Ani's Sketch Space
Hi! I'm sorry to bother, but I have a question. I have a friend who looks white (blonde, light skin, green eyes) but was actually born and raised in India by her Hindu parents. She practices Hinduism and only recently moved to the states. She still wears traditional clothing, but the other day she posted a picture of herself in her traditional clothes and got a lot of hate for it, people saying it was cultural appropriation. She's bummed out about it and is now questioning her ethnicity. Help?
Anonymous

yungbrowngawd:

pendere:

stirringwind:

1. All those people screaming cultural appropriation at her are ignoramuses who are basically saying, “Wow, you don’t look like my ill-informed, narrow-minded stereotype of what people from this region actually look like!” and “I actually subscribe to horrible, reductionist stereotypes that Indian people can only have dark hair, skin and eyes. Light hair? Green eyes? European (origin) only!” 

This is gonna be a tad long, because it’s gonna delve into biology and history- and it’s because I hope people realise how artificial the US paradigm of race is. It’s woefully incompetent at understanding the biological diversity of our species because it is a social construct. Modern scientists and historians generally refuse to categorise people on the amount of melanin they have because it’s just reductionist and oversimplistic- what they do is classify people by their geographic origin, linguistic and cultural ties. 

2. India is an EXTREMELY diverse continent. It’s so genetically diverse that the only place more genetically diverse is the African continent, aka, the birthplace of humanity. And this is a big deal. I’ll explain why.

image

Surprise! People inhabiting an extremely large country that has more than 2000 ethnic groups, members of all the world’s religions, been the site of multiple ancient civilisations, been on the major crossroads of human migration and trade for thousands of years come in multiple colours!

  • Presently, the most widely-accepted theory of our origins is the Recent African Origin, or Out of Africa TheoryThis holds that originally, humans first appeared in Africa, thus all of us have African ancestors. All modern non-Africans are descended from much smaller groups of people who migrated out of Africa, anytime from 65,000 to 125,000 years ago. How do scientists know this? By looking at our DNA, in addition to fossil and archaeological records. They discovered that the differences in the DNA of non-African peoples like say, a German a Japanese and a New Zealand Maori was far less than the genetic differences between people from different African ethnic groups. (Somali, Dinka, Yoruba, San, Kikuyu, Luo etc- I’m BARELY scratching the surface)
  • What this meant was that Africa had to be the original, diverse genetic pool where modern humans first appeared. Everybody else outside of Africa today is descended from much smaller groups of people who left Africa at various times- and that ancestral genetic “bottleneck” is why people who appear to have very different heritage (e.g European vs East Asian) actually have far less genetic variation than the various African peoples.
  • So, India being the second most genetically diverse place on this planet is a big deal- it’s basically second only to THE CRADLE OF HUMANITY. That’s why I’m pretty convinced your friend can have blonde hair and green eyes and still be 100% Made in India.

3. Now, the genetics of India itself.

Genetic studies have shown that if you take a modern Indian from any part of India, no matter how dark or fair they are, his or her lineage will consist of mixing from two main ancestral groups. One is the Ancestral Northern Indians (ANI), and the other the Ancestral Southern Indians (ASI). You may have heard of the ancient Indian caste system which put a lot of social pressure that prohibited marrying outside your caste. Caste discrimination is banned today, but old attitudes do persist. However, even this caste rigidity wasn’t so 4000- 2000 years ago. ANI people married ASI pretty freely, so that’s why every modern Indian has heredity from both groups. So, already to start off, you got quite a fair bit of diversity hidden in people’s genes. 

