Designer-Con’s Vendors: Tips and Tricks for Success

Lily Nguyen, Comic Artist

Designer Con was held at the Pasadena Convention Center and hosted by various companies from Nov. 11-12. It is a convention specifically made for art and design to showcase artist contributions and designs. Different companies use this convention as a scouting ground for talent.


To many artists regardless of level, staying relevant in social media and in the design industry has been proven to be difficult. Stephen Silver, a concept artist that worked on Kim Possible, offers advice to those who struggle with keeping up in today’s technology-filled age.


“You gotta’ keep creating and challenging yourself to stay relevant,” Silver said. “Whether it be working with a new director, new artists, or inventing a new style, doing something new is the key to staying alive.”


Victoria Rose Molt, a puppeteer for stop-motion animations such as Coraline, believes that the fundamentals of art apply to every medium.


“The twelve principles of animation still apply to stop-motion animation as well as the core skills of art,” Molt said. “Gesture drawings also can help with anything art, even in unexpected ways.”


Valency Genis, a sculptor who creates clay taxidermies, thinks it is important to stand out, no matter your skill level.


“I think making something that looks different and unique is really important when it comes to art,” Genis said. “I see art that looks similar to others or that are crazy realistic, which is not a bad thing, but it doesn’t really shout ‘unique’.”


However, according to Brett Bean, an illustrator who worked with Marvel Comics and Penguin’s Classics, distinctiveness is not enough.


“I see this in a lot of portfolios,” Bean said. “You have this amazing art that begs, ‘Give me a job,’ but it doesn’t offer your point of view. Your portfolio is more than begging for a job; a portfolio is to show the world how you see things.”

These vendors’ tips and tricks can be helpful for those who heed it. Their mistakes have turned into wisdom, and their wisdom transformed into advice. There were a variety of different artists, starting from concept designers to sculptors to toy designers, and more. Most of the artists at the convention contribute to a multitude of projects such as Marvel Comics, Coraline, “Slugterra,” and other major programs.