Should we be encouraging?

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Rossfellow
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#61 Post by Rossfellow » Mon Aug 10, 2015 7:20 pm

BrokenAngel75 wrote:What I mean by hobbyists being hurt is the ability for them to be able to create games. There are a good number who can't afford 100 dollar single sprite. I am one of them. Should we be limited from a certain style just because we're not rich? No. Should we try to pay cheaply? No. Like I said I know we won't get balance but there is a problem when prices go through the roof.
You'll have to make do with what you have, and what you can get. Every line of work has its hardships, from retail to medical fields to manual labor. As a game producer, your budget, and what you can do with it, are your primary challenges. For artists, it's competition. That's just how it is.

Yes, and no. Yes, you are limited from certain people. No, you are not limited from certain styles because you can't afford Tetsuya Nomura's character designs. It just means that you'll have to expand your search. Chances are, you'll find someone who meets your standards and can work with your budget.

No guarantees, of course, but that's life.

Edit: And deadlines. Artists face deadlines. And bad clients. Someone wanted me to add that.
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#62 Post by trooper6 » Mon Aug 10, 2015 7:53 pm

BrokenAngel75 wrote:What I mean by hobbyists being hurt is the ability for them to be able to create games. There are a good number who can't afford 100 dollar single sprite. I am one of them. Should we be limited from a certain style just because we're not rich? No. Should we try to pay cheaply? No. Like I said I know we won't get balance but there is a problem when prices go through the roof.
I agree with a lot of what Rossfellow is saying.

I want to add you two things, you keep talking about a reasonable price...you can decide what a reasonable price is for you to be willing to pay, but you don't get to decide what an artist thinks is a reasonable price. You may thing $50 is reasonable. An artist who spends 20hours on that sprite might not think that is reasonable. You say you don't want to be limited because you can afford high prices...but that is life. I mean, if I want to go buy a car and I only have $10,000 dollars to spend, I am not going to be able to buy a Mercedes. That is just a fact of life. Competition helps lower prices. One of the reason the general anime style is not so expensive here is because there are lot of people doing it. But if you want someone who draws in a very different and intricate style with no competition? They are going to be able to charge more.

And the other thing...you say you want artists who value work more than money...but that sounds like exploitation. Because you are valuing your money over their work....but don't think they should be able to value getting paid for their work over giving you work they find too cheap for their labor.

You say if prices get too high poor hobbyists won't people able to make games....but there will always be poor hobbyists artists here as well.
If you have a hobbyist budget you shouldn't turn up your nose at hobbyist artists with hobbyist quality...they need practice too. I regularly see people in the recruitment thread with little to no experience in drawing who want to gain experience and will draw *for free*--I hope commissioners who don't want to/can't spend money don't reject those artists.

And like Rossfellow said, the presence of someone charging $100 a sprite isn't automatically result in everyone charging $100 a sprite. We already have artists on these boards who charge that much and more...but that hasn't stopped people from offering to work for free and EVNs are still being made...I think there were 50 made for the last NaNoReNo.

There are also artists who are willing to enter into a partnership with you where neither one of you gets paid...but then they usually want to be actual partners rather than hired hands.

But two sayings come to mind:
Beggars Can't Be Choosers
You Get What You Pay For

And I am saying this as a person who has to commission and doesn't have a lot of money. But the level of my disposable income (or lack thereof) does not obligate someone to work under the price they feel comfortable working.

I mean, if I went up to Beyonce and asked her to perform on my VN but said I only had $50 and that is what I though was fair, because she should care about work more than money? She would laugh me out of the room. As well she should.
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#63 Post by BrokenAngel75 » Mon Aug 10, 2015 8:18 pm

trooper6 wrote:
BrokenAngel75 wrote:What I mean by hobbyists being hurt is the ability for them to be able to create games. There are a good number who can't afford 100 dollar single sprite. I am one of them. Should we be limited from a certain style just because we're not rich? No. Should we try to pay cheaply? No. Like I said I know we won't get balance but there is a problem when prices go through the roof.
I agree with a lot of what Rossfellow is saying.

I want to add you two things, you keep talking about a reasonable price...you can decide what a reasonable price is for you to be willing to pay, but you don't get to decide what an artist thinks is a reasonable price. You may thing $50 is reasonable. An artist who spends 20hours on that sprite might not think that is reasonable. You say you don't want to be limited because you can afford high prices...but that is life. I mean, if I want to go buy a car and I only have $10,000 dollars to spend, I am not going to be able to buy a Mercedes. That is just a fact of life. Competition helps lower prices. One of the reason the general anime style is not so expensive here is because there are lot of people doing it. But if you want someone who draws in a very different and intricate style with no competition? They are going to be able to charge more.

