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Your thoughts on purchasing someone else's character/creature designs? (see comment below for poll explanation) 

260 deviants said No, don't like it. (reason)
252 deviants said Eh, depends. (on what?)
108 deviants said Cool! (why?)

Devious Comments

Hellstorm888 Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
I just happen to be obsessed with making my own characters. Buying something that isn't mine just sounds... foreign and kinda creepy.
lostforeveragain Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2010
I've done this once on a pet site, but never with real currency. The idea of selling ideas in such a way seems either too easy to take advantage of or too easy to get out of thinking creatively. Of course this is for personal uses... as far as commercial uses go, it's the only way to keep things tidy and legal, I suppose.
macawnivore Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
Buying the rights to a design? I didn't know that was possible. Someone could just copy a design down to the very last detail but change one single thing and call it their own. I've seen it happen a lot. Sucks.
dragonspeaker Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
I think character designs are too personal. It feels cheap, fake, and rather like stealing. I liken it to taking a story from someone else's life and incorporating it into your own, where you make yourself the hero and tell it as if you experienced it. No matter how many times you tell it, even if you believe it a little, the story is never really yours.

I would probably never buy a character to make my own because it would feel too strange. I would similarly never sell one because it would also be so weird to see someone else using my creation and I am pretty sure I would want it back.

On the other hand, I could see selling the basics of a character, like the work you do for game companies or the kind of stuff people do for adoptables. It's not as well developed and personal as the sort of character that I would really call my own, so I wouldn't feel as off about doing something like that.

I don't really have a problem with other people selling characters if they don't have the same attachment-to-chracter hangup as me, haha. However, I would be disappointed if I saw someone else using a character and then found out it wasn't their creation, but only if they were doing it without crediting the original creator.
pandabarrie Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2010  Student Filmographer
COOL: because Im looking at it from the stand point where someone wants to make a movie, or game of illustrated novel W/E and they then hire an artist to sketch up designs for characters/creatures for them to use because they are incapable/have better things to do...Did I misinterpret the poll?

RedtigerVII Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
It would be neat to see how another artist interprets what your character would look like. But on the other hand it wouldn't be your art and you couldn't call it your art. *shrugs* Its whatever the person would like.
RedtigerVII Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
It would be cool to see how another interprets your own character. Then again, it wouldn't be your personal art and one could not call it their own. *shrugs*
YourAlcoholicGrandma Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2010
depends... if the person wants nothing to do with it and is willing to let it die... and you have plans for it.. why not?
TryToStopMe Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2010
To me purchasing someone's character/creature design is like drawing a character/creature from a TV show or something its not truly your own! But if you feel like your out of ideas i suggest asking a friend about what they would like in a character/creature and then tweak the idea as much as you like!
dracontes Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
I voted 'No' only because I prefer to toil on my designs rather than fork money for someone's. It kinda defeats the purpose of getting better at it.
However, as many have said above, your mileage may vary. As a pertinent example some people make good money selling 3D digital models of various critters "off the shelf".
dematari Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010   General Artist
Not going to read though a hundred million comments to see if someone has already said it, but when you design something your self you put something of yourself in it. Plus, In my opinion buying a character seems like a tad of waste of money to me (Different from getting commissions of said character in another artists hand). what's the fun in buying it? It would never truly feel like yours, the artist gives it its soul.
SingsWithRavens Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Creatures/characters, in my mind, are very personal things. Though there are many people out there that make money off of designing creatures - selling them, in a way - the concept of creating something unique to oneself is ruined when one sells the design. A personal character is meant (to me at least) to reflect an individual's personality. Having another person having me design their own character seems rather odd, since only that person can judge who they really are. When designing creatures/characters, I make them close to me, and for me alone...they reflect who I am, not who another person thinks I am.
LivHathaway Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
The short version- I support it .

