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 Posted: Wed Feb 24th, 2010 08:46 am
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AdamMcLean
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I have noticed recently a couple of tarots being issued as "Artist's Proofs", usually a small numbered edition ahead of the eventual publication.

Artist's proofs original applied to etchings and lithographs, where the artist had some proof copies pulled to check the quality and colour balance of the prints, before committing to producing an edition. This works in the hand production process for etchings and lithographs, however, I cannot really see this as working with modern machine litho printing. A modern litho press needs to run up to speed to get the ink flowing over the rollers and plate consistently, so many sheets of paper are wasted to get good copies. Consequently, most printers are not going to go to the bother of producing proof copies, unless it is part of long print run, say thousands of copies of a book. Printers usually provide a digital laser print as a proof for their customers to check the layout is correct.

Also, to check the printing, surely it is not necessary to cut the sheets into actual individual cards.  So I am perplexed. Are these "Artist's proofs" truly sample copies provided to the publisher before the edition is issued, or is this a marketing device to try and sell some copies of the actual edition off at a higher price.

Originally, an artist's proof had a higher perceived value than the actual edition, because the artist had handled and checked this first pull off the press. Often these remained in the artist's possession for many years and were only sold later, after the artist died or the edition of prints was long sold. This does not seem to apply to the "artist's proofs" of tarot cards which I have noticed appearing in the last few years.


Last edited on Wed Feb 24th, 2010 08:46 am by AdamMcLean

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 Posted: Wed Feb 24th, 2010 09:32 am
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gregory
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This is beginning to annoy me, too. It feels like a borderline scam.

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 Posted: Wed Feb 24th, 2010 09:35 am
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t.town.troy
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It would seem to me that it's a ploy if everything else is the same as the decks that come later.  Like books sent out early for review, they are not necessarily proofs.  I can see uncut sheets or even strips of the sheet as being closer to a proof.

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 Posted: Wed Feb 24th, 2010 08:05 pm
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Kimber
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I believe we all have the same "proofs" currently in mind. I have received an advance e-mail informing me of the availability of each deck as it was listed on Ebay. I think the 4th of 5 was just listed, and is already at $280.  The differentiating factor between the 5 and the upcoming "regular" release of 100 decks appears to be that the first 5 each have a different back design.  :f

 

I'll wait for the regular print run, thank you!!

Last edited on Fri Feb 26th, 2010 02:35 pm by Kimber

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 Posted: Wed Feb 24th, 2010 08:15 pm
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gregory
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I got a VERY annoying email from them..... One line reads:

These 5 Artist Proof decks may be the only public release of this deck.

I responded that in that case I would sadly not manage to own one, which would be a shame.... WE shall see....

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 Posted: Wed Feb 24th, 2010 08:22 pm
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skad1
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AdamMcLean wrote:  Printers usually provide a digital laser print as a proof for their customers to check the layout is correct.

Also, to check the printing, surely it is not necessary to cut the sheets into actual individual cards.  So I am perplexed. Are these "Artist's proofs" truly sample copies provided to the publisher before the edition is issued, or is this a marketing device to try and sell some copies of the actual edition off at a higher price.

Originally, an artist's proof had a higher perceived value than the actual edition, because the artist had handled and checked this first pull off the press. Often these remained in the artist's possession for many years and were only sold later, after the artist died or the edition of prints was long sold. This does not seem to apply to the "artist's proofs" of tarot cards which I have noticed appearing in the last few years.


Our collabarative deck had laser proofs printed before hand, but then the whole deck was laser printed. :cl  The proofs showed up as decoration on all your boxes.

I didn't know that the artist's proofs were considered more valuable than the regular edition.  Especially if the edition is small.  I have a complete proofs set of Michaels Tarot by Michael Kuntzer, I thought they were really special because it was such a small edition, now I know they're even MORE special.  :ceSome of them were originally uncolored, and when it became clear I was going to buy all the cards, he generously offered to color them in the origianl style for me. :D  Now if we could just get him to finish the Cudahely series!

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 12:28 am
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lulukat
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To their defense I'd like to say that the artist is trying to raise the funds to print the self published limited edition (100, not 1000 as Kimber said) release.

