AuthorTopic: honor over dollars  (Read 22600 times)

Offline tetsuya_shino

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honor over dollars

on: December 17, 2009, 12:45:04 am
Greetings. This is a question I always wondered; is being a pixel purist foolish in this day and age? I take pride in the fact I never edit or rip sprites from others.  I've been doing pixel art for over 10 years and I feel that I have above average skills. However, there are many things I still can't draw. Therefore I'm not as marketable as I could be. For example if there was a job posting to make a cowboy themed game I could make backgrounds and characters no problem, but I can't draw animals.. such as horses. And because of code I live by, I couldn't take that job if horses were needed to be drawn in that game. However, it would be so easy to rip and edit horses from other games... and I dare say that only another pixel artist would even know about the scam.
It would be great to get paid to push pixels, but not at the sake of my values.

So my question is, is my logic wrong? What would you do in the above example? Thank you.

- tetsuya_shino
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 12:48:14 am by tetsuya_shino »

Offline CrazyMLC

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #1 on: December 17, 2009, 12:57:31 am
I wouldn't take the job myself, I'd like to put my best work forward, and if I can't draw horses, then, oh well.
(Of course there's more to it than that, I'd practice horses, and if I'm satisfied, I'd accept the job, if someone else hasn't already.)

Offline Atnas

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #2 on: December 17, 2009, 01:18:24 am
Learn to draw horses.

Seriously, don't ever consider an amoral path when something so simple and pure presents itself as another option, especially when money is involved. If you can't draw animals after ten years of doing pixel art I think it might be time to reassess your artistic abilities and make strides to improve them.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 01:22:03 am by Atnas »

Offline Dusty

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #3 on: December 17, 2009, 01:39:41 am
There is never an excuse to steal art -- especially if it's for a job you're being paid for.

Offline WM

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #4 on: December 17, 2009, 01:52:30 am
You could always study the other pixel horses for ideas; there's nothing wrong with looking for inspiration.

However, actually reworking another person's image without their consent is neither alright nor professional in this situation

Offline Helm

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #5 on: December 17, 2009, 02:14:28 am
I know it was mentioned in the thread before, but I must echo: learn to draw horses. The rationalizations on why you're not doing it won't help you in anything in your life (if I'm allowed a guess).

THUS SPAKE SPACEHORSE

Offline CrazyMLC

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #6 on: December 17, 2009, 02:35:33 am
Oh god I want one.
Its an essential, it's right next to the nail clipper.

Where would I get those sorta things?

Offline Helm

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #7 on: December 17, 2009, 02:37:40 am
in any art store, dad got it to me as a joke gift, I don't really use it. Photo reference is much better.

Offline TheOne

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #8 on: December 17, 2009, 03:15:49 am
resource: http://i33.tinypic.com/107jgvt.gif

If I couldn't draw horses what would I do? Rip from multiple horse sprites until you have something original looking. eg: shading style from shinobi sprite, pal from 3d horse, pose from photo. You could scale and rotate parts like the head from the shinobi sprite and clean up.



I definitely wouldn't commit hari-kari if I reused bits and pieces. The important thing is to make sure your sprites look consistent. Be aware that what you copy from has its own mistakes which you will take on. The other way out would be to have a simple style that makes anatomy less important.

It'd be interesting to hear what the pros think about ripping rather than hobbyists.

The other source for dishonor is the person you work for won't share your values and will ask you to make dirty compromises. Take up some of the indie jobs in the jobs section to get a feel for it. Also, if people start carrying around devices with resolutions greater than an iphone will that finally kill off pixel art + your career?

Offline Helm

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #9 on: December 17, 2009, 03:34:00 am
Quote
It'd be interesting to hear what the pros think about ripping rather than hobbyists.

From either vantage, don't do it.

Offline LoTekK

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #10 on: December 17, 2009, 04:13:23 am
Aside from the moral quagmire of theft (because it /is/ theft), there's the obvious potential legal wranglings. It simply isn't worth it. Rip someone's art for one paid job, you might get away with it assuming the game never sees the light of day. You might get away with it a second time, maybe a third, but you'll eventually get called out, and then what? Your name gets dragged through the mud, you potentially deal with infringement lawsuits, etc. Even if you don't get caught, there's that looming fear hanging over your head. It's simply not worth it.

In short, Helm's right. Just practise horses (or more generally, quadrupeds). Even if you don't get /this/ job, you're expanding your artistic vocabulary, and that's never a bad thing.

Offline WM

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #11 on: December 17, 2009, 04:20:19 am
...
It'd be interesting to hear what the pros think about ripping rather than hobbyists.
...