The longer version

Over the years I've taken commissions from a lot of people with no drawing skill (and I dont mean that in a mean way, I am talking about people with literally no skill and no ambition to develop skill). There is a sort of generic standard for each type of character that those people follow, for example, the slightly beaky, eagle-eyed dragon with backwards sweeping S shaped horns, a light underbelly and a darker, saturated scale tone and bat wings. It's boxed. It's boring. I've drawn it before, you've had to draw it before, and it leaves me wondering why new art was needed for that character in the first place. Furthermore, the characters are sometimes so laughably generic that they don't serve the purpose they were created for- i.e. being a recognizable icon of someone. I've seen a few group shots that look like the lineup of Mortal Combat ninjas..change the colors and you're done.

I've considered offering design commissions where I could work with someone directly to make a character, but it's a difficult thing to broach the concept of to the non-pro world :/
bladestone Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
Reason why not to buy some one else's design.

Like buying a slave, you get a sole-less puppet which has no feeling or meaning. It's the creatures vision which can bring it to life and can set it free.
memnon0288 Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
Why would I do that if I'm perfectly capable of making my own...
Narsilion Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
If it's for like, a movie or comic deal, say if someone saw your design and wanted to use its concept in their production, and you were offered an amount that you were happy with.. I don't see the problem with it. :)
Hanshin-Kyrii Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
I guess if both parties are okay with it. Still, I'd feel better about a corporation doing it than an individual. The corporation doesn't really make any claims that they designed a thing, just that they have the rights to it. An individual, however...
DragonScythe Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
Guess it would depend a lot on the price, and what rights I'd get along with the purchase...
KigaWeirdo Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
Meh, I like to create my characters etc myself, but if some design would feel really "me" when I saw it and I'd get ideas for it straight away, then I might consider buying it... But it has to be very neat. And people rarely sell/give away stuff like that.
BrokenCane Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
I'd rather make my own desings since it can be fun and I can get the design the exact way I want it, but I might buy a design if I really can't think of something.
Gyanfar Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010   Digital Artist
Well, considering game companies pretty much "buy" their characters too I think it is okay in some cases. What I don't like is this "look I drew a sparkledog, who wanna buy it?" kinda character sales, people could come up with such characters on their own..but oh well, if they want to give people their money for these kinda things I don't mind.
Altarior Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010   Digital Artist
Nah, I've always hated adoptions and I never really liked free species >_> If I don't design both the character and the design myself I just can't be proud of it.. Inspiration is okay though... I'd lie if I said I had not been inspired by quite a few people, but the final character should not be recognizeable D:

I AM guilty of making a few characters of some friends's free species because they wanted me to though. But I don't want the copyright of those characters and I'm certainly not using them for anything or giving them any love, hmmmmm... >->
SubSpracHgefuhl Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
I'm against the idea primarily because, even if it's just a character design slapped down for fun, it's still not originally yours. It just seems... uncomfortable.
CSKazaam Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
I think it's rather sad, actually. I'm all for someone commissioning an artist to draw their own personal character and allowing some artistic license, because it's a nice way to see your character in another style or perhaps at a much better level than you can currently do. But the idea for the character still belongs to the original person.

What I have a problem with is when someone wants another artist to design their own character, or when artists have a bunch of characters that they've already designed laying around and decide to sell them off just to make more money. That's pathetic. A person should design their own character! If they want to brainstorm with someone to help generate ideas, that's great, but don't depend on someone else for the entire idea just so you can buy it from them. Besides, these artists who sell off their character designs seem to be under the impression that no one can use the character design until they buy them, which isn't necessarily true. Personally, if I saw a character design I liked, nothing would stop me from drawing the character myself, and I certainly wouldn't pay money just to be able to use it. Of course, I would credit the character to the original artist, or further develop the design into my own character.

It's even more pathetic when artists use "adoptables" with the same, cookie-cutter shape, but just colored differently and expect people to pay to "have" the character. If "having" the character means being able to draw him in your own art, I can do that without paying. And it's downright silly just to pay for someone else's "original" color scheme. It's just another money-making scheme for the artist.
shinigamispark Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
I chose it depends because it depends on if you're creating creatures and selling them or if you're offering other people the chance to say I want this, this, and this, and then you make a design off of that.

