Stock illustration: guidelines

When a person starts to do something new, he or she always thinks that success comes at once. Let me suggest several advices for everyone who has just started and especially who continues to put soul and craft in stock illustrations.

Advice №1 Be patient

It means: don’t give up if your sells are not as high as you expected. It is all about trading. If you ask any shop assistant whether his sales are the same during the year or even month or week you’ll discover there are peaks and downswings of sales. It is ordinary phenomenon. Focus on uploading and producing new works. Forget that you’ve already uploaded more than 100 or 1000 pictures. Go on and don’t stop.

Advice №2 Constant and purposeful work

If your sales are low, there can be several reasons: 1. you have very few works in portfolio; 2. you upload not many illustrations monthly; 3. topics of your works are not popular at the moment.

Determine yourself daily amount of illustration you upload or at least the average amount of works you can produce weekly. Make sketches every day because it helps to develop imagination. Discover popular topics or vice versa find the subjects which are not well covered.

Advice №3 Analyze that

In order to be high-level professional you should constantly analyze the market of illustrations. What is good or bad, what works are sold better, what s there are. Look at bestseller authors’ portfolios, then look at your own. Always be true with yourself and try to evaluate critically your own illustrations.

Advice №4 Cover different topics

Remember that you need to find your own customer. This means that to attract many customers you should cover different and sometimes opposite topics (for example, politics and art, holidays and weapon).

Advice №5 Define the task

Before starting to draw ask yourself: what is the end purpose of my work? And define whether it is for web design (icons and buttons) or this illustration can go as advertising poster for shopping mall. Always imagine the customer needs and on their basis build your work.

New authors doubt in their level of craft and topics they cover and that’s why ask other authors’ opinion. My advice is “listen to your heart” (as Roxette sings). Rely on your own taste. Only you know the best what you can create and try to get your own experience. You’ll notice the progress in your mind, speed and techniques very soon. Every step you make here is worth that you can become great illustrator.

Good luck!

Photo credits: , Olyashevchenko.

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Thank you for the very useful article! I need to follow Advice №1.


Thank you Olga, I can't wait to read your next article!!!!!



You make my day :-) I need to follow Advice №2.


Great advice, Olga! Thank you.


Seema, thank you. You are one of my favourite authors.


Great works. I like the fortune image the most. Nice advice


Tarja, I will write several articles about it.


Beautiful work Olga ! Thank you for sharing.
I have never done illustration but would love to learn it. Any advice on how to get started ?


Nice blog Olga, and sound advice, thanks.

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