The appeal of these "proofs" in my opinion is the "one of a kind" factor, and everyone is aware that there will be a larger release for a fraction of the current price. So I'm assuming that there is clearly a demand for these, even if the limited edition is yet to be released.

The main idea behind the "proofs" (to my knowledge) was testing the different back designs, the artist had told me, and each contributing artist who worked on the deck received one of those proof sets, which is why they are cut in a deck. All parties had decided to donate their copy back into the production pool to support the upcoming release, as the artist cannot finance it otherwise.

That's how these ended up on Ebay. The Bolt Cutter Design Team didn't expect the decks to go for as much as they are now.

But I do get the point, Adam, and why some people find this annoying!

Last edited on Thu Feb 25th, 2010 12:29 am by lulukat

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 12:32 am
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lulukat
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Kimber wrote:


I'll wait for the regular print run, thank you!!


Me, too.
As happy as I am for these guys to get the cash together to print that edition, I don't see how I could justify this purchase...

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 03:10 am
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Sebille
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They're way beyond my means, as well. I didn't even bother bidding on them. Like Gregory, I was a little annoyed by the line about this possibly being the only printing of the deck, like those infomercials that exhort you to "call in the next 20 minutes!"

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 07:28 am
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AdamMcLean
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lulukat wrote: To their defense I'd like to say that the artist is trying to raise the funds to print the self published limited edition
We have seen this with a number of tarots in the past.  I know another deck at the moment that appears to be trying to  finance its production in this way. It was announced as issuing artist proof copies back in the Autumn, but the deck still has not appeared. It  is not a good strategy. If people are so badly organised financially that they cannot pay for the deck to be published, then giving them money up front in this way can lead to these funds being spent on their ongoing life costs and consequently they are not any closer to being able to publish their deck.

It seems some artists are thinking of this as a commission. When one commissions a painting one often has to pay a half or so up front and one does not expect the artist to produce the painting immediately. This is quite clear and is an established practice.

The problem with tarot publishers adopting this strategy is that they don't make this explicit. They don't explain the situation openly and instead hide this from their potemntial customers. We collectors need to know what is going on, and not be treated as sources of speculative funding.


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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 09:12 am
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gregory
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lulukat wrote: The appeal of these "proofs" in my opinion is the "one of a kind" factor, and everyone is aware that there will be a larger release for a fraction of the current price. So I'm assuming that there is clearly a demand for these, even if the limited edition is yet to be released.
"Everyone" WAS aware - but then we get this email saying it might not happen - which can only be phrased that way to try and get us to bid. THAT is what annoys me. I'm all for their raising funds to print. But as Adam says - SAY so - and don't pressure people  by suggesting that the limited ed might not happen.

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 09:42 am
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goldenweb
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In defense of artist's proofs as pertaining to commercially printed tarots/work (rather than etchings, lithographs, woodcuts, engravings where the artist has made the plate and printed an edition from it in the studio), this is my experience.

I wasn't sure how to produce the Pen Tarot. I tried printing it myself on three different kinds of paper, laminating one to see how it worked out. I had another set printed by one of those online postcard printers, and a set printed by the printer I finally chose before I went ahead. I needed all this information before I made the final decision.

The latest tarot (coming soon), is very different from the Pen, very intensely colourful, and, worried about losing some colour in the necessary changeover from one sort of colour profile to another when commercially printing, I considered producing it myself. Lots of agonizing, delays etc. I printed out 5 sets and laminated them in order to calculate ink, paper, laminate costs, before realizing that I simply couldn't produce them at a cost anyone would be prepared to pay.

So I sent to files to the Pen printers and they made me a set of matt laminated proofs. The colours were great, but I didn't like the soft feel of the laminate, so they printed me two more sets of proofs, one gloss laminated and one without laminate.

The gloss was perfect, not plastic-shiny, and enhanced the colours brilliantly, so I went ahead.

Each of the sets of proofs I had printed will be added to the final invoice from the printer. They are not cheap - much more expensive than each set in the edition. The sets I printed myself cannot be sold at the same price as the limited edition decks, as the cost of materials is too high. I can see how artists might want to recoup these sorts of expenses - even to exploit the word 'proof', the value of which has been retained from the hands-on artists printing processes, where each pulling causes slight wear on the plate, making subsequent prints less defined than the earlier ones. This doesn't apply to digital or modern printing methods, where large editions can be printed from the same plate/s.

