metallik_hasse (metallik_hasse) wrote in artists_beware,

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Contract Advice - Updated

Recently I was accepted to create content for a comic, but the lack of communication and hazy guidelines are becoming a concern for me. I'm looking for advice how I might move forward.
Here's a rough layout of the events, I'll try to make it as cut and dry as possible for efficiency's sake. Let me know if you need more details.
1. I received contact offering me a spot in the comic
2. I read over the guidelines, and sent in my sketches to make sure they fit the criteria
3. Sketches approved, I completed 1/2 of the images using their formatting templates
4. I asked if I'm allowed to sell the originals/prints of my work, they say no: I'm not allowed to redistribute them at all, online or otherwise. At the time I thought 'that makes sense, given that they want to sell the comic'. Later I remembered that another contributing artist has sold the original of their one of their pieces, and sells prints in one of their portfolios.
5. When turning in my first finished piece, I mention I've seen another contributing artist (didn't name them) selling prints and the original of their contribution, and asked if they were aware of this, because I'd really like to sell my originals too.
6. Without acknowledging my questions, they reply asking me to convert my piece into CMYK for printing and resubmit it.
7. On Mar 20, 2014, I ask if they had received my email asking about selling my originals. As of this writing I have not received a reply, and have not turned in the converted file.

No money has currently changed hands, and this is the current business model they're working with (From their FAQ):
"Payments are sent to myself, and I divvy payment between the contributors. Money is split by comic, and to each artist by submission number. Pin ups pay less than comic pages. Otherwise, an artist is paid by their page submission/total pages of the comic (For example: submitting a 5 page comic out of a 25 page anthology would yield 20%). This is based off net profit, which is after a 5% cut is taken for the organizers, to cover cost of shipping to conventions, table space, etc."

Is this common for small publishers?  Would it be wise to back out of this project?
I'm really worried there's a degree of favoritism happening here (because furries), and I don't feel comfortable with that.

Thanks in advance for any helpful input you can offer!

UPDATE: I contacted the artist in question, and they had worked something out before agreeing to create content for the first book. It appears they got into this project with the same intent as myself, not as much for money, but for exposure and something for my fans to enjoy. I've not signed any contract (I wasn't offered one), but I'm going to move forward with the project on the word from the other artist that these guys are decent folks.
Thank you all for your input, I'll definitely bookmark this post's comments for future reference! 
Tags: advice for artists

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