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Another dA con?

Many users on dA will have recieved notes asking them to contribute to some scam or other (unwillingly), such as have their 'poetry' printed into a 'special book' that will only cost them $25, that kind of balony.

So I was very wary when approached by The-art-collecter. To submit 'wolf art' to her book.

"Hello, my name is Sally Ford,I am representing Platte Productions Publishing and we are putting together a book called "Amazing Wolf Art".

I have seen your work and would like to include your art in this collection.
(you can submit up 3 images)

If you are interested you can be sure there is no cost to you, we are only looking for permission to publish.
We would like to include the best wolf art we can find. This can be a great platform for you to promote your work. Not only will all works be credited to the artists but you will have the opportunity to include your contact information, including website and email address.

This book is expected to be available this Summer. We have just successfully published "Amazing Pencil Portraits".

If you are interested please let me know and I will add your work to our Submission folder.
For more information, rules & guidelines, please visit and watch us here at DA.

Deadline for Submissions: JULY 4th, 2008
Thank you for your time,

Sally Ford
Platte Productions Publishing

Journal entry on 'submissions'.

The 'submissions' she's placed here in her favourites. Usually when I see Goldenwolf, Starfinder, khaosdog etc all in the same folder like this my brain screams theft. I do wonder if they actually submitted work to the book?

But basically when you submit your work you recieve exposure, as you can have your details with your work, fair enough. But as far as I know the artists don't recieve any profit from this. So essentially it's like making prints of someone else's work, putting their web address, email on it, and then raking in all the profits for yourself.

Am I over-reacting? Or does something sinister lie like I suspect?

I apologise if this is irrelevent, I just thought this would be the place to ask about this :/
Artist's beware has moved!
Do NOT repost your old bewares. They are being archived.


( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 5th, 2008 03:57 am (UTC)
It's like those dumb "Who's Who in Highschool" books, except it sounds like they'll actually try to sell it to people other than the contributors. I say avoid at all costs, unless you don't mind your stuff being reprinted free forever.
Jul. 5th, 2008 04:15 am (UTC)
Lemme put it simply: "no."

This is obviously not the kind of exposure you need to be selling your soul for. It's downright lame :\
Jul. 5th, 2008 04:36 am (UTC)
yeah I got that note too, just didn't respond. No, getting exposure in place of money is not always an unfair trade or a bad thing. BUT that depends on whom you are receiving said exposure from and how much traffic/attention it will generate you to compensate for lack of monetary profit. I would be ecstatic to have my work published in an anthology I know would reach an extremely diverse audience and I would willingly submit my work without expecting money in return in a case like that. Or if the book's profits were going towards a cause I supported. But this..I don't see how it will gain me anything other than a momentary feeling of "omg Im published" only to realize I could have done that myself AND gotten profit from it.
Jul. 5th, 2008 04:45 am (UTC)
Something that strikes me as exceedingly fishy is that it's going to be published this summer. Isn't that a short amount of time to put together a book, at least if it's to look at all professional?
Jul. 5th, 2008 05:27 am (UTC)
Given how snail-pace slow the publishing industry is anyway, that's exactly what I was thinking. It'd have to be very-small-press or self-published to get done in that timeline.

Googling the other title mentioned turns up hardly anything relevant, and the first link to actually point to it returns a 'page-not-found' at what is, essentially, some manner of self-publisher.
Jul. 5th, 2008 07:53 am (UTC)
They're doing it through Blurb, which looks like something similar to self publishing like Lulu.com. I've done the same (With my own art though) and it only took me a day to get it finished up and ready for printing... It takes very little time to set things up like this through both sites.

This whole thing smells fishy.
Jul. 5th, 2008 05:03 am (UTC)
absolutely not... I got that note too, I'm in the middle of responding at this person's page. They just want to make money off of other people's work, and selling her idea as "free publicity" is NOT a valid selling point. Neither is the last of fees things. Artists don't pay fees to get their work published, they get PAID when their work is published.
Jul. 5th, 2008 05:09 am (UTC)
haha, responded under the wrong account on accident! XD Wonder if they'll wonder who I am...
Jul. 5th, 2008 06:47 am (UTC)
Whoever you are, you have nice icons. :D
Jul. 5th, 2008 07:25 am (UTC)
Why thank you. Stark = love
Jul. 5th, 2008 05:10 pm (UTC)

Depends on the art book, some of the bigger ones you do pay to go into but that's because they send them to art directors and the like so it is industry specific advertising that you're paying for.
Jul. 5th, 2008 07:22 am (UTC)
I find it even more suspicious that they are hiding comments.
Jul. 5th, 2008 07:26 am (UTC)
Hmm, didn't notice my comment was hidden until you pointed that out. =/
Jul. 5th, 2008 08:06 am (UTC)
Judging by the comments on their userpage, I don't think they're fake or a scam, but they'll probably take these 'submissions' and put it into what has been mentioned; a site like lulu.com which makes books for you. Then she goes out and gives it to the artists who contributed or something. Sounds like a dumb plan to me (I would decline XD) but I don't thinl it's a con.
Jul. 5th, 2008 01:19 pm (UTC)
I love how she's still charging the artists if they want a copy of the book they're making no profit off of.

Definitely avoid.
Jul. 5th, 2008 02:59 pm (UTC)
It's not sinister. There's no malice here at all, nobody's trying to rip anybody off, it's just a little vanity-published book, I'm guessing.

