I found an article while browsing some forums earlier today. The article wasn't new but I've seen probably a hundred articles over the last few years exactly the same in tone and conent. This particular one was about Louis CK's success at directing and distributing his Live at the Beacon Theatre performance independently.
The Article in question, titled 'The Future of Content is No Laughing Matter.
One particular quote stood out to me:
"After backing out $250,000 in production costs, the show still netted him a cool $750,00. Not bad for a few hours’ worth of work."
I wasn't aware that the constant touring, writing of new material, writing and starring in two TV shows, promotion through interviews on television, magazines, and guest appearances on talk shows, necessary to maintain a purchasing fan base constitutes 'a few hours' worth of work'.
This vision of a modern egalitarian distribution utopia is misleading. It is often forgotten that acts like Radiohead and Louis CK who have been cited as successful under this model, gained their initial success under a different distribution model. In the old system the content creator was paid (often unfairly) for taking the creative risk, while the distributor took the lion's share of profit for taking the financial risk. Today's content creator must do twice the work while taking twice the risk. This double jeopardy may pay off in the event of the creator's content becoming successful, but this is far from a guarantee. It is often said that the playing field has been leveled, but in fact one group of overpayed (relative to the content creator) distributors (the Warner Brothers' and Sony Musics) has simply been replaced by another (the Itunes', Spotifies, and Youtubes).
Record labels and film studios would still pay the content creator, regardless of the success of the project, as per the contract agreement. The role of the distributor was essentially speculation. For every ten or twenty unsuccessful bands that were signed to a a label, there would be one platinum seller that made up ten-fold for the loss of profit. Essentially signing bands or hiring film directors was an investment; a case of spending money to make money. In the new system of distribution, one doesn't need to invest much per content creator. It is common for distribution sites to give out a 'free' account in exchange for the right to freely use the content without paying royalty. As the site grows and 'platinum sellers' appear the site quickly recoups and profits from advertising.
Historically, being a content creator has always come with a great deal of uncertainty, with talent often going ignored and only a chosen few ever obtaining the success of the Radioheads and Louis CK's of the world. The constant sharpening of skill and craft is an unending task that takes a lifetime, add to that the burdens of promotion, networking, and advertising (all crafts and skills in their own right) and the end result is a situation that doesn't look particularly good for many hours work.
Monday, July 1, 2013
Thursday, February 7, 2013
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Wednesday, November 7, 2012
I've had some wrist problems over the last weeks so my drawing time has been severely cut back. It's almost back to perfect health now though, and I've learned some really important lessons about ergonomics in the process... I've also starting messing around a bit with filters and effects in Photoshop.
Posted by Erik Dellblad at 4:19 PM
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Here are som speeds from over summer, when I was working out methods of faster production because I had to spend a lot of my time at work. I've selected the two strongest sets.
I found that working on 4 or so pictures on the same canvas at the same time allowed me to very quickly come up with better compositions, design elements and color schemes.