What You Can Learn From My 2018 Journey As A Freelance Illustrator

(Written in January, Edited & Published in February 2019)

Happy New Year! January marks a full year since I started working on my goals for 2018. Now, it's time to evaluate my progress before I embark on a new journey. Check out my blog for 2018 Goals to get an idea of where I was. Then have a look at my 6-month report


1. 2017 Best 9 VS 2018 Best 9

In 2017, almost all of my best 9 images were fan art pieces, and several were created traditionally. Not good for business!

A few important goals that I set for myself for 2018 were:

  • practice traditionally

  • create more digital portfolio pieces.

  • create little to no fan art pieces and only use fan art as a marketing tool not as the main body of my portfolio.

In 2018 best 9, all the pieces were digital and a couple are my own concepts. "Mediterranean Beauty" is a character I caricatured and designed based on a photo, and "Curiosity and Fear: First Day of Day Care" was a concept I created from A to Z.

I created a variety of emotions and facial expressions, something that was less visible in my 2017 best 9.

I also noticed I got more likes for less posts.

Read more about my new and improved digital painting technique in this blog

2. Best 9 Inktober 2018: First Sequential Art

I did the Inktober challenge in 2017, but there was no theme. In 2018, I challenged myself to tell a story for the first time, based on the random official Inktober 2018 prompt list, and without adding any text to the illustrations! gotta raise the bar!

I had no sequential art in my portfolio, so this seemed like a great opportunity to showcase what I learned so far, from gesture to extrapolation and from composition to storyboarding. I even designed the characters and I will start coloring these puppies as soon as I can.

They were posted in September, so towards the end of the year, and of course didn't get as many likes as the ones posted towards the beginning of last year.

9 panels from the story of 'Didi & Fluffy'