This week we are chatting with Phil from HECreative. HECreative is a fantastic creative agency and punk rock publishing house. We know what you’re thinking, it sounds slightly unusual. But stay tuned, it’s awesome we promise you. They are also the creators of one of our favorite books, My Very First Punk ABC book.
Show Notes for This Episode:
[1:00] The gang welcome Phil, a long time listener, to show.
[2:00] Phil introduces himself and his agency, HECreative.
[3:00] How HECreative created their own gold dust.
[4:00] Phil becomes known for designing for rappers and modern music.
[5:00] Phil decides to start sharing work he wanted to see in the world.
[6:00] What do you do when your two markets contradict each other?
[7:00] Care less and lean into who you really are.
[8:00] The first piece that gained HECreative 100 likes.
[9:20] 1 paper doll illustration gains them 10,000 followers over night.
[10:00] Green Mohawks, studded leather jackets and tattoos.
[11:30] Becoming more successful when you are yourself.
[12:00] More authentic across the board.
[13:00] Product sales. Talking Self-Published Books and Paper Dolls.
[14:20] Ian inquires about the ins and outs of self-publishing.
[15:00] Phil recommends buying a small batch of 100 books.
[16:00] Pre-Orders really are a commitment.
[17:10] The mystical realm of product sells and the do’s and don’ts.
[18:00] Use Social Media to test the water and take polls.
[19:00] HECreative’s pricing strategy.
[20:00] Ian talks product sale flops.
[21:00] The excuses behind making a print purchase.
[22:00] Offer free postage to remove the postage nightmare.
[23:00] Choose one day to ship all your products.
[24:40] Smart Niching.
[25:00] Ian asks Phil to elaborate on landing Kanye West as a client.
[26:40] Phil’s 30 minute Kanye sketch gets half a million re-shares.
[27:00] Phil is asked to illustrate a cover for Kanye’s new album.
[28:20] Illustrating A Year In A Life of Kanye.
[29:00] Unexpectedly, Pharrell Williams’s agent reaches out.
[30:00] Spec work is not the enemy.
[31:00] Loads of free work delivered loads of money.
[33:00] Everything is spec work.
[34:00] The Internet loves misery. Don’t fall for it.
[35:00] It’s easy to find the negative. Try hard to find the positive.
[36:00] People are homeless and you are complaining about drawing?
[37:20] Phil shares his belief that even being a Christian is speculative.
[39:00] An obsession with 60’s style.
[40:00] Phil feels he was born in the wrong decade.
[41:00] Lisa and Phil talk Veronica from the Archie comics.
[42:00] What’s up next for HeCreative?
[43:00] Tom asks how long Phil was at it before his career skyrocketed.
[44:00] Getting DM’d by your teenage heroes and heroines is surreal.
[45:00] The values of ‘show up, smile, be nice and positive’.
[46:00] Be true to yourself.
[48:00] Always say ‘thank you for having me’.
[49:00] Just because someone says something doesn’t mean it’s true.
[50:00] Clients will always choose the nice person to work with.
[51:00] Be humble and respect your client.
[52:00] Shared passions build stronger bonds.
[53:20] Sales experience is invaluable in any career.
[54:00] Stop trying to talk about things you know nothing about.
[55:00] You really can get the job without ever talking about work.
[56:00] Stop being afraid to niche!
[57:00] Big brand work requires you to be a specialty.
[58:00] Stop the push back on niching down.
[59:00] Moral of the story is to keep having fun on paper.
[1:00:00] Where you can find HeCreative.
[1:01:00] And that’s a wrap.
“A must for every creative freelancer (or those aspiring to freelance). Thank you for being so… honest! Such a wealth of information from people I admire who have ‘been there and done that’. Listening to the podcast every week feels like I’m among friends. Can’t wait for more episodes!” – AG_GD