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enurtsol



Joined: 01 May 2007
Posts: 14152
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 3:32 am Reply with quote
Zin5ki wrote:
I once read somewhere (probably these forums) that animation studios sell the all rights to their intellectual property to the companies who produce merchandise, hence those who make the anime itself don't profit from any individual items sold thereafter.


Unless it's an original series, anime studios are usually work-for-hire by the sponsors and copyright owners. That's why anime studios are usually small and can't grow big.

With original work, they get to be the rightsholder and control the licensing fees.
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Tamaria



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
Posts: 1512
Location: De Achterhoek
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 4:31 am Reply with quote
Quote:
My biggest gripe with AAs lately is all the felt hats and plushies. I mean, those aren't even really fan art and yet they're selling like hotcakes.


I'd rather see those than mass-produced "fan-art" that is more like bootleg merchandise.

I recently formed a crafts group with some people that makes all sorts of items related to anime/manga/games/Japan. Yes, there are people who make fleeche hats, yes there are people who make plushies, but we also have people that make bracelets (well, that would be me actually), bags and wallets, keychains, FIMO earrings etc. Everything is handmade, so we can't massproduce, even if we wanted to.
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cetriya



Joined: 20 Sep 2008
Posts: 156
Location: NJ
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 9:33 am Reply with quote
I dont mind crafts but I dont like plusies of characters simply because there are official versions of them and its not like the plushie artist 'put a spin' on the plush for it to be different.

they just do a basic doll and then start adding peices so its all the same base.
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Tamaria



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
Posts: 1512
Location: De Achterhoek
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 9:59 am Reply with quote
That's not much different from a basic, non-specific fan-art commision, is it? It may al be based on somebody else's design, but you still have to translate it to a plushy yourself (unless you're one of those people who just copies an official plushie). I'm working on building a small Timcanpy army and all the Timcanpies I've seen so far are different in one way or another. Some are made of shiny gold fabric, others have white wings, the size is always different etc.

Some of us like to make plushies of characters from series/games that never spawned any merchandise. For instance, I want to start working on a Yomi (Terranigma) soon. It's not going to be very easy, because I only have two-dimensional artwork to base it on, but I think Yomi makes a great plushie. Sure, I guess I'd make more money making Moogles, but I want to make a Yomi and if someone recognises it and buys it, it will make me very happy.

Besides, we got original plushy designs as well. Cute is fun to make and cute sells, so we make cute.
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gynocrat_rex



Joined: 16 Mar 2006
Posts: 57
Location: Texas
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 11:14 am Reply with quote
cetriya wrote:



I think to my self... 'why doesn't she has anything related to her work on her table?'
.


Are you serious? Very Happy No one is going to buy merchandise from a comic they don't know, how silly. The best way to advertise your original material and recoup your table, room, and food costs are by selling what fans come to the con to buy-- merchandise with their favorite character or show theme on it.

Fan-doujinshi merchandising [remember, doujinshi is anything self-produced in the anime/manga/gaming style - plushies, bookmarks, stationary, comics, games, image CDs, posters, pins, and badges] is a staple at many spot sale events, --event comiket. Many semi-known mangaka load their table top with fan-comics they've made based on FMA or whatevers hot right now, and then give out postcards and posters of their latest BBoy release or upcoming tankobon.
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Jozoiscute



Joined: 25 Oct 2007
Posts: 252
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 2:03 pm Reply with quote
I was privileged to go to my very first AA meet during last summer.
I'm better known online as a fan artist (as you can see from my Totoro avatar here). I find it okay to post fanart and free fan comics online for all people to enjoy, but when I went to AA I found I couldn't bring myself to selling fanart. I just had this guilt knot in my stomach the whole time.....you know?
So.....I did the next best thing!
I ended up selling original work and quotes on buttons (my specialty!). I made the actual buttons in front of people to get somewhat of a crowd.
Because I did want people to recognize my work, I ended up giving away FREE miniature fanart sketches I was doing on the side when I was bored.
Of COURSE I didn't sell as much as the talented artists next to me who were selling everything from Mudkip hats, and G.I.R. dolls to Naruto stickers and Kingdom Hearts bookmarks, but I felt good that I had payed for my table and ticket entirely on my own talent.

