FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How can I help support this website and the artist behind it?
I'm so glad you asked... I certainly don't mind donations, and there's always my wish list if you want to really make my day. Seriously, though - it takes hundreds of dollars every year to keep this site up and running, as well as many, many hours just on the coding and upkeep - and that's besides doing all the artwork!

Can I use your artwork for my website/school project/magazine/tattoo?
I'm really protective of my artwork, and if you would like to use it, I ask that you email me and get my permission first. If you would like to use it on a website, please make sure to include your url in your query, as I prefer to get a look at your design capabilities before I give a yea or nay. For magazines/newspapers/other print sources, as well as any for-profit ventures, I do not give out these pictures for free. As for tattoos... I can't imagine how many of my pictures would work for those, but if you feel like it, go right ahead. Send me pictures!

Where did the t-shirts go?
Unfortunately I decided that the quality I could produce at home, even with a high quality printer, wasn't professional enough to continue to sell them. I am trying to re-introduce them, however that will have to wait until I can invest in buying them myself in bulk.

What do you use to create your artwork?
Nearly all of the pencil drawings are done with my trusty old mechanical pencil loaded with HB leads. Those form the basis for most of my digitally painted works as well. Current colored pieces are done in Photoshop CS5 with a Wacom Cintiq small. Previously, I have worked in Photoshop CS2, Photoshop 5.5, Paintshop Pro 6, and Painter Classic, using my Wacom Intuos medium and Wacom Graphire small.

Can I link to your site?
Of course. There are banners to use in my links section, or you can always use a text link.

Do you take commissions?
Yes! You can find more information in the marketplace.

Do you have any prints of your work?
Yes I do! Please see the marketplace section of my website.

Will you draw my character for free? Will you do illustrations for my role play game for free?
NO! I do not have the time to do that sort of thing. The materials I use to create my artwork also cost money. Since I depend on my artwork for an income, doing work like this for free would be the equivalent of anyone else going into work for a day and requesting that their boss not pay them. That doesn't make any sense, does it? If I'm feeling in a particularly bad mood, I'll block your email just for asking.

Do you have any tutorials? Please, pleaaaaaaaaase tell me you have tutorials!
Yes! After many failed attempts, I do finally have a useable tutorial on Photoshop coloring pencil or inked lineart. Take a look at the Janet CG Tutorial. I plan to do more tutorials in the future, but please be patient.

Will you look at my picture and tell me what you think of it?
I rarely critique individual pictures sent to me over email or instant message - I just don't have the time anymore.

What are your inspirations?
I'm inspired by a lot of things - music, the weather, books, video games, my friends... Links to a few of the online artists who inspire me are in my links section. My favorite fiction writer would have to be HP Lovecraft, though I'm a bit of a junkie for non fiction, research type books. I can't resist the lure of learning new stuff. Comic favorites include Sandman and anything produced by Roman Dirge and Jhonen Vasquez, as well as Megacity 909 and Ex Machina. Some of the more well known artists that have inspired me for a long time are James Whistler, John William Waterhouse, Michael Whelan, Leonardo da Vinci, HR Giger, Brom.

What programs did you use to make this website?
Adobe Photoshop CS5 and NoteTab Light.

I am interested in getting into art college. Could you help me? What should put in my portfolio?
There's no set type of thing you should or definitely shouldn't include in your portfolio. I'm very, very strange in that I never actually submitted a prepared portfolio. I went to Minneapolis College of Art and Design in the fall of my Senior year of high school for one of those "national portfolio days" where about a thousand high school kids from all over the country (and a few international) show up with whatever they can cobble together and show it off to the ten or twenty different colleges represented there. I didn't even know what went in a portfolio, so I grabbed up stuff right and left.

There are several different factors that go into what you want to include in your portfolio. Perhaps the two largest are which field you're going into (illustration, animation, painting, graphic design, etc), and the sort of art that the college itself turns out. For the second part of that, take a good, long look at the literature the college sends you. Look through all the pamphlets and catalogs. It is probably not a good idea to send in anime-style art to a college unless you see some of it in the books already. There is still a sort of bias against this style in most colleges. I've heard of people being rejected because it made up the bulk of their portfolios. To qualify that - it's perfectly all right to include maybe one or at most two pieces in this style. The portfolio you submit will probably contain around twenty or so pieces and you do not want to look as if you've already limited yourself.

The first part of the equation sort of runs into the second here - if you are going in for animation, you might be allowed to submit a short film you've done, or a series of sketches. But that's only if you're going into that. For the sake of argument, I'll say that you're probably either undecided or going in for illustration/drawing/painting since that's what makes up the bulk of my artwork online now and you're looking through this FAQ. Make sure you include at least a few from-life drawings. Charcoal or pencil are especially good for these. They might have you submit a self-portrait. If you don't have any yet, grab whoever you can get - brother, sister, mother, random person off the street (really, though it works better if you have your art supplies with you and you don't look very threatening), and start sketching them. Often times it's not an "exact likeness" that'll get you the scholarship bucks, because you have to be honest with yourself and say that there's about a million people out there better than you at that. Concentrate on getting the basic forms first, and building up on that.

Besides life drawings, other good things to include are, of course, the things you're best at. Even if you're best at drawing comic book characters, you should probably include one or two of those. Throw in a painting in oils or acrylic. Maybe one in watercolor if you're at all good at that (I couldn't use watercolor to save my life.) It's also good to include some 3D stuff, even if that has nothing to do with your intended major. I had some wire sculptures that I took with me and everybody and their mother fawned over them despite me not thinking they were good at all.

Now, a few things that people don't generally think about when they start preparing their portfolios can really help. First of all, build it up with a few more pieces than you can submit, then take your portfolio around to a few people who you can count on to be objective, and also have some understanding of art and/or actual culture. (Not a best friend, parent, etc.) They can help you determine which pieces are the weakest and therefore should be set aside in order to strengthen your chances overall.

And once you have your portfolio selected, take a good long look at how you're going to submit it. If you get to submit it in person, make sure you have a good knowledge of the pieces themselves - the methods you used to make them and any meaning they have for you. If you have to send it in, check to see how they want you to do that. Sending the pieces themselves isn't always a good idea, and if you're going to do that, for goodness sakes, send it insured mail. You don't want this to get lost. Most colleges, however, will want you submit your pieces using slides. The quality of the slides you take can affect what they think of your art as well, so make sure that they are the best you can possibly make, even if you have to get someone to help you.

On a related note, if you have to submit essays along with your portfolio, do make sure that you don't just gloss over them. Put as much work (or more) into them than you would any school report. Depending on what they want, you might have to do some research. At the very least, make sure everything is spelling and grammar checked and you print it out on good quality paper.


This site, its contents and coding, unless otherwise specified are © 2017 to Julia Lichty. Do not use or distribute without permission.