Pen                      

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:09 am
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gregory
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I entirely see that. But I bet you won't be emailing people to say "buy a proof now as I may not actually produce the deck and then you will miss out."

THAT is where I take major issue with this particular example.

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:41 am
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goldenweb
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Yes, I understand the annoyance about that part of the topic. I did consider offering the proofs I made on one of the trading forums (here or at  AT) to readers who like or need slightly smaller cards than the edition cards (I had to print them smaller to fit them on an A4 sheet). Each is signed and marked AP, simply so they won't ever be confused with the decks in the limited edition. The colour is slightly less intense than that on the edition cards, as I bumped up the saturation before sending the files off to compensate for loss of colour in the RGB CMYK changeover. The blues are also truer to the originals, but not too different from the edition cards.

Also the title card has hand writing, rather than a font. (Lots of decision agony in that department too.) In the end I decided it would probably be best to hang on to them - my children will almost certainly put them on ebay eventually...:cool: 

Pen   

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 03:45 pm
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OnePotato
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These days, an Artist's Proof is any signed print that is made apart from a full edition.
The label is not limited to copies made in order to check color or print quality.

Many of my own prints are signed as A.P.'s and I have never gone on to edition them.
I've sold some of these.
This is standard practice.

When an edition is made, a set number are produced for sale, and marked with Arabic numbers.
For example, 23/100 is copy #23, of an edition of 100.
All 100 copies from an edition of 100 are released to be sold.

Additional copies that the artist keeps are labeled as "Artist's Proofs".
These are copies that he may either keep as examples of his work, give away, or sometimes sell himself.
Typically, the number of artist's proofs is kept to about 10% of the edition, or around 10 copies.
They are traditionally labeled as "A.P." and numbered with Roman numerals.
For example, A.P. II/X is copy #2 of 10 artist's proofs.

Boltcutter has made up 5 AP copies for sale before producing an edition.
He's started his auctions at an ordinary price.
I don't see anything wrong with that.
He says he expects to produce the regular edition in March, but for whatever reason it's not a certainty.
I choose to believe him.

Last edited on Thu Feb 25th, 2010 03:46 pm by OnePotato

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 03:52 pm
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goldenweb
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Bill, it's interesting that you begin your post with 'These days'. When do definitions change? Who decides that it's OK? Perhaps the term 'proof' should have changed when  the definition was broadened to include any print not part of an edition - as it stands it's misleading to say the least.

Pen 

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 04:13 pm
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OnePotato
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Obviously the term "proof" still applies to "test" copies as well. It's just not exclusive.
I guess it broadened sometime around the 19th c., when the modern gallery system developed and artists started signing.
Printmaking is full of old practices and traditions.

There are a whole series of labels that can be used....
P.P. for "Printer's Proof" that is given to the workmen who produce the image.
H.C. for "Hors Commerce" for copies outside of the edition that are presented to people who otherwise helped with it. Like a boxmaker, or binder, for example.
E.C. for "Epreuve Couleurs" (Or some-such) for a color standard approval that's used for reference when the rest of the edition is made.

With etching and engraving, you can have different "states" in the evolution of a plate as well.
A small "First State" edition can be pulled before one goes back in and makes irreversible changes to the plate, like adding a background or reworking shading, and then that "Second State" might be used for the full edition. Rembrandt was famous for this.

Technically, Boltcutter could label them as W.P., for "Working Proof" because he is looking at different sizes or back designs, and may go on to make changes.
But it's probably less confusing just to call them A.P.'s

Last edited on Thu Feb 25th, 2010 04:20 pm by OnePotato

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 04:48 pm
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goldenweb
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Depending on the particular process, I used to find when etching that four or five 'states', (sometimes more) were needed before I was happy enough with the print to make an edition. Generally the early ones were destroyed. The later ones became proofs; as you said, up to 10% of the finished edition seems normal practice.

Perhaps 'states' or 'trials' would be a better term for modern proofs like mine that differ from the finished edition.

Reading Adam's original post again, with reference to the cutting up of the sheets of cards, I've always received my tarot proofs like this - presumably because the printer wanted to present them in as attractive and close a form to the finished product as possible. But then Fig Tree is miniscule - I've no idea how the big publishers go about things. 