And the other thing...you say you want artists who value work more than money...but that sounds like exploitation. Because you are valuing your money over their work....but don't think they should be able to value getting paid for their work over giving you work they find too cheap for their labor.

You say if prices get too high poor hobbyists won't people able to make games....but there will always be poor hobbyists artists here as well.
If you have a hobbyist budget you shouldn't turn up your nose at hobbyist artists with hobbyist quality...they need practice too. I regularly see people in the recruitment thread with little to no experience in drawing who want to gain experience and will draw *for free*--I hope commissioners who don't want to/can't spend money don't reject those artists.

And like Rossfellow said, the presence of someone charging $100 a sprite isn't automatically result in everyone charging $100 a sprite. We already have artists on these boards who charge that much and more...but that hasn't stopped people from offering to work for free and EVNs are still being made...I think there were 50 made for the last NaNoReNo.

There are also artists who are willing to enter into a partnership with you where neither one of you gets paid...but then they usually want to be actual partners rather than hired hands.

But two sayings come to mind:
Beggars Can't Be Choosers
You Get What You Pay For

And I am saying this as a person who has to commission and doesn't have a lot of money. But the level of my disposable income (or lack thereof) does not obligate someone to work under the price they feel comfortable working.

I mean, if I went up to Beyonce and asked her to perform on my VN but said I only had $50 and that is what I though was fair, because she should care about work more than money? She would laugh me out of the room. As well she should.
I'm not trying to exploit anybody....I'm not that kind of person. I don't really think it's cool that you're implying that and even if you don't mean you shouldn't say it because you don't me. I'd never try and make an artist work for low prices. I'm not like that. I'm just saying my thoughts and how this might end badly. Never said it would

Also I've read on threads about anime art and if people don't like it fine, but saying it's something that is priced cheaply isn't cool. I've seen plenty of anime artists price their work with high rates. There are many different anime styles and can come in many different prices.

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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#64 Post by truefaiterman » Mon Aug 10, 2015 10:24 pm

Uhm, first of all...
I'm not trying to exploit anybody....I'm not that kind of person. I don't really think it's cool that you're implying that and even if you don't mean you shouldn't say it because you don't me.
No need to take this too personal, I don't think Trooper means that, we're having a debate about something fairly important for people trying to get some work through this community, so everyone here wants clear points and a well defined exchange of opinions.

I do think you have a point about the "risks" of making this an excessively "high-profile-centered" dev forum, but I'll adress that later. Right now, about two points directly asked to me:
1) Sometimes the great expensive artists aren't actually the best for VNs because they don't have experience doing work for VNs--which isn't exactly the same as other media. In terms on art...can you work for LiveComposite? Or are you used to static finished products? This gap is particularly obvious to me when it comes to music. I have played a few video games where they got a famous film composer to do the music...and it isn't very good because they didn't understand how to make music for an interactive experience. So sometimes the big, famous people are not actually as good as the less famous people who understand better how to create for the medium in specific. So...big famous is not always better.
First things first, I have to admit I'm not sure about what LiveComposite is xD I tried to learn about it before posting here again, but all I find is some kind of auto-exposure function in new cameras, and some documentation about Renpy which I don't really understand well. I've asked to some people, and I've been told it's pretty much painting in different pieces so they can be placed in different ways, or orders (for example, making a blank face and separated features, in a more refined way than just "drawin' different expressions").

I specify that just in case I got everything wrong xD If I got it right, then... actually yes, unless it's for something really specific, like animating it on EmoFuri or something like that, which requires a very concrete knowledge, every decent illustrator should be able to make a good job with it (if they plan a workflow that considers how the art is being used, which should be something well organised from the beginning). Well, there are actually high profile illustrators, some of them with huge western influences (even more than eastern) working on visual novels and/or visual novel-style graphics (I specially remember Katsuya Terada, who worked in the Jake Hunter games, and in the PS2 Wizardry videogames. That also brings me to Jun Suemi, who also worked for Wizardry, and even the RPGMaker engine).

As long as the work is properly treated, a lot of the times it shouldn't be a problem. I mention this because of your musical example: most of the times, when a film composer is hired to make a videogame music... well, not only the music itself is treated like that of a film's, but usually the game itself is more treated like a Hollywood product without shying away from the notion of not considering their work as a videogame, nor the music design. Castlevania comes to my mind with their Lords of Shadows installments, which I'd say went full "Lord of the Rings's epic music style". They DID have some cool interactivity, and felt well with the gameplay, but the music felt like wanting to be so "cinematic" and "epic" that the composer didn't even have a basic melody, and just threw instruments and some choruses (in fact, I'm honestly trying, and I can't remember a single second of music from those games... except those which were homages to classic Castlevania themes).

Of course, I'm no musician, so if you think I'm mistaken, feel free to correct me on that matter!

