an option to opt out of the question instead of indirectly not allowing respondents from mov- ing forward. I later added it in, but I knew that the damage had already been done.

    Understand the software better It was the first time I had used Survey Monkey and complications arose after the survey went live. While I had tested the survey several times without problems, respondents alerted me to er- rors as I updated the survey.

    Structured the survey better As this was my first time creating a survey that also touched on the topic of income, It ran a lot longer than my other surveys. I’ve since learnt a lot from the data, and therefore will be able to cut down on the number of questions and keep it laser focused the next time round.

    What you should know

    What I could have done

    better

  • The Pikaland Artists & Illustrators Survey 2014

    Pikaland started out as an illustration blog in 2008 –

    featuring artists and their wares daily for 4 years. Since

    2012 the blog has begun to dig deeper into the pro-

    cess and business side of being an illustrator by piec-

    ing together clues on how artists can move forward in

    the modern digital era.

    The site features artist interviews, creative ideas, PDF

    guides and online workshops for artists and illustra-

    tors who are interested in advice on how to navigate

    life, business and creativity.

    Read: http://wwww.pikaland.com

    I’m an art and design magazine editor turned illus-

    trator; and an adjunct lecturer at The One Academy,

    Malaysia where I touch on topics about creativity and

    illustration. As a self-taught artist, I regularly write on

    the topic of entrepreneurship, illustration and creativ-

    ity; deciphering clues and shedding light on the inter-

    section between them.

    Pikaland is a platform where I experiment with my

    ideas and share the things that I’ve learnt along the

    way.

    Email me: amy@pikaland.com

    About Pikaland

    About Amy

    If you have any comments, feedback, or suggestions, please write to me at amy@pikaland.com

    Conversely, if you’d rather do it anony- mously, you can use our Google Form.

    GOT FEEDBACK?

    GET IN TOUCH >

    https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1eSXjkZaaoX4QxiqakEumf6KRo5rhg-ri4p3AcPypNGw/viewform?usp=send_form mailto:amy@pikaland.com http://pikaland.com mailto:amy@pikaland.com

  • The Pikaland Artists & Illustrators Survey 2014

    USA

  • The Pikaland Artists & Illustrators Survey 2014

    USA Total number of respondents: 91 Age groupMale / Female

    9%

    91%

    Female Male

    Do you have an agent?

    No Yes

    5%

    95%

    Websites used to sell products

    What software do you use to manage your website

    Wordpress

    Behance

    Blogger

    None of the above

    Squarespace

    Cargo

    Bigcartel

    I don't have a website at all

    Tumblr

    Shopify

    0 10 20 30 40

    Etsy

    On your own website

    None of the above

    Society6

    Spoonflower

    Amazon

    Craigslist

    Ebay

    0 13 25 38 50

    18 to 24

    25 to 34

    35 to 44

    45 to 54

    55 to 64

    65 to 74

    0 10 20 30 40

  • The Pikaland Artists & Illustrators Survey 2014

    USA Total number of respondents: 91 Annual income (USD$)

    How do you earn your income?

    Current occupation

    Below $15,000

    $15,001 to $30,000

    $30,001 to $50,000

    $50,001 to $75,000

    Above $75,000

    I don't feel comfortable sharing!

    0 10 20 30 40

    Graphic designer

    Educator

    None of the above - I'm a fulltime illustrator!

    Art director

    Photographer

    0 13 25 38 50

    Through artwork/illustration commissions

    By selling my handmade products (through Etsy, craft fairs, etc)

    I work full-time in an unrelated field

    None of the above

    Through 3rd party services like Society6/Cafepress/Zazzle

    Licensing

    I sell wholesale to shops

    Selling copyrights to my work

    0 15 30 45 60

    I’m a full-time illustrator!

    Pitching to bloggers

  • The Pikaland Artists & Illustrators Survey 2014

    USA Total number of respondents: 91 How do you market your business?

    What worked for me (in descending order)

    Other jobs taken on:

    A list of projects/jobs undertaken + income:

    Facebook / Instagram / Emailing / Twitter / Blog subscribers

    Word of mouth Exposure on bigger blogs

    Chalkboard artist / Adjunct lecturer Retiree / Barista / Tutor & translator Surface pattern designer / Court mediator Human resource assistant / Tax accountant Sales rep at call center / Accessory Designer

    Selling a piece of original art: $500 Illustrating a children’s book: $5000 advance plus royalties

    Branding project: $10,000 Licensing illustrations for a card series for a major company: $30,000

    In-house designer for a lar