Pen


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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 08:27 pm
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BabaStudio
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AdamMcLean wrote: A modern litho press needs to run up to speed to get the ink flowing over the rollers and plate consistently, so many sheets of paper are wasted to get good copies. Consequently, most printers are not going to go to the bother of producing proof copies, unless it is part of long print run, say thousands of copies of a book. Printers usually provide a digital laser print as a proof for their customers to check the layout is correct.

Also, to check the printing, surely it is not necessary to cut the sheets into actual individual cards.  So I am perplexed. Are these "Artist's proofs" truly sample copies provided to the publisher before the edition is issued, or is this a marketing device to try and sell some copies of the actual edition off at a higher price.
Well, I can't comment on the proofs on ebay, but in fact we have done proofs for all our decks. It really helps to get any adjustments done accurately. We've been lucky in working with a local printer who lets us be there during the printing process and stops the press to get a proof.

It may be that the seller has a similar process that does allow them to get proofs - I haven't been following the whole controversy about this so I can't add anything, except to say that it's possible.

I agree with you though that it would be strange to cut up a proof into cards - the sheets are purely for checking basics like layout, colour and general accuracy.

By the way, we've never sold our proofs - we tend to store them away. We did once give a sheet to a friend who promptly left it at a bus-stop, so we've tended to hang on to them since. :gi

(edited because I've just had a detailed discussion with Alex about this and he was explaining exactly the different proof options - he is much more of a technical specialist in print than I am).

Last edited on Thu Feb 25th, 2010 08:45 pm by BabaStudio

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 08:59 pm
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skad1
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I think the printer who did the forums deck gave us cut proofs to make sure we were ok with the cut.  We didn't have the gallery they usually prefer, so there may have been some cards that had a small white strip down the side.  I think they were concerned that we approve the possibility before they ran the whole run.  It was also off a digital press, which may make quite a bit of difference as far as stopping the print run, then starting acouple days later. 

BTW_some (but only some) of the Happy Squirrels have a strip.  It was only about a millimeter, so I approved it.  It was better than trying to get it fixed, which would have been a big hassle.  Anf ya'll would have had to wait for decks even longer!  And postage would have gone up fifty cents! :sd

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 09:01 pm
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skad1
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I noticed that the proofs on Ebay say they are 'genetically signed'   

What in the heck is 'genetically signed' ?  They bleed on each deck so their DNA is on it?

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 09:05 pm
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OnePotato
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Pen, I think it is perfectly reasonable to call your prototype decks "artist's proofs".
Calling them something else would probably just lead to a lot of unnecessary confusion.

-

I think there is some kind of misunderstanding going on here.
A proof sheet that an offset printer provides to a client is not an "Artist's Proof" by the usual definition.
It's just a press proof, to check the printing results, and mark up for changes.
They are not the finished piece.

An "Artist's Proof" is generally something that the artist considers a finished piece, worthy of his signature.
It's a term that usually refers to a piece of fine art, rather than a commercially printed product.
As I said above, it is not exclusively for checking the printing process.

I don't think Boltcutter is talking about an offset printed press proof here.
I think he printed up a few preliminary copies of his deck, and that he hopes to go on to produce a small edition of it.
I simply do not understand the objection.


Last edited on Thu Feb 25th, 2010 09:06 pm by OnePotato

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 09:05 pm
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BabaStudio
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skad1 wrote: I noticed that the proofs on Ebay say they are 'genetically signed'   

What in the heck is 'genetically signed' ?  They bleed on each deck so their DNA is on it?

Well, as long as they don't spit on to them.

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 09:12 pm
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nicole
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BabaStudio wrote: skad1 wrote: I noticed that the proofs on Ebay say they are 'genetically signed'   

What in the heck is 'genetically signed' ?  They bleed on each deck so their DNA is on it?

Well, as long as they don't spit on to them.


or worse....:cs

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 09:27 pm
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Sebille
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I asked the same question on a thread about the Oblivion decks a few months ago (I think it was back in Nov. or Dec). Apparently they come with an actual thumbprint on the presentation card.

