Recently, including this morning, the subject of “how do I get my comics lettered?” Has come up in my FB/net travels. Apparently there are quite a few comics creators(mostly writers) that are in a bind trying to find someone to letter their stories. I am quoting my comment to one writer below. Take from it what you will and hope it steers you in the right direction.
” First off, this is a common problem for creators such as yourself, so don’t panic man – budgets are tight and often paying an artist leaves little or nothing left. As a writer and artist, I understand both sides, so my first advice is learn to letter yourself. It may seem like allot to do- but I know several published writers who sold to Image,Archaia, etc., who started off lettering their first few projects themselves. Yes it’s a learning curve using Adobe Illustrator or InDesign(no I will not get into any side-discussions about why using open-source tools aren’t the same)- but they are industry-standard tools and using them in conjunction with pro-level tutorials will net you the pro look in the most timely manner. I know, there are open-source tools- they will bog you down and cannot without twice the tweaking, produce pro results. So yeah it’s allot to learn. but if you invest the time – you will learn to do it to a decent level of quality and frankly have more control over your end product. Before I get crits from the hand-letterers out there- I agree that hand-lettering is both an art(truly) and a lovely end result. BUT only for masters of the craft who have spent years perfecting this skill. For someone out the gate- digital lettering is really the best way.
resources for how-to’s:
One of the most thorough- Jim Campbells multi-part tutorial- MUST SEE.
Videos(including Scott mcLeod): http://goo.gl/dZaRQs
Having said all that, if you absolutely cannot or will not DIY- you can find aspiring letterers on some of the same art sites you find artists- they will charge lower prices down to nothing, depending on their experience and quality/budget. I remember years ago, you could find a competent amateur letterer for a s low as 5 dollars a page. I doubt that would be the case, I would think it would be higher.
my guess is that DevianArt could be a resource- although there are allot of flakes there(even if you pay) so caveat emptor there. BTW, I am on DevArt, many people we know are on DevArt- I love DevArt- I just know numerous bad experiences from there- so just be aware. I would stick with the first 3 links because the people there really are trying to fill their portfolios with their best work to get pro jobs.
Images are from COMICRAFT/Balloontales and Nate Peikos’ amazing resouce http://www.blambot.com – go there, learn stuff and pick up free fonts and BUY SOME TOO. Oh and also one image from – http://clintflickerlettering.blogspot.com/2010/11/lettering-in-adobe-illustrator-five.html .