I came across this earlier this week and…yikes! Don’t have anything to add, but go ahead and check it out
It’s easy to forget, but all of the people who are involved in creating comics, whether it’s for a big company or an Indie one or even self published, are people too. It takes a lot of hard work and time to create and produce them, especially if there is a deadline. Remember that.
I know Ed Brubaker has spoken on how he made more money from his cameo in Captain America The Winter Soldier than what he was paid for creating the Winter Soldier. Success stories like Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead are the exception and not the rule. Brubaker makes more money on his creator owned properties which sell below 10,000 copies a month than Captain America which sold 70,000+ per month.
Support creators by buying stuff outside of just comics. Also, support The Hero Initiative which helps with medical bills for creators like George Perez and my favorite artist Mike Grell.
It’s sad, but not surprising. You hear similar horror stories about working in the film or video game industries. A lot of companies will overwork their creators and give them crap benefits, if any, because they know a lot of them will stay for the “dream” of working in those industries.
It’s basically another side to the infamous Jack Kirby quote: “Comics will break your heart.”
And apparently your mind, body and spirit, as well.
I’ve been following this #comicsbrokeme thing a bit myself over the past couple days and was wondering if a discussion about it would turn up here. All I know is that it’s made me feel guilty for reading and enjoying comics. Don’t know if that was the intended outcome.
It’s hard to say how much blame can be directed to us consumers. Regardless, it’s up to these companies to treat their employees fairly and humanely. And that might require a complete revamp of the industry
Right. Nobody should be suffering like this for an endeavor that is supposed to be creative and entertaining.
We are purchasing a product. Please don’t feel guilty for doing that. I wanna give some perspective, we have all probably watched a film produced by Harvey Weinstein. Should we feel guilty for having watched those films? I don’t think so. It already happened. I think the only thing you can do is pay attention when the truly horrible things happen, such as a writer or artist saying they were not paid at all for their work (this has happened with some of the indies). When those things happen and you still buy from that company then and only then maybe feel some guilt. At that point, you are making a concious choice to support a company not paying respect to their creator by never giving any compensation for their work.
I have read a few of these stories this week and I am just saddened at how the industry has handled certain things. I am not shocked though. Comics have been a boys club for so long and we are finding in our current society that anything that has been a boys club for far too long has some very real toxicity within it. I mean look at the last 5 years in Hollywood. These industries are finally being put up to a standard and having to face some very real negative history. This will sort itself out, but that doesn’t mean we are currently part of the problem as consumers.
I glossed over the article,
I found it sad that people in the comic book industry felt they were over worked and under paid or not acknowledged for their work. The story of the creators of Superman and how they got the short end of the stick and then had to go to court to get a better deal or justice/ i knew of already. Some may not know though that Batman had a co-creator, Bill Finger, who wasn’t acknowledged for a long time.
While I get it is a struggle to make ends meat. In the article, someone complained about how 7k for an assignment wasnt enough to get by. I mean come on. Now I will say this, I didn’t realize writers and artists in the comic book industry have such a wobbly payment basis. or free lance ? dunno what to call it.
People want to be at the top, and be the next Frank Miller, Sean Murphy, Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, who ever. These people, didn’t get to the top fast and easy, neither did the women in the comic book industry. But when they are at the top, they make it look easy because they have done it for so long. Any of you here want a job at DC, as a writer , artist, penciler, inker?
once you answer that why, I guess the question next becomes, how bad do you want to make that why happen.?An then if you get in and find out, hey I do have the skills, I am making deadlines, but I am working my butt off and barely getting ahead, do you have what it takes to negotiate a raise, and if you lose that bid, are you going to be ready to make a move to some where else that will pay you what you know you are worth.
I am sure there are plenty of people in the comic book industry who have had to work a side job on top of their other job at DC to keep afloat till they got stable work with DC.
Heck, go to Hulu and watch that new movie about the dude who invented the Flaming Hot Cheeto.
If a job is sucking your soul out, and making your personal life miserable, it is time to do a reality check and maybe get a new line of work.
Those people in the article complaining , are all individuals, who are only giving the article a snipet of their life, there are too many questions that were not asked to give a proper image of how it is really to work for at least, Dc Comics.
I want it but in no way would it be my only job if your a writer you can do more then one job it goes the same for artist even if you love a job if it doesn’t make enough you have to get another
Regarding purchasing a product, do you feel bad when you buy a cellphone or car? People in China commit suicide because of the poor working conditions. Industrial accidents have been with us from the beginning. People die and are maimed in foundries and factories.
Child labor is used to make tennis shoes and mine rare earth minerals for those “green” electric cars. All of life is a choice and we have to pick the least horrible options.
Sorry to bum you all out.
Perspective. I appreciate it.
It today’s modern, capitalist economic system, it is almost impossible to purchase a product that isn’t tied to some sort of exploitive practice or has no environmental impact
True. Just working for a company is exploitive. Depending on your place in the company your pay will be different (line worker vs. CEO). I was in Sales and was very well compensated. I generated $2 Million per year and my compensation was 6.5% of that figure. The company “kept” 93.5% of that figure. Of course, they had to pay software developers, support people, accountants, marketing staff, et cetera. Was I exploited? Not really, because I couldn’t generate that figure all by myself.
Nothing, repeat nothing, has NO environmental impact. Unless you want to go back to naked and afraid and compete with all the other species on the planet as a hunter gatherer you’re going to impact the environment.
Is it better to erect solar panels which take up a lot more space compared to a nuclear reactor to produce the same amount of power carbon free? That is a choice we have to make until nuclear fusion can function profitably.
Does an electric car have less impact on the environment than a gasoline car? Maybe, but have we taken into account the electric generation source or what happens to the batteries after they are no longer useful? Those batteries could be as bad as the lead acid batteries prior to the recycling program which reclaims 95-98% of the lead batteries.
Again, the world is a harsh place and we have to make choices as best we can with the information we have available.
I knew that doing comics is a difficult job to do, but damn! I didn’t realize it could get that bad. As someone who’s had a dream of doing comics etc., and looking at this; I feel really bad for these people. It seems that a lot of jobs that just involve any type of art & storytelling really bring these artists down.
I find it kinda crazy how a job that people are so passionate about are also hurting them. But that’s been this way for thousands of years. Artists driving themselves into the ground making a painting, story, etc., to the point they even take their own lives or cause them to live in not-so-good conditions, and lose their connection with family/friends.
The artist who mentioned the arm pain she struggles with. That’s absolutely understandable. I’ve had wrist/joint pain due to drawing too much on few occasions and it’s not fun.
These artists definitely deserve more credit and a higher pay for the work they do.
I still want that hack Bob Kane taken off the credit for Batman.