  • And the next interesting part to explain why it IS possible for Indians to have features stereotyped as “European” is because while the ASI seemed to be genetically unique to the Indian subcontinent, the ANI people are genetically related to Middle-Easterns, Europeans and Caucasians (and I mean this not in the sense of “white” as often used in the US, but the actual region of Caucasus, which borders Europe and Asia).
  • You mentioned she looks “white”- and the American-understanding of “white” being hurled at her by those people screaming cultural appropriation are actually ignorantly treating “white” as synonymous with “European-origin”. In reality, it’s completely useless in the realm of biology. Biologically, there is actually no real dichotomy where “European” suddenly ends and “Asia” begins. 

image

  • As I earlier pointed out, well, we’re all kinda related. And it’s not at all earth-shattering that some people from India look like they’re of “European-origin”. Because modern Europeans, Central Asians and the Ancestral Northern Indians are all believed to be descendants of a group of people called the Proto-Indo-Europeans. It’s believed they lived around 6000-7000 years ago. Some modern people that are descended from the Proto-Indo-Europeans are French, Germans, Iranians and Pashtuns (a major ethnic group in Afghanistan).  It’s even been found that Europeans and Indians shared a gene for fair skin from a common ancestor- which is why there ARE people who look like your friend. Naturally, fair skin is just relatively rarer in India vs Europe because more parts of India are located in hotter regions. Therefore, there’s more selection pressure for darker skin which has more melanin to protect from the sun- making fair skin rarer, but still possible. 

image

(This is a map of the Kurgan Hypothesis, which is currently the most popular theory for how the Proto-Indo-Europeans migrated from their homeland to settle Europe, Central Asia, Iran, India and Turkey etc)

  • Saying Indians are descendants of the Proto-Indo-Europeans is NOT the same as saying they’re of “European origin”. For example, think of the Proto-Indo-Europeans as like the “mother” of Europeans, Central Asians and the Ancestral Northern Indians- they’re like “sibling” groups, not descendants. The original Indo-Europeans were not “European” in the modern sense. I am clarifying this because plenty of colonial-era scientific racism tried to attribute ancient India’s achievements to “European who left Europe for India”- you might have heard the phrase “Aryan” thrown around in Nazi Germany, which was used to mean “blonde hair, blue eyes”. Nazi scientists and historians also abused it to explain away the sophistication of non-European civilisations in Ancient Egypt and India. In reality, ”Aryan” is derived from the ancient Sanskrit word “Arya" which means "noble". Sanskrit is an ancient language still used in classical Indian texts, and is of Proto-Indo-European origin. For example, the name of the country “Iran” actually means “land of the Aryans”- it was the names ancient Iranians (another people descended from the Proto-Indo-Europeans) gave to what others called the Persian Empire for more than a thousand years before the Third Reich. 

image(Sanskrit manuscript)

  • Furthermore, many languages we often separate as “European” and “Asian” like German, English, French, Italian vs. Hindi, Farsi (Persian), Gujarati, Punjabi, Pashto, Sanskrit etc are ALL classified by linguists as belonging to the same Indo-European language family- which all evolved from the original language the Proto-Indo-Europeans spoke. See how artificial the Europe/Asia dichotomy really is, in terms of human genetics and origin of cultures? 

4. Finally- there’s plenty of modern proof that the region we call Europe today does NOT have a monopoly on producing people with blonde hair, fair skin and green eyes.

This is Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, a popular Indian Bollywood actress who is also known for her striking blue-green eyes. She’s 100% Indian- she was born in Mangalore, India to Indian parents. 

image

This is a couple at their wedding- the lady on the left is Indian, from the Southern Indian city of Hyderabad. Her husband is Ethiopian.image

This is a photo of a boy and a woman who is likely his mother, taken in Turkey.

image

This is a girl from Darfur, Sudan- an area that has more than 30 ethnic groups.

image

This is a Nuristani girl. The Nuristani people are an ethnic group from Afghanistan. 

image

5. And in the first place, what makes up a person’s identity IS NOT JUST HOW MUCH or HOW LITTLE MELANIN THEY HAVE.

  • Tell your friend she is 100% Indian, because what makes up her identity is not just how she looks. Identity is what feels most natural to her, and if that identity is indeed very intertwined with major aspects of Indian culture- then well, she IS Indian and noone can say otherwise. 
  • Those people had no right to make her feel awful and “not-Indian enough” because it’s clear she identifies as such due to actually being born there and also practising major aspects of Indian culture. The best example I can think of to explain this is how in the US, people sometimes use the term “Latino” as a race category, with the stereotype that all latinos must have tanned skin and dark hair. In reality, it’s more of a cultural identity. The are fair haired-latinos and darker-skinned latinos whose ancestors included the African slaves brought to the Americas four hundred years ago. But what really makes them “Latino” or “Hispanic” is their upbringing- growing up in the environment of Latin America, which is culturally a syncretic fusion of Amerindian, African, Spanish, Portuguese and other European influences. 

