In partnership with YES Employment + Entrepreneurship.
Tania Mignacca is an illustrator and graphic designer from Montreal. Since her childhood, she’s had a passion for drawing and has always wanted to draw comics. After graduating from Concordia University’s Design Art program she worked as a graphic designer and freelance illustrator.
In 2013 she created Ponto, a cute orange cone character because she was tired of people complaining about construction in Montreal. “I started publishing his webcomic adventures to show the city from a different angle and to get my work out there,” Tania says. “I never expected it would become my full-time job! I’ve been doing the webcomic for 8 years now, and about 4 years of it full-time.”
During her artistic journey, Tania managed to create a line of merchandise to support her art and in 2019, she self-published her first book. She has also worked with clients such as the City of Montreal and the REM – Réseau Express Métropolitain where she created comics and illustrations for various mediums such as construction site banners, advertisements, educational graphics, and more featuring Ponto and new characters.
“I had a few struggles along the way such as seeing my art as a business,” she continues. “During the heart of the pandemic, I also lost access to one of my social media accounts which I was able to get back with a lot of perseverance.”
As an artist, she’s always had a more intuitive approach and knew she needed to develop her business and organization skills in order to make a living from her comics.
“Around 2012, I joined YES Employment + Entrepreneurship. for the workshops because they are affordable and very informative,” Tania says. “It’s also a great place to network with other artists.” At the time, she was just starting her freelance illustration career after quitting her graphic design position in a company. She also exhibited at the YES Art Expo that year and introduced the character that would become Ponto to Montrealers for the first time at that event.
Tania worked with two YES Artist Coaches who helped her set up new strategies to grow her art business.”They helped me to set up good organization habits and find new ways to generate revenue from my art, with a focus on my online store sales and finding points of sale.”
“The Artist Business Coaching service at YES is amazing! It offered me the opportunity to work one on one with a professional artist coach,” Tania says. “It’s great to be able to get a different view about your work and develop new ideas!”
Tania is currently working on the second volume of Ponto’s adventures which she plans to publish this fall.