I wanted to provide an explanation for my upcoming and final Harry Potter collaborations.
Firstly, I want it to be clear that I whole heartedly disavow J.K. Rowling’s sentiments on women’s rights and the transgender community. I think there is a very clear divide with where people stand with her views and I’m most decidedly on the side that sees her opinions and statements as harmful.
However, I think within the divide that has now condemned JKR the person, there is a more scattered resolution on how this group has resolved to move forward in the Harry Potter fandom. Some have separated the art from the artist and continue to enjoy the world that the fans have built; some have refused supporting official merchandise and enjoy purchasing unlicensed products from small businesses; some are keeping their consumption of Harry Potter private and off of social media; and some have outright avoided any mention or following of the fandom at all.
There are so many arguments to be had about any of these resolutions that I can’t say any of them are absolutely right or wrong. I can for certain say that Harry Potter is now triggering for some. And just like other content triggers and warnings, the polite action would be to apply these trigger warnings when possible if our intention is to create those safe spaces. I personally choose not to show nudity or gore in my artwork and can be a safe space for those avoiding those triggers, but that does not mean I am personally triggered by it, nor do I disavow or unfollow other artists who create those contents. This is how I’ve crafted my resolution for Harry Potter.
I know how deeply ingrained the Harry Potter fandom is, and even with a critical eye on the controversial topics highlighted in the books (elves, werewolves, goblins, Seamus, etc), I can see those who are fans are still celebrating the books for the goodness and morals and inspirational quotes that the text is known for — not the harmful subtexts and especially not the recent sentiments of JKR.
With regards to my upcoming collaborations with LitJoy Crate in 2021, I will be providing artwork for four Harry Potter related items. Before JKR’s statement blew up in June 2020, I had already agreed and signed a contract for these pieces, a project that LitJoy had already been planning for in advance of my involvement. With my sentiments above, I do intend to finish my commitment with LitJoy, but will not be posting any Harry Potter artwork from the collaboration on my personal social feeds, nor will I be collaborating or producing any future Harry Potter artworks thereafter.
This is my personal resolution based on my own reactions to JKR’s statements, but I do NOT condemn LitJoy or their followers for purchasing and celebrating the Harry Potter fandom; in fact, I continue to be impressed and amazed and delighted with the ideas and creativity they bring to their community and the Harry Potter fandom. That can be a valid resolution. I would of course love to continue collaborating with LitJoy Crate on non-Harry Potter artworks in the future. But going forward, my resolution is to focus on other fandoms on my public accounts and consume the Harry Potter fandom privately in my own space.
I realize my resolution will not be the solution for everyone who follows me and who I follow, but there is a space for everyone and I only hope everyone can find the spaces they can enjoy.
Alice in Wonderland (or Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll) is in the public domain. Therefore as long as it doesn’t resemble the Disney version of Alice in Wonderland (or any other copyrighted variations of the original book) then I have free standing to sell my interpretation of the book. 🙂
Fanart is the love child of two parties: The artist and the copyright owner of the original property or ideas the fanart depicts. Because I am declaring that the artwork I make is referencing, depicting, or relating to copyrighted properties that do not belong to me, then I am no longer the sole owner of that artwork. For example:
If I caption this picture below as [KINGDOM OF ASH SPOILERS] “Elide racing across a bloody battle field, desperate to save her love before a dam collapses and floods the entire field.” [END KINGDOM OF ASH SPOILERS] — you as the FAN of that work would recognize the scene, recognize those characters, recognize those EMOTIONS you felt while reading those scenes by looking at my interpretation, my fanart. You’re connecting with my art through the emotions that were earned by the Author, Sarah J. Maas, not me.
If I were to instead caption the picture as “A girl desperately riding across the field on a horse because she really has to pee.” I no longer am associating it with a copyright work, but it sounds a little less appealing in context, doesn’t it? Not the same emotional connection as before? Therefore, the only thing left sustaining its value is my artwork alone. ( Unless you really sympathize with the desperate need to seek a toilet. )
In the case of fanart, I would need the consent of both parties to sell my work for it to be within legal standings for Copyright Law.
I notice you’ve been doing commercial commissions for book boxes, do you ever plan to do private commissions?
Unfortunately, my schedule doesn’t allow me to have open private commissions at the moment.
I can at most build 1 – 2 papercrafts a month depending on the complexity, so it’s very limiting if I open private commissions. Commercial commissions allow these box subscriptions to distribute my artwork on a larger scale to you all than one-on-one commissions would.
But I’m not against it in the future if my schedule opens up to allow it! 🙂
Oh boy, I’m going to gush here. Glen Keane.
One of the most prolific Disney animators since the Disney Renaissance, his work has been my inspiration since before I even knew who he was as a person. You can easily recognize his character designs by his signature eye style. They’re so full of focus and emotion; it radiates through the rest of the character’s body language without any dialogue.
I try to apply the same emotion to my artwork. The eyes don’t have to be detailed, but just need to have that focus. I don’t usually do character portraits for this reason – I feel like their eyes would be so out of focus if they were actually sitting for one. I like to create expression while the subject is in the middle of an action, or a story, so you are able to think about before, during and after the scene, all captured through their eyes.
Out of respect for the copyright holders (and copyright law), I don’t sell fanart of works that I don’t have permission to sell. I am working on gaining permission for some properties and will definitely announce when prints, kits, or paper crafts of those properties are available for sale. 🙂
I try to spread the love as much as I can with giveaways though!