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AKA Rick

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Everything posted by AKA Rick

  1. Ethics, Legality and Strategy are all separate issues. Ethically, usually insinuates the potential to offend others or violate codes of morality. Legality, is black and white, is it legal. Not fair or unfair. Not right or wrong by opinion. Does it violate contracts, agreements or terms and conditions? Strategy, that's subjective, which is where this question belongs. Is it smart and wise or is it foolish and stupid? Is it effective or a waste of time? Historical precedent of personal experience usually helps dictate those decisions. There's nothing wrong with putting a high buy it now, but most see the buy it now option as something close enough to the opening bid price and fair market value to inspire an impulse buy from a customer who is afraid someone else may beat them to it or the item may go into a bidding war and they risk losing it or paying more for it. Part of strategy is brand management as a seller, so if you have a high buy it now, and most of your auctions end way below that, either with no bids or around the starting bid, but far below the buy it now price, then you'll get a reputation as a seller whose merchandise may not be priced properly. I'd say use the Buy it Now or Best Offer for non-auction listings, then for auctions, put your buy it now at the price you'd be happy getting, not the price you wish and dream for, but something reasonable where if the auction ended at that price you'd be very satisfied.
  2. He should just stick with going to conventions and charging $100 for his autograph and not doing any more sketches or artwork, his recent renderings the past few year are diminishing his legacy as an artist and are pretty bad looking adolescent looking doodles. He has a great legacy behind him, he should be proud of that and stop producing mediocre material.
  3. It's good to hear he's focusing in on his own life rather than the hustle of working on art and doing the convention circuit, he's earned a beautiful sunset after a long career. I hope he enjoys a peaceful and fulfilling retirement. His legacy speaks volumes and continues to contribute to both current fans who review his body of work and the new fans that discover it and will continue to do so for decades upon decades.
  4. I love that book, in any condition because of the cover. What I often do is just put a comic in an 8 x 11.5 frame and hang it up, forgetting about value, preservation and condition if the book is worth less than $10, figuring, a nice framed poster or print costs that much and this looks retro nostalgic as decor.
  5. $10k is a pie in the sky price, I think it's closer to $2-3k probably, in part due to the general valuation of trading card art coupled by the major damages (the missing COA isn't a factor).
  6. I hope so, so that dollar bins all over the country will be easier to flip through without the presence of that title
  7. ... also artists who assume the inker roles like Scott Williams, Joe Weems, Alex Gardner, Matt Banning, Richard Friend, Terry Austin, Jay Leistein, Norm Rapmund, Giordano, Murphy Anderson, Wally Wood, etc - - if you've ever seen the original pencils vs the finished inked work on certain pieces, or if you notice you mainly like a certain artist when inked by one artist vs another (Kirby pencils w/ Sinnott or Stone VS Coletta or Royer inks) - - you can truly appreciate the artistic contributions of inkers, who are often credited as "embellishers" - - and that describes the craft more accurately in that the role of inker doesn't simply of course trace over pencil lines making them darker, the inker takes what exists and improves it, adding their own contributions, altering the artwork with their final touches, often including intricate details as well as backgrounds and scene support. So, in that way, I hate to see the scarlet letter applied to inkers works disparaging their valued efforts and contribution while praising pencilers as the be all end all, at times.
  8. To me, if it's digital pencils and no pencils ever existed and it is inked properly on paper, as opposed to digital inks and a print out, then I'm actually fine accepting that it's original published artwork pure and simple. A professional inker friend who works for DC sells his artwork, and people always ask him if it's digital pencils, blueline pencils and/or original pencils. He has a mixture of everything in his portfolios for sale. He retorts, what do you think? and can you tell the difference? To which nobody can. He further qualifies and rationalizes some facts. When you're looking for original published art you want the final piece. So, you don't want prelims nor layouts, then why do you want just pencils that are not inked? Some fans clamor over just the pencils and not the finished inked piece, even disparaging that inked piece. So, if you look at a published comic book, the inked piece most resembles what is published and is in fact the anchor in that relay race where it's the final baton handed over to production before digital coloring and digital lettering. Secondly, he explains, when he and most professional inkers do their work, all of the original pencils are beneath the inks and you can't see them anyway and any excess pencils are erased anyway too. So, the artists pencil work is obliterated and covered up with not much DNA on the page. So, if an artist does do digital only and it's inked, it's the only option and version out there, so should command a decent if not equal level of respect and price/value. I am anti-digital print outs where all art is rendered digitally and these prints are sold as one of a kind originals.