Something along the lines of "Stop stealing our sprites you crazy kids!"  >:(

Offline TheOne

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #12 on: December 17, 2009, 06:51:20 am
Aside from the moral quagmire of theft (because it /is/ theft), there's the obvious potential legal wranglings. It simply isn't worth it. Rip someone's art for one paid job, you might get away with it assuming the game never sees the light of day. You might get away with it a second time, maybe a third, but you'll eventually get called out, and then what? Your name gets dragged through the mud, you potentially deal with infringement lawsuits, etc. Even if you don't get caught, there's that looming fear hanging over your head. It's simply not worth it.

In short, Helm's right. Just practise horses (or more generally, quadrupeds). Even if you don't get /this/ job, you're expanding your artistic vocabulary, and that's never a bad thing.

Sure there is copyright (and NDAs that make you liable, not the company you work for) but tetsuya suggested ripping and editing sprites so only an experienced artist familiar with those previous games could tell.  

http://www.wayofthepixel.net/pixelation/index.php?topic=8557.msg98365#msg98365

Did the artist there get his name dragged in the mud? Was there a lawsuit? Maybe there is a long history of ripping and editing:

http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?t=11862

Realistically borrowing from several sources is going to be quicker than learning all the fundamentals. It might be something pros don't have to do, but I'd be interested to know if they otherwise are forced to compromise their 'honor' due to time/budget constraints. Of course the hobbyists say never rip, just spend another 10 years meticulously practicing before trying a paid project.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 06:53:37 am by TheOne »

Offline NaCl

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #13 on: December 17, 2009, 07:08:50 am
Your mindset seems to be that ripping is a viable method, and the only reason not to do it is because of morality. This I totally disagree with, if you Frankenstein a bunch of other sprites together it is sure to look like crap, and even if it doesn't then how close will it look to what you wanted? Unless you are trying to make a directly derivative work, it will not look like what you want. And if you want to make a directly derivative work, what's the point?

Anyway, if you can't draw a horse, and want to resort to ripping, then I don't think you have any business trying to get a professional job. It's not really as though you have to practice each different type of object before you can draw it, there is a fundamental skillset that will allow you to draw any 3D object, with reference for the specifics of course. A professional artist has built up these fundamentals so that he can draw whatever he needs to, and doesn't fall apart if asked to draw something he never has before, like a horse.

One more thing, your idea of a pixel purist differs from mine, and from all the opinions I've seen. It should be taken for granted that a pixel artist doesn't "rip" someones work and try to pass it off as their own. Ripping is something entirely apart from pixel art, because pixel art is creating art, ripping is not. A pixel purist to me has more to do with care put into the pixel techniques like AA, working with a limited palette, etc...

Offline LoTekK

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #14 on: December 17, 2009, 07:31:23 am
Did the artist there get his name dragged in the mud? Was there a lawsuit? Maybe there is a long history of ripping and editing:

Granted, rips/paintovers, etc, may not be noticed by the general public, but they do get noticed, especially if you're talking about a particular style/artist. At some point, though, yes, the line gets a bit fuzzy as to what is theft and what is not.

Quote
Realistically borrowing from several sources is going to be quicker than learning all the fundamentals. It might be something pros don't have to do, but I'd be interested to know if they otherwise are forced to compromise their 'honor' due to time/budget constraints. Of course the hobbyists say never rip, just spend another 10 years meticulously practicing before trying a paid project.

Honor doesn't really play into it. Influences are going to come from all over the place, some more intentional than others, and ultimately as a professional, you use whatever tools are at hand to complete a job. That said, if you're going to be editing the hell out of a sprite, why not save yourself the trouble of reworking something and just use reference instead? If you're going to rework a sprite to a different style, for example, I can all but guarantee it's going to be less hassle to start it from scratch using something else as reference. And now I shall re-quote the important parts of your statement:

Quote
the hobbyists say never rip, just spend another 10 years meticulously practicing [but] learning all the fundamentals...might be something pros don't have to do

Can you see how backwards that statement is?

Offline Dusty

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #15 on: December 17, 2009, 07:42:53 am
Speaking from a pixel artist standpoint OR from a hiring standpoint, I wouldn't want someone ripping their way to completion, even if it means I get no sprites in the end. If someone releases a game commercially and eventually they get called out for copyright infringement(as you put it, 'experienced artist with familiarity with the games comes along'), who do you think takes the hit? From a legal standpoint, I'm pretty sure it's not the artist. Beyond the legal aspect, people are paying you because they believe you are making graphics. If they wanted ripped graphics, they'd do it themselves, or pay someone a lot less. I doubt you're giving them what they wanted, even if they're not aware. It's very deceitful.