Going back to art, there is a chance that a very specific knowledge may be an issue for a big name like the ones we've mentioned, but if that's not the case, it's probably a matter of letting the worker know about what are they actually doing. Unless exceptional cases, visual novel art (Meaning sprites, backgrounds and CGs) (I prefer to put GUI in a different category, since I consider it more graphic design than illustration) isn't that different from other forms of painting (technical issues aside, which can be worked with).
2) You are right, we aren't that big yet. But I think one of the reasons we aren't that big yet is that we often don't reach outside of our very insular community. There are EVNs that have done well within our community...there those EVN who were really successful because they could tap into the market of people who like JVNs...but the potential market is so much bigger than that. And I think to get that market, we need to reach beyond the traditional EVN community. Juniper's Knot got a lot of mobile users and other users through really gorgeous art and great design. Now, as a person who has played a decent number of VNs...(this is just my opinion)...I don't think the writing was as good as a lot of the VNs I played coming out of the LSF community. But it was reaching a new market who aren't used to some of the great things we've done here. Christine Love hit a much bigger market, so did Cinders. Cause of Death had a great market for the years it was around before EA decided it wasn't making EA level money. [Etc]
I agree in that we're still aiming for a relatively little audience, even within our niche (I can't really say I'm free of fault, since 99% of my influences come from JVNs, and one of my projects feels so much like Type-Moon, the original outline of the story felt like a rip-off), but that's partly because this is a "young" market. Games likes the ones you've mentioned are slowly opening the gates, and are creating a proper audience for EVNs (I'd also mention Hanako Games, since it got more exposure than usual thanks to media like Extra Credits talking about then) (Their recommendation actually convinced me to buy Long Live the Queen, which surprised me with its impressive complexity and well-developed lore). But most of the market is still thinking on Japanese, most of the big commercial visual novels that are becoming specially successful still come from Japan (specially since the Otome genre got so big in the west), and we're bathed in anime tropes and aesthetics.

Once again, that's changing while we're talking here, which is always good, but there is a long way to go until then. The EVN industry is still becoming a thing, and trying to force big names and budgets feels, at least to me, a way to just smash the current main goal of our market: to become not big, but middle grounded. Let's say AA games, which have been almost non-existant these years due to publishers only making multi-millionare inversions, and indies... well, doing what they can (and even then, in a Kotaku article about budgets that I think was shared in this thread, it's mentioned that Braid costed 200.000$, more or less the same budget than the mentioned Tokyo Dark (which is actually Japanese, and with some exposure/support from Square-Enix as far as I see).

I like the idea of growing, of course! But we should make sure it's a sure and steady process that allows our market to get a solid foundation, and I think that still needs some more time (Also, something I enjoy about the indie community is that dispossition to experiment with both narrative and visuals, and we all know that the more money = the less risks. We may want to enjoy more of that freedom, which might also give the EVN world a more distinct shape and fame).

With all of this said, about the point I wanted to expand at the beginning...
I guess I just worry if the prices skyrocket this place will become less of a community and more of a place of competition.
I'd like to say I'm afraid of the same, but for a different reason which I already stated, allow me to quote myself:
Let's say AA games, which have been almost non-existant these years due to publishers only making multi-millionare inversions, and indies... well, doing what they can
The risk I see with the possibility of big shots setting ground in a place like this, is not transforming LSF into a place of competition per-se (which kinda is, right now, just feels like a pretty healthy competition, at least to me), but a completely broken competition. There is a chance that, if the EVN market grows in such circumstances, those with budget will not even bother to take a look a those who aren't big names already, and those without money would go for the cheapest, since they just don't have a choice. And that destroys the middle ground. It doesn't necesarilly have to go into the videogame's developement level, it can and does happen in more little circles (I leave it in spoiler because someone may consider this content more of a filler):
I daresay this happened in Spain, regarding videogame voice acting, which started as a more niche work for middle-quality actors and beginners, but grew up too fast and just forgot any middle ground. Nowadays, if you want your videogame to have Spaniard voices, your only choices are to go to the big studios and expending good money, or trying to go completely indie... and that's almost legally impossible due to Spain's voice acting conventions, and there's only ONE known case where they could pull this off (The original Spanish voices of Unepic).
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#65 Post by trooper6 » Tue Aug 11, 2015 12:29 am