...and trust me when I say, it felt SO AWESOME when several of the people who approached me knew who I was when they saw my original characters vs. my fanart. It's a very ecstatic feeling indeed!

Laughing

...I personally have no trouble with people selling fan art at AA (heck....I've bought dozens of buttons and stickers with fanart pieces on them) I just don't like it when they copy a piece pose for pose...
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ArthurFrDent



Joined: 05 Aug 2008
Posts: 466
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 2:53 pm Reply with quote
in terms of "Just draw Kakashi" and why people want to see things that...

I think there exists in those of us without the skill to do a thing like write or draw, a curiosity and perhaps an awe for those who can. Just like not everyone is a world class athelete, but enjoys watching one perform. We may have started to read or watch manga/anime because the content spoke to us in a very specific way... and behind that content is at least one person with the ability to make that content from scratch, from skill, from talent.

So, we may never interact with that individual, but perhaps with another person that also has a talent. That can not only copy but interpret the image or the story... just for us. Even if it is something basic, that could be bought mass produced. We don't want mass produced. 'I went to a talented person, and look what they drew for me?' 'They wrote a story for me that I had an idea for.' 'They took this song I love, and this anime I love and made a visual story and it cheered me up.'

I think this is on a continuum from the original storyteller's intent to start, on through the consumer's interest.

The commercial aspects of the whole? Well yes this is difficult. I think as a fan I have no problem helping someone defray the expense of doing what they love to do, because I want to see it too. Most people will draw the line if they are making huge profit on what is somebody elses work. The thing is, that is not a 'legal' way of looking at things. Law can't be so flexible.

I had read the piece in Wired some time back with interest, but noted that some of the Japanese norms involved would never fly in the US. Our copyright law is kinda funky in that if you DON'T express your right of ownership in the face of copy, you will lose it. There are certainly gray areas, especially with respect to size of infraction, but the bottom line is that some companies have to do routine Cease&Desists to maintain their legal control over their right, even if they are sympathetic to the derivative work. If they do not prosecute their right, another company could come in and turn profits on their IP. The only way it works is for the tacit not lookinig violations to be hand in hand with moderation on the part of those who could make the derivative works. That is similar to the way it seems to work in Japan, but I think our law is much more of a knife edge.

Lastly, as for the artists alley tables that are being monopolized by a few big con-hoppers... well you prolly have a few options. One is to become part of the collectives that are running the con, so that your voice can be heard. Then you can point out how this monopoly doesn't help the con in general. The con can control how many tables are given to one person/group, and they can probably categorize Vendor vs. Artist. In fact there may local sales tax structures that demand that categorization. Should be a compromise situation on the con wanting to keep variety.

On the other hand... every con of any kind I've dealt with [certainly not just anime] may be run by a core of people who are very interested in the con they are doing, and have very strong personalities... and may have NO interest in changing or compromise. :shrug: just hafta bypass those, I guess.

an amusing topic, thanks kids! Wink
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feytaline



Joined: 13 Sep 2006
Posts: 38
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 4:06 pm Reply with quote
This was a fascinating article--and the comments coming out of it have mostly been very enlightening as well.

It's sad but true that most people will not even stop by your artists' table unless you have fanart spewing out all over a transom looking like a professional set-up. It's not like you can blame them--would you shop at a store that you hadn't heard of, that didn't have products in the windows that you liked or anything like that? It is a shame, though, there is a lot of really great original art out there, and the only way people will stop to look is if something draws their eye.