image

(This is the Brazilian football team that won the 1970 World Cup- you can see Pelé- second from the bottom right. He is an Afro-Brazilian. If you look at his teammates, you can see how latinos come in ALL COLOURS.)

6. Your friend should not be questioning her identity, but those people attacking her should be questioning their utterly myopic worldview. The history of human genetics and migrations makes it abundantly clear how DIVERSE India is- so it’s perfectly possible for her to be Indian but have blonde hair and green eyes, even if it may be less common. 

7. On a more general note, I cannot stress this enough to everyone- DO NOT GO AROUND ATTACKING PEOPLE for “cultural appropriation” when you are NOT even from that culture in question and/or don’t actually know in detail the history and genetics of that region.

  • If you suspect cultural appropriation: DO YOUR RESEARCH FIRST or ASK SOMEBODY you know who actually belongs to that group. You may be attacking mixed-race people or people like the anon’s friend, who simply has features that are less genetically dominant- blonde hair shows up less easily in countries with a bigger pool of people with dark hair because dark hair is dominant. Even if her parents had dark hair, it’s possible they both carried a recessive gene for blonde hair that was suppressed by their dark-hair gene. Their child would be blonde if she happened to get both copies of the blonde gene instead of the dark hair gene.
  • Also, even if you think the person isn’t of that group, please bear in mind they might have been invited to dress in that clothing by a friend, or because they’re at an event. (I.e let’s say, at an Indian wedding)
  • I can’t stress how infuriating this “white knight” complex is. Speaking as someone pretty familiar with colonialism, I’ve had people who didn’t grow up in my culture condescendingly insist that if I’m okay with somebody doing something from my culture, it’s “self-internalised oppression”. I’ve studied African colonial literature, and the way people insist on defining what people should be alright with is very reminiscent of 19th century imperialists high-handedly saying, “oh, we have to bring the light of civilisation to save those backwards colonial subjects from themselves!”

image

This is Reese Witherspoon, wearing a kimono in Japan, where she is being taught by JAPANESE people how to perform the traditional tea ceremony. This is not reducing a culture to a caricature because she’s actually learning stuff respectfully and wearing a bona fide kimono.

  • Fighting against cultural appropriation is to prevent cultures from being cheapened, made into jokes, sexual fetishes or ugly caricatures. Part of returning power to people to define themselves is ALSO by allowing them to set the parameters of what they want to share with others- and many cultures are perfectly willing to share aspects that are non-sacred or do not have to be earned. So, for example, do not go around insisting a Japanese person should not be allowed to teach non-Japanese people to wear a kimono- because a kimono, unlike a Navajo war bonnet (akin to veteran’s medals), is something anybody can wear. Recognise this difference.

Know the difference.

Very long p cool post

teabingestudios:

YAOI-CON 2014. It’s HERE.
The Tea Binge Studios posse will be live and selling you prints and other paper-products emblazoned with their glorious illustrations at Artist Alley table #40 from Sept. 12- Sept. 14! We’ll have prints, post-cards, book marks and at-con commissions all available for your purchasing pleasure.
If you’re at Yaoi-con, drop by and say hi!

Feel free to drop by if you guys are at the con!

teabingestudios:

YAOI-CON 2014. It’s HERE.

The Tea Binge Studios posse will be live and selling you prints and other paper-products emblazoned with their glorious illustrations at Artist Alley table #40 from Sept. 12- Sept. 14! We’ll have prints, post-cards, book marks and at-con commissions all available for your purchasing pleasure.

If you’re at Yaoi-con, drop by and say hi!