BrokenAngel75 wrote: Also I've read on threads about anime art and if people don't like it fine, but saying it's something that is priced cheaply isn't cool. I've seen plenty of anime artists price their work with high rates. There are many different anime styles and can come in many different prices.
Noting that the generic popular anime style is priced cheaply here is not an insult. Saying that something can be obtained cheaply doesn't mean that it is bad. That entire passage of my post is about how pricing is often driven by demand, scarcity, and competition. That particular generic anime style is the most popular style among the artists here. This means there are lot of artists doing that style in a range of skill levels, which means the free artists who are looking to practice are often in that style (as opposed to some other style), this also means that with a lot of good artists in the same style, it drives the commission prices down. This doesn't mean the art style is bad. I have seen maybe one or two artists here who do art with the sort of line work of manga artist Ikegami...and they are expensive not because they are better than someone else, but because they are scarce. If you are one of the few artists offering something (a particular style, a willingness to do certain content, the ability to draw x or y), the lack of competition will often drive the prices up. My point was that if what you wanted was one of those artists for whom they are one of the few who do the thing they do (which for this community is not the general popular anime style), you are probably going to have to pay more. This is already happening on these boards and has been since I've been here. If everyone drew in a digital watercolor style and only one person drew in the general popular anime style, that style will probably be not available cheaply here and the digital watercolor style would come in a range of prices.
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#66 Post by trooper6 » Tue Aug 11, 2015 12:47 am

truefaiterman wrote: As long as the work is properly treated, a lot of the times it shouldn't be a problem. I mention this because of your musical example: most of the times, when a film composer is hired to make a videogame music... well, not only the music itself is treated like that of a film's, but usually the game itself is more treated like a Hollywood product without shying away from the notion of not considering their work as a videogame, nor the music design. Castlevania comes to my mind with their Lords of Shadows installments, which I'd say went full "Lord of the Rings's epic music style". They DID have some cool interactivity, and felt well with the gameplay, but the music felt like wanting to be so "cinematic" and "epic" that the composer didn't even have a basic melody, and just threw instruments and some choruses (in fact, I'm honestly trying, and I can't remember a single second of music from those games... except those which were homages to classic Castlevania themes).

Of course, I'm no musician, so if you think I'm mistaken, feel free to correct me on that matter!
Some artists/musicians/writers/etc can adjust to the new form...some...don't. Maybe they can't, maybe they don't want to...but some don't. Your Castlevania examples is a good one...one of the most egregious I can think of is Knights of the Old Republic 1, they put in this epic, cinematic Star Wars fight music...but was really awkward in the game. That music was really goal oriented, very much built around a beginning, middle, end. And when battles when really long? The music looped, but wasn't built to loop and sounded awkward. When the battle was really short? It just cut off before then end of the cadential sequence. I thought...oof...film composer who doesn't know how to compose for the needs of video games. Other examples is when a video game hires a big name actor to do the voice work...but that big name actor is not a voice actor and their performance was really expensive...and bad. That has happened quite a few times.

Now, it doesn't always happen and there are lots of film actors who are also good at voiceover work. And there are anime/manga/comic book/etc artists who are good doing sprites. And there are film composers who are good at video game scores, etc. My point was simply that really expensive people are not *always* better than cheaper people for the particular medium. This is the counterpoint to me wanting more professional people here. Yes I want more professional people here (who are often more expensive)...but I also want to note that just because a person is expensive doesn't mean they'll be great doing VNs.
truefaiterman wrote: I agree in that we're still aiming for a relatively little audience, even within our niche (I can't really say I'm free of fault, since 99% of my influences come from JVNs, and one of my projects feels so much like Type-Moon, the original outline of the story felt like a rip-off), but that's partly because this is a "young" market. Games likes the ones you've mentioned are slowly opening the gates, and are creating a proper audience for EVNs (I'd also mention Hanako Games, since it got more exposure than usual thanks to media like Extra Credits talking about then) (Their recommendation actually convinced me to buy Long Live the Queen, which surprised me with its impressive complexity and well-developed lore). But most of the market is still thinking on Japanese, most of the big commercial visual novels that are becoming specially successful still come from Japan (specially since the Otome genre got so big in the west), and we're bathed in anime tropes and aesthetics.
Hanako Games is another one I was thinking of that has been able to grow to a larger audience.
truefaiterman wrote: I like the idea of growing, of course! But we should make sure it's a sure and steady process that allows our market to get a solid foundation, and I think that still needs some more time (Also, something I enjoy about the indie community is that dispossition to experiment with both narrative and visuals, and we all know that the more money = the less risks. We may want to enjoy more of that freedom, which might also give the EVN world a more distinct shape and fame).

