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T.T Boy

Artist Contracts

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well im sure this has been brought up before, but i need some advice or any general knowledge of this. im doing designs for a new company. i baisically am doing cover art for their videos and the designs for their clothing line. the owner is asking me to sign a form saying hes the only one allowed to use my designs and theyre not allowed to be used by anyone else. hes a friend, but a shady business person, im not sure of the full details of the contract but i havent signed it and dont want to unless i know what im getting into. also, hes paying me upfront for the designs and hes giving me the clothes and the video once its all finished. im not charging him a huge price cause hes just starting out at it. but i just want to know if this thing goes big how do i know im not gonna get screwed out of more money than i deserve. do i need him to sign a contract stating he will pay me royalties and such for anything that happens? where can i get a contract like this? please, anyone with any info help me out. if you want aim me bfresh764 thanks for the advice. anything will be appreciated.

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Guest imported_Tesseract

T.T,

i've done a lot of works under the situation you describe.

I am afraid i never signed a contract in my life.So i cant really give you any usefull information.Silo had a similar thread (i think it was called "i hate being a freelance artist")and Beardo can give you some info about contracts i supose.(i remember that he mentioned something about it).

Now as far as i am concerned,contract or not,you just have to think about how you can get damaged by this,meaning from getting fucked with your payment to being exploited from this guy.

If you ask me

it seems that since that dude is your friend is pretty odd that he asks you to sign that form,its a sign of not trusting you,imposing that you'll use the material for other things aswell.Its kinda insulting in a way.

The crucial piece of info is that your work belongs to you in first place,you could always do something identical with out having a problem with copyright issues.So it seems that he aint got a strong point, especially when he has knowledge that you charge him less in order to help him out.Greedy...or way to "professional" for me.

So either you sign that shit and get him to sign yours(concerning the payment etc)

Or you'll have a "friend" discussion telling him to lighten up a bit,and give the designs when he gives you the money.

A traditional "hand to hand"

I would do that if i didnt trust him...

Damn its really fucked to work under nontrust conditions.

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make up your own contract, even if its just a typed out simple form, stating some of the following....

 

 

that "the designs are only being licensed for ____________ products." meaning, that if you design a video box, he cant re-tool the design to fit an album cover or a t-shirt graphic. be specific as to what your doing.

 

"no likeness of your work can be recreated by anyone but you" meaning that he cant get your designs, then hire some two bit schmuck to come in and recreate them for a bunch of other shit.

 

"designs are to remain the onwership of t.t.boy, and are being leased to _______ until ____________ with an option to renew at that time." that way if he blows up, he'll have to renegotiate your pay at that time.

 

 

to be perfectly honest, i have no clue if dude would sign that, haha, it would not be in his favor at all, but, fuck it. it would keep you covered and from getting fucked over.... you should obviously talk to a lawyer, but blah blah blah.... good luck....

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Guest beardo

i really wish i had all that contract info handy. you can get real specific with the rights to the design. any cover art should be one time use, t shirt designs (dont have to, but its a good idea) can be licensed in quantity. say he has the license for 500 shirts. if he wants to make more he has to pay you again for the rights. it sounds like hes trying to get you too give him sole ownership of the design, which is good for him if his company gets big. bad for you because hes making a bunch off your design. case and point, the nike logo was sold for like $5000 originally and look at them now. im not totally qualified to give a bunch of advise, so i would suggest you do some research on the net. i wouldnt be surprised if there was a website out there that had a template for a basic design contract.

 

good luck

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i used to do a lot of freelance design work, and the way i handled it was just by using a standard independant contractor's form, which i would have notarized at mailboxes etc. the form can probably be printed off the internet if you do a yahoo search or something. most businesses will not give you the exclusive rights to your design, and this is true all over the professional world. you have the rights to use the design to promote yourself as an artist, but normally you don't retain anymore rights to the work beyond that. the lady who designed the nike swoosh was a college student who made 17$ from it. if you want royalties, you normally have to agree to it from the start, and most clients aren't willing to work that way. unfortunately that's how the business usually works.

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for consolidated, i never signed anything. i didnt even agree to anything. the guy todd just seems really cool and nice. we didnt even really talk about payment. just kind of a verbal agree ment i guess. hope the contract thing works out well. good luck.

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Guest beardo

damn $17 for the nike logo.. i knew it was something cheap as hell, but thats just out of hand.

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Guest bug

you gotta uderstand that as someone selling a product, he wants the images you create to represent his product exclusively, not something that you can turn around and sell to his competitor, or some image that people will associate with other products. that goes both ways. like seeking said, make sure the contract works for you too, so that he only uses the design for the product you design it for. if he made shirts, album covers etc. see to it that you would get royalties for every unit sold.

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hey thanks alot for all the info guys. its really helps. seeking you brouht up some very good points and things that i could definatley consider and use. ive worked freelance before with no contracts and the stuff i did never got used as almost all of the companies fell through, but this one seems to be doing well, theyve already released 2 videos. and hes sinking alot of money into it. so i dont want to get screwed over in this. i have the contract details and would like to talk to any of you if you have the time to go over it and see whats up and give me some advice, i mean im kinda confused and dont want tp get fucked over. ive never really delt wth companies with any future before. give me a shout on aim or email me if you have the time. thanks alot. heroin183@hotmail.com

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damn $17 for the nike logo.. i knew it was something cheap as hell, but thats just out of hand.

 

It was actually sold for $35 which equals out to around $185 today

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