Mentorship Information

MENTORSHIP WITH EMILY McDOWELL

Thank you for your interest in working with Emily! These criteria can help you determine if you and your business are a good fit for this grant. 

Basic requirements:

  • You are a self-employed artist and business owner; you might work part time, but you do not have another full-time job.

  • You have a developed, unique artistic voice and style.

  • You currently sell products featuring your work to customers online, to retailers at wholesale, or a combination.

This may be right for you if some (not necessarily all!) of these apply:

  • You need support around hiring and/or managing an employee or employees, or figuring out what to do yourself vs. what to hire someone to do.

  • You’re thinking about making the jump to wholesale, or you’re already there, and you’re trying to navigate how to best approach it in an industry that’s rapidly changing: Faire, trade shows, catalogs, sales reps, etc. Or, perhaps you’d like to sell to larger wholesale accounts, but you don’t know how to make that leap logistically. 

  • You’re trying to decide what sales and marketing channels to focus on.

  • You want help with sourcing the right manufacturers, and/or with the logistics of manufacturing.

  • You’re trying to figure out what your margins should be, and/or how to manufacture in a more cost-effective way.

  • You need to improve or implement systems for things like inventory management or customer service, and you’ve reached the limit of your own knowledge.

  • You want to figure out how to streamline and simplify, and what your priorities are, not only for the business, but for the kind of life you want.

  • You need support in managing your time, your priorities, and your dual role as business owner and artist. 

This is likely not the right fit for you if…

You don’t have quite enough experience yet:

  • You’d like to make products with your art, but you haven’t yet started making anything.

  • You’re still working out your artistic voice and style. 

  • You haven’t yet made the leap to full-time.

Or, your business model and/or goals fall outside of Emily’s areas of expertise:

  • You’re an artisan/maker, and your craft doesn’t lend itself to being produced/manufactured by someone who isn’t you.

  • You sell your work via a brick-and-mortar retail shop.

  • You work exclusively with a print-on-demand facility such as Society6 or Printful, and you don’t plan to manufacture products yourself.

  • You’re not an artist or designer; your brand’s model is based on curating / buying finished pieces to sell.

  • You plan to seek investors or venture capital to help fund your business. 

  • You’re more interested in licensing your work to others for production (see Lisa’s expertise!)

MENTORSHIP WITH LISA CONGDON

Thank you for your interest in working with Lisa! These criteria can help you determine if you and your business are a good fit for the illustration and licensing grant.

This may be right for you if:

  • You are a self-employed artist and business owner; you might work part time, but you do not have another full-time job.

  • You understand what illustration and licensing are, and the difference between the two, and you are interested in doing more of both as your career path.

  • You have a large body of illustration work.

  • You have developed a unique artistic voice and style. 

  • You have an Instagram account dedicated mostly to your illustrations and lettering.

  • You’ve begun doing illustration gigs for friends and small companies or you have licensed your work or been approached for licensing your work.

  • You’ve reached the limit of your own knowledge on how to further develop your illustration or licensing portfolio and how to reach art directors or licensors.

  • You want to make the majority of your living doing illustration and licensing, but you’re not sure yet how to get your work in front of potential publishing, illustration and licensing clients, or promote your work for strong engagement on Instagram.

  • You’re unsure of the best practices for working with editors, art directors and art licensors, especially bigger brands.

  • You’re unsure of what to pay attention to in a publishing, illustration and licensing contract; you need advice on negotiating.

  • You’re unsure of what to charge for your work when you get an opportunity. 

  • You may monetize your work already through selling prints or other products online, or you have found other ways besides illustration or licensing to make part of your income from your work. 

  • You need support in managing your time, your priorities, and your dual role as business owner and artist.  

This is likely not the right fit for you if:

You don’t have quite enough experience yet:

  • You’d like to be an illustrator and license your work, but you don’t have a solid body of work yet.

  • You’re unsure what illustration or licensing is exactly.

  • You’re still working out your artistic voice and style. 

Or, your business model and/or goals fall outside of Lisa’s areas of expertise:

  • You’re more interested in manufacturing your own products (see Emily’s expertise!)

  • You’re an artisan/maker or graphic designer not an illustrator, and your craft doesn’t lend itself to publishing, illustration or licensing.