Ellen Million (ellenmillion) wrote,
Ellen Million

Sketch Fest - some more details and suggestions

I'm so excited to see people signing up for the sketch fest!

There have been several questions about posting pictures, funding models and donations that I'd like to attempt to answer:

Do I have to post my results?

You don't have to, but it's a really good idea to. It encourages our prompters to see what you've created, and helps with the 'creative jam' aspect of our event to see what others are working on.

How do I post my results?

If you are not working digitally, you'll need to scan or photograph your work to show it off!

Be absolutely sure to re-size your work for web-viewing. Please do not post anything larger than 700 pixels on the long side in the comments of the Sketch Fest - as it is, we're going to have a LOT of images, and the page is going to be large to download. If you want to post something larger, you are welcome to do so, at your own site, in your own journal, at another art gallery or wherever. You are welcome to link to your larger image. (See below for special Portrait Adoption terms!)

You can upload your piece to your own server, to livejournal, or to Portrait Adoption. Once you have a link for your piece, please post the image in a reply to the original prompt using this code: < img src="http://theaddressofyourimage.jpg" > Just take out the spaces on the insides of the < and > marks. If it is larger than 700 pixels, please just post the link. If you need a place to upload your work, please let me know.

If you have used more than one prompt for inspiration, you can post your piece in reply to both of the prompts. (This doesn't actually make the page download any faster, since it's the same image)

Do I have to ask for money?

Absolutely not. Your goals may include 'producing lots of work,' 'practicing something I find hard,' 'making some money,' 'getting my name out there,' or just 'having fun.' While EMG is providing a platform for this event, I'm sure not going to dictate which (if any!) of these goals you are pursuing.

Some of us will also be using this event for practice and fun only, and potentially using as starting points for larger, finished pieces we may sell commercially later.

In the end, the details of your participation in this event is up to you.

The only thing we require is that you sign up ahead of time, and that you post to the project entry *only* those sketches that you've worked on for 1 hour or less. I'll post an 'afterwards' post later where you can show us what you've expanded your sketches to be.

I like the idea of money, but I don't know how to ask for it...

Asking for money may feel a little weird, if you aren't accustomed to it. Here are a couple of models you may want to explore:


One method is to simply ask for general donations, to keep you working through the day. When you complete a sketch, post the finished piece in a reply to the prompter. Mention at the end that you have a donation button in your blog if they liked the piece, and then include a link. Or, if you don't have a donation button, you can just let them know your paypal email address. Or, you can mention your donation button or address in your original sign-up post, and then not mention it again. A particularly appreciative prompter may go looking for it, but it's a good idea to make it easy for them.

Sell the original or prints:

You may also sell the original, or prints of your sketch(es). Like donations above, just let them know what the cost is, what they get for that price, and how to pay you.

Portrait Adoption:

If you are a contracted member of Portrait Adoption, you may post your finished portrait work for sale at PA. To get the appropriately sized and watermarked image, go ahead and submit your work to the lilypad as soon as you complete it. Then, you can right-click the image, click on 'copy this image location' and post it in the reply to the prompter. I will try to get through submissions quickly, so they will be available on-line for buying immediately.

Pay to Finish:

This can be done in several ways. You may post your sketch and ask for funds to complete it. You can set benchmarks, for example "If I get $5, I'll finish the figure. If I get $10, I'll add another figure. If I get $50, I'll add color, etc." People can make contributing donations as they can afford, to move the picture along. You can do this completion work at any time after the Sketch Fest is finished.

You may also want to agree to finish one of them, with or without payment, and let people vote on which to finish, but weight votes that come with donations.

Or, you can offer a flat fee for finishing something as a commission, asking for $xx to finish this piece to the client's specification. (Similarly, you can offer it on Portrait Adoption with customization options.)

Making a Paypal Donation Button:

If you have a Paypal account, you may simply list your Paypal email and ask for payments. A better method is to post a 'donation button.' You must log in to your paypal account, click on "Merchant Services," and then click on "Donate" under "Create Buttons." This will step you through creating a small bit of script. This script can be posted in a livejournal entry, but cannot be posted in comments. It's also somewhat prone to breaking - make sure that you view your entry as HTML, not rich text.

Something For Free

Even if you're using a pay model for your participation, consider throwing out a freebie or two! Reward your prompters by offering a random one or two of the originals you create for free, or allowing one of the portrait prompters to use your work as their character. Some of us will be rolling a 6-sided die for every 6 portraits we sketch - 1 in every 6 people will win a sketch that they can use for their character at no charge.

A glance at the future...

If this goes well, I will be moving this event off of livejournal and onto a webpage proper, coded specifically for SketchFest. Also coming (regardless of SketchFest), an easier way to allow microfunding without waching Paypal snack on their fees. Oh boy, is that coming. *wild, barely containable glee...*

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