Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg art!

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ccbyproject
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Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg art!

#1 Post by ccbyproject » Sat Oct 03, 2015 9:28 pm

https://www.patreon.com/ccby

Hi ya,

I was hoping this project might resonate with you guys better than it did at /r/visualnovels where it was shot down rather nonchalantly with a "who would use it?" type of response. But I KNOW from lurking these forums (etc.) there's a strong use case for this, with loads and loads of people looking for cheap or free to use art assets.

So why not pool together to have that art created, free to use by all, backer or non-backer, in projects commercial and non-commercial alike?

https://www.patreon.com/ccby
Last edited by ccbyproject on Sat Oct 03, 2015 10:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#2 Post by HiddenCreature » Sat Oct 03, 2015 10:05 pm

I've visited /r/visualnovels before, and like many subreddits, the people can be a little dismissive, so don't take it personally.

There is definitely a huge demand for this, and you have a great idea. It's surprisingly difficult to find a place where artists volunteer for creative projects. It doesn't even exist on a huge site like Deviant Art; you have to pay.

With that said, you have to *really* invest time in finding ways to spread the word about this. Coming from experience, you can't post on forums and suddenly lots of people like your idea.

A simple Google search will get you started on where to begin. I'd also try searching Twitter, and see what relevant accounts might help you.

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#3 Post by ccbyproject » Sat Oct 03, 2015 10:56 pm

Thank you for the kind words! Finally a modicum of appreciation for what I'm trying to do T_T

It seems you're right about investing time though. Actually at this stage I'm thinking I should maybe just go ahead and use my own money to commission a small graphics pack for starters, and then hopefully recuperate the cost through the resulting pledges. show, don't tell, I mean. But maybe I'm just being naive here and about to throw my money down a bottomless pit...

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#4 Post by HiddenCreature » Sat Oct 03, 2015 11:30 pm

There's already lots of free content here in the Creatives Commons section. A bunch, actually. And some of it is already categorized. Use that to get started.

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#5 Post by SundownKid » Sat Oct 03, 2015 11:57 pm

HiddenCreature wrote:There's already lots of free content here in the Creatives Commons section. A bunch, actually. And some of it is already categorized. Use that to get started.
Thats true, but the amount of backgrounds available that are decent quality are pretty limited. So, I do think it's a good idea.

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#6 Post by Alte » Sun Oct 04, 2015 12:41 am

Where's the backgrounds going to be distributed from?

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#7 Post by ccbyproject » Sun Oct 04, 2015 9:22 am

Alte wrote:Where's the backgrounds going to be distributed from?
From the patreon's content feed. Not meaning to lock any of it to just make it viewable to backers or anything though. Since everything would be CCBY, anybody would be able/allowed to repost it wherever they wanted though, of course (as long as they attribute it properly in accordance with the license).

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#8 Post by ccbyproject » Sun Oct 04, 2015 9:23 am

HiddenCreature wrote:There's already lots of free content here in the Creatives Commons section. A bunch, actually. And some of it is already categorized. Use that to get started.
The idea isn't to catalogue already available art though, but to create new art.

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#9 Post by Sharm » Sun Oct 04, 2015 10:27 am

The hardest part of gathering free materials for a game isn't finding the free, high quality stuff. It's finding enough consistent stuff so that you have what you need to make your game. I'd suggest starting first by finding a few artists (character, background, UI) who are professional enough to stick with this long term and are willing to work this way. I think you'll get more interest with a more solid example of what art will come out of such an arrangement.

If you aren't cataloging what you get made, what's the 5% for?
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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#10 Post by Katta » Sun Oct 04, 2015 12:52 pm

I like the idea in general, but as was already said, the main problem with existing resources is consistency, so your bgs should all be done by the same artist to have sense. So I agree there should be some preliminary agreement with an artist you plan to commission, that they're ready to work on a long-term basis and also to show possible patrons the quality and price they can expect. It'll also be good to see a list of planned bgs. Right now there is nothing in your project except that you'll be taking 5% of money.