I don't think it's a crime to sell fanart if, as they stated, it is in moderation both in cost and quantity, and it is original drawings. You cannot sell traced or copied art--that's downright plagiarism; but a derivative work, to me, is not wrong. People are buying the products they want, and the fanart they are purchasing (for example, a picture of Haruhi in a unique style and pose unlike any of the official art) is not available through official means--likewise, if fanartists remain responsible, the official merchandise the consumer wants will only be available through official means (for example, a glossy poster or wallscroll of Haruhi by the original artist). One should not replace the other. If you like someone's work, there is nothing wrong with compensating them for that as well as the cost of producing a physical product, even if you can't compensate the original character designer for the use of that character.

People are going to draw what they want, even if the sale of fanart at cons is banned completely. I believe that would kill most interest in Artists' Alley, sadly. I don't know many people who visit that aren't looking for specific characters they like. It's a shame, there is so much amazing talent there!

The distinction between artists and dealers NEEDS to be drawn at the larger conventions and ones where the space is so limited. Someone who has their own account at a professional copying store, hitting one con a month, should not be 'competing' next to someone who is only making it to this con this year. The only way I could think to draw a distinction is by asking how much the booth has taken in at previous cons--if it takes in as much as a vendor's table, or significantly more than all others at the artists' alley, then perhaps it's time for a bump up to the dealer's room prices and space. Table limits are a no brainer! There is absolutely no need for an artist to take up more than two tables TOPS. NONE.
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irishninja



Joined: 15 Jun 2005
Posts: 344
Location: Seattle-ish
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 4:48 pm Reply with quote
Zin5ki wrote:
irishninja wrote:
I'm not sure I follow your logic. Buying a piece of custom fanart doesn't help the original IP holder and doesn't support those involved in crafting the anime, unless the artist actually pays royalties on the art he sells (which I doubt anyone does).

Granted. Whilst it may not aid the producers to any degree however, if the art is made to a unique design it does them no harm either (unless it gains a notoriety such as that of the Pokémon doujin mentioned). One assumes that purchasing a piece of original fanart doesn't entirely fulfil a fan's desire for merchandise.


Oh, I see what you're saying. Yeah, I totally agree with you here. Smile
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reanimator





PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 10:55 pm Reply with quote
cetriya wrote:

My biggest grip about mass produced fan art is the stop of artistic growth. you can say its a coincidence but, I've been drawing for about 6-7 years so when i find some one who have been drawing for 10+ years and are not better then me, I feel sad and upset. Especially :
Quote:

how you drew a picture of Naruto five years ago and you're still printing 200 copies and selling them everywhere,


because its like you've become satisfied with your (usually fake, because most of them would not stay if you stopped doing fan art) popularity and making money with no more effort.


I think I know why that person's artistic skill has not improved over the years. Drawing for 10 years should have improved anyone's drawing, and it tells me that he or she hasn't been drawing day-in and day-out, which all good artists do.

The main reason is that fan artist stopped being observer of real life objects. The biggest problem with amateur art is that the artist fail to expand his or her horizon beyond popular character design. Drawing school girl and maid is fine, but the artist should draw character referenced from real life view or photos of someone dressed in school girl outfit. Veteran animators like Toshiyuki Inoue and Cindy Yamauchi are still telling people to draw real people and objects. After all, anime/manga is just another stylized caricature of real people and environments.

Another problem is that no one tells or points out obvious mistakes that artist make. I believe casual fans inflate artist's ego by purchasing their "okay" art at an abnormal price or by saying empty compliments. Just because fan art was rendered in fancy Copic markers or Photoshop software, mediocre art is mediocre art no matter what.

In Japan, an animation inbetween artist has to draw 300 to 700 sheets per month at rate of $4 to $5 per sheet of drawing. Unlike fan drawings, their line quality is a lot better and they have to comply with art standards established by the industry. Can fan artists willing to draw that much drawings (not sketches) in a month? I doubt it.

Fan artists don't have to put up with industry standards, but in order to sell original designs at desired price he or she has to show professional quality of craftsmanship.