If you're taking on jobs you can't finish, whether it's because you're not experienced enough, you don't have the time, you have too many obligations... maybe the better option would be to step back and reconsider things and either improve or stop taking on jobs you can't handle. I'm sure there are many pros here who do not rip, regardless of how overworked they may get.

To put it simply, would you ever want someone you're paying to half-ass it?
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 07:52:27 am by Dusty »

Offline Jakten

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #16 on: December 17, 2009, 08:04:05 am
I would never take on a job I know I can't do but when something comes up that is hard for me to render I view it as a chance to learn. I go straight to references and do a bunch of sketches until I think I understand it enough to make a serious version of it. I think it would be silly for someone to pass up the chance to learn and get paid for it.

Offline TheOne

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #17 on: December 17, 2009, 08:11:54 am
@Lotekk - tetsuya used term 'honour', im not sure what other words to use, ethics, artistic integrity etc. I didn't mean to post that backwards statement I edited it. edit: wait, did u quote my sentences out of order and then claim that it doesn't make sense - that's not fair.

@Nacl tetsuya didn't specify if he was just going to draw a still one, but drawing an animated, realistic horse isn't easy. I don't think that should rule someone out of getting a professional job, but then I'm not a pro, so wait to see what they say. I think ideally tetsuya should show his art to a professional pixeller who is about to retire to get an unbiased opinion of what the business is like and what skills are necessary.

Hey NaCl i bet u could make a frankenstein sprite look good if u really wanted to.

edit:

@jakten, that's what i was interested to hear. you get paid even though there's gaps in your knowledge. but u don't resort to ripping becuase references are better. if u were asked to animate a galloping horse, would you rotoscope that lithograph or would u borrow leg positions from the shinobi sprite?

i better stop derailing this thread that is all.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 08:36:09 am by TheOne »

Offline Elk

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #18 on: December 17, 2009, 10:07:29 am
I hate people who rip or steal artwork, especially if it's yourself that is the victim (it sucks to be a fanboy (if you know me then you know why I'm saying that)
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Offline Ai

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #19 on: December 17, 2009, 10:30:18 am
Aside from the moral quagmire of theft (because it /is/ theft),

That's debatable. The whole 'intangibility' and negligible-cost reproduction of all things digital illustrates the dubious ground the concept of 'intellectual property' is built on.

What it really would be, is fraud (in this case, misrepresentation of who the author of the art is).
That's not 100% sound either; although it's certainly more sound than describing it as theft.

Quote
In short, Helm's right. Just practise horses (or more generally, quadrupeds). Even if you don't get /this/ job, you're expanding your artistic vocabulary, and that's never a bad thing.
What I find strange is the notion that ripping and editing horse sprites will actually be less work than simply learning to draw horses right. The only kind of psyche for which that could be true is either a) a very short-sighted one, or b) one that doesn't understand how to learn effectively.
The fact that an artist who doesn't know how to draw horses will not reliably recognize what is a good depiction of a horse adds on to this to make the question look quite absurd really. AFAICS ripping will only give you needless pain, whether you are ever caught or not. (frankensteins always look weird. It's just a question of 'just how weird?')

It's worth mentioning that I notice the emphasis on 'pixel art' in the original post; there's no particular value in limiting oneself to pixel art, in fact I'd call it a disvalue to do so. The point of pixelling is to do pixely things (ie. leverage the unique advantages of pixel art), which you can't do until you know just what you are depicting. Otherwise you're just punting bits of information that you do not understand around meaninglessly.  If you don't understand the basic construction (and kinetics if applicable) of something, don't pixel it!


tl;dr version : active deception == FAIL, for 99% of circumstances (and your situation is not so special as to fall into the remaining 1%). Just learn to learn.
If you insist on being pessimistic about your own abilities, consider also being pessimistic about the accuracy of that pessimistic judgement.

Offline tetsuya_shino

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #20 on: December 17, 2009, 10:54:41 am
As I said before I've never edited, ripped or stole sprites after over 10 years of pixeling. And I'm not about to start now. Nor am I trying to get hired for a company that requires me to draw a horse. I think many of you are missing the point I was trying to make. I was asking a rhetorical question. So the answer wouldn't be what tetsuya should do, but what you'd do. Of course soon after posted this I realized my mistake. No one would admit to it. "You wouldn't rob a bank, but I should would!"...

