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Card Game Woes

I know a lot of artists out there have had at least one experience where they got burned. I not so long ago got burned by a company I did artwork for that then didn't want to pay for said artwork (about 20+ designs). I was crushed at first, since the company I loved because they put out the card game "Killer Bunnies," but then angry with how it was handled. The producer of the game was nothing less than thrilled with my work ethic and artwork I provided, but when I mentioned about getting a little bit of good-faith payment (because the game I was illustrating for was in the beta-testing stage and not yet published), he flew off the handle and wrote me quite scatching letters about how I should have known better and he expected more from me, and that he was dropping me as an artist and did not want to ever hear from me again, period.

This was probably my worst experience of all time. Although I have had clients not pay me before, this took the cake because he was so personable, I loved the games he made, and all was going 100% well until, months after I drew the art, I merely asked for some of the payment he mentioned he would provide (which he later heatedly said might take years and then only if the game did get published). What he ranted at me was not only unprofessional but unwarrented. I should have written up a contract, I know...and I've normally done this for all professional projects I do. But this time, we were on good faith and handshakes. Now I know better.

I also wrote the game producing company, Playroom Entertainment, to verify that the artwork on the beta-testing decks were destroyed because the first e-mail back from the Killer Bunnies creator said he was purging his system of all of my artwork because of my terrible lack of understanding in the payment department. Apparently he supposed I would do the images on good faith and then wait years for the game to go into production before hiring me as the main illustrator for the said game. I also tried to clear my name because I was trying to get work from Playroom in other game departments. Playroom did not respond to my email but I did hear back from the Killer Bunnies manager telling me that I was going "behind his back" on that matter and that I should never expect to work in the business again because he has put my name out there as an artist to beware of.

Well, I want everyone to beware of this with both Killer Bunnies and Playroom Entertainment. They are always saying they are looking for new artistic talent so don't be suckered in.
********
Also, if you ever wanted to get a custom plush manufactured: http://www.watergazersden.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=84 there's another warning for you I'm still coping with. I hope you can see the link. If not it's at my forum under topic Fire Circle/Burned Again. http://www.watergazersden.com/forum/index.php
Artist's beware has moved!
Do NOT repost your old bewares. They are being archived.
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Comments

( 25 comments — Leave a comment )
mix_hyenataur
Jul. 25th, 2006 12:08 am (UTC)
It took you this long to post about them, here?

Why the hell haven't you sued, hun?
mix_hyenataur
Jul. 25th, 2006 12:09 am (UTC)
Imho, post the links to your old LJ posts about this matter!
mix_hyenataur
Jul. 25th, 2006 12:14 am (UTC)
I still think it was bullshit that he said "I'm deleting all your art, and etc..."

Yeah.fucking.right.
mix_hyenataur
Jul. 25th, 2006 12:17 am (UTC)
" verify that the artwork on the beta-testing decks were destroyed because the first e-mail back from the Killer Bunnies creator said he was purging his system of all of my artwork"
watergazer
Jul. 25th, 2006 02:43 am (UTC)
He'd almost have to delete the art for copyright reasons. He could never use it and publish his deck all over the place with my art on it. He did adore the work the world over and everyone did love it, according to him, but I'm sure it was destroyed because quite simply it cannot be used, and he puts out popular games people would see all over the US...at least Playroom does. Killer Bunnies, for instance, is sold in just about every gaming store I know of. It might not be as popular as Munchkin, but it's up there.
watergazer
Jul. 25th, 2006 02:36 am (UTC)
I don't want to use my own LJ anymore, hense why I didn't link to them. Plus, those entries are quite long and I'm suremost people don't want to read them, so I gave the gist of it all here.
watergazer
Jul. 25th, 2006 02:35 am (UTC)
Firstly, I wanted the entire thing to blow over first. Secondly, I wasn't sure if I wanted to go public with the names of the businesses. Although I do have proof this all happened to me, it could be taken the wrong way (slander), when this is merely a warning to other artists. Thirdly, well, I finally came to the decision to let other artists know about this. It may be a ways after tha fact, but now is when I've finally realized that other artists should be told so they can avoid the same thing.
thaily
Jul. 25th, 2006 07:04 am (UTC)
Two things;

