Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week Day

Category: announcements

VOTE NOW for the 2017 Ursa Major Awards – voting closes on March 31.

by Patch O'Furr

Hey furries! The Ursa Major Awards for the best anthropomorphic media of 2017 are now open for voting. Go vote between March 1st – March 31st on the UMA website:  http://www.ursamajorawards.org

Can you imagine running these fandom awards for 15 years and not having enough help? I recently covered the story of financial difficulty and understaffing. Rod O’Riley, a key member of the award committee, is a fandom founder who organized the first furry parties and conventions in the 1980’s. He’s been covering costs out of his pocket for 15 years. There’s now an Ursa Major Awards GoFundMe taking donations to cover the costs of running it. Because I don’t just bark about critical stuff, I’m going to contribute $100. Can you give some too?

Before we get to the nominees, here’s some special notices. For Best Dramatic Series or Short Work of 2017, check out OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes. This Cartoon Network show got a lot of fandom notice for their episode “We’ve Got Fleas”. It makes a suspiciously cute callout to things we love. Wait for this: an interview with a writer/storyboard artist for OK K.O. is publishing soon on this site and it’s a fandom connection you’ll love.

The banner up top is special art we had made by Mexican furry artist Meteor-05 to give you a suggestion for Best Magazine. And Dogpatch Press isn’t even the only nominee from the culprits who make it happen. Best Other Literary Work has two from Fred Patten. Best Non-Fiction Work has an essay by me in Furries Among Us 2. There’s also Fred’s Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015 … but nobody should worry if your first pick is Furry Nation by Joe Strike, the first formally published fandom history, many years in the making. How did this category get so tough for picking just one?

Here’s the Final Ballot. Winners will be announced at a presentation ceremony at FurDU 2018 at Gold Coast City, Queensland, Australia on May 4-6, 2018.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Ursa Major Awards are a fandom institution, but can we fund them?

by Patch O'Furr

Co-written by Thurston Howl and Patch O’Furr. Full disclosure – Howl and Patch have received Ursa Major awards by community vote.

Even in non-writing communities in the furry fandom, many furries are aware of the Ursa Major Awards. They’ve been around for about 17 years, have presence at cons, and each year they receive many voters. However, for all their legacy, Thurston Howl – (a furry publisher who assisted with social media and marketing for the UMAs in 2017) – has come forward with concerns involving the UMAs’ recent soliciting for donations and GoFundMe campaign.

A transparency concern.

Until now, there has been no formal budget or accounting for funding. Fred Patten, Secretary of the ALAA (Anthropomorphic Literature and Arts Association, which runs the UMAs), told Howl on 5/30/17: “I cannot remember that the Treasurer for the ALAA has ever submitted a formal treasury report.” Fred confirmed there were no records for 17 years, and later added:

I don’t know how much it costs to print UMA award certificates, buy frames for them, ship them to the recipients, make and ship powerpoint presentations, etc., and I don’t know how much total in donations we’ve gotten over the years…

There have been complaints in email discussion by associates.  ALAA member Bernard Doove said: “I would like a report on the finances that is more than ‘we’re broke.'” And on 5/4/17, a donor reported that they considered their donation “an unwise decision that could have been put to much better use elsewhere.” There were even fears of misappropriation, but Bernard Doove found no evidence when he looked in the bank accounts. The explanation seems to be fees of $156/year to maintain a Checking and Savings account if they have under a $300 minimum balance each.

It honestly seems like an issue of mixing small fan efforts with more formal organization, like how fandom started. ALAA Treasurer Rod O’Riley was a fandom founder who helped start Confurence in 1989. He responded to a request for comment:

The problem is not transparency — the problem is a lack of funds to be transparent about.

All donations have made their way into our bank account, and have been spent on either what they were supposed to be spent on — making and mailing out our trophies and plaques — or else were swallowed by the bank fees. ALL donations. Sometimes they took a while to get where they were going — as recently, when PayPal and our bank’s on-line system had difficulties talking to each other, for reasons I still do not understand. But eventually, they got where there were going.

Read the rest of this entry »

Furry Ambassadors: protecting and promoting the fandom.

by Patch O'Furr

Furry Ambassadors – a recognition program

 

“Furries ruin everything.” “F#$king Furries.” “Yiff in H$!!.” The furry community can face stigmatization from the mainstream – and for some, fursecution is real.  That being said, there are good people who put a lot of effort into the furry community. Between helping people financially, educationally, or by going out of their way to help keep the peace, there are good furs out there who deserve to be recognized for their efforts.

On June 1st, 2017, the Furry Ambassadors Program was initiated on Fur Affinity: http://www.furaffinity.net/user/furryambassadors. An ambassador is someone who protects people, promotes prosperity, or works for peace. Meeting one of those three duties has become a requirement for someone to be recognized a Furry Ambassador as well, as this is not a popularity contest. Being a Furry, however, is optional.

