Monday, November 17, 2008

Barking Up The Wrong Tree

How not to choose an illustrator.

You might remember me talking about meeting an accomplished illustrator and eventually sending him the children's story I've produced. (Makes sense, right? Clearly, this blournal is for kids.)

I was flatly ignored. Maybe I shouldn't say "flatly" ignored; he did use my photos. I took some shots of him giving a presentation and he apparently liked them enough to use on his website, though he never said a word to me about it. I did offer these photos to him for free, so it's not like he pilfered anything here. I offered - he took. That was the end of that exchange.

That's fine, if not a bit 'holey. The photos were a bit of a hook that gave me an excuse write to him (and for him to read it) after I'd missed my opportunity the first time. I say "hook" because "graft" is such an ugly word.

But I must have really offended him. Not only did he not bother to reply, he didn't so much as put a photo credit there on his website. Seems a little cold. All I asked him to do was give my story a listen, and all he had to do was click.

So after waiting a week for some kind of response, I decided to write back. I wrote only a simple two-line e-mail entitled "Impropriety" in which I said, "Please accept my apology. I didn't mean to annoy."

This time, flatly ignored, and I should be using that word.

So he obviously doesn't give a shit about anything I have or have to say. Why does that bug me? Because I (bush league as I may be) know that I do have some degree of talent. In the face of someone who obviously excels at what he does, (i.e. someone with non-bush league talent) I guess I'm just a hack. Now, I know I'm a hack, but... wait - not so much of a hack that he wouldn't even put my photos on his website - but I think I've got some perspective on how much talent I do/don't have, and I do know my limits. I didn't ask him to take a look at my drawings, if you know what I'm sayin'.

I had no idea I was that much of an asshole. I knew I was kind of an asshole, but I had not yet learned that my assholishness had progressed to such an extent.

So in light of that, and used here without any credit or permission, I will describe with some detail one of his single-panel cartoons.


A dog has hanged himself. Two cats are sitting next to each other and have apparently just come upon the scene where a nearby chair has been kicked over and the lifeless hound sways gently from a tree branch.

One cat turns to the other and says, "I guess all that butt-sniffing was really a cry for help."


So I guess you can decide for yourself if this whole situation turned out for the worse.

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