Not only that, there are a lot of incredibly talented artists out there who have little to no experience in licensing and don’t realize this. They have stars in their eyes about making money from their art and are so excited that their submissions have been accepted that they don’t realize they need to protect themselves. Even experienced licensing veterans who don’t read the fine print can be taken in.
In situations like this, the licensing company makes you an offer that sounds fantastic, promising a certain percentage and asking for exclusivity in return. Yet you find out later that the percentage is really only a percentage of a percentage… it’s not fair that the person who created the art is making pennies for work they did and the licensing company thousands of dollars off of it. You go to the company, frustrated that this isn’t fair, and they point at the contract that you signed and say, “you made the agreement.”
Yikes!!! No artist or photographer wants this to happen to them. It may sound like I’m painting some terribly grim picture for you and being dramatic, but this actually happens all the time.
Always, always sit down and read the fine print of ANY contract you sign with a lawyer or someone who understands legal paperwork and contracts. And if the terms are unfair, negotiate so that they are a win/win situation. Be willing to walk away if they aren’t willing to work out something that is fair.
This is why it is incredibly valuable to have an agent. An agent is someone who has years of experience in the industry – they know what pitfalls to look for and will protect you from this ever happening to you. OC Designer Source cares very much about its artists and strives to connect artists with opportunities that are mutually beneficial.