DFO 1451 12/1/83
—A Special Notice to All You Good Artists!
1. WHY ARE YOU KOMIX ARTISTS SO DAMNED SCARED OF USING THE ORIGINAL ML COVER ART as the cover for your Komix?—Usually covers which I myself have worked on personally with our best artists! This is art that I have directed & appointed & commissioned to be done even according to some of my own sketches. I don't want to see these original art–masterpiece covers abandoned just because another artist is doing the Komic.
2. YEARS AGO I SUGGESTED USING THE SAME COVER & going from there! And I heard some kind of complaint: "Well, they seem to want to use their own art & they don't want to have to use somebody else's art because it won't be just theirs!" Like that guy that wanted to buy the town but couldn't get the last man to sell, who wanted to say: "It belongs to thee & to me"—they don't want to have to say that. Well, that's being very selfish & very wasteful & wrong!
3. (MARIA: WE COULD GET THEM OUT A LOT QUICKER IF THEY'D USE THE COVER THAT'S ALREADY THERE!) Of course! It saves one fourth of the work on four-pagers, & most of them are four-pagers. (Maria: Maybe they think the original cover takes up too much room because otherwise they can put part of the text & art on the first page.) Well, I grant you that, but I would rather see them use the original cover.—Especially if it's for GP it's going to go better on the streets because they've got a big picture the people can see! If they're going to have a little dinky cover with little tiny pictures, that's all right for the Family‚ but that's not going to get very far on the streets.
4. IS IT THEIR TYPICAL TEMPERAMENTAL ARTISTIC JEALOUSY that they don't want to share the limelight & the glory for the TK by using the original cover appointed, ordered, designed & approved of by me—& sometimes sketched by me too? Well‚ I am upset about it! I designed those original covers & I felt some of them were inspired! I directed the artists exactly how to make them & I went over them time & time again 'til I got them just the way I thought they ought to be & just what I wanted them to say. They also identify the Komic with the original Letter, because people will recognise the covers & remember the Letter, but they can't remember anything from some of these covers!
5. (MARIA: THEY MAY HAVE THOUGHT THAT SINCE THE COVERS WERE ALREADY PRINTED IT'S A DUPLICATION TO PRINT THEM AGAIN.) That's exactly what we want, a duplication of the original cover that I designed & approved the way I wanted it & the way I thought it ought to be, to say what I thought it ought to say! I am really disappointed, really sick to see some of these new Komix, as good & as beautiful as they are & as much as I like them‚ but abandoning the original masterpiece cover of the Letter just to substitute their own new art! It just absolutely sickens me! Why waste time doing a whole new cover when there's already a perfectly good cover? All they have to do is add the TK Logo, that's all!
6. I DESIGNED THOSE COVERS TO GIVE THE HEART & ILLUSTRATE THE MESSAGE OF THE LETTER, but I run across cover after cover that does not illustrate the Message of the Letter at all‚ it's just a nice new pretty picture. My purpose in all of this is to get a message across & I designed those covers to give the heart & the whole idea of the message of the Letter. Instead, they designed their own pretty little picture in place of it & just slapped me in the face! It's an insult to me & the original artist that they insist on putting their own cover on instead of the original cover that we designed & commissioned & went over & over again & perfected with the artist & then finally approved!
7. WHY SHOULD THEY HAVE TO DO THEIR OWN COVERS WHEN THERE IS AVAILABLE ART THAT IS SATISFACTORY & SUFFICIENT? I don't even care if they make up a whole Komic with existing art as long as they do it well & it's illustrated well! (Maria: They started doing that but it didn't seem like it was working.) Well, there was one guy who was particularly doing that sort of thing & then not even putting the credits on for the original artists, that's what I didn't like!
8. ONE GUY WAS PLAGIARISING, HIS WHOLE KOMIC WAS NOTHING BUT OTHER PEOPLE'S ART, BUT HE SIGNED HIS NAME TO IT & NEVER GAVE ONE OF THEM CREDIT FOR IT! That's the guy that flipped my lid & really made me blow my top, the guy who literally was stealing art & claiming it to be his own & expecting to get paid for it, when it was all other people's art! Well, I wouldn't mind paying him for it, although I'm not going to give him a top gift for others' art!
9. I TOLD THEM MYSELF, "IF YOU CAN TAKE EXISTING ART & PUT IT TOGETHER & MAKE A KOMIC OUT OF IT‚ FINE! It's not necessarily going to get the top gift, although if it's well done & deserves it, why not? Especially if he uses the best art, why not? We have nothing against that. But he's got to give them credit for it & not sign only his name to it like it was all his work! That's what the guy was doing‚ & that just made me real aggravated, so maybe that's why they were afraid to use anyone else's art any more. I mean, they go from one extreme to the other! God help us!
10. IT TAKES QUITE A BIT OF WORK TO EVEN BLEND DIFFERENT ARTIST'S WORK INTO ONE KOMIC & to have it in the right position & expression to illustrate what they're trying to illustrate. It's probably almost as much work as doing their own! Sometimes our top artists would rather do their own original sketch than have to try to weave in some existing art that was not originally designed for that. So sometimes it's just as easy, if not easier, to do their own, but they could at least use the front cover which we have worked on & worked on & worked on & approved of finally as being what we wanted. Please try to use the original covers! Thanks! God bless you, in Jesus' name‚ amen.—Love, Dad.—KPM ROLLIN'!—ILY!