With all of this said, about the point I wanted to expand at the beginning...
I guess I just worry if the prices skyrocket this place will become less of a community and more of a place of competition.
I'd like to say I'm afraid of the same, but for a different reason which I already stated, allow me to quote myself:
Let's say AA games, which have been almost non-existant these years due to publishers only making multi-millionare inversions, and indies... well, doing what they can
The risk I see with the possibility of big shots setting ground in a place like this, is not transforming LSF into a place of competition per-se (which kinda is, right now, just feels like a pretty healthy competition, at least to me), but a completely broken competition. There is a chance that, if the EVN market grows in such circumstances, those with budget will not even bother to take a look a those who aren't big names already, and those without money would go for the cheapest, since they just don't have a choice. And that destroys the middle ground. It doesn't necesarilly have to go into the videogame's developement level, it can and does happen in more little circles (I leave it in spoiler because someone may consider this content more of a filler):
Oh the erosion of the middle, of the AA games, is certainly a problem--but it seems to be reversing itself. It was a huge problem (and in many ways still is) in the end of the last console generation and this console generation. I played a bunch of fun AA console games...that don't seem to be made for consoles anymore. On the other hand, there seems to be a renaissance of the middle on PC with the growth of Steam and Kickstarter. Obsidian was able to do a genre with Pillars of Eternity that no publisher wanted to touch. Even the great success of Walking Dead is basically AA...also something like Hearthstone. I'm seeing a lot of great middle sized games over there.

Where we have no middle, is here in the EVN world. I'd say we have to rescale our ideas of small, middle, and big for our particular sub-genre. For EVNs, big is not Gears of War, it is Long Live the Queen and Junipers Knot. But we have the "big names" for us, and a lot of hobbyists. We have very little in between. We have some in the middle, but not many. My desire to have some more professional people here is part of a desire to expand our middle. I want more diversity, a broader range between Winter Wolves and the game I'm making in my spare time. More people like Cyanide Tea and that crew--and I hope they will be more successful as well.

I see the worry about losing experimentalism and taking risks...but there is already a bit of a rigidity in the community about what it takes to be "successful"--did you read that Gamasutra article that basically said the only way to be successful as an EVN is to make a high school dating sim in the anime style? I think the expansion I dream of will increase the risks taken rather than decrease it.

But we'll see!
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*Next Next thing to do: Set up film animation
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#67 Post by Caveat Lector » Wed Aug 12, 2015 4:50 pm

Should we encourage artists to charge more? Absolutely! First, though, I think there would need to be a mutual understanding—both from artists and non-artists—on what price is fair for their talent plus time (I think it ultimately boils down to that, but there might be more to it—anyone who’s more experienced can pop in and correct me or add to that). A major problem, I think, is that there seems to be a bit of a misunderstanding on both ends about what the “right price” is, if it can even be properly defined at all. More experienced artists, from both this forum and elsewhere, probably can step in to talk about this in more depth. Perhaps this topic might be of some help: http://lemmasoft.renai.us/forums/viewto ... 46&t=21933

I really, really hate the whole “REAL artists work for the LOVE of the project, NOT money” mentality, because it ultimately amounts to dismissing artists who just want to make a living off their passion and implies that “wanting to make a living” and “being passionate” are two, separate things, with one somehow bad and the other somehow good. In truth, people are a bit more complex than that, and reality is not so black-and-white. In the real world, you NEED money. It’s one thing to have a dream, it’s another to be able to balance said dream on top of the cost of living.
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#68 Post by trooper6 » Wed Aug 12, 2015 4:58 pm

Caveat Lector wrote: I really, really hate the whole “REAL artists work for the LOVE of the project, NOT money” mentality, because it ultimately amounts to dismissing artists who just want to make a living off their passion and implies that “wanting to make a living” and “being passionate” are two, separate things, with one somehow bad and the other somehow good. In truth, people are a bit more complex than that, and reality is not so black-and-white. In the real world, you NEED money. It’s one thing to have a dream, it’s another to be able to balance said dream on top of the cost of living.
Indeed! Also, it is always the arts and education where this crops up. I have yet to hear anyone say, "REAL stock traders work for the LOVE of stock trading, NOT money" or "REAL CEOs work for the LOVE of the company, NOT money." People take it for granted that doctors, lawyers, bankers, and...basically eveybody should be paid for their work. But people in the arts are somehow expected to work for free or cheap and pay our rent on...passion?
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*Currently Doing: Coding of emotions and camera for the labels--On 5/10
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*Next Next thing to do: Set up film animation
*Other Thing to Do: Do SFX and Score (maybe think about eye blinks?)
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#69 Post by Rossfellow » Wed Aug 12, 2015 5:25 pm

“REAL artists work for the LOVE of the project, NOT money”
If you believe this and adhere to it, it's noble.

Imposing it on others, though... ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#70 Post by bluebirdplays » Sun Aug 16, 2015 9:57 pm

I don't think it's a bad thing to be encouraging artists of any sort to up their prices. I've also seen my fair share of artists that really undersell their work tremendously. While I like getting a good deal on commissions, I also admit to getting amazing art for way too cheaply.

The way I've seen other artists manage their prices is through slowly raising their prices every so often and seeing when the number of commissioners drops off due to that price change. Eventually you'll reach a ceiling between what a client is willing to pay and your average price.