Feel free to drop by if you guys are at the con!

pennicandies:

leseanthomas:

Here’s some of the most amazing and invaluable advice you’ll most-likely ever get from one of my good colleagues and legends in comics/gaming, creator JOE MADUREIRA. It’s what i’ve been preaching to you aspiring artists since i arrived on DA, but i think his POV says it perfectly:

*WARNING: SOME MATURE LANGUAGE*

"DO YOU REALLY WANT TO BE A SUCCESSFUL ARTIST? 


Or a successful WORKING PROFESSIONAL?



Believe it or not there is a difference. I’m not usually a soapbox type guy, I don’t like instructing people, and I think I’m a terrible teacher. But hey, it’s Friday and I’m in a strange mood. So here goes:

I’ve noticed that a good number of my fans happen to be aspiring artists themselves. This is for all you guys. I get asked constantly: "Where should I go to school?" "What classes should I take?" "What should I study for anatomy?" "What pencils and paper do you use?" "Should I be working digitally now instead of traditionally?" "How do I fix my poses? Learn composition? Perspective?" "When am I going to develop my own style?" "Who were your influences?" "Teach me how to draw hands!" The list goes on…


Here’s the deal. All of that stuff *is* important, and it may nudge you in the right direction. A lot of it you will discover for yourself. What works best for one person doesn’t work for another. That’s the beauty of art. It’s personal. It’s discovery. DON’T WORRY ABOUT ALL THAT CRAP!

Instead I’m going to answer the questions that you *SHOULD* be asking, but aren’t. These are things that have only recently occurred to me, after doing this for 20+ years. These things seem so obvious, but apparently they elude a lot of people, because I am surprised at how many ridiculously talented artists are 'failing' professionally. Or just unhappy. The beauty of what I’m about to tell you is that it doesn’t matter what field you’re in or what your art style is.

In no particular order:


1) DO WHAT YOU LOVE. If you are passionate about what you’re doing, it shows. If you’re having fun, it shows. If you’re bored, IT SHOWS. Some guys are able to work on stuff they have zero interest in, and still pull off great work, but I find that when I do this my motivation takes a huge hit. And Motivation is key. Money is not a great motivator. It’s temporary like everything else. And honestly, I’ve gotten paid the most money for some of the shittiest work I have ever done. That may sound awesome, but it’s not. And here’s why…

2) You MUST stay Excited and Motivated. Have you noticed that there are days you can’t draw a god damned thing? And some days you feel like you can draw anything? It’s 4am but you don’t notice because you are in the ZONE. Your hand is racing ahead of your mind and you can do no wrong?! Maybe it’s some new paper you got. Or a new program you’ve been wanting to try out. Or you just found some amazing shit on DeviantArt, or watched some movie that just makes you want to run straight to your board. This relates to the above because while it is possible to involve yourself in projects you aren’t excited about—maybe you need the cash, or think it will look good on your resume, whatever it is—it’s not going to last. You need to stay fresh. Expose yourself to new things. New techniques. You should be getting tired of your own shit on a fairly regular basis. Otherwise other people will.

3) Check your Ego. If you think you’re the shit, you’re already doomed. You may be really, really good at what you do, but there’s someone better. Sorry. There’s always plenty to learn, even for us old dogs. So when I meet young upstarts who have this sense of entitlement, or a know-it-all attitude, I just have to laugh. Some of the biggest egos I’ve ever witnessed were from people who have accomplished the least. Meanwhile, most guys who are supremely talented AND successful, and have EARNED the RIGHT to have an ego and throw their weight around, don’t. Why is that? It’s because…

