An e-mail from Fernando Ruiz…
Above: Artwork from Archie Comics’ "Football Star" by (penciler) Fernando Ruiz and (inker) myself.
Continuing with creators’ responses concerning "Comics and Work-Made-for-Hire: Creator’s Rights", here’s an e-mail from my buddy, Fernando Ruiz:
Always remember... Nobody can force you to sign a contract. This is true today and it was true in 1938. These "creator's rights issues" are a a whole lot of nothing. They amount to the same amount of disingenuousness as when an artist takes on a job and then complains about the page rate. The work for hire agreement is what it is. If you don't like it, don't sign it. If you don't like the terms of a job, don't take that job on. I'm always beyond disgusted when I hear a fellow artist say, "They're paying me crap so I didn't try very hard!" Hey! If you agree to work for crap, you give them your best! Don't complain because they're paying you the rate you agreed to. Pass on the job if the terms are so offensive!
Regarding the grandaddy of all these creator's rights issues, the Siegel and Shuster case, read "Men of Tomorrow" by Gerard Jones. It offers a very sober and even-handed look at the Siegel and Shuster story.