Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week Day

Tag: fans

Artists and authors, be in the book Furry Nation – January 6 deadline!

by Patch O'Furr

Here’s a special announcement from Joe Strike.  Joe’s a writer and reporter about animation for the New York Daily News and Animation World Network. His website shows work with TV cartoons you may know. He’s a first-wave furry “greymuzzle.”  And he talks like a velvet alligator on the phone.

Joe has an incredibly exciting book coming out.  He’s putting the story of furry fandom in print from an established publisher.  He wants your help.book

I want to tell your story in Furry Nation.

I’m in the final stages of writing Furry Nation, the first book to chart the birth and growth of furry fandom and its relation to the anthropomorphic instinct that’s been part of civilization from prehistoric cave paintings of animal people and animal-headed Egyptian gods to the modern day. Furry Nation will be published fall 2017 by Cleis Press. To learn more visit www.furrynation.com

Furry Nation will include a handful of profiles of furry artists, published authors and craftspeople. (Furry sculptures, clothing, accessories, etc.) If you’d like to be in the book, please contact me by December 26 at info[at]furrynation[dot]com. I want to hear about your work, your first interest in anthro characters, and how you found the fandom; please include links to your work. (Sorry fursuiters but that section of the book has already been written.)

Thanx much!
– Joe Strike

Write to info[at]furrynation[dot]com, by January 6.

 

Personally, I have been urging the creation of a coffee table furry book for years – from the history and graphics, to fursuit fashion photography.  Like the kind of beautiful but info-packed bibles that Taschen is known for.  (I even outlined such a book – but what a big project that is!)

Now I’m delighted to hear that Joe has a contract with Cleis Press to publish Furry Nation in fall 2017.  Cleis has an eminent 36-year history as “the largest independent sexuality publishing company in the United States.” Don’t get too mad about being grouped with erotica; emphasize independent.  It’s a chance-taking, open-minded platform that can do justice to an alternative subculture.  They explain on LinkedIn:

Cleis Press publishes provocative, intelligent books across genres. Whether literary fiction, human rights, mystery, romance, erotica, LGBTQ studies, pulp fiction, or memoir, you know that if it’s outside the ordinary, it’s Cleis Press.

51561577Don’t overlook more cool books! Dogpatch Press’s own star guest poster, Fred Patten, has Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015 from McFarland Press.  (That’s an academic/reference publisher where you’d find the book in a library.  So you might consider Joe’s the “first” as a narrative history on the shelf at an indie or alternative bookstore.)

Fred’s Publishing for Furries article helps to show how special these are in the publishing world.  Until now, there’s been almost nothing at book stores.  Whatever you’re looking for in a furry book, these are extremely cool happenings.

And I can’t wait to see more. Grubbs Grizzzly (of Ask Papabear) has The Furry Book on the way, too.

Book by Grubbs, cover art by Charleston Rat

Book by Grubbs, cover by Charleston Rat

Who runs furry fandom? Check this list of cons with formal corporate structures.

by Patch O'Furr

All hail Uncle Kage, Dark Lord and Master of Furry fandom… nah, he’s just one very visible and committed fan who wants to set an example for how to run a good con.  The real power is with many con leaders who form a shadowy, secret cabal whose name cannot be spoken.

JL Martello/ New Pittsburgh Courier

They’re watching me. (JL Martello/ New Pittsburgh Courier)

It’s called the Furry Convention Leadership Roundtable.  And now I’m in biiiiig trouble.

I’m sharing a big list of cons below.  Compare it to the participants on the FCLR website – nearly all (with just a couple of exceptions) overlap with the formally incorporated portion of the list below.  It seems like incorporation is for cons that Have Their Shit Together.

Thanks to Fred Patten for assembling and researching the list.  He did it when I asked: is there one resource to show which cons have what structures, and when they started or ended?  It would be interesting to look at their growth over time and learn about defunct cons.  There’s a whole topic about what happens when it’s time to transfer or disband, and why. (With all the drama RainFurrest caused, everyone could learn something from it.)

Read the rest of this entry »

Revisiting Rainfurrest: what can we learn about limits of a growing fandom?

by Patch O'Furr

giphy

Everything was happy and peaceful with the furries, until… Overflowing hot tubs damaged the Rainfurrest hotel.  The con’s current status is still seeking a new venue. There’s been much public discussion about bad behavior leading to this.

Separate from that drama, there was an issue about organizing their dealer’s room in 2015.  High demand vs. limited capacity made pressure to compete for tables. Rainfurrest decided to manage it with a new Jury Selection process that left many feeling shut out.  The same issue has happened across many cons.

