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Successful cartooning in the digital world

Howard Tayler, creator of the webcomic Schlock Mercenary was one of the fine speakers at this year’s AAEC convention. In my introduction to Howard’s presentation I explained that this blog, when launched in 2005, was meant to be a personal exploration of where cartooning (primarily comic strips and editorial cartooning) was going with the growth of the Internet and decline of newspapers. In 2013, there is no question that the Internet has redefined how cartoons are distributed and viewed. The lingering question is more about how to more effectively use the Internet to produce income for cartoonists.

Howard is experienced, knowledgable and articulate about how he’s able to professionally produce a comic and earn a healthy income through his work online.

With Howard’s permission, I’m posting his presentation.

Community Comments

#1 Kevin Rafferty
July/1/2013
@ 3:55 pm

Wow, that’s a lot of helpful info… thanks for that Howard, and thanks for posting it Alan.

#2 Frank M Hansen
July/1/2013
@ 4:10 pm

Some great tips. Thank you for posting and the recap on the AAEC.

#3 Howard Tayler
July/1/2013
@ 4:51 pm

As I mentioned a couple of times at the show, any one of those bulleted slides could have been a one-hour presentation, or even a half-day workshop.

Also, anytime I get specific about owning the audience, or monetizing things, we very quickly run up against the fact that these things won’t work exactly this way for everybody.

Thanks again for the opportunity to present, Alan. This was a great privilege, and a lot of fun.

#4 Rich Diesslin
July/1/2013
@ 7:28 pm

Howard, glad to see you are still out there sharing your insights. I enjoyed your presentation a few years ago at the Tundra seminar and I’m guessing this was another good one. ;)

#5 Howard Tayler
July/1/2013
@ 10:13 pm

@Rich: I think this one was better. :-)

#6 Bearman Cartoons
July/2/2013
@ 5:04 am

Great job Howard

#7 C C Rockenbach
July/2/2013
@ 2:45 pm

Thank you, Howard — this was extremely timely information! Very much appreciated.

#8 Randy Glasbergen
July/3/2013
@ 9:05 am

I can vouch for everything Howard said in his presentation. I’ve been following the same business model since I got online in 1995. The only thing I haven’t done is sell advertising on my site, since my web page is essentially an advertisement for my cartoons and services.

#9 Alex Hallatt
July/23/2013
@ 5:40 am

Good summary and makes a nice change to see some real numbers.

Thanks.

#10 Binky
May/14/2014
@ 7:56 am

A little late to the table, but those were some solid tips with real figures to back them up. Very nice to see.

#11 Chris Desatoff
September/28/2014
@ 11:54 pm

Howard, thank you so much for sharing these tips, and with real numbers, including gross and net income! That was so encouraging to see what is possible for a cartoonist today.

Not sure if I’ll be getting there any time soon, but I sure will try.

I’ll give it a year.

That should be long enough to go pro, right?

Bahahaha…yeeaahh…a year… =P

Aloha everybody!

Chris Desatoff
Cartoonist

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