Marilag Lubag's Blog

Indie vs. Sponsored | February 4, 2016

To be a professional artist, which is better? Becoming an indie artist or the ones with major sponsor? In our current world, becoming a successful indie artist could eventually lead to someone working with a major company.

Take for example, Rocket Jump. It was started by a group of friends who just graduated from college. They kept working on their Youtube videos, improving on their skills, and finally creating Video Game High School, their most successful creation. RocketJump currently has a show at Hulu that goes behind the scenes of their productions.

Another example of an indie artist that had become so famous a major publishing company was interested in signing her is Amanda Hocking. To make the long story short, she self-published her novels after getting tired of waiting for a publisher. Eventually, she sold a ton of her novels, selling 1 million of her books. She was then signed on to St. Martin’s press.

With the advancement of technology, indie artists had gotten an equal footing with those who were backed with major sponsors. The key is to know how to utilize the technology so that you can compete with them. One of my friends, Kristen Lamb in particular, is good at showing artists how to do that.

Gone were the days where indie artists had to go from fair to fair to sell their work. If we still want to do it, we can. However, we also have the technology on our side. When we learn how to utilize SEO and other forms of social media, we’ll be able to sell our works while we’re on our pajamas. Technology increased an indie artist’s platform at no cost.

So, which one is better? To become an indie artist or one backed with major sponsors? To me, becoming an indie artist is better because once you have gotten successful, major sponsors would be interested in signing you up. As an indie artist, you can publish your work anytime you want often free of charge. Since you already had a self-published book out there, it would get you in the mindset that you are already an artist. As a professional artist, you need to work on your craft to improve. Through practice, you would get better at whatever medium you choose. Eventually, you would be good enough that you would get traction and could actually sell things. It would take years but you have to keep on improving your craft. Eventually, there will come a time when you would be able to sell enough to make a living. At that point, you have to decide whether you want to sign up with a publisher or to keep self-publishing your own work.

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