1. Slander is verbal, libel is written.
2. It's not libel if it's true.

You have the e-mails to prove that what you said happened is true, make back-up's. If you had a verbal agreement (through mail) that you'd get paid you can take him to court for your payment.
watergazer
Jul. 25th, 2006 03:49 pm (UTC)
Unfortunately our verbal agreements were made over the phone, and most of the e-mail stuff does not talk about payments until after this whole mess happened. He said he'd rather talk and do business over the phone than internet, and maybe now I know why. It's unfortunately like a case of he-said she-said now, aside from my saved mails, but none talk about direct payment for images except the ones after the argument started, when he said I'd be paid only after the deck was produced etc etc., which of course I did not agree to. I would not have done all those images (nor put out a lot of money to buy a tablet and expensive software) if I knew this was the case. I was told it was a formality, the beta-deck, and we'd be well underway to creating the game and me getting paid per image.
thaily
Jul. 25th, 2006 10:33 pm (UTC)
That sucks, I'm sorry :/

And you can't legally record phone conversations without alerting the other participant either, so that's out of the question for future instances. I guess that for any business venture you'll need to get stuff black on white, be it written or in digital form, before you do any work :/
watergazer
Jul. 26th, 2006 12:43 am (UTC)
Yeah, you know you really have to even though it seems unnecessary sometimes, what with the popularity of a given company etc., or how awesome the people seem to be. You just never know, you know?
mottenfest
Jul. 25th, 2006 12:11 am (UTC)
oh.what.the.fuck!?


that is a scam if i've EVER seen one! if they use your art, le SUE. >:|
watergazer
Jul. 25th, 2006 02:37 am (UTC)
If they do in fact use my art, I would indeed have grounds for a suit. I am fairly sure though that the art has been destroyed. The companies are both fairly popular so it would be nigh impossible for them to put out a product with my art on it and I not know about it.
But...if they did...yes, I could in fact do something about it.
mottenfest
Jul. 25th, 2006 03:06 am (UTC)
this makes me so angry that ANYONE would treat you this way! >:E
watergazer
Jul. 25th, 2006 03:50 pm (UTC)
On the up side I do still own my own artwork and have it, but it seriously was a huge waste of my time regardless, among other things.
mottenfest
Jul. 25th, 2006 10:49 pm (UTC)
you want i should whack um' boss? :3
watergazer
Jul. 26th, 2006 12:42 am (UTC)
Lol-nice icon, but no, just don't do business with their company.
mottenfest
Jul. 26th, 2006 12:45 am (UTC)
Thanks. I made you one a while back at xmas time, did you ever see it? X3
watergazer
Jul. 26th, 2006 12:46 am (UTC)
I don't think I ever got that. Send it to my email at Watergazer@Comcast.net. would love to see it!
banka_flavored
Jul. 25th, 2006 01:05 am (UTC)
I hope you find a good lawyer for both incidents, this is total bullshit and im sorry you got used for your talents :(
watergazer
Jul. 25th, 2006 02:39 am (UTC)
The first one hurt because everything was going so well and I really liked the companies and people involved. Then with one email things went completely south instantly. As for the second one, the same was true except there were no angry emails against me...just loss of all contact. I am still in the process of dealing with the latter case; the first one is closed.
banka_flavored
Jul. 26th, 2006 09:06 pm (UTC)
Thats horrible, i hope you can resolve this one. Im sorry that you cant with the other one and its closed :/ you said you had a legal contract though, if they did use your art couldnt you try to sue?
mix_hyenataur
Jul. 25th, 2006 03:07 am (UTC)
"...but my plush specs. were already given to the China factory for them to be produced so I don't see what the problem is to getting them made."

Why should you redo the design? I'd only redo it if you like a better one, NOT if you're afraid of copyright issues, since you should own the copyrights.
watergazer
Jul. 25th, 2006 03:51 pm (UTC)
The only problem is we do not have our own specs, as in type of material or details on how the plush was put together. She does have her actual objects though. some other company might be able to replicate it, but I don't know how well they could do so really.
mix_hyenataur
Jul. 26th, 2006 04:04 am (UTC)
If they do, you can sue.
( 25 comments — Leave a comment )

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