Just my observations though. I doodle here and there and have tried to take super low price commissions as well in the past but I've found that I just can't work with the same amount of enthusiasm when charging $2-3 dollars for a full color anything. Too low. Ent even worth it. Would rather draw things I enjoy, and so on.

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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#71 Post by wayward » Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:13 am

That's kind of a tough call as far as having everyone set fixed prices. I do agree with a sort of equilibrium with prices on art here, but unless a big sticky thread is made to get everyone's attention, the best people can do is see what other people are charging and price match. From a moral standpoint though, and imo, art that is equal in detail, hours spent in making the art (not hours spend drawing a dot on a white canvas, but hours spend drawing say a thousand buildings in a town), and general good looks should be priced the same.

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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#72 Post by trooper6 » Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:26 am

wayward wrote: From a moral standpoint though, and imo, art that is equal in detail, hours spent in making the art (not hours spend drawing a dot on a white canvas, but hours spend drawing say a thousand buildings in a town), and general good looks should be priced the same.
I don't know. There is more that just detail and hours spent that are of value in a piece of art.
If there are two artists who produce the same amount of detail and spend the same amount of detail, but:
Artist A is world famous, is award winning, has a huge following, and if you use this artist your game will sell 100x more than if you used someone else.
Artist B does not have any of those qualities.

Artist A brings more value than Artist B. As the producer of the game, you will make 100x more money because you used artist A rather than artist B. I think it would not be moral to insist they are paid the same.
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#73 Post by Vegos » Tue Aug 18, 2015 10:00 am

Economy has never been a matter of what is or isn't moral, really.
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#74 Post by hiko27 » Tue Aug 25, 2015 7:00 pm

Going to be butting in and answering the OP's post instead.

The keyword is encouraging, not forcing, so yes. But as mentioned by others, artists shouldn't be the only ones encouraged, but other creative jobs as well such as writers, musicians, voice actors, etc. Heck, programming should be too. Every position out there that is needed to plan and make a VN, pretty much. It's not just a problem here in the forums, but everywhere else. Artists (I'm not talking about just visual artists, but everybody in the creative industry) are so undermined, so put down that we all have to underprice our shit because that's what society wants from us, because about half of the population doesn't want to pay $50 for art because, "It's just art. You should be paying me to buy your art." Heck, I had a commission when I was in high school, and you know what, I thought I was going to get something out of it, either through the networks they "supposedly" had, or money. But I didn't get shit because I'm the friend of the commissioner's relative. I'm not even that freaking close to that friend of mine. And the sad thing is, they didn't even ask me, they just accepted the thing and that's it. They expected it to be free. I didn't do shit back then because I was a insecure, spineless ass back then. It's pretty evident how this happens a lot in the creative industry, go look at Clients From Hell. Most of them are funny, but it's pretty evident how most people don't think much of the art world.

Some artists on here are high schoolers still, or that they live with their parents and live off of them for the time being, while some are making a living out of it so they could pay rent and bills. It really depends on their situation. But either way, those that need commissions to pay the bills will obviously need more clients coming their way than those who aren't so financially independent. That's probably why a lot of people underprice, because they don't have time to do a trial and error on their prices, they need money now. And underpricing your stuff equals more clients, which equals more money for the short run.

And as mentioned by others, it also depends on where they live. For me though, the internet is neutral ground. Meaning, the internet really has a market of its own. It doesn't matter if you're accepting in a different currency, the prices won't really change until you decide to pull down the entire market by charging so little even though you can charge higher based on your skill level. It'll just keep on going down and down if you think of it in the long run. You charge lower, you get more customers. The others price lower than you, they get more customers -- it becomes a cycle until every freaking artist is expected to draw for free. So I'm gonna be mean and say just stop it. It doesn't matter what country you live in. If you're gonna offer your commissions online, you need to go by the rules of the internet's market. Your country's prices don't count here, because if you price lower just because you want to get more customers, or because you're feeling really nice, then goddamn just give your art for free if that's how it is. If there's a whole lot of supply of something (let's say a specific level of skill), the demand for it lowers, which in turn lowers the prices. You're not exactly the only one in the market, and you can possibly be hurting other artists that make a living off of their art.

Another thing. A lot of people have reasoned that this is a hobbyist forum so the prices should be lower. I'm still feeling really mean so I'm gonna say it now: Tough luck, if they're not within your price range, lower your goddamn standards or start saving up more money. You can't just go to McDonald's and tell them they should lower their prices because you don't have that much money on you right now. People on here expect high-quality art (or some other service/commission) for a fucking lower price. If you don't want to spend money on stuff like that, look for those that're offering their services for free. "But it's not the quality I want!! *whining noises*" That's life for you, deal with it. Which brings me to another thing: If someone haggles with you, that's fine. It's really up to you as an artist, but don't do it too much, and don't do it for douchebags. If you like the project, go for it. If you like this person, and they're a friend, go for it. But don't do it because you're a yes man. You're gonna hurt the market more than it already is. Believe it or not, there ARE some people out there that would willingly pay for your prices. Artists need to focus more on themselves, on what's good for them, rather than what'll get them more clients because having a lot of clients doesn't always mean more money.