For dealers, the pool is feeling crowded. For everyone else, more crowds makes more strangers with weaker links to keep peace.  It’s a village vs. city situation.

Read the rest of this entry »

Swat Kats creator gives an interview about the show, with a few days left on Kickstarter!

by Patch O'Furr

Enjoy Christian Tremblay’s interview with Dogpatch Press below, and help make a cool show happen.

The campaign ends 8/22/15:  SWAT-KATS REVOLUTION, by TREMBLAY BROS STUDIOS.

3841546-swat_kats-750x400

Demand from devoted fans is bringing back the Swat Kats TV series for the first time in 20 years.  Fandom kept the show alive since it was canceled in 1994 with only two seasons.  If you missed it, here’s the lowdown from Swatkats.info:

Read the rest of this entry »

Q&A with Biohazard, artist of the infamous “Too Hot for PBS” auction video.

by Patch O'Furr

Here’s a followup to a previous article – Exchanging Fluids on PBS: Your eyes will bug out at this WTF furry video from 1992!  The artist Biohazard has more details on his page: “Too Hot for PBS”.

Biohazard answered my request to talk about this crazy subcultural stunt.  Here’s our Q&A:

(Patch:)  The PBS art auction video is epic and classic.  I’m curious how the whole thing went down… beyond the stuff you have already posted, and what you can see in the video.

Can you set the scene to give us a little “furry history”? What was it like to be making naughty furry art in the 1980’s, when that was a more daring thing than now? How did you start making it? How did you start sharing it? Who inspired you or gave you courage to share? What were the reactions? Who were your fans and how did you interact? Was it all by mail or was any in person? How much real-name/real-face interaction was there beyond your fan names? Was there much of a “furry scene”, and did they find you, or did you find it first?

I noticed you said something about donating to that auction for 14 years before they stopped taking the naughty stuff. Was your stuff always cartoony, and did it get more naughty over time? Did you get any funny reactions besides a “tense phone call” with the manager? Any other interaction with “the normals” before they changed their rules to ban your stuff? Did you continue donating tame stuff afterwards, or just move on?

biohazard(Biohazard:) Gallery 33 was not my original foray into TV Land; the first television appearance of my (non-furry) art was at the age of eleven! My winning entry in a 1977 Baltimore Symphony Orchestra poster contest was announced and displayed on the local children’s show ‘Captain Chesapeake’. (I was even invited to City Hall where I met crazy ol’ Mayor Schaefer.) Read the rest of this entry »

Special Features and Top Articles at Dogpatch Press.

by Patch O'Furr

  • Did you hear about President Obama’s meeting with furries?
  • See how our biggest convention draws $7 million in tourist spending!
  • Want to read interviews with movie directors as high as Pixar, as well as the most creative and devoted furry fans?

Dogpatch Press has over 700 articles, publishing every week day.  Here’s some special ones that got high traffic, drew views for a long time, dug deep to uncover stories, or they’re just quirky personal favorites. They all highlight a thriving subculture.

Updated Feb 2017

_______________

THE REGULAR NEWSDUMP:

See the “Newsdump” tag.  These are digest posts of curated links and “list worthy” small stories, from around the web and the border between subculture and mainstream.  They give a look at the state of the community over time. (Lately there’s so much press that these digests are “on paws”. It’s too much to track!)

INTERVIEWS FOR FANS AND FURRIES:

Creators and Doers make a subculture thrive. Whether they build it from grassrootinterviewss, or feed it from outside with stuff we like, they have valuable words to say.

FRED PATTEN PRESENTS:

Check his latest posts.  Fred is our star guest poster, with a long resume as a fan historian and reviewer.

FURSUITING, THE MOST FURRY ACTIVITY.

patch_icon_fursuitIt’s the most original Furry-generated activity, with it’s own coined name.  Nobody does it like us, and nothing else represents us so directly as “ambassadors”. Call it the theatrical soul of furrydom. Fursuiting has a booming cottage industry, and makers are raising the craft until they’re being envied by commercial mascot designers.  It’s true that only 20% own this costly wearable art, and other worthy members might be irked by the scene-stealing glamor, but a picture is worth a thousand words.  It’s hard to deny their huggable appeal (representing the touch-based name of this subculture!)

FURRY DANCE PARTIES – A NEW MOVEMENT:furclub

Since around 2010, furry dance parties are getting established as urban night life.  They bring new partnerships with established venues for support and crossover.  They build on the growth of cons, but take their own direction.  Howl Toronto says – Con dances happen once a year, and “that’s just not enough to fill the need!”  