In the case of design-by-direction, script-writers and directors don't generally design the creatures in movies themselves, they pay someone else to design them (usually after giving a description of what they want- ie Cameron saying he wanted 'a panther from hell that should be able to eat a t-rex for dinner and the Alien for dessert' and getting the Thanator from the crew) and then the movie creator can use the creatures in any way they want so it's not really the designer's creature anymore. They're being paid to take ideas and make them appear visually, and while they get credit for the design work, it's certainly not owned by them. Same goes for a lot of paid jobs, like gaming.

As for the other side, creating something from your own head and selling it, I suppose there's also a 'depends on' clause. I believe there is a difference between a creature who has a place in your heart being sold off versus a creature you, from the start, tell 'you're going elsewhere'. If you start the design with the idea that it's nothing in your worlds or stories, then it's really more of a contractual job and I assume would feel the same as someone coming to you with guidelines. It'd be waaaaaay harder if you wanted to part with the design for, say, the locks. Or even something on their homeworld, or something you suspect is on their homeworld.

That's just my two cents. I suspect that this artist created her auctionable critters with the idea in mind that they were going elsewhere, or perhaps these ones don't mean anything to her. As for not being able to get over the idea that they weren't yours to begin with.... well, there's plenty of people who plain old take artwork and claim its theirs, why couldn't people willing to lawfully purchase the designs instead exist?

00X181-033-4-9953XX3 Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
I'm all for people commissioning me to design a character for them because it's more money for me :'D
ghost-eye Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
Depends on what you feel about them (the personal/non-work designs you mentioned). I *would* sell or even give away some of my own, but only at my own initiative, and (from past experience) after having it around for some time to make sure I'm happy with giving it up.

Having said that, I did have an experience a few years back, when someone saw a pic I had on Elfwood of an old & personal character, and wanted me to alter it's form & context & sell it to her (she never mentioned for how much) for her personal collection. When I said now, she got very insistent, even after I designed another, similar looking character more to her tastes (which she turned down because she wanted what she wanted). Eventually, she did give up but it's since left me very wary of people wanting to take over my personal concepts.
ghost-eye Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
"When I said now" - typo, I meant 'no' :d'oh:
spacerogue Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
If I didn't make it I can't use it.

Its as simple as that, I can't incorporate a personality on something I get or buy, it just doesn't work with me.
Deathcomes4u Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010  Professional General Artist
unless i made it, i don't want it, cause there's no pride in owning and using something that isn't my own brainchild :|
nanna Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010   Traditional Artist
Unless the creatures or characters are being used for a game, movie and whatnot I just don't see the point.
AquariusWolf Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010
Selling or purchasing a creature/character design is not something I would consider doing. For one, art can be very "unoriginal" in a sense because ideas are not limited to one person. Deviantart is a very good example of this. For example, if you search for something like "cow dragon" a few people have already created cow dragons. No one can really claim true ownership of the cow dragon idea. I guess in some cases a very specific design could be purchased. If you work for a gaming/movie company you are selling your designs. Outside this context I guess it is up to the artist.
Tavaris Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2010  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Personally I wouldn't do it. I'm able to create my own designs, so in the end I will survive if I CAN'T get a really cool one from another person |'D. I only apply for another artist's design when they are up for adoption.
Plus, really cool designs tend to be taken all over the internet, to youtube, RP-forums and whatelse. I'd bite my a** to spend money for something that others take for free. After all, it happens to "regular" pictures all the time.

Btw, because some people said it'd be hard to consider adopted characters their own/feel attached to adopted characters: I don't have this problem. They hold a different status than characters I created myself, of course, but they still are mine. I don't do "character-hording" like some people here seem to do, I only applied if I really had USE for the character. They have their place, I need them, I love them |D.
hiphopfarendo Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Professional
If they're fine with it WHY NOT?
The-Wolf-Within Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010
most here are artists, so i dun wanna be harsh but... why would someone buy someone else's design, while they can design for themselves to their hearts content? then there are ppl that arent good at drawing (yet) but what use do they have buying a character if they cant draw anyway?
SeitoAkai Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Mmmm, if I was a designer for an RPG or a comic book and was looking for some interesting creature designs to throw in there, I could see how it would be useful to buy a critter conceived by somebody else's brainmeats.