  9. I hear rumblings that the formerly dreaded Green Label where it applies to autographs is not so much a scarlet letter (or color) in some cases like this, where, truth be told, if a seller has good reputation, has that COA, and the autograph looks legitimate, it's an odds on favorite to be legitimate, so the Green Label is not a red flag for fraud with all of those considerations making it odds on favorite to be legitimate. I'm not sure how prevalent forged autographs are within the comic industry aside from some deceased (Kirby), elusive (Ditko), or celebrity (Stan Lee) creators, most artists and writers are generally accessible and liberally sign. It feels, when I talk to LCS, autographed comics, even the ones they know are legitimate that they have from in-store signings, don't carry a premium, so the whole "signature series" doesn't necessarily add value nor prestige to some collectors. So, with this JSC Venom, I think getting it graded, regardless of the label, and the public knowing of the way this was sold and distributed by the artist direct, I'm sure a green label with the COA (which I'm sure will have his hologram sticker on it) is as iron clad of substantiation as you can get for assurance it's a legitimate signed comic given the circumstances.
  10. I would like to think that Campbell hopes this happens with this sale and that more of these books get into collectors hands as opposed to flippers. However, at the end of the day, he gonna bank regardless. I think the majority of the customers who buy direct from Campbell are indeed the "flippers" who see it as an opportunity to get online and act fast to then turn around and sell them at a mark up after they've sold out. It's the historical sales precedent and sales that the flippers do that actually keeps that part of the industry alive, so in a way, for Campbell's own economic interests, his books are better off going to the flippers than the fans first, then the "frenzy" to buy (laws of supply and demand) will continue and he can also continue to push the envelope from selling at $9.99 to $14.99 to $19.99 to $24.99 to $49.99, then as in the case of the Venom issue, go from $150 up to $200 and have it still sell out within the hour. That in-itself may have him ponder... sell 1/2 of the inventory first, then hold back the 2nd half and price it at market value or start remarking them and charging a grip of cash. It's not exploitation or greed, it's simple business for both flippers and JSC. If the fans/collector's who want 'em stop buying and paying premiums, the laws of supply and demand may dictate a far different marketplace where short prints and variants cease to exist as they did not in the pre-Y2K era of collecting.
  11. I'm really surprised more ALEX ROSS covers aren't going for a lot more based on the artist by name, same with FRANK CHO, in the same vein as JSC and AH!
  12. From what I understand or hear, in this case, it would be 100% minus the cost of goods. So, I think Marvel will have rights of refusal/approval of the artist and artwork on these "retailer variants" (in this case it's owned and operated by JSC) and I think there's a minimum order of around 2,000-5,000 - but in the case with a superstar like JSC, the rulebook makes exceptions, and I thought I heard the retailer buys the books at 1/2 of cover price, and then sells the books. So, if this book has a $3.99 cover price that would be $2 per book, and at $200, that's a profit of $198 per book, less the overhead costs of those bags/boards and running the operations (website maintenance, fulfillment, packaging supplies, employee labor, etc.) I'm not sure it that's 100% correct, but that is what I though I heard.
  13. The companies can't come to a consensus. I've talked with them both about these at different shows. One guy will say .5, another will say since it's intentional it should be graded as a normal sketch cover. But if I had to guess, they would come back a .5 I'd say "No Grade" and leave it at that, and the condition is really the background reason taking the backseat to the foreground of the true value and aesthetics of the original art, and yes this is art, not limited to just pencil and ink on paper. I'd say a slab simply becomes a nice picture frame for the piece, as well as way of preserving the delicate nature of the cut out, as well as authenticating the piece. Otherwise, this, as with Sketch Covers, the grading seems secondary if not unimportant to the art itself.
  14. 1:1000 vs 1/1 (one of a kind)... just forgo the comic book if you're just buying it for the variant cover, and buy the original art of the cover, it's a better investment and not subject to CGC 9.8 vs 9.6 vs 7.0 grading on conditions. Sure, a J. Scott Campbell cover will set you back $15k and same with most other artists, or an Alex Ross, maybe $25k, but at the end of the day it's a more sustainable investment. For comic book only completest collectors I think at one point you have to come to grips with the fact you can't/won't and more importantly, shouldn't try to own everything, it'll either drive you crazy or into the poorhouse since the marketing machines of the publishers are out to rape you.