The thing with newer artists is just because of that, they're new. What we need, I think, is for those that have been in this gig for a while to educate those that're new. They don't know how things work, they're fumbling around with these prices because goddamn, how does this whole freelance thing work???????????????? And another is the attitude of the community. I've ranted about this a whole lot to a friend, so I'm going to probably go into another rant...

If you get offended easily, I suggest you don't read the paragraph below. If you do, not my fault.
We're all pretty laidback about things. We talk about stuff like these, but there's really nothing we do except discuss and debate about things. That's as far as we go from what I've seen. And even if we do manage to act, or get a thing going, it's still not taken as seriously as it should be. I see those honest critique buttons around the forums, but I don't see a whole lot of constructive criticism from those who have them. Let's take art for example. Conceptart is pretty much a forum for professional artists, as well as those who're in the industry. Pretty serious forum. If you post on there, you know you'll get not only critiques from knowledgeable people, but constructive critiques. They tell you what works (praise you on what you did right), what doesn't work and how to go about correcting it. And they come back again and again, they actually help you every step of the way. Now, we do get those here in our forums, but the difference is (aside from us being a hobbyist forum) how serious artists here take their stuff. Now I know some of us are doing it as a hobby, but some actually want to get serious about this and only getting praises don't help. We all just try to be humble about things, only praising and not enough of the constructive critiques. Another part of the equation is those who're getting the critiques. If you want critiques, you need to be able to accept them, regardless of how much they put you down. That's part of the process towards improving. You can't know every single aspect of your strengths and weaknesses because you're human, you're not perfect. So take it, listen to it and see where it takes you. And if you don't take critiques much, that's perfectly fine. Believe me, I used to be super stubborn back then when it came to critiques. Now, not so much, but you need to learn that there are some help critiques out there. Now, I'm not saying everybody on here isn't serious, but from what I've seen, a whole lot of people on here don't take this whole thing seriously and that's what I think is the problem. We can see what the problems are, but unless we do something about it, stay on task and persevere, it won't go away.
I think I strayed too far from the main topic...
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Re: Should we be encouraging?

#75 Post by infel » Tue Aug 25, 2015 7:23 pm

hiko27 wrote:Going to be butting in and answering the OP's post instead.

The keyword is encouraging, not forcing, so yes. But as mentioned by others, artists shouldn't be the only ones encouraged, but other creative jobs as well such as writers, musicians, voice actors, etc. Heck, programming should be too. Every position out there that is needed to plan and make a VN, pretty much. It's not just a problem here in the forums, but everywhere else. Artists (I'm not talking about just visual artists, but everybody in the creative industry) are so undermined, so put down that we all have to underprice our shit because that's what society wants from us, because about half of the population doesn't want to pay $50 for art because, "It's just art. You should be paying me to buy your art." Heck, I had a commission when I was in high school, and you know what, I thought I was going to get something out of it, either through the networks they "supposedly" had, or money. But I didn't get shit because I'm the friend of the commissioner's relative. I'm not even that freaking close to that friend of mine. And the sad thing is, they didn't even ask me, they just accepted the thing and that's it. They expected it to be free. I didn't do shit back then because I was a insecure, spineless ass back then. It's pretty evident how this happens a lot in the creative industry, go look at Clients From Hell. Most of them are funny, but it's pretty evident how most people don't think much of the art world.

Some artists on here are high schoolers still, or that they live with their parents and live off of them for the time being, while some are making a living out of it so they could pay rent and bills. It really depends on their situation. But either way, those that need commissions to pay the bills will obviously need more clients coming their way than those who aren't so financially independent. That's probably why a lot of people underprice, because they don't have time to do a trial and error on their prices, they need money now. And underpricing your stuff equals more clients, which equals more money for the short run.

And as mentioned by others, it also depends on where they live. For me though, the internet is neutral ground. Meaning, the internet really has a market of its own. It doesn't matter if you're accepting in a different currency, the prices won't really change until you decide to pull down the entire market by charging so little even though you can charge higher based on your skill level. It'll just keep on going down and down if you think of it in the long run. You charge lower, you get more customers. The others price lower than you, they get more customers -- it becomes a cycle until every freaking artist is expected to draw for free. So I'm gonna be mean and say just stop it. It doesn't matter what country you live in. If you're gonna offer your commissions online, you need to go by the rules of the internet's market. Your country's prices don't count here, because if you price lower just because you want to get more customers, or because you're feeling really nice, then goddamn just give your art for free if that's how it is. If there's a whole lot of supply of something (let's say a specific level of skill), the demand for it lowers, which in turn lowers the prices. You're not exactly the only one in the market, and you can possibly be hurting other artists that make a living off of their art.

