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It is certainly possible to make money as a web cartoonist and lots of it if you are on the very top of the pile. But for every Penny Arcade and xkcd there are hundreds of thousands (?) of cartoonists who make $ZERO from their craft.

At least with syndication you either make it or you don't there's not this carrot of "if you marketed yourself better you'd make more money." Maybe that's true, but it can take a boatload of hard work to find out you don't have what it takes.

I read about one seemingly successful Web cartoonist who said he made the majority of his income from original art sales. How can that be? With a finite number of fans and a relatively low cost for the art ($100) even if he sold out completely every year he'd make $36,500 a year -- and the sell through rate is probably no where near 100%. SO if he sold half he'd have $18,000 a year. Not bad I guess, but he's supposed to be on the top of the pile. Where does that leave the rest of who aren't in that circle.


You're absolutely right, Lucas. Anyone who is syndicated to print newspapers can attest to the enormous amount of work that all the people who make up the working parts of a syndicate put in. Many, many working parts. And anyone who has not had the print syndication experience on an international level can't truly appreciate that working relationship of artist and syndicate business arm. I have been fortunate enough to have it for the last 16 years, and it is much more complicated and artist-friendly than the,"You are old and a buggy whip corporate-lacky, and we are new and hip and the future" attitude that the film's trailer suggests. I am an artist and I am completely encouraged by my syndicate to explore my own id, and because they handle all of the minutiae of the business, I am much more creative and experimental than I otherwise would be. And just so you know, the money is amazing too.

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