The list of Furry Ambassadors to date are as follows.

  • June 2017: The chairman of Anthrocon, Dr. Samuel Conway aka Uncle Kage aka kagemushi
  • July 2017: Doctor Courtney “Nuka” Plante aka Nuka-kitty
  • August 2017: Aberguine from the YouTube channel Furries in the Media
  • September 2017: Arrkay and UnderbiteDragon of the YouTube Channel CulturallyFD
  • October 2017: Founder of the International Anthropomorphic Research Project, Dr. Kathy Gerbasi
  • November 2017: Civil litigation lawyer Boozy Barrister Badger
  • December 2017: DogPatch.Press, founded by Patch O’Furr/Patch_Packrat, with Furry Historian Fred Patten, and contributing editor Pup Matthias.
  • January 2018: (skipped due to holidays). More is coming soon… please get in touch with them to nominate furries who deserve recognition!

Read the rest of this entry »

Fursuiting: A History – a video miniseries by Culturally F’d.

by Arrkay

Guest post by Arrkay from Culturally F’d, the furry youtube channel. See their tag on Dogpatch Press for more.

Yesterday we posted a sneak peek of our multi-part miniseries. It looks at animal-costume history from the basics of the mask, theatrical outfits, Hollywood rubber-suits, fandom cosplay, and our very own fuzzy army of unique performers.

Now here’s Part 1: Masks. This video explores the very idea of the mask itself and its ancient origins. Of course we focus on animal-masks, since we’re talking about Fursuit History, not just costuming in general.

Read the rest of this entry »

Coming this #FursuitFriday: Animal-costume history that goes way beyond furries!

by Arrkay

Guest post by Arrkay from Culturally F’d, the furry youtube channel. See their tag on Dogpatch Press for more.

Get a load of this sneak peak for this weeks long-awaited Culturally F’d Miniseries. Inspired by a series of articles right here on Dogpatch.Press, Fursuiting: A History is an expedition straight into the uncanny valley.

This multi-part miniseries will look at animal-costume history from the basics of the mask, theatrical outfits, Hollywood rubber-suits, fandom cosplay, and our very own fuzzy army of unique performers. Stay tuned this #FursuitFriday for the first installment of our 2018 series – and make sure to subscribe to Culturally F’d on YouTube to catch new videos as they come.

Read the rest of this entry »

Fur Health’s fitness training guide – and a mental health video from Taebyn pup.

by Patch O'Furr

Furry hugs are amazing medicine, but sometimes you need something more. Here’s two guest submissions from two awesome furries who love the community and have something more to give.

Eye candy is best to start an article, so check out this adorable puppy Taebyn. He’s silly but has something serious to bark about. Even a fantasy world of talking animals has members affected by suicide. It can even be a special issue because of how surveys show this fandom has many young and LGBT people. When I met Taebyn in person at Further Confusion, the local community of the con just lost a young member who took his own life, but I wasn’t able to share about it for privacy. So this post is for remembrance as well as help and good vibes.

The Fur Health Training Guide – a message from TaxBeast

Read the rest of this entry »

Rukus is a furry movie premiering on Feb 2 – here’s the trailer and a review by Marbles.

by Patch O'Furr

The director of Rukus wrote in with a new trailer:

I’ve been reading Dogpatch Press for a long time and am a big fan. The film is called Rukus and it’s a feature-length doc-fiction hybrid, centered around my friendship with a furry from Orlando, Rukus, who took his own life in 2008. It goes into his life, and childhood, and some of the people he was close to in the furry community, but then also goes into my teenage years in Memphis, and stories relating to mental health, sexuality, and the politics of documentary filmmaking.

I hope you enjoy it, and I would love to hear what you think!

Brett Hanover
www.bretthanover.com

Movie synopsis:

A hybrid of documentary and fiction, ‘Rukus’ is a queer coming of age story set in the liminal spaces of furry conventions, southern punk houses, and virtual worlds. Rukus is a 20-year-old furry artist, living with his boyfriend Sable in the suburbs of Orlando, Florida. In his sketchbooks, Rukus is constructing an imaginary universe – a sprawling graphic novel in which painful childhood memories are restaged as an epic fantasy. Brett is a 16-year-old filmmaker with OCD, working on a documentary about kinky subcultures in spite of his own anxiety. After an interview leads to an online friendship, their lives entwine in ways that push them into strange, unexplored territories.

facebook.com/rukusmovie/
bretthanover.com/rukus/

Written and Directed by: Brett Hanover
Assistant Directors: Alanna Stewart and Katherine Dohan
Additional Art and Writing: Rukus
Animation: Karolina Glusiec, Ben Holm, Eusong Lee
Original Music: Brian Saia

Read the rest of this entry »

Ground control to Major Paws – Space Camp party is coming in March.

by Patch O'Furr

Furclub: “A repeat/regular nightclub event by furries for furries.” It’s a dance party independent from cons. The concept has been spreading since the late 2000’s. It’s a movement! See the list of parties at The Furclub Survey. Featured here is a new event in Alameda, CA. 

