Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
 

Author Topic: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?  (Read 1357 times)

geronimo

  • Member
  • Sub Basement Sewer Unit
  • *
  • Posts: 32
  • Speaking as a failed comics artist & writer.......
    • View Profile
What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« on: 11 December, 2018, 11:34:49 am »
Hi all Squaxx,

    I am just wondering about the prices to expect to pay if I asked a pro to letter up some pages I draw, and also could it be done easily through the computer if we are at a distance from each other? I'm sure it can but is there any special software needed?

Thanks,

G.

Jim_Campbell

  • 2000AD Creator
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 12687
  • Letterer to the Stars! (and PJ)
    • View Profile
    • deviantArt Gallery
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #1 on: 11 December, 2018, 11:56:58 am »
The overwhelming majority of pro letterers are working in Adobe Illustrator, although there's a much smaller number working in InDesign.

Absolute rock solid minimum for an actual pro letterer is £10/$15 per page. You can find people who'll work for less, but you very much get what you pay for.

There are several options for moving files between artist and letterer, but Dropbox and WeTransfer are the most common.

If you've got any other questions, please feel free to ask!
Stupidly Busy Letterer: Samples. | Blog
Less-Awesome-Artist: Scribbles.

geronimo

  • Member
  • Sub Basement Sewer Unit
  • *
  • Posts: 32
  • Speaking as a failed comics artist & writer.......
    • View Profile
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #2 on: 11 December, 2018, 12:57:09 pm »
Many thanks, Jim,

But I assume prices go up for pages that require a lot of lettering, what is the maximum?
But what you have told me so far it is affordably priced,  cos lettering takes so long and when it looks amateurish it pulls the quality down.

Jim_Campbell

  • 2000AD Creator
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 12687
  • Letterer to the Stars! (and PJ)
    • View Profile
    • deviantArt Gallery
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #3 on: 11 December, 2018, 01:05:36 pm »
But I assume prices go up for pages that require a lot of lettering, what is the maximum?

I can't speak for every letterer, but all the ones I've spoken to about it have the same policy as I do: it's a flat rate — we don't charge extra for difficult pages, but by the same token we don't offer a discount for easy ones. I invoice for 'silent' pages at the same rate as a page with twenty panels and three balloons per panel. In the long run, it more or less balances out…!
Stupidly Busy Letterer: Samples. | Blog
Less-Awesome-Artist: Scribbles.

geronimo

  • Member
  • Sub Basement Sewer Unit
  • *
  • Posts: 32
  • Speaking as a failed comics artist & writer.......
    • View Profile
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #4 on: 11 December, 2018, 04:51:45 pm »
Thanks Jim,

So all that is needed for me now is to knock out some pages over Christmas! :P
Where can I reach you to do business with when the time comes?

Trout

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 13452
  • "Because I hate you."
    • View Profile
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #5 on: 12 December, 2018, 12:52:08 am »
Wait - is it balloon or bubble? I've forgotten.

sheridan

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 4184
    • View Profile
    • Wilde Wood
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #6 on: 12 December, 2018, 12:53:42 pm »
Wait - is it balloon or bubble? I've forgotten.

Wikipedia says balloon, though that doesn't actually mean anything as the article has to have a name, and the very first sentence says "Speech balloons (also speech bubbles, dialogue balloons or word balloons) are a graphic convention used most commonly in comic books, comics and cartoons".

sheridan

  • Member
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • ****
  • Posts: 4184
    • View Profile
    • Wilde Wood
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #7 on: 12 December, 2018, 12:55:47 pm »
Wait - is it balloon or bubble? I've forgotten.

Wikipedia says balloon, though that doesn't actually mean anything as the article has to have a name, and the very first sentence says "Speech balloons (also speech bubbles, dialogue balloons or word balloons) are a graphic convention used most commonly in comic books, comics and cartoons".

Though probably influenced by the name of the Thought Bubble convention I tend to say bubble over balloon, or scroll if I'm going old-school.