4) RELATIONSHIPS ARE IMPORTANT. This may be one of the biggest lessons I’ve had to learn. Early on, I didn’t value my relationships with people. Creatively or otherwise. I felt like I didn’t need anyone’s help and I could figure everything out on my own. Let’s face it, many of us become artists because we are reclusive, social misfits. We’d rather stay inside and draw shit than go outside and play. We like to live inside our own minds. Why not?! It’s awesome in there! And sometimes we don’t want to let other people in. But like I said—you can’t do it alone. I can honestly say that as much as I try to stay current, as much as I try to push my work and draw kick ass shit that will excite people, I would not be where I am today if it weren’t for all the other people I’ve met and learned from along the way. Guys who pulled strings for me. Took risks on me. Believed I was the right guy for the job. You need to manage your relationships. You need to network, and meet people. Drawing comics is still a pretty good place for reclusive types—but if you want to work in big studios—Making games, Films, animation, basically any other type of job on the planet, you’d better start making some connections. Be likeable. Be professional. That doesn’t mean be an opportunistic ladder climber. Fake people lose in the end. Be yourself, but be professional. It’s no secret that when people are hiring, our first instinct is to bring in people we know. It’s human nature. I don’t like unknowns, even if their portfolio is awesome. If we have a mutual connection, if they have great things to say about you, you’re in. If you have AMAZING artwork to show, and I call your last employer and they tell me what a pain in the ass you are to work with, you’re done. Talent and skill only get you so far. I am literally amazed at how often I meet guys that are total assholes and think they are going to get anywhere.

5) Here’s the BIG ONE. The greatest obstacle you will ever have to overcome IS YOURSELF. And the Fear that you are creating in your own head. Stay positive. Stop defeating yourself. There are artists I know that are so damn good they make me pee my pants. I look up to these mofos. I study their shit and I want to draw like them. And they are almost NEVER working on their DREAM project. And—big surprise, they aren’t happy in their job. “Why NOT?! WTF is WRONG WITH YOU?!” is usually my reaction. And the answer is almost always "The market isn’t great right now" "Other stories/games/comics like mine don’t do very well" "The shit that’s hot right now is nothing like mine, It’s just going to fail." "I’m not sure I’m good enough." "I need the money." "Too Risky." "I tried it before and failed. " It doesn’t matter what words they use, they are afraid for one reason or another. I know. I’ve been there.

But here’s the deal. YOU NEED TO TAKE RISKS. Guess what? YOU ARE MOST LIKELY GOING TO FAIL. If you want it—REALLY want it, that won’t stop you. You will learn A LOT. My good friend Tim constantly jokes about how I jump out of planes without a parachute and worry about the landing on the way down. You may think that I’m lucky, that it’s easy for me to say because I’m already successful, that I’m in a different situation than you all are. But it’s not true. Risk is risk, no matter what level you’re at. If you’re already successful, you just take even bigger risks. But they never go away. Everything in life is Risk vs. Reward. Not just in your career. LIFE. You’d better get used to it.

I didn’t know what the hell I was doing when I got into comics. I left the #1 selling book at the time ( Uncanny X-men ) to work on Battle Chasers during a time when 'Conan' was about the only fantasy comic people knew. And no one was buying it. I wanted to work in games, so I started a game company. I had NO IDEA WTF I was doing. I just wanted it, really bad. We tanked. It failed. No big surprise. But the people I worked with got hired elsewhere and rehired me. I started ANOTHER game Company. We had 4 people and a dream, and some publishers wouldn’t even meet with us, because their ‘next gen console’ teams had 90+ people on them. I literally got hung up on. "Stick to handheld games, it’s smaller, maybe you can handle that…" one MAJOR publisher told us. I don’t blame them. But we didn’t let it stop us. Thank god we didn’t listen to them. Vigil was born. Darksiders happened, AND we got to make a sequel. It stands shoulder to shoulder with the best games in the industry, and the most elite and experienced game dev studios in the world. How is that possible?!!! Hardly any of us had even worked on a console game before. I’ll be honest, I was thinking we would fail the whole time. I just didn’t care. If I had to play the odds on this one, I’d bet against us.

