Reality Check

Everyone is kind of freaking out right now because of the Gary Friedrich case.

Long story short, the guy who created Ghost Rider in 1972 sued Marvel, claiming that they never filed a copyright for his work and therefore he still owns Ghost Rider. Courts said “sit down before you fall down” and in addition slapped the guy with a $17,000 fine for selling tee shirts and posters featuring Mike Ploog Ghost Rider art at conventions.

People are considering this a warning salvo at artists who do sketches of Marvel and DC owned characters at conventions. Now everyone who’s ever drawn Batman spanking Catwoman at a con for $75 bucks is shitting their pants, and it’s gone as far as people calling the Marvel “sketch cover” comics a form of entrapment.

Here’s an idea I’m just going to throw out there, considering it’s 2012. If you can draw and you have the equivalent brainpower of a creative six year old, try making up your own characters. Then draw them doing interesting things. Post those stories online, develop an audience and charge $75 to sketch your own characters at cons.

It’s sad that Gary Friedrich did not create Ghost Rider in more creator friendly times, but we don’t share that same fate.

Stop bitching, grab some pencil and paper and come up with your own god-damn characters. It’s not hard. I’ve made a living drawing a farting troll for 14 years. All without any real grasp of anatomy or storytelling. Jeff Smith I ain’t. If I can do it….

Food for thought.