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#11 Post by Alte » Sun Oct 04, 2015 2:32 pm

I don't think CC BY is the license you're going for if the backgrounds are intended to be used for projects only.
Since CC BY doesn't restrict the materials (itself) from being resold. As in, from the FAQs explicitly mentions purposes of commercial exploitation.
Whichever party you're involved with should know this condition.

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#12 Post by HiddenCreature » Sun Oct 04, 2015 3:49 pm

I think Katta had the right idea. It would be better to pool together some of your own money, so you can afford artists that agree to regularly produce content long term. That way, you have something to show on patreon.

There's plenty of crowdfunding platforms out there if you want to give that a try, so you could afford these artists. I know the average cost is at least around $100 per background. At least.

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#13 Post by Tempus » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:09 am

I've been thinking about this lately, so here's a few things to consider:
  • Consistency. As mentioned by others, the difficulty with resources free or paid for is that often you'll only find bits and pieces. In a visual novel you want a set of related environments. Not only that, you also want things like the horizon line and viewpoint height to be uniform between backgrounds, as these determine textbox and sprite positioning.

    Desire. Even once you have a set of consistent backgrounds in the same style with uniform horizon lines and viewing heights, you'll need to make sure they're backgrounds people actually want. There's probably a low need for, say, the surface of Mars. Whereas the interior of a present day house is probably a much more common need.

    Expense. While free assets might seem like a good thing, paid assets have a secondary function aside from compensating the person selling: limiting the number of people who have them. Imagine these free backgrounds are a runaway success and a hundred projects use the backgrounds. That's probably... not desirable. Because now everyone recognises them and associates them with project X. There's a sweet spot where you're supplying assets for the largest number of projects while simultaneously ensuring the market isn't saturated by said assets. Free food for everyone sounds great on paper, but if you've only got one pie you have to slice it thinner and thinner for each person who turns up.
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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#14 Post by Kia » Mon Oct 05, 2015 3:54 am

Sharm wrote:I'd suggest starting first by finding a few artists (character, background, UI) who are professional enough to stick with this long term and are willing to work this way.
I can be a resident GUI/BG artist but this project should offer something that I can't achieve with my own patreon account. :roll:

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Re: Let's pool together and pay artists to create CC-BY bg a

#15 Post by Kkoro » Mon Oct 05, 2015 8:27 am

I've seen your post on /r/visualnovels before.
It's true that the response was rather negative, but I saw some of it as honest critique on why it's not going to work. Here on Lemmasoft you've got more positive responses, but still no new backers. IMO, there's a lack of information.

I think enough people commented about your idea(both on reddit and on lemmasoft), so I'll comment about your marketing and my thought process when I saw your post on reddit:
You posted your link to your patreon on reddit without introduction or whatever. Strange. It'll probably come over as a bit blunt towards redditors. When I open your patreon page, I see a nice piece. That's good. You got my attention, but you still haven't convinced me yet to donate. I read the text, but I still dont know much about your team.
  • Who are the artists?
  • How many are there?
  • If I donate, will I ever see the results in a game I'll play?
  • When will the production of backgrounds start? If they don't produce anything because they didn't get enough, my donated money will be for nothing!
  • How much would they need? If whatever they recieve is enough for them to produce, I don't need to donate.
  • For what reason should I donate my money to your team, instead of funding the kickstarter of a VN project directly?


Crowdfunding requires you to gain the trust of people, but currently you don't have much to convince possible backers that you're not going to take the money and run away with it or cancel the project.
Now what I would suggest is to create some more assets first. Show people that there is a dedicated team and that donating will help that team. Patreon is meant to be a way to fund people producing content, rather than getting them started to create content.

Also, give some more information about the team and its goals. Give them an idea on why you would want the donations. Most people now will probably think: "There's currently a backer of 25$ and is that enough? I don't know. Maybe they'll reach 100$/month in a couple weeks. If they'll continue to make those backgrounds without problems then there's no need for me to donate."

Please don't see this as me trying to demotivate you. I know how difficult it is for OELVNs to get good backgrounds, so I sincerely hope your project will succeed. So the best of luck to you and your team.
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