Ever wondered how to protect the characters you have created in your books, cartoons, comics or graphic novels? Or been worried as to whether you can use real people or existing characters that you don’t own in your work?
Join us for an in-depth session on using characters and real people in your work, as well as how to avoid the pitfalls and protect your own creations. With years of legal and practical experience, SoA Chief Executive Nicola Solomon will be in conversation with Joe Sullivan, Director of Cartoon Museum, offering an overview of using characters and real people, including copyright defamation, privacy, trademarks and more.
The session will be aimed at comics creators but open to all types of writers and illustrators who are using characters in their work.
Free event. Book your place (Clik on RSVP Here: “Going” to register)
This is the first of six sessions in the Brush Up! event series in association with the Cartoon Museum and the SoA Comics Creators Network. More details to come.
Header image © Woodrow Phoenix
Send your questions in advance
If you would like to send questions in advance, email firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Industry Insider – 9 Dec’ in the subject header. We will prioritise questions sent in advance and try to answer as many as we can from the audience on the day.
What will this session cover?
Protecting and using characters, including in fan fiction
An overview of copyright law
Exceptions for parody and pastiche
How and when to use trademarks
Using real people – including defamation and privacy
Who is this session for?
This session is aimed at comics creators and graphic novelists of all types – whether your work is for adults, young adults or children – as well as other authors, artists and storytellers.
5 minutes: Welcome and general outline of character usage and copyright law
35 minutes: Q&A with Joe Sullivan and Nicola Solomon on using and protecting characters, including questions sent in advance
10 minutes: Live questions from the audience
5 minutes: Summary and closing comments
If you would like to send questions for Dean Atta in advance, email Nadia Bonini with ‘Dean Atta – Question’ in the subject header. We will prioritise questions sent in advance and try to answer as many as we can from the audience on the day.
Joe Sullivan – Director, The Cartoon Museum
Joe Sullivan is the Director of The Cartoon Museum, and Chair of the London Museums Group. He joined The Cartoon Museum in January 2020, after holding various roles at the Natural History Museum, Royal Air Force Museum, The Grant Museum of Zoology, and Brooklands Museum. Joe is passionate about building community partnerships and making museum collections and stories accessible and interesting to everyone.
Nicola Solomon – Chief Executive, Society of Authors
Nicola is a solicitor with years of expertise in advising creators. Her role encompasses protecting authors’ interests in negotiations/disputes with publishers and agents, advising individual authors and campaigning for authors’ rights, as well as for the wider cultural environment. Nicola is an expert in the publishing industry and the associated law, from copyright and defamation, to privacy, data protection and contract.
She is a Deputy District Judge and sits on the board of the International Authors’ Forum and the British Copyright Council and the Creators’ Rights Alliance.
About The Cartoon Museum
The Cartoon Museum champions cartoon and comic art, highlighting its importance to culture and society. Since 2006 it has received 420k visitors, and built a prominent national collection of 4,300 cartoons, comics and caricatures, and a library of 18k items. The Cartoon Museum runs a well-attended school programme and sell-out school holiday workshops, and over 50k children and adults have attended cartooning, comics and animation workshops at the museum.
The Cartoon Museum closed on 18 March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As an independent museum with no regular government funding, 75% of yearly income is through the door – admissions, shop purchases, schools and venue bookings. As a result, the museum closure has resulted in the loss of nearly 50% of the museum’s yearly income. The museum is currently fundraising for its survival, and during closure has been keeping cartoon and comic fans entertained with online exhibitions and activities.
To support The Cartoon Museum, please
Any questions? Contact