Saturday, October 31, 2009

Speak freely...

-George Washington (March 15, 1783):

If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.

-Thomas Jefferson (1823):

The only security of all is in a free press. The force of public opinion cannot be resisted when permitted freely to be expressed. The agitation it produces must be submitted to. It is necessary, to keep the waters pure.

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Monday, October 26, 2009

It’s Pro’s birthday!!!

Above photo: P.I.C. member, artist, and thespian, Steve Pro.

Hey! It’s Pro’s birthday today. Merry Birthday, Mr. Pro!

Stop by Pro’s website to see some of his excellent artwork!

Above photo: Me (who was about to have his lunch) and Pro at Sloane House (the School of Visual Arts dormitory). Fall 1986.


Friday, October 23, 2009

Don't stand in poo!

Above: A Cerebus print by Dave Sim.

Lately, I am (more often than not) reminded of what Dave Sim stated in his Pro/Con address from April 1, 1993:

I can certainly tell you that the happiest days of my life are the days when someone goes "over the wall": The day that Image left Malibu; the day Steve Bissette decided that his royalties from 1963 were going to finance his long-delayed start in self-publishing; the day Colleen Doran decided that her goal was to do A Distant Soil exclusively and that any work she did for any company was just a means to that end. And most particularly the day when Alan Moore said to me, after leaving DC for the last time: "When you find out you've been standing in shit, you don't jump up and down on it to punish it, you walk away."

"That Annoying Pro/Con ’93 Speech" by Dave is a must-read for any cartoonist and for those interested in comic book Creator’s Rights.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Viacom buys the TMNT!?!

Above: A Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle sketch by Peter Laird.

There are reports that Mirage Studios has sold the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to Viacom for $60 million!

According to his blog, TMNT co-creator Peter Laird had this to say:

It's not a rumor -- they now own the TMNT.


No, I didn't sell Mirage. I sold the TMNT property. states:

Furthering its mission to provide premium content to its audiences, Nickelodeon--part of MTV Networks, a division of Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B)--has acquired the global rights to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles from The Mirage Group and 4Kids Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: KDE). The acquisition provides Nickelodeon, the world's number-one entertainment brand for kids, global intellectual property rights to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the hit television, film and video game property that has delighted kids around the world for the last 25 years. The aggregate purchase price for the transactions is approximately $60 million.

Peter Laird blogs in more detail:

First, why did I sell the TMNT? There are a number of reasons, but first and foremost is that I have been doing this TMNT thing for twenty-five years, sixteen of them in partnership with TMNT co-creator Kevin Eastman and the last nine as sole owner of the property. That is a long time. It is almost half my life (I'm 55). I never expected to be working on the same thing for this long. And it has worn me down. I am no longer that guy who carries his sketchbook around with him and draws in it every chance he gets. That guy did all of the pre-TMNT artwork you have been seeing on this blog in many of my "Blast from the Past" posts.

Steve Bissette shares his insights on this topic:

Still, my advice to all creative individuals: in an era when ownership of copyright and creative concepts is more vital than ever, don’t buy the ‘party line’ that your work is worthless and you should transfer or sell your copyrights on new work (cut bait and sell it out before its born). Monolithic as these events seem, they reaffirm the coin of the realm are the unique expressions of ideas — the very bundle of rights copyright protects — and the value latent in the expression of ideas via cartoons, comics and drawing.


Sunday, October 4, 2009

Happy Birthday, Heather!

Hey! It’s Heather’s birthday today. Happy Birthday, Heather!

Above photo: Heather at the Wax Museum in Las Vegas.

Stop by Heather’s website to see some awesome artwork!


Saturday, October 3, 2009

Inspiring words...

-George Washington's address to the Continental Army before the battle of Long Island (August 27, 1776, New York, NY):

The time is now near at hand which must probably determine whether Americans are to be free men or slaves; whether they are to have any property they can call their own; whether their houses and farms are to be pillaged and destroyed, and themselves consigned to a state of wretchedness from which no human efforts will deliver them. The fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the courage and conduct of this army. Our cruel and unrelenting enemy leaves us only the choice of brave resistance, or the most abject submission. We have, therefore, to resolve to conquer or die.

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