In licensing your artwork to manufacturers, it is always advantageous to be able to suggest ideas with your designs in a format they are familiar with...their product. I thought you might like to see several examples that I have created. These are not templates! These are my own original drawings showing my artwork and designing a piece that reflects my look and vision. An art director or product development person of a major manufacturing company greatly appreciates the insight and creativity an artist has to show their versatility in this way. It shows so much more than just flat 2-D art...it shows that you understand product development which is key to success in this field. You went the extra mile because you understand the manufacturing process, you are a professional!
While it takes an extra step to create product concepts to show to companies, what in life doesn't take an extra step to get things right, to make a great presentation, to be the best you can be? That extra effort has paid off for me big time with dozens of successful product lines on the market because I took the time and have the expertise to create something new. I am dismayed sometimes when I read forums of licensing groups by artists on the internet and hear them complain about how much work it is to license your artwork...how stressful...how competitive.....how do you find the time...how up and down the market can be. Art licensing is a business just like any business, that is why it is called WORK. To complain about creating designs and all that entails is like complaining about life to me. Hey, if it were easy everyone could do this. So buck up there my artist friends, put pencil to paper and create and originate and be joyful that you are fortunate enough to have a talent that can earn you money doing something you love to do. Going the extra mile creates fun products. For example, this coffee mug I designed for Boston Warehouse Trading Company has a nice shape and a tiny coffee bean added to the handle...a small touch..but one that takes an ordinary mug and makes it extra-ordinary and more interesting.
For me, part of the real fun in this business is thinking about creating the product and what it can be. This candy dish is one of the products for my new "Batty Babes" line licensed to One Hundred 80 Degrees. This is a paper mache candy bowl with a bat wrapped around the back of the pumpkin bowl wearing a "Bone Appetite" sign around it's neck. I had to create this product, there was no template. I had to think how this would come together, what the materials could be, how would the bat be attached, how large would it be, colors, styling, etc.
This was something the client and I originally discussed when I presented the idea of the line with these funky bats for a Halloween group. The creative challenge was that I had to think how this could be manufactured, what size it would be, colors, textures, materials...and here is the finished product that is on the market now. It is both rewarding and fun to see your creation come to life and know that you worked hard to do the best you can do to be professional, to be creative and to be original. It is very satisfying indeed!