When I created this post I was trying to see if there were other purists out there that felt the... discontent of not being able to draw anything and everything I want.  By contrast, being a writer would be so much easier. You could just type one sentence that could take days or weeks to draw. However, I'm not a writer, I'm a pixel artist.
I was just complaining aloud about my limited range and wondered if other people had the same thoughts. Of course I know the only way to improve is practice.

Still, thanks to Mr. Dusty, this topic isn't a total waste. His avatar isn't merely RCR style, it's a shameless rip/edit. I'd even go as far as saying other then the head, it's a pixel perfect copty. So I have something new for you to think about. All of you made it very clear that you were strongly against someone using edits/rips in order to get a job. However, since none of you corrected Mr. Dusty, you send the message that it's okay for a novice to steal and modify art as long as no money changes hands. Or did no one notice he ripped from one of the most famous NES games? Or is it no one cares? Discuss.

Offline Helm

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #21 on: December 17, 2009, 11:09:21 am
tetsuya, if you've been doing pixel art for 10 years with commitment and you consider yourself a purist (I read from this, dedicated to the craftsmanship and learning) then you should have learned how to draw horses, along with buildings, telephones, sad girls that have just been told their flights have been indefinitely delayed, sleepy cats, sports cars, washing machines, big trees and small bushes, cruise ships, children and other things in those 10 years. If you haven't learned how to draw those things (through practice, adoption of good methods that allow you to abstract nearly anything into shapes and forms you can represent in your artform) then you don't really have 10 years of *experience* with artistic creation, you have 10 years of dabbling in it.

Not saying that's a sin or anything, that's fine, but get your head straight as to what your skills add up to and if they're ways away from what you'd have liked them to be after 10 years, then it's time to practice more and better. You seem to be distressed with something else than you should be at.

A good place to start is to stop thinking about how much of an accomplished pixeller you are and confront how much of a pencil artist you are. If you can't do it with a paper and a pencil, you won't be able to do it with pixels. This is a sad truth for a lot of people that got into the arts through pixel art (and especially game art) in the first place where they throught that if they could fumble away in a little 32x32 box until something looked marginally ok, they 'could draw'. That's an empowering feeling at first (because truly, everybody can draw if they put their mind to a method) but it's also crippling later on when they've drawn a few mockups of game art and think this translates to the skills of a non-pixel artist of equal representational-drawing strength.

If you want to know your measure as an artist, draw something to the best of your ability on a piece of paper at a serviceable size and post it on some community (here or elsewhere) for critique without any preamble of how much of a purist or how many years you've been drawing attached to it. Reactions will steer you in constructive directions to better yourself. Don't hide behind small pixels, don't hide behind game art.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 11:11:36 am by Helm »

Offline TheOne

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #22 on: December 17, 2009, 11:21:18 am
That is hypocritical! (I'm exempt because I actually don't know the nes game) shame shame shame dusty. Here is an edit to make it less frankenstein (or igor in this case):



edit: not only is it hypocritical (especially since for non-paid art you have a choice about what u draw and how long u take. Also this isn't once off: http://www.pixeljoint.com/pixelart/47246.htm) but it illustrates my point why it would be important to wait for professionals' opinions. Hobbyists can talk talk talk about 'pixel definitions' and best practice, but that can mean jack.

edit: deleted edit
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 02:33:49 pm by TheOne »

Offline tetsuya_shino

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #23 on: December 17, 2009, 02:05:06 pm
...... I just lost my reply I had been writing for that last 45 mins. I really don't feel like rewriting it all so I'll try to sum it up.

My oringal post basicly was a question asking if you could get a job, but had to edit or rip sprites to get it, would you go for it? It was purely a rhetorical question. And in fact if someone were to ask me the same question, my reply would be more less be a carbon copy of what CrazyMLC typed. Even if the company didn't realize the art was ripped, I would know. That is the 'honor' I was referring to. Although maybe I should have said 'pride' instead.

If I can draw horses or not irrelevant because I just said that as an example. However, if you want to make it personal based on a false assumption.. please present your best horse drawing. Or, you could reread my first post and realize it was just an example.

The dictionary I have lists purist as "Someone who insists on great precision and correctness ". It has no bearing on skill level or range.

I am always learning, even if it isn't the way you went about it. I agree with you that strong line art skills would improve your pixel art. However, I disagree when you say you need them.

All in all, I more or less got the replies I had expected. A delightful blend of foolishness and helpful insight.
Thank you for helping to kill my boredom.

@TheOne: ... I'm not sure what I should say to you. We didn't need you to point out the dusty's RCR rip. It's a no brainer, even a novice could realize. Also, even if you think you're trying to be helpful, don't edit other people's sprites unless they ask for cnc, which I never did... which you did anyways,... in a topic about stolen art.....   ???



« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 02:15:05 pm by tetsuya_shino »

Offline TheOne

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #24 on: December 17, 2009, 02:32:02 pm
Hey, my suggestions about ripping and cleaning up were called Frankensteins. So I showed how to clean up Dusty's Frankenstein. You might not have found it relevant but anyways.

 Hey i'll delete the edit of your avatar if u mind.

"For example {suppose} there was a job posting to make a cowboy themed game {and} I could make backgrounds and characters {with } no problem, but I {couldn't} draw animals.. such as horses."

I know English is probably ur second language but the above sentence is much more clear that you are posing a hypothetical question rather than a legitimate question such as "could i still make a career change despite having gaps in my drawing knowledge". I don't get the point of playing hypotheticals.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 03:00:53 pm by TheOne »

Offline Jad

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #25 on: December 17, 2009, 04:07:52 pm
Dusty never even claimed having made it himself, so who would a homage to river city ransom be 'taboo'? Had he put it up for critique it'd have been a bit silly, sure. But now it's just an image he uses to represent something about himself. He's allowed to have a river city ransom sprite there. This particular part of the argument is silly.
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Offline LoTekK

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #26 on: December 17, 2009, 04:24:00 pm
Ai, fair point about wording/vocab, though we could each probably sit and make points for and against both sides endlessly. :)

As for the second part, I hope you were agreeing with me, and not refuting me, since that's almost exactly what I said. :p

tetsuo: What Jad said. There's typically a clear difference between homage and ripping/fraud/theft.

Offline Reo

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #27 on: December 17, 2009, 04:34:42 pm
Also, It's not something that he is selling/getting paid for or claims that he has completly made himself.
and I think you misread the hood in his avatar for a ponytail..

Offline Pawige

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #28 on: December 17, 2009, 04:53:35 pm
So, this is the part that I don't understand, and I have my own (not rhetorical though) question to ask regarding it.

How can you, Tetsuya, claim to "not be able to draw horses" and yet have pixeled for 10 years?

And I would like an answer. What can you draw? What have you been drawing? Why do you think that pencil skills are not necessary? Why are you posting silly questions like this instead of trying to draw horses (or giraffes or baboons or whatever)?

It seems to me this whole thread is based on a flawed question, as anyone with a professional skill level would not need to rip anything due to a mysterious inability to draw some certain thing.

Offline Jakten

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #29 on: December 17, 2009, 05:20:21 pm
if u were asked to animate a galloping horse, would you rotoscope that lithograph or would u borrow leg positions from the shinobi sprite?

i better stop derailing this thread that is all.

Last time I had to animate a horse I used the Muybridge image you posted, sketched a bunch of the frames and them cleaned it up. I didn't take any pieces of it other than the information I got from looking at it.

Offline Gil

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #30 on: December 17, 2009, 05:38:04 pm
I don't get this thread. At all.

Just like many here, I can't understand how you can not draw something if you have 10 years of practice. I mean, what's the difference between drawing a horse and a boat? The answer is: nothing. They can both be deconstructed in simple shapes, there's references, books on how to animate them, etc. If you know how to deconstruct something, then you can deconstruct anything. If you can't deconstruct objects, then you probably don't have the skills you should have after 10 years.

The 10 years thing is silly too. I have been doing pixel art since I had a computer, 17 years ago. I have been seriously deconstructing, constructing and looking at art with the right mindset for maybe 5 years. 2 were spent drawing contours from live model nudes, 2 were spent deconstructing all sorts of things into barebone representations and I have now spent about 1 year on the construction part, learning how to represent the things I can now see. I have also learned more in the previous 2 years (of sketching!), than in the other 15 years combined.

Offline WM

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #31 on: December 17, 2009, 05:40:20 pm
if u were asked to animate a galloping horse, would you rotoscope that lithograph or would u borrow leg positions from the shinobi sprite?

i better stop derailing this thread that is all.

Last time I had to animate a horse I used the Muybridge image you posted, sketched a bunch of the frames and them cleaned it up. I didn't take any pieces of it other than the information I got from looking at it.

Which is exactly how is should be done  :y:


So far I haven't seen an argument for the ripping/editing of others sprites other than "well, if you can get away with it, there's no problem".