Space themed costumes, dancing, DJ’s, fursuiting, craft beer, and waterfront views on San Francisco and the Bay Bridge! This is happening at a massive 1200+ person hangar converted to a brewery.  There’s 10,000 sq. feet of indoor fursuit-friendly naturally cooled space, free secure parking, and a huge outdoor patio with food trucks. Space Camp joins Frolic party, Wild Things, and Party Animals as events for SF Bay Area furry night life.

For San Francisco Pride 2017, I organized with the Burning Man art car “Unaverz” to be our furry float in the parade. They’re coming to Space Camp as a mobile sound system with DJ and upper deck hang out space. Not just furries, but Burners and anyone who wants an amazing party should come check this out. Tell your friends!

@NachoHusky (contact on Telegram or Twitter) is the organizer. Roman Otter, the volunteer coordinator, wants to hear from anyone interested in volunteering. (A short shift gets free entry – sign up on the main site). Those interested in doing photos or videos should get in touch.

Read the rest of this entry »

Rukus premiere at SF Indie Fest (2/2/18) – a furry movie says Lights, Camera, Anthros!

by Patch O'Furr

RUKUS at the 20th annual SF Indie Fest

February 2, 7:00 PM / February 5, 9:15 PM

Roxie theater, 3117 16th Street, San Francisco

RSVP at Meetup to join the furmeet – 2nd showfest info

Rukus – a fiction/documentary hybrid by Brett Hanover

Birth of an indie furry movie scene

Videowolf’s documentary Fursonas [2016] was a landmark, even if it split watchers between love and hate. (Wag your tail if good movie making comes before “does it make the fandom look good?”) It wasn’t the first feature-length indie production by furries – that was the only-fandom-seen Bitter Lake [2011].  It wasn’t the first high quality movie that had them in it – that was the German arthouse gem Finsterworld [2013].  But it was a movie that broke through to more than only a “furry movie” by aiming for a thoughtful, critical look at subculture and identity. It just happened to be directed by and about furries. Now they don’t just follow behind mass media that many claim not to depend on. They also make it and play on bigger screens.

At roughly the same time, Zootopia [2016] was a huge event. Animation may be the holy grail for furriness on screen, but a behemoth budget from Disney is light years from the cottage industry where fandom gets its strength. Zootopia was merely a “furry” movie, as in, one whose directors won’t let you call it that. Journalist Joe Strike had a story about that in his book Furry Nation (another first for publishing in 2017.)

I was invited to a Zootopia press junket the week before the film premiered and was granted one-on-one time with Byron and his directing partner, Rich Moore. I immediately — and perhaps not too wisely — asked if the teaser was a “dog whistle” to the furry community. Howard deftly dodged my questions, and not long after the interview I received an email from my upset editor, who’d been contacted by an upset Disney PR person. – (Joe Strike, Furry Nation, p. 333)

Read the rest of this entry »

2017 Ursa Major Awards nominations open now!

by Patch O'Furr

On Sunday evening at Further Confusion, I chatted with Mark Merlino and Rod O’Riley of the Prancing Skiltaire furry house, founders of ConFurence, the first furry con. We talked about how a certain fandom controversy today is dragging on one that started all the way back with the divide between fans and “lifestylers”. That is, people who only liked furry stuff – vs. people who dared call themselves Furries, with a community beyond simply being a consumer for anthropomorphic animal media. It looks out for its members like any other.

This community recognizes contributors with annual awards. The awards are funded by Rod and Mark, and they need help. It’s a modest 3-digit cost… but still the help has to happen. We discussed the monthly model of Patreon vs. a one-time cost of GoFundMe or IndieGogo. Expect more info on that soon. Furry readers: is this something you would contribute to? Please speak up in the comments! – Patch  

Fred Patten tells more about those awards:

Nominations for the 2017 Ursa Major Awards opened on January 11, the first day of Further Confusion 2018. The awards celebrate the best anthropomorphic literature and art first published during the previous calendar year.

Visit their site to participate: http://www.ursamajorawards.org/

The awards are selected through a two-stage process of nomination and voting. Members of the public send in up to five nominations in each of the twelve categories. The top nominations in each category are then presented for a public vote.

Award categories:

Read the rest of this entry »