This blog was originally created for the IAG, “Illustrators at the Guild,” an interest group I chaired at the NYC chapter of the Graphic Artists Guild. Unfortunately, it became very clear to me that the Guild’s many serious problems were insurmountable, and that continuing to fight with the Guild management over their apparent desire to keep the organization in its currently deplorable condition would not be a productive use of my time and energy. Therefore, I am no longer an officer or member of the Guild, and not speaking in any capacity as such. However, previous posts will remain as an archive for Guild members who might still be interested in knowing about their organization, and about their rights to participate in its governance. Good luck to you.
Despite my recent loss of interest in remaining with the Guild, my research over the past year into its troubles has yielded a great trove of information on many issues confronting both graphics professionals and the general public, which I am very interested in building upon and blogging about. It so happens that the Guild is situated at a very interesting nexus of clashing economic and political forces: copyright law, labor law, media and telecommunications policy, and international trade, along with some good old-fashioned Washington D.C. partisan politics thrown into the mix. It’s really quite a shame that the Guild could not be a better representative for the graphic arts community; but since there’s still such a need for everyone to keep up on current events and to be informed about the many problems we face, I’m compelled to carry on with this blog, and not concern myself too much with the activities or survival of the Guild.
This blog’s name change to “Illustration Advocacy Gorp” continues with the theme of artists facing a complex wilderness of economic, social, and political issues, for which no one seems to have a good trustworthy map. Of course, there are plenty of people and organizations out there wiling to sell you a map, such as the Graphic Artists Guild or Copyright Alliance, though who’s interests their maps serve is something for you to be mindful of. Being only an interested illustrator, and not a lawyer or trained investigator, I won’t claim to possess an accurate map for you to follow. I will try, however, to give you something to munch on while you figure out for yourself which paths to take in this dark and tangled freelancer’s jungle.
— Christopher Johnson