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:06 pm
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gregory
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OnePotato wrote:

I don't think Boltcutter is talking about an offset printed press proof here.
I think he printed up a few preliminary copies of his deck, and that he hopes to go on to produce a small edition of it.
I simply do not understand the objection.

My objection is that several months ago he told a number of of us that the Magna Veritas would be available later, and that we who had bought the earlier decks would be informed; his website has carried on saying this.

NOW we are getting emails (every time he puts another up on ebay) saying that these proofs - whatever they may be - may be the only copies ever available, and we had better bid now.

I don't care what sort of proof it is. I don't care how much they sell them for. I do object to what is in effect an attempted hard sell to people who had been supporting you. If he'd just emailed in the first place to say it might not work out after all, but that he would be putting proofs up on ebay - and left it at that - I wouldn't have minded, I would just have been disappointed.

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:13 pm
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AdamMcLean
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I have a few proof uncut sheets from offset print runs. The Niki de St Phalle, the Italian IAIA, the Gruyeres, the Dali.

These all seem to be from the print run, with registration marks, colour reference bars and are uncut. Probably they are proofs to test the layout and correct positioning of the backs and fronts. These have no special value, but I bought these to document the production of commercially produced tarot. These are large A0 or A1 sheets.

I also have proof copies of some tarot prints, and a proof sheet of a tarot created by etching.

I wonder where the added value comes from 'proof copies' of laser printed digital printings.


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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:23 pm
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BabaStudio
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Yes, that's what I'd call a proof of an offset deck too - all ours are exactly as you describe - and I agree that while they have rarity value in a sense, these print proofs don't normally seem to go for much more money than a deck. I have complete proof sheets of the New York Tarot and I didn't pay very much for them. We only bought the deck in this form because we intend to maybe frame one or two at some stage (it's an interesting deck).

Anyway, I don't know anything about the deck in question - are they really laser printed "proofs"?

Last edited on Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:27 pm by BabaStudio

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:27 pm
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AdamMcLean
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The  Oblivion decks appear to be printed using offset lithography with a standard four colour screen. Interestingly the 'thumbprint' also appears to be printed, so no DNA !

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:29 pm
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BabaStudio
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AdamMcLean wrote: The  Oblivion decks appear to be printed using offset lithography with a standard four colour screen. Interestingly the 'thumbprint' also appears to be printed, so no DNA !

Unless of course they spat in the ink first.  Okay, okay, we've done that one.

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:30 pm
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skad1
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The printer called them proofs, so I called them proofs.  Actually I think they were, because they were used to get approval for the final print.  I don't think there would be any additional value to them, which is why I came up with the idea to put them on the boxes.  It seemed like a better idea than throwing them away. 

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:47 pm
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OnePotato
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AdamMcLean wrote: .....I wonder where the added value comes from 'proof copies' of laser printed digital printings.....

Who said there is an inherent "added value" to proof copies of digital prints?
I have proposed that it's simply a designation of something outside of an edition.
I suppose an added value might come into play if there is some difference in size or quality from the edition version, or if the edition never happens.

The press sheets from commercial decks that you're describing have a novelty value.
And some people like to hang them up.

In the case of Boltcutter, I don't see him suggesting that they are any better than the proposed edition, other than the different back. (And maybe a larger size?) (And the opportunity to get one right now.)
To me, that's not much different from when a mass market deck is alternatively offered in a limited edition that includes an additional card, or something.
If people want to pay a premium for that, who am I to question it?

Gregory, I think it's ok if you don't bid on these Boltcutters, even though he tells you to in his email notification.
Since they're selling well enough anyway, he'll probably go ahead with the planned edition, and you can get one at the regular price later.
:ok

Last edited on Thu Feb 25th, 2010 10:49 pm by OnePotato

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 Posted: Thu Feb 25th, 2010 11:25 pm
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debra
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If the artist is experimenting with different back designs, I understand cutting the cards to see how the backs look when shuffled and fanned. 

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 01:51 am
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lulukat
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skad1 wrote:
I noticed that the proofs on Ebay say they are 'genetically signed'   

What in the heck is 'genetically signed' ?  They bleed on each deck so their DNA is on it?


Why is everyone complaining about the Boltcutter stuff?

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 01:57 am
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lulukat
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goldenweb wrote:
Bill, it's interesting that you begin your post with 'These days'. When do definitions change? Who decides that it's OK?


