I’m using this very inspiring post by BossLogic as an excuse to say a couple of things:
It’s a continuation to another blog post where I talked about the trap of fan fiction and fanart.
BossLogic is Kode Abdo, a very talented artist working with the largest comic brands in the world right now.
His work is phenomenal, and I like it too. I’ve shared a lot of his posts over the years. This inspirational post was his own comment from 7 years ago, a newbie in the indie arena, wondering how he could sell his prints.
And yesterday he said, “For a long time, it will feel hopeless
Don’t quit, ever ❤️”
I agree with all that. Only those who persevere and carry on will see any sort of success. That’s all well and good and a very good example to follow.
Also, the rebranding might have helped a lot too.
What I want to talk about is intellectual property. Bosslogic keeps pumping out amazing, absolutely stunning artwork of Batman and Deadpool and Wonder Woman, really, just check it out.
And now, even though he’s probably getting paid for it, it’s not his IP. They’re not his Original Characters. He’s spending hours of his talent for IP that he cannot license, building up IP that belongs to a corporation, and getting massive amounts of support online from wonderful fans around the world.
That’s awesome, but it’s not building towards something of your own.
Now, let’s contrast all that hard work with Spinnerette.
Spinnerette was a parody of Spiderman. This person decided to just make a webcomic about a zany Spiderman version of a superhero. He or she decided to go all out, it’s just bonkers. I love it. Check it out.
Now, Spiderman occupies I think the 2nd place in the list of most famous superhero characters in the world. It’s an IP worth billions. The creator of Spinnerette decided to make an OC, zany and sexy and hilarious, and when fans loved if because it’s awesome, they then capitalized on that success. They have merchandise, plushies, prints, spinoffs and I’ve lost track of what else. They’ve made a new IP, which they own, out of a crazy OC.
And to top it all off, they’re safe from Sony and Marvel’s lawyers because their character, Spinny, is sufficiently different than Spiderman and protected under the parody laws.
Now, back to Bosslogic. He’s doing wonderful work for someone else’s IP. He’s probably getting thousands for each artwork, I don’t know and frankly, I don’t care. He’s selling prints, if they allow him to use their IP, and they can shut him down in an instant without breaking a sweat. Heck, even an automated spider can flag him, send Cease and Desist letters and shut down his entire work, his social media, everything.
It might be success, but it’s a fragile one.
Now, what I would suggest is to capitalize on that fame, those likes and those fans that came from the tons of wonderful fanart. I would suggest to split your time between your OC and the big IPs that you don’t own. Do one Batman, one Spinny. One Wonder Woman, one Spinny. Split your focus in half, and then as it builds up, push the IP work down to 10% and your OC up to 90%.
Sure, you’ll lose lots of fans. Tons, actually. They’ll get mad at you, they’ll want Batman. They’ll want Spidey. Fuck Batman and Spidey. You don’t own Spiderman, and you never will. But you can own Spinny. Your Spinny.