@TheOne: I wish you would quit dismissing our opinions because we're "hobbyists"; we have knowledge on the subject (and art in general), and whether or not we made a career out of pixeling is irrelevent.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 05:50:31 pm by WM »

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #32 on: December 17, 2009, 07:22:51 pm
I also don't know if a US Navy Sailor who's been living in Japan for 3 1/2 years has 10 years experience in pixelart :)
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 08:26:07 pm by Elk »
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Offline Dusty

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #33 on: December 17, 2009, 07:27:07 pm
http://www.pixeljoint.com/pixelart/47246.htm
The concept art for that avatar was made for the person I did the pixel version for. Both were made for the same person, and she really liked the concept art, but the person had never finished it and she was hoping to have a more finalized version. Seeing as my only digital art skill is pixel art, it was the only way I could help her out.

Also, you should stop making assumptions as to whether or not we are professional or 'hobbyists'. I doubt you can sit and tell us which one of us is making money with our pixel art or not.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2009, 07:30:23 pm by Dusty »

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #34 on: December 17, 2009, 08:32:57 pm
Quote from: tetsuyo
If I can draw horses or not irrelevant because I just said that as an example.

Apologies, though your original post presented an example job, your inability to draw horses was stated in a real manner. I tacked on that "reassess artistic abilities" part because of... that avatar.   .o.

But yeah, regardless, the frank answer for this hypothetical artist: learn to draw horses. There really isn't another option, if hypothetical artist wants to be Dr. Frankenstein, he'll just be spiting himself, besides being a gigantic fagott.

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #35 on: December 17, 2009, 09:43:37 pm
I'm probably just echoing earlier sentiments, but from the viewpoint of artistic integrity, modifying, tracing, or ripping violates every shred of creativity in my body. From the viewpoint of a freelancer, you can be financially liable. A standard contract includes a clause that affirms you have the intellectual rights to the art that you are either licensing or transferring to their ownership. The same contract will usually have an indemnity clause, protecting the client from damages you might incur. Although many clients won't recognize ripped art, the contract's validity extends beyond their memory. If down the road, someone were to catch your indiscretion and notify the copyright holder, the client will pass the lawsuit onto you. It's an unlikely event, but it would end your career. 

That being said, I've encountered less scrupulous employers. When I worked at Gameloft, ripping art and indexing photos was standard procedure. I remember one title that featured effects ripped directly from a Capcom game (they didn't bother to even edit it or modify it slightly).  It's hard to stay creative and maintain your integrity in a climate like that.

Offline tetsuya_shino

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #36 on: December 17, 2009, 11:48:15 pm
I'm probably just echoing earlier sentiments, but from the viewpoint of artistic integrity, modifying, tracing, or ripping violates every shred of creativity in my body. From the viewpoint of a freelancer, you can be financially liable. A standard contract includes a clause that affirms you have the intellectual rights to the art that you are either licensing or transferring to their ownership. The same contract will usually have an indemnity clause, protecting the client from damages you might incur. Although many clients won't recognize ripped art, the contract's validity extends beyond their memory. If down the road, someone were to catch your indiscretion and notify the copyright holder, the client will pass the lawsuit onto you. It's an unlikely event, but it would end your career. 

That being said, I've encountered less scrupulous employers. When I worked at Gameloft, ripping art and indexing photos was standard procedure. I remember one title that featured effects ripped directly from a Capcom game (they didn't bother to even edit it or modify it slightly).  It's hard to stay creative and maintain your integrity in a climate like that.


Thank you! The whole point of this thread was if you could get away with it, would you? It was never a question of if I should do it or not. I had said as much since the oringal post, if anyone bothered to notice. big brother's post proves what I firgured what was going on already; that people are already using stolen art in games.

It bothers me that all I tried to do was present a hypothetical question for everyone to ponder and nearly all the replies are misguided and/or baseless personal attacks.

"reassess artistic abilities" because of my avator? I shouldn't even have to explain this to you, but I will anyways. My avator does not infer an ability OR inability to draw horses. Try applying your own foolish logic to your own avator. That's the limit of your skill? That's the only thing you can draw? Idiot.

There is no doubt there is some artistic talent on this board. Although it could do with a good dose of common sense. This was never a debate. I just wanted to hear everyone opinions on a hot topic. Nothing more, nothing less.

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #37 on: December 18, 2009, 12:09:34 am
I wouldn't take too much offense, tetsuya.  The way the post read and the naturally provocative moral question that accompanied it made it hard for artists not to be passionate with their responses - even to the point of assuming that you were considering it.

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #38 on: December 18, 2009, 12:32:05 am
For the record, my avatar is still awesome after all these years. :)

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #39 on: December 18, 2009, 12:45:04 am
For the record, my avatar is still awesome after all these years. :)

As is Doom \o/

Anyway, tetsuya, I gave you a strike in account of calling Atnas an idiot. That was uncalled for.
Also your original post did not sound overly hypothetical so you should not wonder when people get it the wrong way.
That said, your avatar does not look like you do pixel art since 10 years, or at least not with focus.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline The B.O.B.