When I get test prints for my portfolio or need to see an image printed before sending off to a magazine, my printing house in New York does this for me and bills me for "proof prints".

I think many things have changed lately with ever changing technology, I doubt that the artist did this to deceive anyone, and I don't see myself changing printers because mine falsely called my test prints "proofs".
Although in my world, the word "proof" is 100% correct.

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 07:34 am
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gregory
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OnePotato wrote:
Gregory, I think it's ok if you don't bid on these Boltcutters, even though he tells you to in his email notification.
Since they're selling well enough anyway, he'll probably go ahead with the planned edition, and you can get one at the regular price later.
:ok


That's good, because I'm not !!!!:cl

Photokat - because of the emails suggesting that this is our only chance. You know youesef we were told they WOULD be available in a 100 deck edition. These emails ARE pushy. That's why.

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 09:01 am
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AdamMcLean
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lulukat wroteWhy is everyone complaining about the Boltcutter stuff?

My original posting that started this thread was more general.  I was making an observation about the way in which some small and lone self-publishers were using this as a marketing device. While it seems applicable to craft-produced etchings, serigraphs and lithographs, it seems somehow inappropriate for digital and litho printed material.

The real irritation and annoyance that has been articulated on this thread arises, I believe, when a publisher does not give us the full information about their plans, and tries to deceive collectors in some way. Another problem expressed lies in asking for pre-publication payments. There are a number of examples of this currently. I myself am concerned about one artist who promised delivery back in the Autumn and after a number of promises now seems unwilling to reply to my emails. There are a number of these outstanding pre-orders, and that also annoys collectors.

I suppose I was just expressing a wish that people selling tarots should be honest with the collecting community. I, as a publisher of tarot cards, have always tried to be completely honest. I never ask for pre-payments and only advertise a deck when I have them in my hands to sell. If I say I have 10 copies left to sell, then there are indeed only ten copies on my stock shelf.  I suppose I wish other publishers could try to be honest with their customers and not exploit collectors. It will lead to an increasing cynicism that will backfire on sellers and perhaps stop some genuine artists being able to produce their tarot designs as printed cards.

Tarot production is small scale and there are only a very few collectors supporting that market. Often collectors develop personal links with artists so it dismays me when a producer of tarot cards uses devices to market their cards that turn away genuine collectors and make them critical and unhappy with the way they have been treated.

We, as collectors of tarot art, don't respond well when we are seen merely as "punters" to be milked of as much cash as possible, either by marketing devices or by people taking pre-order payments then not following through. It works best when both sides respect one another.


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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 09:15 am
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gregory
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AdamMcLean wrot

I suppose I was just expressing a wish that people selling tarots should be honest with the collecting community. I, as a publisher of tarot cards, have always tried to be completely honest. I never ask for pre-payments and only advertise a deck when I have them in my hands to sell. If I say I have 10 copies left to sell, then there are indeed only ten copies on my stock shelf.  I suppose I wish other publishers could try to be honest with their customers and not exploit collectors. It will lead to an increasing cynicism that will backfire on sellers and perhaps stop some genuine artists being able to produce their tarot designs as printed cards.

Tarot production is small scale and there are only a very few collectors supporting that market. Often collectors develop personal links with artists so it dismays me when a producer of tarot cards uses devices to market their cards that turn away genuine collectors and make them critical and unhappy with the way they have been treated.

We, as collectors of tarot art, don't respond well when we are seen merely as "punters" to be milked of as much cash as possible, either by marketing devices or by people taking pre-order payments then not following through. It works best when both sides respect one another.



You said better what I was meaning. Thanks.

I well remember Other Problems with preorders that were never delivered, too..... It sours one. I don't do those any more unless it's a claim staking thing and no money in involved until the decks are ready !

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 09:31 am
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Lex Talionis
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I think that they are doing a great job, i received an e mail from them saying the same thing but honestly i know they ll make the normal run of the decks after all this is all business! and i i think the artist proofs theyre selling at e bay are a great addition to any collector!




PS: my brains melting from all the stuff u guys where saying a bout 19century and stuff lol but anyway one must not pass a day without learning something new :) shemhamforash everyone!