Another thing. A lot of people have reasoned that this is a hobbyist forum so the prices should be lower. I'm still feeling really mean so I'm gonna say it now: Tough luck, if they're not within your price range, lower your goddamn standards or start saving up more money. You can't just go to McDonald's and tell them they should lower their prices because you don't have that much money on you right now. People on here expect high-quality art (or some other service/commission) for a fucking lower price. If you don't want to spend money on stuff like that, look for those that're offering their services for free. "But it's not the quality I want!! *whining noises*" That's life for you, deal with it. Which brings me to another thing: If someone haggles with you, that's fine. It's really up to you as an artist, but don't do it too much, and don't do it for douchebags. If you like the project, go for it. If you like this person, and they're a friend, go for it. But don't do it because you're a yes man. You're gonna hurt the market more than it already is. Believe it or not, there ARE some people out there that would willingly pay for your prices. Artists need to focus more on themselves, on what's good for them, rather than what'll get them more clients because having a lot of clients doesn't always mean more money.

The thing with newer artists is just because of that, they're new. What we need, I think, is for those that have been in this gig for a while to educate those that're new. They don't know how things work, they're fumbling around with these prices because goddamn, how does this whole freelance thing work???????????????? And another is the attitude of the community. I've ranted about this a whole lot to a friend, so I'm going to probably go into another rant...

If you get offended easily, I suggest you don't read the paragraph below. If you do, not my fault.
We're all pretty laidback about things. We talk about stuff like these, but there's really nothing we do except discuss and debate about things. That's as far as we go from what I've seen. And even if we do manage to act, or get a thing going, it's still not taken as seriously as it should be. I see those honest critique buttons around the forums, but I don't see a whole lot of constructive criticism from those who have them. Let's take art for example. Conceptart is pretty much a forum for professional artists, as well as those who're in the industry. Pretty serious forum. If you post on there, you know you'll get not only critiques from knowledgeable people, but constructive critiques. They tell you what works (praise you on what you did right), what doesn't work and how to go about correcting it. And they come back again and again, they actually help you every step of the way. Now, we do get those here in our forums, but the difference is (aside from us being a hobbyist forum) how serious artists here take their stuff. Now I know some of us are doing it as a hobby, but some actually want to get serious about this and only getting praises don't help. We all just try to be humble about things, only praising and not enough of the constructive critiques. Another part of the equation is those who're getting the critiques. If you want critiques, you need to be able to accept them, regardless of how much they put you down. That's part of the process towards improving. You can't know every single aspect of your strengths and weaknesses because you're human, you're not perfect. So take it, listen to it and see where it takes you. And if you don't take critiques much, that's perfectly fine. Believe me, I used to be super stubborn back then when it came to critiques. Now, not so much, but you need to learn that there are some help critiques out there. Now, I'm not saying everybody on here isn't serious, but from what I've seen, a whole lot of people on here don't take this whole thing seriously and that's what I think is the problem. We can see what the problems are, but unless we do something about it, stay on task and persevere, it won't go away.
I think I strayed too far from the main topic...
I agree with you on many points, but not everything on the fourth paragraph. It's true some believe that prices should be low since they think this is a hobbyist forum. However, there are likely a good number on here who can't afford certain prices. I don't believe it's because they are cheap, but rather because of life or because they don't get a lot of money. It's true a commissioner shouldn't ask for super low prices, but I don't think people should think in black and white here because nothing ever is in life no matter how simple it may be.

As for me personally I'm wary of hiring any artists in truth due to situations that have happened in the past. If I'm going to pay you 75 dollars for a single sprite, you better not leave me hanging or leave my project halfway through. My sister, who I discussed this with, believes artists shouldn't be paid at all till the entire game is done. I can see her valid point in this given what has happened to me and many others, though I don't do this because I know many artists on here need to live. However if one were to do this that is why a contact has to be made by both the commissioner and artist as I have done.


Also for a visual novel it in my personal belief that even for a paid artist you really do need someone who is active in the game. I'm sorry and I know many will likely not agree with me, but I do believe an artist has to have some passion for the game they are working for. No, I'm not saying they need to be super passionate about visual novels, but they can't be like a robot and just want to work with me just so they get some money.

As Hiko said though I believe we should encourage everyone. I think the ones who actually undersell themselves too much are writers and coders. Artists will always be needed in the visual novel world no matter what the style. For writers and coders though they have a more difficult time getting work, but in all honesty I rarely see posts about that. I am all for giving artists there fair share as I've always tried to do that, but writers and coders definitely need a little more attention in terms of who is underselling too much.
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