When it comes to cartoonists, Stan Sakai is the gold standard. Not only is he one of the nicest people you will ever meet, he’s also one of the most talented. His 20-year-long epic Usagi Yojimbo has quietly become one of the greatest single works in recent comics history. So why is some sh*thead ripping him off? Stan reports he just got back from Motor City Con where he had a great time and did free sketches for the fans, a sadly rapidly vanishing practice due to the prevalence of people turning around and selling these free sketches on eBay. This time, the sketch-seller went above and beyond, however, going so far as to ALTER the sketch to remove the personalization.
Here’s a link to one of my drawings from the Motor City Con, with a BIN option of $45.99 plus $7.99 for mailing the sheet of typing paper:
Except it is not completely my drawing. Someone (the seller I presume) has drastically altered the art , using a broad marker to darken the border and drawing some grass to obliterate the personalization. Drawings usually fetch a higher price if they are not personalized to someone. I assume it is the seller that did the alterations, because he is selling a piece by another artist with the drawing drastically cropped to leave out the personalization. I don’t know if it technically it is counterfeit, but it certainly is fraud.
Most cartoonists will not do these free drawings anymore because of dealers reselling them. I think I will have to join this majority.
[link added for clarity.]
Sketching at shows has become much more controversial in the eBay era, and while we can see both sides of it a little, the bottom line is that artists don’t have to give ANYTHING away, and sitting at a table sketching all day isn’t that different from being at work, so if someone is going to profit, it might as well be the artist.
Thanks a lot, Mr. Comicman182, for ruining it for the vanishing breed of people who are just trying to be nice guys and just give something back to their fans. We expect this auction to be taken down very very soon.