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 11:48 am
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BabaStudio
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gregory wrote: AdamMcLean wrot

I suppose I was just expressing a wish that people selling tarots should be honest with the collecting community. I, as a publisher of tarot cards, have always tried to be completely honest. I never ask for pre-payments and only advertise a deck when I have them in my hands to sell. If I say I have 10 copies left to sell, then there are indeed only ten copies on my stock shelf.  I suppose I wish other publishers could try to be honest with their customers and not exploit collectors. It will lead to an increasing cynicism that will backfire on sellers and perhaps stop some genuine artists being able to produce their tarot designs as printed cards.

Tarot production is small scale and there are only a very few collectors supporting that market. Often collectors develop personal links with artists so it dismays me when a producer of tarot cards uses devices to market their cards that turn away genuine collectors and make them critical and unhappy with the way they have been treated.

We, as collectors of tarot art, don't respond well when we are seen merely as "punters" to be milked of as much cash as possible, either by marketing devices or by people taking pre-order payments then not following through. It works best when both sides respect one another.



You said better what I was meaning. Thanks.

I well remember Other Problems with preorders that were never delivered, too..... It sours one. I don't do those any more unless it's a claim staking thing and no money in involved until the decks are ready !

Paypal has made it difficult to take pre-payments much in advance now, which in many ways is a good thing. However, I can empathise with very small publishers who raise money for a deck printing in this way. We tend to raise money from one deck for the next (i.e. in a way the Bohemian Gothic will pay for the Alice Tarot printing - or most of it) but small publishers have to start somewhere and some of them presumably need to bootstrap by taking pre-payments. It's fine, in my opinion, as long as they are ethical and responsible about making sure that the deck does finally appear. I mean, I don't necessarily mind paying for something in advance if the likely timescale is clear and I'm confident I'll get it.

Apart from that, I agree that there are some dubious practices in the way tarot is marketed, but I'm not sure that it's worse than in any other form of publishing. There is a HUGE amount of odd stuff going on in publishing - from disguised vanity publishing  to limited editions that aren't limited, to stuff that is just mis-described or bootlegged or hyped in a dishonest way. But, as I say, it's happening in publishing in general and probably reflects the way the industry is contracting and struggling. That doesn't make it okay of course, but I don't know what can be done about it when it's so pervasive. Maybe it's a case of "buyer very much beware" these days.

Last edited on Fri Feb 26th, 2010 12:27 pm by BabaStudio

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 02:18 pm
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Chronata
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I have had numerous proof decks of my various creations.

They were the test trials, and each one had a variation in colors or card stock that made them different, and usually not at all what I wanted for the final edition.

Sometimes they were the only copy of the deck I had for myself (besides the originals) that I could carry around with me to show people my work.

I did sell one or two, though most were simply given away.

And I only sold them after the limited edition was gone, and OOP.

I guess what I get from this thread is that I shouldn't have sold them at all?



Last edited on Fri Feb 26th, 2010 02:20 pm by Chronata

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 02:29 pm
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gregory
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Did you email anyone to say this was the only way to buy your deck ?
Did you for one moment suggest that you would make only a proof (or a few copies of one) and then might not publish - knowing (or not knowing, whichever turns out to be the truth) that you were actually going to bring it out after the proofs were sold ?
Did you, indeed, email your fans and say you were going to bring out a deck and would let them know when they could buy it and then do either of the above ?

No. Chronata - you have been entirely above board all the way. :ro

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 07:38 pm
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OnePotato
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gregory wrote: Did you email anyone to say this was the only way to buy your deck ?
Did you for one moment suggest that you would make only a proof (or a few copies of one) and then might not publish - knowing (or not knowing, whichever turns out to be the truth) that you were actually going to bring it out after the proofs were sold ?
Did you, indeed, email your fans and say you were going to bring out a deck and would let them know when they could buy it and then do either of the above ?