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #40 on: December 18, 2009, 12:48:35 am
I see your original confusing post has been conveniently edited for us to understand better...The first time I read it, I assumed it was for a real job, and that you didn't have the capacity to draw a horse correctly.


Edit: looks like Ptoing beat me to the punch...any hoo, welcome to pixelation, haven't really seen you around before, Tets...
my back hurts...

Offline TheOne

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #41 on: December 18, 2009, 11:29:55 am
@WM - If the question was "how do you draw horses" it would be wrong to dismiss hobbyists opinions they can have the same skills as professionals. I originally thought it was: "working as a freelance pixel artist, can I get away with some gaps in my knowledge". It then seemed silly to have people talk about their ideal view of the world. Look at say what dusty says on liability and what BigBrother says. Look at what Lotekk says on the 'invisible hand' that will smite ripping and what BigBrother says occured at Gameloft.

Itd be interesting to hear from Ben2theedge (is he art project manager at gameloft or something?) if things are done differently there now.

@Dusty - "There is never an excuse to steal art" - but then you stole art, apparently, and gave an excuse. Depends on the definition of stealing though. You're right though I can't tell who is a hobbyist or pro anyone even you could be getting paid for it.

@jakten - thanks for answering my question. maybe the shinobi sprite may have used the lithograph also see the similarities with frame 10 although they mucked the ordering of hind legs up.

Offline tetsuya_shino

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #42 on: December 18, 2009, 01:59:01 pm
I wouldn't take too much offense, tetsuya.  The way the post read and the naturally provocative moral question that accompanied it made it hard for artists not to be passionate with their responses - even to the point of assuming that you were considering it.

I thought it was very clear that I was asking a 'what would you do' question. I even scanned thought it a second time to be sure. I later saw a glaring spelling error and thats when I edited it once.  Could I have made it clearer? Sure.

I later said that it was pointless to even post this because no one would shoot them self in the foot and admit to using stolen art to get a job. If there was such a person that did this and would admit to it, I'd this ask this question; Did you feel bad about doing it? Would you do it again? It's the artist mind, not mouse/pen that this topic was about.

@ptoing: I could say the same thing about you. You look like a novice. Do you see the problem with judging people solely by their avatars now? The stirke doesn't bother me. Give me another after reading this if you like.

@B.O.B: Thanks for the welcome. Although to assume I am 'new' isn't quite right. I just don't come to this site very often. But I was bored last night (it's the future here in Japan, ya know)
 and I'd thought I'd ask an interesting question to kill some time. Nothing more, nothing less. I didn't expect all this,.. but it entertaining after all.





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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #43 on: December 18, 2009, 02:14:11 pm
Tetsuya,  if you are going to continue down this path you're heading right now then I truly believe you should leave on your own regards.  Us moderators have better things to do than play a game of "strikes" with you when you have such clear disregard for them.   Man up - either stop being an ass, or leave.

there was some good discussion here, but you taking personal offense and your assy attitude is a shame.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2009, 02:17:46 pm by Indigo »

Offline Mathias

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #44 on: December 18, 2009, 03:51:53 pm
I'm glad my avatar does imply my level of inability. That's good. Less Jerry Springer, more pixeling, comrades. Especially you, tets. I'm grateful the mods control the herd as they do, otherwise what would this place be like . . .
(thank you, mods!)



ONTOPIC
No, even if I could find appropriate art assets to fit the bill, I would never rip anything from something else's creative work in order to skate by if faced with a difficult task.

When faced with a project involving skills I know I have weaknesses in, I think, 'well, once it's done, I'll be better'. That's all. Sometimes I have to be pushed to do something, such as practice/improve in a certain area. Having a deadline can be nice motivation. I'm also always impelled by the desire to see what I, myself, can do. I love to add quality items to my body of work. If even part of the end result were not mine, I'd probably just want to hide it, and take little to no pride in it.

When I'm trying to devise a solution to a creative problem, am stumped, and go look at others' art and discover what they've done to solve it, I hate to even use their idea, let alone copy the exact pixels into my project, in effect ripping. That happens a lot to me with pixel art - ya know, can be anything from how to AA something difficult to how someone rendered clouds. My happiness is diminished if others' ideas find their way into my work, unless I directly ask for assistance or ideas, such as I'm doing with a couple pixel projects right now, which have become lost in the "Pixel Art" crit forum here.