Why am I telling you all this shit? This is not me patting myself on the back. It’s just stuff that has somehow only dawned on me recently when it’s been staring me in the face for so long. I feel like I need to wake you guys up!!! I’ve been limiting myself. I’ve gotten afraid. I’ve taken less risks. I saw my career going places I didn’t want to go. I wasn’t happy and I wasn’t excited. And I’ve realized, that all that stuff I just talked about is the reason I am where I am today. Not because I have a manga style, or I draw cool hands, or there’s energy in my drawings, or all the other things people rattle off to me. There are other guys that do all that same shit, and do it better. And amazingly, those same guys constantly tell me “Man, I wish I could do what you are doing.” “SO DO IT!!!!!” PLEASE listen to me—because I want you guys to make it. I want to look to one of you people for inspiration some day when it’s 2am and I need to keep drawing. Stop worrying about all the other stuff—the pencils, the paper, the anatomy, all that shit. It will only get you so far. You’ve already got most of what you need. I hope this helps some people. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for all the support over the years. You are all one of the greatest motivating forces in my life and my career. Sappy but true. Ok, let’s go draw some shit!!!”

image

bisexualpiratequeen:

"Researchers at the University of Western Australia decided to revamp the way they studied Viking remains. Previously, researchers had misidentified skeletons as male simply because they were buried with their swords and shields. (Female remains were identified by their oval brooches, and not much else.) By studying osteological signs of gender within the bones themselves, researchers discovered that approximately half of the remains were actually female warriors, given a proper burial with their weapons.”

Women have always fought. We have always been there, ‘contributing to history’. Our own, modern sexism contributes to the erasure of it.

(Bolding mine)

punk-kieren-walker:

polks:

anderjak:

So, for many people in California, water is literally going to run out for them before the end of the year, which is a completely ridiculous thing to ever have happen. Bottled water companies and various companies who use excessive water for extracurricular activities are not really taking into consideration the environment surrounding their area, and are pretty much bleeding California dry.
I don’t really have much in the way of helping, but not supporting those companies is always a great idea, which is why I personally recommend Bobbles.
They’re reusable plastic bottles that are fairly cheap and utilize a carbon filter that usually runs you less than $5 per filter and typically come two filters to a pack, and lasts you a good couple of months. You can buy them on Amazon, and I’ve seen them in places like Best Buy and Walgreens, so they’re bound to be in all sorts of places outside of that.
Tap water in most areas has been found to basically not be any more dangerous to your health than bottled water, but if you’re really unsure or paranoid like me, these filters do a great job without having to buy an attachment filter for your sink faucet.
There are TONS of short term solutions to help you guys out, but I figure having a reference or two drop on your dash might make the decision to jump to filters as opposed to traditional bottled water a little simpler to make.
Here’s a handy-dandy link to the Amazon search page if you’re interested.

bottled water is a SCAM and one that literally is endangering the environment and contributing to the horrific wildfires CA experiences every year. Get a filtered bottle like this, or something similar. Way cheaper and better for the environment! Remember, water, like any other resource, is valuable. Don’t waste it!

I have a Bobble bottle and it’s fucking great. I got it for school because our dorms have shitty-tasting water from the tap but I use it everywhere. It filters the water and makes it taste way better. Also it looks cool and is durable enough that I’ve knocked it off my desk many times at school and it’s not dented or broken or even barely scratched at all.

punk-kieren-walker:

polks:

anderjak:

So, for many people in California, water is literally going to run out for them before the end of the year, which is a completely ridiculous thing to ever have happen. Bottled water companies and various companies who use excessive water for extracurricular activities are not really taking into consideration the environment surrounding their area, and are pretty much bleeding California dry.

I don’t really have much in the way of helping, but not supporting those companies is always a great idea, which is why I personally recommend Bobbles.

They’re reusable plastic bottles that are fairly cheap and utilize a carbon filter that usually runs you less than $5 per filter and typically come two filters to a pack, and lasts you a good couple of months. You can buy them on Amazon, and I’ve seen them in places like Best Buy and Walgreens, so they’re bound to be in all sorts of places outside of that.

Tap water in most areas has been found to basically not be any more dangerous to your health than bottled water, but if you’re really unsure or paranoid like me, these filters do a great job without having to buy an attachment filter for your sink faucet.

There are TONS of short term solutions to help you guys out, but I figure having a reference or two drop on your dash might make the decision to jump to filters as opposed to traditional bottled water a little simpler to make.