THE “FURRY ECONOMY”: 

economyFurry creators are working fan-to-fan with an internal economy that even supports some full time careers. Cons are expanding at a healthy rate.  Furaffinity is an independent project acquired by a venture-capital funded company.  It’s rising beyond a full-fledged subculture to possible commercialization.  How will it develop?

“PALEO FURRIES” – ANTHROPOMORPHISM IN HISTORY:patch_icon_history

Hidden threads connect Furry fandom to a rich history of art and performance. A “museum of furry” could exhibit works that look like they’re from a parallel universe. Writer Phil Geusz calls it Paleo Furries. A “Panto-animals and Paleofurs” con panel could uncover hidden depth for what we love.

A THRIVING SUBCULTURE.

ideasThere’s furry houses with multi-generations of fans. There’s a fur con somewhere in the world every weekend of the year.  It brings speculation about future opportunities for new organizations, projects and events.

BAD MEDIA, GOOD MEDIA.

Exploitation makes sensitivity about being in the spotlight, but media and furries can have a chicken-or-egg relationship.  Terms are getting better, and there’s rising recognition for a self-directed community. It brings power to control access for outsiders, or support them to tell our story like we want.

THE FURRY ART WORLD

It’s one of the most creative fandoms because all the content is self-generated.  Sometimes it even overlaps or achieves recognition in the wider art world.

THE NASCENT FURRY MOVIE SCENE.

Film and video can be more challenging than other media where furries thrive.  Other subcultures have developed enough to support independent film making. There have been a few attempts at furry features and some outside ones that come close. There are many fursuiting shorts (especially music videos) and animation student work. The holy grail might be a furry-made animated feature.

“CELEBRIFURRIES” AND STREET CRED:

Furries have more influence than they even realize. Advertisers covet the street cred of subcultures. Disney winked at us with Zootopia.  Are there mainstream celebrities who are secret furries?  How do other subcultures overlap?

ANTHROPOMORPHIC POLITICS.

Think Democrat donkeys, Republican elephants, and “Animal Farm”, the political allegory by George Orwell.

LIMITS AND LIBERTIES – HOW A HOBBY BRINGS FREEDOM:

protestAcceptance is a big feature of furry subculture. It draws interests together, but nothing represents every member, because membership is self-defined by anyone who claims it.  Some interests get conservative disapproval. It makes tension between freedom and collective interest. It can involve prejudice, laws, and times for a hobby social group to stand up for itself.

WHEN FURRY MEETS FURRY – INTIMACY AND “THE TOPIC THEY LOVE TO HATE”.patch_icon_furry_love

It’s not an urban legend – some furries get wild. But sex isn’t a definer.  It can be a family friendly hobby too.  Media hypes sex, but romantic themes are part of being human, and furries are just regular people with extra rich imaginations.  Being unusually open and expressive is required for an interest spectrum beyond the default.  It can cause controversy. It also makes first-time visitors call them the most friendly people you could ever party with. This blog is anti-prude and not shy about sex-positivity.

FURRY TRASH!

Sometimes it’s fun to mix satire with news.  Keep Furry Weird.

WHAT’S WRONG WITH FANDOM:

Furries have been punching-bags for sensational media exploiting them as freaks.  It comes from bias to only look for the worst in people.  There’s stigma, shaming, scapegoating, and a streak of homophobia.  There are even enemies within who are motivated by authority or insecurity.  But dogmatic negativity doesn’t build anything.  That’s why it’s losing power with time. If you hear of “inherent” problems, especially from insiders- it calls for pointing out the positive, expressive nature of the group.

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT:

Crime happens in any community.  Sometimes it overlaps with furries.  Most everything they do is harmless and positive, but rare and marginal problems can get sensationalized.  It calls for an eye on biased judgement.

SPECIAL GUEST POSTS BY PUP MATTHIAS:

MORE SPECIAL GUEST POSTS:

Community > Commodity, and the value of WTF. Part 3 about the FurAffinity sale to IMVU.

by Patch O'Furr

A series of three articles:

 

  1. About the FurAffinity sale, and the issue of trade-offs.
  2. IMVU does a Q&A with me.
  3. Community > Commodity, and the Value of WTF.  Long live furries.