Adrian Bamforth

  • 2000AD Creator
  • Battle Hardened War Robot
  • *****
  • Posts: 3361
    • View Profile
    • Adrian Bamforth, Artist
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #8 on: 12 December, 2018, 01:33:03 pm »
I use Manga Studio (AKA Clip Studio Paint) for both art and lettering, which is a lot cheaper than Illustrator (£38.94 when I bought it). Bubbles seem slightly more elliptical than I see in 2000ad but I'm sure you can probably import your own. Free font is Back Issues. Would be happy to letter for someone else.

 
www.adrianbamforth.co.uk

Jim_Campbell

  • 2000AD Creator
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 12687
  • Letterer to the Stars! (and PJ)
    • View Profile
    • deviantArt Gallery
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #9 on: 12 December, 2018, 02:55:53 pm »
you very much get what you pay for.

Point neatly illustrated.

Sorry, Ade — there's a reason there are zero professional letterers using Clip Studio for lettering. It doesn't offer anything like the fine-grained type controls needed for this sort of work, it doesn't support OpenType features like autoligatures (where typing, say, 'EE' swaps the letters out for two non-identical 'E's), it applies faux italics to text even when you have an italic version of the font installed.

In short, it's shoddy and it gives shoddy results.

Also: if you're looking at your lettering and telling yourself that it's of professional standard, you need to go back and have another look.

Why are there no crossbar 'I's on the pronoun 'I's in this sample? Why didn't you turn 'mind' on 'made up your mind' onto a new line to make a nicer shaped text block and fill the balloon space? Why isn't that balloon cropped to the top panel border?

I don't have time for a detailed critique this afternoon, and I appreciate you weren't asking for one, but if you're going to come onto a thread where someone is offering to pay a professional letterer and offer instead to do it for free, but to a much lower standard, you're going to have to anticipate a bit of pushback.
Stupidly Busy Letterer: Samples. | Blog
Less-Awesome-Artist: Scribbles.

TordelBack

  • Member
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 25060
  • Thunder Chops is dragged off, gnashing...
    • View Profile
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #10 on: 12 December, 2018, 05:58:14 pm »
Anyone want some popcorn when I'm going to the lobby?  This is getting good!

Funt Solo

  • Member
  • Bionic Fingers
  • *****
  • Posts: 6179
    • View Profile
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #11 on: 12 December, 2018, 07:21:25 pm »
autoligatures (where typing, say, 'EE' swaps the letters out for two non-identical 'E's)

That's fascinating: is that so it looks more naturalistic, and less mechanical?
fate amenable to change

Jim_Campbell

  • 2000AD Creator
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 12687
  • Letterer to the Stars! (and PJ)
    • View Profile
    • deviantArt Gallery
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #12 on: 12 December, 2018, 07:53:17 pm »
That's fascinating: is that so it looks more naturalistic, and less mechanical?

That's the the idea. Blambot's Collect 'Em All has six variants of each letter that swap out not only when they're adjacent, but when they're just near to each other.

Stupidly Busy Letterer: Samples. | Blog
Less-Awesome-Artist: Scribbles.

IndigoPrime

  • Administrator
  • Bionic Fingers
  • *****
  • Posts: 8196
    • View Profile
    • http://www.craiggrannell.com
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #13 on: 12 December, 2018, 08:54:25 pm »
Huh – I had no idea about that. I've in the past done a very tiny amount of lettering for my own amusement, but manually adjusted nearby letters through using variants in upper/lower case. The automated stuff and wide variety in modern fonts is really interesting.

Jim_Campbell

  • 2000AD Creator
  • CALL-ME-KENNETH!
  • *****
  • Posts: 12687
  • Letterer to the Stars! (and PJ)
    • View Profile
    • deviantArt Gallery
Re: What Are The The Prices For Lettering?
« Reply #14 on: 13 December, 2018, 08:22:23 am »
Huh – I had no idea about that. I've in the past done a very tiny amount of lettering for my own amusement, but manually adjusted nearby letters through using variants in upper/lower case. The automated stuff and wide variety in modern fonts is really interesting.

That's what I've had to do with both Grass Kings and Black Badge for BOOM. The font I've used for both (Hundred Watt from Blambot) has a lot of character, but part of the problem with that is the the identical-ness of specific letters stands out like a sore thumb because each version of each letter is quite distinctive.

Once I've got the text shaped into a block that looks attractive and fits the space available, I have to go through each line and try to make sure that repeated letters alternate between upper and lower, also paying attention to whether they are also repeated on the lines immediately above or below…





It adds a surprising amount of time to the process, but is worth the extra work, IMO.
Stupidly Busy Letterer: Samples. | Blog
Less-Awesome-Artist: Scribbles.