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The Pros and Cons of Starting an Illustration Blog


So, how better to start my new blog than with a bit of advice for anyone out there who's thinking of starting one themselves?


My blogging heyday was back in 2012 when Tumblr was the thing - before they had introduced all of their new privacy and data laws. There was some weird stuff on there. My account was mostly just filled with re-posts of other people's illustrations, mixed in with a few starkly photographed versions my own early work. Social media and blogging culture has however, changed a bunch since then. So, when thinking of starting up a feed again, I had to think pretty long and hard about 1. Why I should bother, when the market for creative content is already so saturated? And 2. If I were going to go ahead, what can I write about - which will be interesting enough for anyone to want to read it?


I'm still not sure that I have a firm answer to either of the above questions, but here is the list of pros and cons which helped me to make a decision and click the 'publish' button on this first blog post... And here's to hoping that my future posts turn out to be useful in some way to somebody, somewhere.


WHAT SUCKS ABOUT STARTING A BLOG?

- It's super time consuming; planning, writing and making content for consistent posts.

- There's a lot of pressure to update frequently.

- And pressure to create good quality content.

- "Writing is not my area of expertise, it's difficult."

- All mistakes are archived.

- There's heaps of competition.

- Nobody might read it.

- Exposure to trolls.



WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF STARTING A BLOG?

- It's a new creative outlet for writing and list-making.

- You can upload more illustrations than ever before!

- You can use it as a way to connect with existing audiences.

- You can also reach new audiences - HEY NEW AUDIENCES!

- It's a platform for behind-the-scenes stuff.

- You can use it to demonstrate processes and techniques that might help other people.

- You can offer guidance for other illustrators and artists who are in the very early stages of their careers.

- You can answer FAQs.

- You can promote collaborations, inspirations and affiliate communities.

- You can offer useful tips on practical illustration jobs (murals, window painting, digital design).

- And can share experiences working with clients (including invoicing, contracts, deadlines, fees etc).


The pros seemed to outweigh the cons for me, so here's my blog-baby, online and living. Maybe this post will give you that kick to start your own feed? Or not. Whichever the case, I hope it's the right decision for you.



TOP TIPS 4 GOOD BLOG (Or so I have read...)

- Streamlined, easy to navigate design.

- Interesting, focused content.

- Use high-quality images.

- Engage with your audiences.

- Use #hashtags to appear in searches.

- Don't be a troll.


Check back soon for more useful lists and posts about some of the interesting things I am learning as I'm starting out my career as an illustrator. For more info, you can check out portfolio.bobbirae.co.uk - shop at bobbirae.co.uk - or stay in touch on social media using the links below:

instagram.com/bearcubs

twitter.com/bobbiraecouk


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