I was recently asked the following question through Facebook Messenger:
“I want someone to review my work so I can get feedback on what I’m doing right or wrong. I have no idea how to initiate that kind of conversation or who to turn to. What do you recommend I do?”
Quick thoughts: Sending your art unsolicited to a professional cartoonist for a critique is usually a bad idea.
It’s like wanting your car fixed, and instead of making an appointment, just driving it into an auto repair shop and parking your car on a mechanic’s lift – then expecting them to get to work.
Posting it online on social media for a critique can be hit or miss. There’s simply no way of knowing the experience and/or professionalism of those giving their two cents worth.
From personal experience I find Artists Alleys at comic cons to be a good bet. The reason being that the artists on hand are specifically there taking the time to touch base with readers and fans. This one-on-one from an artist you respect can be invaluable.
Just make sure to ask if they’re open to doing a portfolio review. They may not depending on time constraints/sketch requests, and that’s perfectly understandable.
Also a heads up that the critique you get can be instructive and/or eviscerating depending on the artist’s demeanor. Be prepared for either.
A surefire way to get a critique is to take a class or correspondence course in cartooning. Heads up that the Minneapolis College of Art and Design has an online portfolio review for potential students.
I would also recommend the Joe Kubert School Correspondence Course (and no, I don’t get paid for this endorsement). In this case it’s a matter of getting what you pay for.
Hope the preceding was of assistance and wishing you all the best in your artistic ventures!