The income of a caricaturist can be a roller-coaster at best. You may publish a cartoon or two this month and then hear crickets the next several months. However, one thing you can consider once you become a professional is teaching caricature lessons. There are lots of people out there who would love to learn. Here are some tips for teaching others how to draw caricatures.
Knowledge: Caricature Lessons
Of course, this should be a given- but before you can teach others how to draw caricatures, you must first have a knowledge of this yourself. Think about your own skills. If you have already had some formal training, then by all means- go right ahead. If you don’t have any previous training, then you’ll need to spend at least 2 to 3 months and then move on to teaching classes. If you do need to brush up on your skills, there are lots of options for that- check at your local community college, you may be able to find some art classes that you can take.
If not, you can always check out the local library or bookstore. You may also consider looking online for some resources for caricaturists. When you start looking, you’ll find that there is a plethora of information online that can help you make sure that your skills are rock-solid before you start teaching others to do what you do.
When you’re just getting started, it’s best if you can hold the classes at your house, as there is no investment necessary for your location. You may need to invest in some tables, chairs, etc. if you don’t already have these. Finally, you’ll need to spend some money on advertising and getting the word out about your classes. You can advertise online in your local social media groups, ask about placing flyers at your local library and/or grocery stores. There are plenty of options for advertising, so keep that in mind when you’re setting your budget. Hosting the classes in your home will save you lots of money.
Plan Your Curriculum
Next, you need to plan out your curriculum for at least 1 year. You’ll want to let people start out by practicing only lines and shapes for a few classes, so they can improve their wrist movements. Then, you can move on to more advanced classes once they get that under control. Eventually, you’ll want them to reach a point where they can complete a full caricature in one class. At that point, they’ll be ready to move on and start creating caricatures on their own.
We mentioned this in the section on investment, but you’ll need to choose your location before you can start hosting classes. Ideally, you’ll want to have it in your home or your personal studio if possible. This will save you some investment money. If that’s not an option, you might want to look to an art studio in your local area and find out if they have some space. Sometimes, your local library may have some meeting rooms you can rent out for classes. As you see, there are lots of options, you have to determine which one fits your budget best.
Choose a Name
Of course, you’ll want to name your caricature school. You’ll want to choose something catchy that people will remember. You don’t want to choose something that’s complicated or that doesn’t make sense. You want it to flow so that when people hear it, they automatically think, “yes, that’s the caricature school.”
Again, this was briefly mentioned in the section on investment, but you’ll need to find some ways to market your caricature lessons. After all, advertising is one of the best ways to make sure that others know all about you and your lessons. Create pamphlets, flyers, and other media. You can post on social media- especially in some of the groups that are local to your area. You might want to consider organizing some workshops or competitions to get the word out.
Hire More Instructors
Once you have established your caricature school and you’re too busy to teach all of the classes on your own, you might want to consider hiring more instructors. Perhaps some of the students who came through your classes, in the beginning, might be interested in working for you. Of course, you’ll want to determine if they will be put on an “as needed” basis or a full-time basis. This will depend on how busy you are and how busy you expect to be in the future.
Keep Polishing Your Own Skills
Just like anything else, if you’re not using it, you’re going to lose it. If you don’t continue to practice and refine your own caricature skills, you’re not going to continue to flourish in your own career- and you may end up becoming an inadequate teacher.