Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week Day

Tag: MLP

ArtworkTee issues and the heart of the furry economy

by Patch O'Furr

There was a lot of recent drama about Artworktee, an indie operation catering to furries. This video covers how it started, but there’s a lot more to say.

I had mixed feelings on watching it unfold on social media. “But Patch, isn’t reporting not supposed to have feelings?” I’m a fan like any other, and “objective fan” is an oxymoron.  I couldn’t pretend not to be one, or miss the point of having an independent subculture by fans, for fans that’s best written about from inside. For this story, I dug deeper into some of the issues involved:

  • Complaints about underpaid artists.
  • Questionable practices for the business of art.
  • The mission and allegiance involved in profiting from fandom.
  • The stakes of overlooking problems and calling it “just business”, vs. how formal business can solve problems too.

Let me try to bring understanding from several perspectives, including the travails of small-business, and the devotion of grassroots fans. This is a great case for that stuff, because it’s not every day that a business comes from this niche fandom that kind of resembles mainstream startup companies. Until now, the most successful commercial enterprise like that is probably Bad Dragon.

Pro-fans and profiteering

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Morning, Noon & Night, by Michael H. Payne – Book Review by Fred Patten

by Pup Matthias

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

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Cover by Marilyn Scott-Walters

Morning, Noon & Night, by Michael H. Payne. Illustrated by Roz Gibson.
Balboa, CA, “Hey, Your Nose is on Fire” Industries, September 2014, trade paperback $14.00 (325 pages), Kindle $3.00.

“‘You dare?’ Koyannaset, the Black Sphinx of Andeer, let herself burst upward, towering onto her hind paws, the now massive points of her crown smashing the marble of the throne room ceiling into boulder-sized chunks; plummeting, they shattered the tile floor, cracks spidering out from the craters to splinter the pastel mosaics covering the walls. ‘I am your Goddess Queen!’” (p. 7)

This is one book where it pays to read the dedication:

For Lauren Faust, Rob Renzetti, and all the creative people behind My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic without whom this story would not have been possible

Morning, Noon & Night does not try to hide the fact that it is little more than MLP:FIM fan-fiction in a transparent disguise. The two equine goddesses of Equestria – Princess Celestia and Princess Luna – are the benevolent white griffin Princess Equinox and the murderously insane black sphinx Princess Koyannaset. The “Mane Six” ponies – Twilight Sparkle, Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, and the rest – are the Champions of Andeer; two each of humans, hawks, and dogs, all adolescent females. Spike the dragon, Twilight Sparkle’s juvenile assistant, is Chert the (adult male) housecat, human Larissa Noon’s familiar but in love with the other human Champion, Violet – “even though every article Larissa had read on the subject said that interspecies romances never worked out!” (p. 16)

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My Little Pony: The Art of Equestria – Book Review by Fred Patten

by Pup Matthias

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

MLP CoverMy Little Pony: The Art of Equestria, by Mary Jane Begin. Foreword by Jayson Thiessen. Illustrated.
NYC, Abrams, October 2015, hardcover $29.95 (215 [+ 1] pages), Kindle $13.49.

Furry fandom has had a sometimes adversarial relationship with the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic TV series and its fandom, or at least its Brony often-extremist fans. The TV animated cartoon series that premiered on October 10, 2010 is in its fifth season/year now. It has won the Ursa Major Award as the Best Anthropomorphic Dramatic Short or Series for 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013, resulting in screams of both (from within furry fandom), “Oh, no! How could it have lost!?” (in 2014, to Furry Force), and (from Brony fandom), “How dare you furry fans try to hijack our program!? MLP:FIM is totally unanthropomorphic! The ponies of Equestria can just talk and sometimes fly, that’s all!”

My Little Pony: The Art of Equestria is an Everything You Want To Know About MLP:FIM, lavish, heavily-illustrated, full-color coffee-table art book. It has already been reviewed and analyzed in detail by the MLP:FIM fans, to general praise. Here is a review for furry fandom.

The book is a how-to and how-it-was-done about the TV animation series and the development of its world of Equestria, rather than an exploration in detail of Equestria and the “Mane Six” ponies, although the reader does get that, too. It begins with a double-page map, described below. A Foreword by the Supervising Director at DHX Media, the animation studio in Vancouver, outlines on one page the basic framework of the series.

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