Is there a place with in the design industry for artists to be hired to produce specific types of work, whether they are paintings or illustrations? Does this happen?

Its a random question I know but my Mother is a well known Irish Artist and is really struggling with the current economic climate. I was trying to research some other ways that she could make money. I thought she could possibly do some illustrations/drawings for the more commercial sector rather than trying to sell massive paintings in this climate.

If you have any thoughts on this matter or experience using artists please let me know....

Thanks again,

A concerned Daughter....
It is possible for an artist to become an illustrator too, if that's what you're asking.

She might be best getting an agent first, who will then contact high-end Design and Advertising agencies. It would help if she has a distinct style or maybe something different to what is already around.

Otherwise, it's just a matter of advertising her wares, just like the rest of us. Take a look at sites such as Contact Creative. How about book illustration for covers and children's books?
She would have to be able to work to a brief, of course, and to be able to send her work digitally, etc.
Tricky one, but looking into getting representation as a commercial artist sounds like sensible advice.
Thanks guys,

She has an agent, but for the fine art side of things. He doesn't want her to go commercial as it will cheapen her fine art in his opinion. Which is correct BUT she has to survive financially, which she isn't doing atm with him. She mainly paints so I may try and get her to do a few illustrations for me to do up a illustration portfolio for her.

To send it digitally is it as simple as getting it onto the comp as a high res image?? Or does it have to be completely editable eg. adobe illustrator?

Cheers for the replies!
... She has an agent, but for the fine art side of things. He doesn't want her to go commercial as it will cheapen her fine art in his opinion...

Toulouse-Lautrec, anyone?

Maybe illustrate under a pseudonym (although this exposes the flipside of the agent's issue in that it prevents her from trading on her fine art reputation)? That said, if I was an artist of some repute who was struggling to pay the bills, I'd probably be thinking limited edition prints.
Thanks Dave,

I'll definitely mention that to her as an option. I was am currently looking into limited edition prints, problem I'm concerned with is that her paintings are on canvas and many have different surfaces and often uneven surfaces, not sure whether we go about getting them professionally scanned or photographed? What way is it usually done?

Also on the subject of illustration. Could she contact graphic agencies directly, offering to go on they're books for freelance projects or something?

Cheers again!
Hi, hopefully this website will prove useful: HOME - The Association of Illustrators if you want to get into illustration.

I have a few friends who illustrate, their physical work is sent to the agency who sort out the scanning at their end (I believe they have special drum scanners or something). They both work traditionally rather than digitally.

There are plenty of illustrators who still work traditionally only. I would do what you suggested and maybe set her a few illustration briefs yourself or find some illustrations from magazines/brochures etc and re-do them in
her own style (for "illustration" purposes only, of course). If she only paints on canvas, then these will have to be either professionally photographed or scanned on a large format scanner, of which there aren't many about.
This will then be sent as a high res Tif or whatever, for the agency to do with as they wish.
Maybe she could try starting to paint on other media that would be easier to scan.

It sounds like she would probably need a separate agent who is specialised in this field. Once she has put a portfolio of work together, I think a website is a must, if she doesn't have one already.