Here’s a handy-dandy link to the Amazon search page if you’re interested.

bottled water is a SCAM and one that literally is endangering the environment and contributing to the horrific wildfires CA experiences every year. Get a filtered bottle like this, or something similar. Way cheaper and better for the environment! Remember, water, like any other resource, is valuable. Don’t waste it!

I have a Bobble bottle and it’s fucking great. I got it for school because our dorms have shitty-tasting water from the tap but I use it everywhere. It filters the water and makes it taste way better. Also it looks cool and is durable enough that I’ve knocked it off my desk many times at school and it’s not dented or broken or even barely scratched at all.

REBLOG if you have amazing talented artist friends!
142,277 plays

ask-gallows-callibrator:

carcinologygeneticist:

666dualscar666:

clockworkspookyville:

nolongerpassive:

amtrax:

I know that I usually keep Homestuck off of here, because I know I have followers who don’t enjoy it, but I was bored so I took a midi of Eridan’s Theme (by Radiation) and turned it into a full orchestral piece.  Enjoy.

Oh

MY

GOD.

THIS IS THE BEST THING OKAY.

this is instantly one of my favorite pieces of anything to come out of the homestuck fandom. wow!

WOA HAWOAH????

OMFG

IM GONNA SCREAM SO FUCKING LOUDLY MY EYEBALLS WILL POP OUT OF MY HEAD OH MY GOD 

/eargasm

have you ever sold at an artist alley? if so, do you have any tips? im thinking about selling at a local con for my first time this year.... thanks dude

kinomatika:

kinomatika:

HMMMM I made a post about this before but I guess I should do one that’s more in-depth.

OK SO TO PREPARE FOR ARTIST’S ALLEY:

1. Know what you’re willing to spend on AA. Artists alleys can be a great place to make money but they also can be a great way to lose money if you’re not prepared. Generally AA tables aren’t THAT expensive (AX’s is the most expensive i’ve seen - 215$ i think it was?) but when you consider the amount of people the go through the AA and impulse buy things (because lbr AAs are basically just one giant checkout counter candy aisle) you can actually make up your capital and come out with decent profit if you’re smart about it.

2. Find someone to table with, if you can. Someone who is into similar fandoms is a good idea. Try an artist friend or maybe someone from the internet who’s looking to get a spot. This increases your chances of actually getting a spot at an AA and also gives you someone to talk to and throw ideas back and forth when it comes to figuring out how you want to market yourself.

3. PREPARE IN ADVANCE. i can’t say this enough but if the con is 5 months away, you should be like, in the thick of conselling preparation. You need:

- a seller’s license/permit. Usually you can get these for free or for a meager cost through your county or state’s website (they usually end with a .gov so that is an indication that youre in the right place.) get these early and ask questions if youre confused about what theyre for or what they do and do not allow you to sell.

- a display. A lot of first time consellers tend to just kind of spread their stuff out on their table which requires the people walking past the table to look down. This is not a bad idea per se, but you’ll get less business this way. Ever wonder why expensive toys are generally at eye-level in toystores? It’s a selling tactic. People buy what they can immediately see and what catches their eye. Build a nice display for yourself, and make sure it fits your table and the rules and guidelines for the AA. Try to stay away from a lot of over the top display decorations. You can just build a simple and lightweight one with PVC or those interlocking wire shelving units that walmart carries.

- product. This sounds like a no-brainer but honestly it is a place where a lot of artists kinda… end up lost, especially first timers. Make sure you have product that is directed at the audience you’re selling at. Consider which series are popular (or are projected to be popular) at the time of the con. Consider what your financial limits are when it comes to producing product. A lot of sellers drop hundreds of dollars on product but they’re usually more experienced and really know what’s up. I’d recommend making simple buttons, laminated keychains, bookmarks, prints, and other small things that people can just buy immediately. Yknow like instant satisfaction type stuff. Be aware of how much money you’re putting into the product vs how much you’re selling it for, and also consider how much money your potential buyers are going to have on them to spend.

