Sunday, August 28, 2016

Is it Illegal to Sell Fanart?

I know what you're thinking. You want to do it too.

Everyone's taking the characters, quotes, stories, movies, TV shows, and books that we all love and they're making it into merchandise to sell.

I'm here to tell you, that's illegal.

It's illegal to take something that's not yours and repurpose it into merchandise to sell for profit.

What about fair use? Fair use can be challenging to defend in court.

Can you do it and not sell it? Sure.

You can be spending your time making you own work instead of spending your time trying to not get caught.

I know is hard to try and make it without fanart. I went to conventions and made fanart myself. I made Pokemon and Harry Potter merchandise. I did the same thing.

And then I realized that I was in a constant state of panic and I didn’t want to do it anymore. Instead, I wanted to focus on geeky likes that aren’t really addressed like planners and researchers and cool, little jobs that no one talks about.

I wanted to focus on something other than the fandom of the day.

I do not recommend that you join the party and make fanart like everybody else.

Do you want to add to the pile of the same fanart of the same characters, stories, and quotes? Or, do you want to make something different that’s custom and never seen before?  People can fall in love with it because it’s from you and it’s yours.