The Freelance Life: Making it in webcomics in Romania

fredo_and_pidjin.jpg

The Romanian webcomic Fredo and Pid’jin, has been a big success for its creators Eugen Erhan and Tudor Muscalu, this piece at Next Web tells us, if by success you mean lots of links on Reddit and Digg. But:

Despite its popularity, the pair have struggled to make money from Fredo and Pid’jin. Now Erhan has quit his dayjob to make a go of running the comic full time.


What emerges is the story of two guy with a dream and a webcomic about two evil pigeons out to conquer the world. Things looked low, but then a guy who works on the Simpsons came and told them they were on the right track, energizing them to carry on. But…questions remain:

TNW: How is the comic monetized at the moment?

TM: For the first years we believed we should concentrate on growing, and didn’t really try to make any money. We recently started selling merchandise through Neatorama and local Romanian sites. And it took us 6 years, but now we have banner ads on our site.


Although this sounds like slow going, the Romanian comics industry is in its formative stages, although the Cultural Embassy is behind it, and Romanian cartoonists have made a few appearances here at MoCCA and NYCC. Asked for advice in the interview, Muscalu suggests, “Don’t delay the monetization stage too much. One day opportunity will knock at your door faster than you can design ad banners.”

Evidently taking their own advice, Erhan and Muscalu have created a trailer for the strip, below. We wish them luck on that crucial “quitting your day job” moment.

Comments

  1. Hi,

    Thank you very much for your article,

    I’m Tudor – the writer of Pidjin – I need to make a small clarification:

    In our case the Cultural Embassy is not “behind it” – as in helping or endorsing Fredo&Pidjin in any way (not yet anyway)

    We wish it would support Pidjin, but so far this has not been the case.

    We found out about the Cultural Embassy backed NY ComicCon presence after it had already happened and only accidentally – via reading boingboing.

    Thanks much :)

    Tudor / pidjin.net

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