Not a likely scenario, but I can see how that might work.
Zyraxus Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010   Digital Artist
I don't really have strong feelings about it one way or the other. But overall I'm cool with it. I mean, if someone wants to buy/sell essentially the 'rights' to a character's design, I don't see why not.
EpineQueen Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010
I'm not against it in general, but personally I'd never buy someone else's design just because 1. I have enough imagination to come up with my own and 2. if it didn't come out of my own head to begin with, then I don't feel it's really mine or that it fits me.
blumgrl Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010
I would never sell or purchase them... Personally I think it is kind of stupid. I would never stop anyone else from doing it if they wanted to, though. In the past I have created designs for a forum I frequented, but purely free use for fun.
TaesoSpiritDragon Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
It really does depend on the condition of the purchase.

If it is a commission, then I'm all for it (I have a commission right now for me to wing it with a pet design for a character that's about half done). It's allows the artist to not become attached to the brainchild, and thus makes giving the creation away all the more easier

Premade designs I'm a little iffy about because I'm also a hoarder of designs. However, if someone is willing to let their designs go to another person, I have no real problem with it. Yet, once that design is sold, the original maker can't really use it for himself/herself because the creator in essence signed over the copyright to the buyer. Selling a design is like selling a bit of your essence for most people.

Some people are ok with that, and I won't put up a fuss about it, I'm just not really that kind to make a design and sell it if it's not Gyregons.
WolfenAmphithere Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Student Artist
I don't like the idea of purchasing them and then using them in my story, etc. My story is mine, and the characters should be too.
Epiaruna Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Nah, not for me, personally. My characters are the most important thing to me (concerning art, anyway), and to buy a character/design? It's just not my style and it won't ever be. As many before have repeated, it'll never be my own officially. I like owning everything I create.

Though I know some people are all for it, and to each their own.
Avyris Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010
It happens in the industry. Someone is paid money to design the characters for an- animation, commercial, movie, comic books... Character design is an art in and of itself. Like any art, it can be commissioned or simply bought for a flat fee.

I wouldn't do it myself but that's because I AM a character designer. I'd rather use my own skills. But I do like adopting characters and purchasing characters operates under the same principles.
scerrycherry Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Student Traditional Artist
Depends on how much a person is compensated for their work, and if it's used professionally, then the option for royalties for its use, ect...
Lady-Tempest Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010
I'm not sure I would buy another person's character design. I would assume that they are attached to them and might feel that I should follow their vision causing the character to stagnate.
Also, I tend to leave my own characters undeveloped and languishing in sketchbooks or scraps of paper, just look at my gallery (very few reappearing characters). I would merely be adding to the collection, sadly.
Koyukionna Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010   Artisan Crafter
I like to create my own character design, but if I saw someone else's I really loved for sale in a nice art piece I would have no reservations about buying that piece. :]
im-a-tumor Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Hobbyist
if i like the design, but it will always be that person's creature
drakonshie Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
to me, buying a character is like being lazy and lacking skills to think and create it for yourself. if you are a casual artist who dabbles for fun and wants to "buy a character" to make yourself look cooler, it really isn't helping them look good.

i could never really attribute the character belonging to the artist who purchased it. i would still affiliate the character of whoever created it.

the only time i would understand paying for a character is to use it in some professional project that is like a book, film, illustration where resources, quality skill, and time may be a factor that limits the individual from creating their own character - thus resorting to "pay" for a character.
astheticpoison Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010
honestly i would rather create something myself as far as characters go, but if there was a species i absolutely loved for one reason or another and the artist who made it wanted to sell the rights to it for a reasonable price i would consider it, but i love creating strange creatures as well.
plexar37 Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2010  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I lean more towards "no", personally. To me, it kind of depends on why a person would want to buy a character.

I agree with some others' comments, that when you make a creature yourself it is a part of you and I would have trouble selling something like that. I kinda like what =kilara has done - how certain people (=Shinerai comes to mind!) have their own version of her Avian species. Sure, she made up the creature, but (I assume?) the color scheme is made by the other artist.

I can kinda understand how someone would want to purchase a character; perhaps that person feels like they can never come up with something creative enough, but sitting down and making yourself try something new is a part of what makes a person more creative. It's like a muscle you have to work out.
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