- commissions. This is something that I personally dislike doing, but it’s kind of a huge benefit to be able to do it at a con. Taking commissions at your table for people to come pick up later on or at the end of the con can suuuuper boost your sales because that person is getting something custom for them, and it’s tangible — they can take it with them. My advice for this is to only take five slots, and when you’re done with them, IF you get finished with them at the con, then open up for more if you feel confident enough to. Don’t take more than you are capable of handling though, because then you’re stuck producing realmedia commissions after the con, spending money to post them out, worrying about them getting damaged in the main, etc. It’s best to not overwhelm yourself.

- have a helper. Generally, most AAs allow each seller to have at least one helper with them. Your helper will help you pack up sales, exchange money, keep track of sales, bring you food and drink, relieve you when you need to go to the bathroom, etc. I would NOT sell without one. Most AAs also require the seller to be there most, if not all of the day while AA is open, so it can get stressful and tiring to sit there for 8 hours without being able to get up to pee or get something to eat. 

- Understand tax. Are you going to be charging sales tax? Are you required to charge sales tax? Do you have to report those figures anywhere on your income tax reports at the end of the year? Look at this closely before you bust out into the AA scene. Learn first, do later.

PAST THAT…

Make sure you set up and take down your display BEFORE the con. Understand how much space you’ll have and how much room you will have to move behind your display. Set up your display so that it looks visually appealing, but is also not particularly complex to take apart and set up, and also make sure it isn’t delicate or fragile. Most people will, without thinking, touch the product you have on display because that’s what people like to do. If your product just falls of your display, figure out a better way to display it. When you’ve finalised your display setup, draft a schematic of it and take a photo of it so you have reference when it comes time to set it up.

Also understand that if you are not successful at the con, or not as successful as you had hoped to be, don’t get discouraged! Learn from what happened, what products you saw other sellers peddling, which of your products sold the worst, which ones sold the best, so on and so forth. Study what happened and recycle that information for the next time you do an artist alley table.

GET A PAYPAL CARD READER. I’M SERIOUS. If you have a smartphone, GET ONE. Some people just don’t have cash on hand or don’t have ‘enough’ to get what they want at your table, but DO have money in a card or in a bank account, and don’t want to go to an ATM to withdraw 3$ for a keychain. Make sure you get yourself a card reader if you have a smartphone. It’ll enable you to make WAY more sales.

There’s probably more I’m missing but thats the gist of it and i hope it helps!

answered this question late last night & thought it might be worth a read!

 - Agony
10,321 plays

toastyhat:

Sorry not sorry.  Song is Agony from Into the Woods.  I just livestreamed this for no reason.

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That song really fits with amporas dang

thescienceofjohnlock:

thenerdyindividual:

Look guys, I know the challenge is for a good cause but if you live in California please don’t do it! We’re in the middle of a serious drought and all the water that you use, counts! The water you use for the challenge including the ice, is contributing to this emergency level drought! If you really feel the need to do the challenge, change it so it won’t affect our water usage! Cram a shit ton of ice cream in your mouth if you have to but PLEASE stop doing the challenge if you live in California! Spread the word! Here are some links to educate yourself. A serious one: http://nationalreport.net/ice-bucket-challenge-contributing-california-drought/ A funny yet logical one:https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=YAcmOuww-D8

This is a damn good point. If you live in California maybe wait till the drought is over before you do it.

Man this is what has been pissing me off the most. Please stop wasting water!

thescienceofjohnlock:

thenerdyindividual:

Look guys, I know the challenge is for a good cause but if you live in California please don’t do it! We’re in the middle of a serious drought and all the water that you use, counts! The water you use for the challenge including the ice, is contributing to this emergency level drought! If you really feel the need to do the challenge, change it so it won’t affect our water usage! Cram a shit ton of ice cream in your mouth if you have to but PLEASE stop doing the challenge if you live in California! Spread the word! Here are some links to educate yourself. A serious one: http://nationalreport.net/ice-bucket-challenge-contributing-california-drought/
A funny yet logical one:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=YAcmOuww-D8

This is a damn good point. If you live in California maybe wait till the drought is over before you do it.

Man this is what has been pissing me off the most. Please stop wasting water!