The conclusion brings it all back to commercialization.  I’ve reported this for a while:  Measuring the Furry Economy. – Mainstream advertising: “More and more, Furries are being hinted at in marketing media!” – And the recent $11,575 record fursuit sale and $17,500 top price. Also try: Furry, not an obscure little fandom any more.  I often say that the thriving growth of this subculture is built on WTF weirdness that can’t be digested by the mainstream.  Will that stay true?

___________________________

3) Community > Commodity, and the value of WTF.

___________________________

 

You could write a whole book about a subculture’s place in the larger culture.  (There’s a “Furry coffee table book” waiting to be written.) Here’s a very loose topic about it, with a point:

Commercialization makes some furries fear losing what they love.  But the normals-scaring, freedom-raising, limit-pushing, WTF part of it may save the rest.  The more fringe it is – the more it holds Furry back from acceptance, but keeps it strongly independent. More notice could be a win-win.

Read the rest of this entry »

IMVU does a Q&A with me. Part 2 about the sale of FurAffinity.

by Patch O'Furr

A series of three articles:

 

  1. About the FurAffinity sale, and the issue of trade-offs.
  2. IMVU does a Q&A with me.
  3. Community > Commodity, and the Value of WTF.  Long live furries.

The conclusion brings it all back to commercialization.  I’ve reported this for a while:  Measuring the Furry Economy. – Mainstream advertising: “More and more, Furries are being hinted at in marketing media!” – And the recent $11,575 record fursuit sale and $17,500 top price. Also try: Furry, not an obscure little fandom any more.  I often say that the thriving growth of this subculture is built on WTF weirdness that can’t be digested by the mainstream.  Will that stay true?

___________________________

2) Speaking with IMVU.

___________________________

 

FurAffinity just posted a Q&A with IMVU’s CEO Brett Durrett.  A furry responded: Ashamed for the fandom; an apology to CEO Brett Durrett. 

While seeking graphics, I just noticed they tweeted me from Fur Con in January!  (Not endorsement, just spreading furriness.) Yay! Can you spot me among the eye-blasting pink, sparkles and rainbows? I was in camo.

My Q&A started:

This is for both IMVU and Dragoneer (Mr. Piche). I assume that some details may be kept private. I’ll build a news article from the answers, aiming for positive information not gossip. I’m curious to know:  1) The story of how IMVU and FurAffinity came together.  2) Terms of ownership now.  3) The future and your roles in leading users.

They responded to my long list:

Attached is the interview completed by Sean Piche, Fur Affinity Community Leader, IMVU; Kevin Henshaw, SVP Business Development, IMVU; and Varsha Pande, Director, Community Experience and User Safety.  You’ll note a few of your questions were left unanswered as a matter of company disclosure policy.  Thanks for the opportunity to talk about the Fur Affinity acquisition.

Read the rest of this entry »

FurAffinity’s new ownership makes a turning point. Should fans fear commercialization?

by Patch O'Furr

(Via Greenreaper):

Screen Shot 2015-03-20 at 6.46.18 PM

From 2008.  Anthrocon has grown to generate $7 million in 2014.

From 2008.  Anthrocon has grown to generate $7 million in 2014.

A comment from 8Chan:

The furry community is loaded with cash compared to other niche internet communities and it’s been exploding in popularity over the last decade. Nowadays it’s becoming more apparent with kickstarter and patreon making the figures public and internet companies are starting to move in on their turf to get a cut before it really goes mainstream.

And for those doubting that it’s about to enter the mainstream just wait until “Zootopia” from Disney comes out in 2016. Even Marvel giving prominent roles to a furry character in their recent major Hollywood movie would have been unthinkable 10 years ago, people who study the furry phenomenon are expecting it to explode soon. Universities and marketing groups are preforming surveys and studies on the fandom, this is considered a legitimate field of study.

A series of three articles:

 

  1. About the FurAffinity sale, and the issue of trade-offs.
  2. IMVU does a Q&A with me.
  3. Community > Commodity, and the Value of WTF.  Long live furries.

Read the rest of this entry »

Early Furry Fan Photos – by Fred Patten.

by Patch O'Furr

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

Greymuzzle Stickmaker (Rodford Edmiston Smith), an attendee and photographer of many World S-F Conventions and other s-f conventions of the 1980s through the 2000s, has been posting his photos on Flickr since late September.

Most are of interest to s-f fans, but some contain pictures of furry fans at bygone s-f conventions. (I’m in there, but never mind where – I don’t photograph well.)

A fox fursuiter (but the word “fursuit” didn’t exist yet) at the 1991 Worldcon in Chicago.  (link)

w91m003

Read the rest of this entry »