thoughts about contests

I personally hold contests, when I send out gimmicks...
because it's nice to know somebody put effort in getting those for free. It's .. okay- I guess.

What is not okay is that case:
Instead of commissioning somebody the company/whatever makes a contest. Create our logo/create our website/create XY and you'll be given credit.
And some people freak out, go like aww and forget the fact that they do work for free that is supposed to be actually PAYED.
I *believe* there are some contests where you can bend that and say it might be okay. But normally it's not. I don't want to work for free for company XY just because they are cool. Or big. Or popular. Because I won't be able to pay my bills and have to work for getting credit.
Lew linked me something that might explain it a bit better:

I got a lot of mails with "I love you work, want to join our contest?". Er... thanks for the compliment, but no!? If you love my work and want goodies, send a proper request and I'll send you a price and than we can talk.

I know it's hard in the beginning to get good jobs. And good paying customers. Actually I needed .. uh... 5 years to get both. That might be a long time but I never participated in any "creative work for credit" contest, never worked my ass off for free and always - well, in the beginning mostly- knew how to pay my bills. I even sold tickets but you know what? I got payed for it.
A lot of people achieve that goal faster, a lot don't even come close to it. But keep your head high and don't feed the greedy monsters out there who don't want to pay for a job.


Frau Kirschvogel said...

I do totally agree with you. I choose to work at a local bar for paying my bills in rough times over drawing for free or at insulting rates. Much better for both, my bank account and my self esteem.

Caro said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Caro said...

this flowchart was created by Jessica Hische (http://jessicahische.com): http://jessicahische.com/spendstoomuchtimeinternetting/?p=780
i think it would be nice to backlink her on this - just for integrity :)
it's indeed a very helpful guideline. i will print it out to steadily remember myself...
but the constant problem will remain: yo will always find somebody doing it for free. the only hope is that people will consider their abilities and stop to sell themselves below value. which has to do with self esteem as well...

SaraLynn said...

Thank goodness for this post. I hate seeing people entering contests like this or getting pulled into the whole "we can give you a chance to be published in our magazine" gimmick. It also hurts a lot when people sell their work dirt-cheap. I look at some and the people can't possibly making back the price of materials, let alone paying for their time or factoring in the cost of living. It hurts that they aren't respecting themselves and it hurts the art business.

deeterhi said...

I agree with you too. I think most contests aren't worth anyone's time especially the "work for free" ones. I'll rarely offer a contest for my own self-promotion but I usually don't ask for my contestants to do much other than support my work or answer trivia, which is lots of fun ^^