I picked up one of those "how to draw manga" books, and guess what? They teach the same things that used on fine art drawing book except comprehensive head study. Now fans have access to internet for photos and abundant books about drawing manga. 10-15 years ago, there wasn't hardly any translated book on drawing manga and internet wasn't even like Google images. With all those, fan artist have no excuse not to draw stuffs everyday.
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cetriya



Joined: 20 Sep 2008
Posts: 156
Location: NJ
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 12:43 am Reply with quote
gynocrat_rex wrote:


Are you serious? Very Happy


I am serious, and yes people do buy original stuff or else I would have stop going to the AA (if it looks nice enough they'll still buy). Besides, she didn't have to sell it, but if she's promoting then it would be better if she at lest had a binder with some pages printed for viewers at the con. Many people look at your work and may not remember to go to your site. having a paper bookmark taped onto the out side packaging is more likely to be torn off.


reanimator wrote:

Fan artists don't have to put up with industry standards, but in order to sell original designs at desired price he or she has to show professional quality of craftsmanship.


I believe this too because I've sold out original prints many times so I know that if its good it will still be sold. I know many original artists at the cons I go to and they do a decent pool of money too because their work is really beautiful like:
http://blush-art.deviantart.com/
http://soap-committee.deviantart.com/
http://blix-it.deviantart.com/

Now if people would just not be afraid to do the work they want to do and be judge by skill and not the content of others. This doesnt count for people who just does this once in a while for fun.
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giberwitz



Joined: 01 Dec 2006
Posts: 36
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 11:26 am Reply with quote
Selling fan art is never ok. I don't care who you are or how bad you've tried to sell you're own and boo hoo hoo... You are making money off another artists hard work and creativity. I am an artist and I know what it's like to be ignored as a struggling artist it doesn't make it ok to profit off of others work. Think about it if you created it would you want people making money off of your life's work? Create you're own art if it's any good people will pay attention.
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Tamaria



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
Posts: 1512
Location: De Achterhoek
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 12:36 pm Reply with quote
There are easier ways to make money. For some people it's still about sharing a fandom and I don't think it's ever going to change.

The problem with AA's is essentially that aspiring artists are trying to compete with aspiring vendors and that's not doing the AA any good.
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ANN_Bamboo
ANN Contributor


Joined: 05 Jan 2002
Posts: 3903
Location: The OC
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 12:56 pm Reply with quote
I don't have a problem with commissions, really, because you (the customer) are paying for the artist's time. Yes, they're drawing someone else's character, but there's still a skill set associated with that-- and a unique market. If you really want a hand-drawn sketch of Ranma, it's probably much easier to get a talented artist to draw it for you, than Takahashi.

It's the prints that I have a problem with. At that point, it becomes a business model. It sucks the soul out of it, and you're just paying for someone else's poster of a character they didn't design.
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Cain Highwind



Joined: 08 May 2006
Posts: 295
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 1:55 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Robin: Well, that's kind of what I don't fully understand. A lot of customers just love seeing different interpretations of these characters done by different artists, and so getting to see these characters in situations that they would not normally get to see them in is nice. For instance, there are no professional, real posters of Naruto and Sasuke being all yaoi together, or, you know, characters from different video games crossing over and doing creative things like that. I think that is what people are looking for, but I still am a little bit confused when people say, “Just draw Kakashi,” you know? In that case, just get a poster of him. But I think those people are looking for different interpretations.


I think I fall into that category, even though I've never had the experience of attending a con. When I browse Deviantart, I think the two things that catch my attention are outrageously gorgeous renditions of a character or funny crossovers. I'm always thinking of how if I were an artist (Oh man how I WISH I could draw), how I'd have two completely different characters interact with one another.

And from a purchasing fanart perspective, I find it rather unsettling myself. While I like looking at fanart I'd feel really awkward buying it or even using it for some kind of artistic project like a banner or some kind of presentation. My sister, who HAS been to cons once got me a One Piece bookmark. I was really appreciative of her thinking of me, but I just found it incredibly awkward to use because it didn't have that "officially endorsed" look and feel. However she also got me a couple of One Piece product parody shirts that I found hilarious and love to wear. So it's rather tricky to explain.

Oh and I'm surprised no one's linked to this classic issue of AN Nina. It popped into my head as I was reading this article.
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