The exposure is likely to be minimal, if it's anything like the other million such projects I've encountered, but there's nothing sinister about that--I'm guessing the project coordinators mean really well and just want to do a book of cool wolf art. They're asking for submissions, not ripping people off, and they explain up front that the artists aren't being paid--believe it or not, there's a lot of very respectable anthologies that follow the exact same sort of guidelines. You don't get paid to show up in "Spectrum" either.

So no, it's not sinister, they're not doing anything wrong, but it's just not likely to provide any meaningful exposure one way or the other.
Jul. 5th, 2008 03:24 pm (UTC)
I'd totally say to avoid the offer. Anything that asks the artists to submit free artwork for a publishing project that does not result in the artist being compensated in some way - especially if the completed project tands to gain some profit - is bogus.

I had been approached on FA with something similar to this - although, in my case, it had to deal with a card game the guy was looking to create (like along the same lines as Pokemon trading cards). He explained they didn't have to be originals - pre-existing images could be used - and in exchange for the images, the artists would receive a minimal amount of $5 for each piece, a free deck of cards, plus - the best part of the offer, supposidely - free publicity (given that the cards had the artists' email addy/FA account listed at the bottom of each card their work was printed on and said cards would be distributed at Cons for $25 for a pack of 40 - I think).

When asked why he was offering the artists such a low price in exchange for the images - especially when he would be selling the finished product for personal profit, he explained that creating the cards would be an expense coming out of his own pocket (it would cost him far more to print them out and have them laminated than what he stood to gain at the Cons), so essentially, he wouldn't be breaking even (or just barely).

I had initially agreed to help (figuring I could stand to be generous once in awhile), but thought better of it when giving his explanation more thought, and allowed the offer to fall through (no money had been exchanged by this point, thankfully, and I haven't heard from him since).
Jul. 5th, 2008 03:51 pm (UTC)
While I'm not really experienced with the art world or books such as these, by looking over the page and reading over everyone's comments here and the comments on the page... I have to agree with Ursulav. I think this is legit. It's something like Spectrum or submitting your art to other anthologies. It's free exposure. Meanwhile, yes, Spectrum does gain a profit. I think this woman is just, like Ursulav said, trying to make a book of cool wolf art and trying to get a little bit of exposure out to artists. Everything looks pretty legit; it doesn't seem like someone is trying to bait people into getting free art. They even submitted a news article about it. I don't know how dA's news articles work, but it seems like the mods would at least keep an eye out for scams.

I think it's good to be cautious. But at the same time, art is a business and business is about risk. By hiding away at every opportunity that vaguely looks like a scam, you lose out on a lot of potential commissions and work.

But again, that's just my opinion.
Jul. 5th, 2008 04:10 pm (UTC)
first thing that made my red flag go up was the terrible grammar in that. if she really was a rep for a publishing company, i don't think she'd butcher the english language so much.

*rereads her lack of capitals* oh goddammit.
Jul. 5th, 2008 05:23 pm (UTC)

In cases like this:

You NEED a contract if you're going to enter into any sort of deal with these people, it needs to cover, how, when, where, and limitations on printing. ie license to print a run of 500 books excetra. They don't detail that though they say you'll have to sign a release form, that's the first red flag.

This probably isn't a scam but it's probably not a good thing to get involved with.

The anthologies that you would not be paid for or have to pay to get into? Are like that because they are guaranteed exposure, they're regularly brought/given to art directors and the like. Getting into one of those is a feather in your cap, they are huge and as such they have a big professional website usually (not a dA account), are mentioned in all the top artist communities and don't need to go around panhandling for artists because they get more submissions than they can print. The big ones do bring in work.

This looks to be extremely small scale, it's unlikely to net you any publicity at all and it can actually damage your chances of publishing work later, a lot of publishers prefer first publish rights unless you're very well known. So even if it only sells five copies, a bigger publisher may not take anything you allow to be printed in this because it's previously been published.

I would avoid it like the plague. Not because they keep the profit but because it's not worth it for the effort and the rights given up. Plus giving large res print files to someone without a long term track record in the industry is just risky.
Jul. 6th, 2008 01:25 am (UTC)
Sure, some anthologies like Spectrum give you no monetary return but they have hefty exposure and prestige factors! :o Joe Shmoe trying to get work to use for a zine(which is pretty much what it's amounting to, a zine) isn't going to get much attention from artists by toting exposure in front of them. It's NOT a good selling point at all, and sounds like a scam to the wary artist that doesn't want to let their hard work go abused.

However good the intentions are, they would make a decent profit (comparing the base prices and the sale prices of the books already on the site, and assuming they were ever bought) off of work they acquire a right to for free.
Jul. 6th, 2008 12:34 pm (UTC)
(Taking advice given to my class on Self Promotion, taught by an illustrator who has an agent and been in the industry for decades) Free publicity/publishing without a contract? No. Don't ever just "agree" to something, you need it in writing as far as the rules of use, where and who is using your work.

People DO prey upon those "younger" artists because they are inexperienced, it's WRONG, but they do it on purpose - how many of you know what a boiler plate contract is or have legal counsel? *sigh* I understand it hurts, you want people to see your art but NEVER "give" the rights to your work to someone else without written/signable/legal, documents. Unless its a small operation such as a net article that will credit/link back. But some unknown publisher NOT offering a terms of use contract? No. (if they are, then do some research and maybe talk to those already having been published by them)

(btw their site does work they just accidentally put in a period - always check their spelling! http://www.platteproductions.com/publishing/ )
Jul. 6th, 2008 12:35 pm (UTC)
BTW since she is SELLING the book, she SHOULD be paying the artists a percentage of it.
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )


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