No. Chronata - you have been entirely above board all the way. :ro

Honestly, I'm still not seeing the problem here.
What am I missing?
A while ago, Boltcutter said he would be making this new deck.
At this moment, he has only made five prototypes that he is offering people a chance to buy right now
He's starting the auction at a very reasonable price.
He says he may not be able to produce the edition as planned, but it seems clear to me that IF THESE SELL, he will be able to go ahead and offer the regular edition as planned.
He even gives you the intended release date for it. He's telling you that he is trying to make sure you will have a chance to buy it at that point, if you prefer, but he maintains the possibility that he might fail. (I take it you don't like this?)
Obviously, if you don't want to buy these advance copies, you don't have to, but I think his message is that it would help him stay on track with the planned release if somebody does buy them.
But obviously, it doesn't have to be you, as he's alerting everyone he knows.
(People are buying them, so I assume he'll go ahead with the release as planned.)
And he's offering unique back designs as an added incentive to buy one. He undoubtedly assumes some collectors might like this. (No?)
Is there some reason to take this as some sort of threat that he won't release the deck as planned??
Is that what you're suggesting?
It sounds to me like he's being very open about what he's doing.





Last edited on Fri Feb 26th, 2010 07:46 pm by OnePotato

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 Posted: Fri Feb 26th, 2010 07:55 pm
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gregory
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I was reassuring Chronata that I did NOT think selling her proofs was the same kind of thing as appears to be going on here, that's all.


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 Posted: Sat Feb 27th, 2010 05:30 am
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t.town.troy
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lulukat wrote:When I get test prints for my portfolio or need to see an image printed before sending off to a magazine, my printing house in New York does this for me and bills me for "proof prints".Is this for photography?  I once received a 'proof sheet' on a roll I had developed, is this the same thing?

Back to topic...  I am glad to read everyone's thoughts in this thread, very enlightening.  I can see the different points of view, merits in them all.  I just had (well, a few days ago actually) a conversation about how word meanings change over time and I'm starting to think this may be what is happening here.  I've collected comic books and records, and there have been these kinds of issues; limited ed., different covers, laser etched, coloured/B&W ed., different coloured vinyl, acetate pressings, etc... (just to mix it all up and throw out how confusing all these things may be for one...)

I don't know if I'll ever pre-order a deck again, too much worry.

Last edited on Sat Feb 27th, 2010 05:33 am by t.town.troy

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 Posted: Sat Feb 27th, 2010 06:35 am
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Lex Talionis
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A lil off topic but do you have a spare Body Bags comic for sale?

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 Posted: Sat Feb 27th, 2010 08:30 am
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gregory
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That is so off topic that I don't even know why it was asked here - what on earth IS it ?

Is there a reason why a tarot collector would have such a thing ?

ETA - OK - googled. But where is the tarot connection ? (if any)

Last edited on Sat Feb 27th, 2010 08:36 am by gregory

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 Posted: Sun Feb 28th, 2010 02:47 am
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t.town.troy
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gregory wrote: That is so off topic that I don't even know why it was asked here - what on earth IS it ?

Is there a reason why a tarot collector would have such a thing ?

ETA - OK - googled. But where is the tarot connection ? (if any)
I thought mylar bags, but lo... a comic after my collecting time; so, no body bags.
I thought maybe a tarot connection may be like Alan Moores' "Promethia", there was an issue that is all about tarot(and Mr. Crowley).

Sorry, I don't have much to say on-topic, so I'll just leave it at that for now...

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 Posted: Mon Mar 1st, 2010 03:22 pm
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Jeannie_writer
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noticed that the proofs on Ebay say they are 'genetically signed'

What in the heck is 'genetically signed' ? They bleed on each deck so their DNA is on it?




About genetically signing a deck:

I genetically signed a few of my decks when I cut my finger and bled on them. Another way to genetically sign a deck is to trap a hair under the laminate. LOL Very unsightly though.
:gi[

Last edited on Mon Mar 1st, 2010 03:25 pm by Jeannie_writer

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 Posted: Mon Mar 1st, 2010 05:30 pm
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skad1
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Jeannie_writer wrote: noticed that the proofs on Ebay say they are 'genetically signed'

What in the heck is 'genetically signed' ? They bleed on each deck so their DNA is on it?




About genetically signing a deck:

I genetically signed a few of my decks when I cut my finger and bled on them. Another way to genetically sign a deck is to trap a hair under the laminate. LOL Very unsightly though.
[


Oh, so when I had cats, the sneaky little buggers managed to 'sign' everything I did!

:gi  Cat hair does tend to get everywhere.

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