Offline Ben2theEdge

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #45 on: December 18, 2009, 04:42:58 pm
That being said, I've encountered less scrupulous employers. When I worked at Gameloft, ripping art and indexing photos was standard procedure. I remember one title that featured effects ripped directly from a Capcom game (they didn't bother to even edit it or modify it slightly).  It's hard to stay creative and maintain your integrity in a climate like that.

Um, 100% not true. At least not in the past 3 years since I've been lead artist there.
I mild from suffer dislexia.

Offline huZba

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #46 on: December 18, 2009, 05:24:08 pm
Even though things surfaced weren't the one's you were searching for tets, they are things you can greatly benefit from if you want to be serious about the art.

@Ben2: Wiki says gameloft has 4000 employees. There's surely some people who are less concerned about morals. Good for you if you're with good people, sucks for those who aren't.

Offline Frychiko

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #47 on: December 18, 2009, 05:28:12 pm
I take pride in the fact I never edit or rip sprites from others.

Do you also take pride in never stealing from anyone or knocking over blind people? Taking pride in not ripping sprites does not compute!
Congratulation this story is happy end. Thank you. - Ghost & Goblins

Offline big brother

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #48 on: December 18, 2009, 05:39:54 pm
Quote
Um, 100% not true. At least not in the past 3 years since I've been lead artist there.

Our employment terms didn't overlap. I started  in 2005 under Joon, and Andrew was hired months later.

Offline Froli

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #49 on: December 18, 2009, 06:46:27 pm
To the original question.

Find another job to pursue ;D
Seriously..if things are not working out for you for 10 years, you might as well do something else productive that will earn you money.
But if it's just a hobby & "just another" sideline to do. Draw until your hands bleed  :lol:

And for a side comment, the only reason some artist don't progress is because they are just lazy or have other priorities to do.

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #50 on: December 18, 2009, 06:56:10 pm
Also if an employer doesn't think you've got the chops to do a job, that's for them to decide. Don't do the work of rejecting yourself on their behalf. If I couldn't draw horses and I had an opportunity to do a gig where I had to draw a hundred of them, I would see it as a learning opportunity. If all I ever drew was what I already know I can draw I might as well get a job bagging groceries somewhere.
I mild from suffer dislexia.

Offline Dusty

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #51 on: December 18, 2009, 07:19:06 pm
@Dusty - "There is never an excuse to steal art" - but then you stole art, apparently, and gave an excuse. Depends on the definition of stealing though.
Is this about the pixeljoint avatar that was linked? Because it's not stealing if it's collaborative, and I gave full disclosure that the original concept was not mines. If it's about my avatar, I think that's already been covered.

Offline Gil

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #52 on: December 18, 2009, 08:57:52 pm
Heh, the funny thing about this whole thread is the notion that Ptoing's avatar makes him look "novice". I've always considered that avatar to be extremely well executed and being a blend of humor and a reference to Ptoing's love for pixeling chunky robots.

If that avatar doesn't scream "excellent artist", then what avatar on this site does?

Offline Photocopier

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #53 on: December 18, 2009, 09:26:40 pm
the timing always amuses me  ^-^#
I have no avatar, what does that make me?

@ontopic.
I agree with what many people have already said, I would learn to draw the subject in question, if the game was based on horses I imagine an employer would look at a portfolio with horses in mind.

Offline TheOne

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #54 on: December 18, 2009, 09:37:26 pm
@ben - thx for answering my question.

@dusty - i'm only talking about the two avatars already. if ur definition of stealing was taking another sprite and editing it (regardless of purpose, 'cult' status, consent, legal status of work, skill of original artist etcetera) then its still theft. obviously u have a different definition to tet.

I now think the original question is wrong because i don't think tetsuya could edit a horse so that only an experienced artist could tell. Unless someone can give an example where they are able to rip and disguise the work (without being able to draw it for themselves,  or it being quicker and still matching overall aesthetic) its stupid discussing its merits.

@Frycko- lol!

Offline Atnas

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #55 on: December 18, 2009, 09:47:18 pm
Gee, sorry tetsuya! I by no means ever mean to insult, I'm just being frank, and you misunderstood what I typed judging from the response.

this topic has many topics

Offline Helm

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Re: honor over dollars

Reply #56 on: December 18, 2009, 09:56:42 pm
It's infuriating for me to see a waste of the good-will of many commentators in this thread to the original poster. But perhaps somebody else reading this has gathered something useful from it, so it's not a total loss. Bad vibes here though, so this is locked. Next time if you have questions tetsuya_shino, be more courteous about how you receive answers. Nobody's here to serve you.