Creating a manga is hard work. Sometimes, you can write the plot and storyboard on your own. But still, you are unable to illustrate the drawings. And that’s okay because a lot of other mangakas also hire illustrators and artists for their manga.
How do you get an artist for your manga idea? You can hire one through forums or freelance websites. It’s just important to remember that you need to allot a proper budget to pay for one.
In this article, we will break down the things you need to do and consider when hiring an artist for your manga.
Let’s get to it!
Table of Contents
Can I get an Artist for My Manga for Free?
It is highly unlikely that you will get an artist for your manga for free.
Unless you are doing the illustrating on your own, you need to shell out money. Even manga artist interns get paid, if only a minimal amount.
However, it is necessary that you prepare the proper budget for this. Don’t lowball artists and say you are only looking to hire interns. If you want to get quality art, you need to pay for it.
Where to Find a Manga Artist for My Manga?
There are multiple websites and listings through which you can find manga artists.
Fiverr is a famous freelancing website, and it caters to many different industries. Accordingly, there are a plethora of manga artists here. You just need to know what kind you’re looking for.
First, you would need to sign up for an account, as the site is only available to registered users. People are divided into buyers and sellers, not clients and employees. In your case, you would want to create an account as a buyer.
You could then post a job posting or opening, otherwise called “Gigs.” Be clear about your specifications and requirements. If you want revisions to be a part of the deal, you could put that on your request. Sellers can then send you their bids afterward.
Make sure that you go through the profiles of the sellers. This way, you could scrutinize their feedback and work, if they do have a portfolio. If not, you can message them beforehand and ask for samples.
Here’s a little tip: you could work with a seller for one small project first. Think of it as a paid test. If you’re satisfied with the results, you could hire the artist for bigger projects.
Upwork is another freelancing platform, and it’s a little easier to navigate than Fiverr. It has no service fees for payroll enrollment and offers recruiter support.
All you need to do is open a job posting, and proposals from interested artists will come in. You also have the option to reach out to candidates you want and ask them to apply to your posting.
The great thing about Upwork is that it has over 10 million talents. The downside is that there may be plenty of competition, especially for a niche need like this one.
Guru is one more platform through which you can hire freelance manga artists. It arranges the top manga artists on its site by ranking and amount earned. This means that you can easily hire their best options for manga artists.
Alternatively, you can look through the pages if you want to hire lesser-known artists. Regardless of whether the candidate is highly-rated or brand new, you can ask for a quote. All you need to do is clearly communicate your needs, so they will be able to give you a fair price.
Reddit is widely known as a forum, but it does have subs that cater to hiring needs. One such subreddit is called Hungry Artists. There, you could just post your requirements, then candidates will contact you.
The tricky thing about Reddit is that it is an anonymous forum. This means it would be difficult to verify the identity of the person you’re working with. So, it is important that you employ privacy measures in the process.
Deviant Art is a huge social community for artists and art enthusiasts. Think of it as Pinterest or Instagram, except it’s all artwork.
You could scroll through thousands of drawings and get an idea of what kind of style you want for your manga. If there’s a particular artist you like, you could message the person and try to strike a deal.
You can also post on the Deviant Art forum and indicate that you are looking for a manga artist. The good thing about this is you can virtually look through their online portfolios. Their profile activity should also show whether or not they are trustworthy.
Still, it’s a different dynamic as opposed to hiring a freelancer through Fiverr or Upwork.
How to Choose the right Manga Artist for My Manga?
There are several things you need to consider when hiring an artist for your manga.
First, it is important to know what art style you are going for. Is there a signature look you want to achieve? Or do you want to stay within the bounds of usual shoujo/shounen art styles?
It is also important to consider the genre of your manga. A manga that has young romance themes is usually drawn differently from a manga written for kids. Likewise, a josei manga will also look different from a coming-of-age manga.
If you’re into horror genres, you need to make sure that the manga artist you will hire works well with gore. Meanwhile, if you’re making an action manga, you want an artist who is good with movement scenes.
Just consider the techniques required when drawing a scene like this:
These are nuances that you need to look at when determining your preferred art style.
Speed of delivery
Drawing panels can be tough. However, the best mangakas are able to churn out at least 20 pages of work per week. This is because they are working with a deadline and need to meet the publisher’s demands.
So, make sure to choose a manga artist who can draw fast without sacrificing quality. You may just be starting out now, but eventually, you would want to get serialized in a manga magazine.
When that time comes, you would need someone you are already familiar with. You don’t want to re-hire a new artist and train him on your requirements. It’s time-consuming, especially at a point where things are picking up pace.
Hence, it is important that early on, you already choose artists who can meet that level of demand.
Some people think that it’s okay to work with an artist who doesn’t have the same language as you. After all, you’re using drawings, not words.
But you would need to communicate well with the manga artist you are hiring. Edits need to be made and storyboards will have to be clarified. If you want a manga artist you can really collaborate with, get someone who speaks the same language as you.
This is something you need to ensure when you’re choosing from an online global talent pool.
With the internet, it has become easy to work with people across the globe. However, most traditional manga is still done by a team of people who are living in the same place.
If this is something important to you, you would then need to consider a manga artist’s location. If down the line, you want to have everyone working from one studio, you should at least be living in the same country.
Finally, consider the price range you are going for. Of course, everyone wants to have professional-level manga artists working for them. However, the reality is that artists of that level may cost more than you can afford right now.
Hence, it is important to have a set budget for your manga artist. Make sure it is fair and something you both agree on.
We advise that when you hire a manga artist, pay for the output per page, not per hour. This will allow you to have a more solid idea of how much it would cost you in total.
How Much Would it Cost to Hire a Manga Artist?
One 20-page chapter will cost you around $1,000 on average. The total cost would then depend on how many pages or chapters you plan to churn out.
If you want to produce one chapter monthly, you will need $12,000 for one manga artist.
If you want to release one chapter weekly, it will cost you $52,000.
How Much Do Manga Artists Charge Per Page?
On average, manga artists charge $50 per page. A beginner manga artist may cost you less, at $35 per page. Meanwhile, a more experience manga artist will cost you more, generally at $100 per page.
Now, it’s time to hear from you:
Did I miss anything?
What are your considerations when hiring a manga artist?
Whatever your answer is, let’s hear it in the comments below.