  15. Question: I purchased the Gamora JSC Exclusive from the JSC Store Online. They shipped it fast, kudos to their fulfillment system! However, the books came not damaged per se, but not in 9.8 worthy condition with obvious indentations on the spine, enough to say it's probably a 9.2 - 9.6 candidate. I eliminate the postal delivery and packaging as the culprits since the box is nice and sturdy, a very high quality comic book mailer. So, I'm of course assuming it was either the nature of the beast, and the print run was subject to flawed production of the books with dings, or possibly the handling on the fulfillment side where maybe it was bent in the process of the handling and packaging (which I sort of doubt since it's their business to cater to nit-picky condition queens). My question is... Is that just the way the cookie crumbles and how the dice rolls? Or, is it a reasonably inquiry to the JSC store for some sort of replacement or partial refund or some compensation? I do realize not every book is going to be a 9.8, otherwise the 9.8 wouldn't be so coveted, but I also hear so many good things about how the JSC store delivers top quality condition books, and my 1st order here came in shy of those expectations.
  16. 100% Yes, not the typical "artificial power of suggestion" type of self-serving post to try to create false demand. More of the story of how a comic dealer lost a sale and a potential customer by their over zealous antics to create false hype, erroneous information, and over inflated pricing (I'd say gauging since it was 10x over true fair market value). The book is nice, but can be found for under $5 most of the times, and is often in many dollar bins in decent shape. Yeah, I'm sure a high grade or signature series by Byrne or Perez might be worth a lot more, but in general it's just a fun do-nothing uneventful book that's entertaining to read.
  17. $40k as the starting point... @ over $6,500 per head... it's an interesting proposition. Too bad the pieces weren't huge and this on 11" x 17"
  18. Reputations are built around first impressions... ...'nuff said!
  19. so when someone dies and you own the rights to something they created, you Don't think they should be able to make money on it anymore? Take that sentiment through to what that really means in its totality for all art or inventions and see if you still feel that way. ...and Apple would cease to release any new iPhones, or related products As for celebrities... Prince, Michael Jackson, Elvis, 2Pac, Marilyn Monroe, etc. all still live as cultural icons exploited through their estates licensing their images. So long as it's not done in bad taste, it's not such a horrible situation. It's probably true that half the stuff being released, Turner would reject seeing the light of day and instead re-work them tighter, but that's no an option and fans seem to like it, otherwise they'd not buy it.
  20. Michael Turner is like 2Pac... There's a vault of material that Aspen will keep on remixing and releasing, whether rough pencils, prelims, sketches, commissions, sketchbook material, etc. It's all legitimate when it comes to published pieces by Aspen, Marvel or DC with the Michael Turner name on it. I'm sure Turners heirs, and the company he built, Aspen, garners financial benefits, as they're the ones who are controlling releasing the images and putting out these variants. It's in one breath, nice to see Turner's name continue to thrive but hopefully the quality of what's put out there is maintained and also rough sketches don't turn into new material with so little of Turners work that may be over-colored or inked that it becomes less him and more other artist's work.
  21. In the world of sports trading cards where there's so many parallel releases of the same card, usually with different colored borders or foil tones, they refer to that as "completing the rainbow" (of colors). I was wondering if anyone has tried to complete a set of an exact book in every single grade? I was contemplating trying, but know the 9.9 and 10.0 are hard for moderns and near impossible for silver age.
  22. Bronze... I'd have to go with Giant Size X-Men #1, as the 1st appearance of the team and technically 2nd story with Wolverine (after the Hulk 180-181-182 arc w/ Wendigo). The square bound spine and white cover makes it harder to find in nice condition too. I like what and where my $ can get me with this book and the upside for growth over what Hulk 181 is at now, with less room to grow and what $1k can get you in terms of condition/grade.
  23. I'm hoping there will be an update of stuff not on "sale" (discount) after this holiday % off sale, as well as updated images posted up to the website or a revamp of the website for easier shopping and navigation. The ordering process as it exists isn't that difficult at all actually, but as far as inspiring impulse buys, I think Spencer would benefit greatly by having a more complete site with all art for sale shown and a shopping cart to click to reserve or buy.