August 11 - August 13, 2017
Walter E. Washington Convention Center
Washington DC, USA
// Artist Alley // Art: The Alley - FAQ
Art: The Alley - FAQ
Artist Alley FAQ
- Do memberships come included with a table purchase?
Memberships/Badges are not included in Limited and Normal tables. Unlimited tables include a single Membership/Badge.
- What is the deadline to cancel tables by to get a full refund?
Just like Memberships Artist Alley tables are not refundable.
- I don't have a government issued ID. Can I use my school ID instead?
No. Government issued IDs are all that we accept because we need to be reasonably sure that you are who you say you are when you're selling things at our convention. Government issued IDs require more proof that you are who you say you are than school IDs.
- I'm under 18 and want to sell in The Alley, but my parents don't want to come babysit me. Can I have a friend co-sign for me?
Yes. The person who co-signs your contract does not have to be a parent or relative — they just have to be willing to keep their eye on you and take responsibility should anything go wrong. Just remember that an adult (Someone over 18) must be at the table at all times.
- I registered for two tables, how many Artist ribbons do I get?
Each table gets three ribbons. However, please remember that one of those ribbons must go to the artist who registered the table. So that leaves two ribbons.
- How do I add assistants to my table?
You may add and remove assistance up to two (2) week before the convention by contacting the Artist Alley Department Head through this form. You must select Artist Alley under the topic heading. Any requests made in the final week before the convention may not be processed in time to make changes. As always you can add any assistance during your registration process if needed.
- I like to play music/videos at my table. Will I get in trouble for it?
In general, no. However, you need to remember that you aren't the only one in The Alley and that not everyone may want to hear your music. If your neighbors ask you to turn it down, please do. If the staff have to talk to you repeatedly then you may be asked to leave.
- Can I use a logo in my art if I give credit to the copyright holder?
No. Our lawyers have advised us that logos are fairly complicated copyright issues. In order to keep things simple, we've disallowed the use of copyrighted logos. In addition, variations of copyrighted logos which the staff feel too closely resemble the original will be asked to take the art down and not sell any more of it.
- What is "Official character likeness"?
Official character likeness is the actual image that was produced and distributed by the copyright holder. For example, a page from a manga is the official character likeness; but a fan created drawing of a character is not. The rule is intended to prevent people from cutting out pages from a manga, or printing screen caps from an anime and selling them as buttons, shirts, etc. You can put your own drawings on buttons, pins, hats or t-shirts, even if they're drawings of licensed characters.
- Why can't I sell food that I made?
The short answer is that our contract with the BCC prohibits us from selling any food or drink because Centerplate has an exclusive food vending contract with the BCC.
- Why can't I sell art supplies or a cosplay repair kit?
The Alley is a place where artists can promote their art and interact with fans. There's really nothing artistic about selling markers, colored pencils or thread. Those are things that belong in the Dealers Room, not The Alley.
- My entire studio is coming to Otakon with me, can I get more than two tables?
Maybe. Exceptions can be made to the two table rule if there's a real need for more than two tables. If you think that you need more than two tables, contact the Artist Alley through this form and explain why you should be given an exception.
- Why do I have to sign my fan art?
Over the last few years, copyright infringement issues have become much more prominent at anime conventions. One of Otakon's responses to this relatively new set of challenges is to take steps to differentiate between art that is sold by the license holder(s) and art that is drawn and sold by fans. To help with this, our lawyers have advised us that having artists who create fan art sign their work would be a good step. Signing the work will make it clear that the piece of art is fan art, rather than a licensed product. Besides, if you're proud enough of your work to sell it, you should want your name on it anyway. We ask that, as the artist, your name appears legibly on the art where it can be seen (e.g. not in really, really tiny print that nobody will ever be able to read). Ideally, you will also make mention of who holds the copyright.
- I won't get in to Otakon until after noon on Saturday. Can you hold my tables for me?
Maybe. In certain cases exceptions to the No-Show rule will be made. If you think that you have a case that should be an exception, contact the Artist Alley Department Head through this form
ASAP to discuss your situation. Please remember that asking for an exception in no way guarantees that it will be made, but the only way to find out is to ask.
- What do you consider to be very similar to the original piece of art?
This is a very touchy issue since, as the contract says, there's no magic rule with art. The Department Head will make a judgment call about a piece of art if he has to and will look at things such as pose, colors, background, weapons and other misc. items that are in the piece. If they match up enough with the original, then you may be asked to take the art down.
- I think one of my pieces of art may be a problem, can I still bring it to con?
Yes, but you run the risk of being asked to not sell it. Since you probably don't want to go through the trouble of getting the prints made and bringing them to con on a gamble, if you have a question about a piece of art before the con then please contact the Artist Alley Staff through this form and ask if it's ok or not. That way, if an issue comes up at con and the piece has already been cleared you won't have to spend time defending your art.
- What is going on with the men's bathroom in the artist alley?
The answer to that is not simple. Something about dimensional gates, a group of adventures and ectoplasm. Needless to say there are some odd EPA regulations and something about an endangered extradimensional species. Because of this the simple solution is to make the Pratt Street entrance both an entrance and an exit so that the guys have access to a restroom. Just so you know we had one of our staffers suit up in an environmental suit last year to check things out… we still have not heard back from him yet.
- Under the Fan Art Rules there are two optional rules, what are they for?
These rules are to assist us in identifying what is fan art and what is original art on your display. The idea is that if you use one of these rules we can easily identify what is fan art and what is original art on your display. By doing so our staff will not need to interrupt your sales to ask you questions about your display.
- I sent a message to the Artist Alley staff asking when the alley would open for registration why have I not received a response?
The Artist Alley staff can not tell you when the Alley will open. To do so would give you an unfair advantage over everyone else who also wants to get into the Alley as well. Please keep a eye out on the website and the forums for information on when the Alley will open.
- If I want to use the Loading Dock on Thursday and Sunday to load in and out my merchandise how much would it cost?
Starting this year use of the loading dock is $50 per use. So if you used it on Thursday and Sunday that would be a total of $100.
- Why are you suddenly collecting for using the loading dock? We've been allowed to use it for free in the past.
In the past Otakon has offset the cost of the loading dock, however we are no longer able to do this. Rather than hit you with sticker shock for the full cost of the loading dock fees we are going to ease you into them over the next few years. These fees are not just for the artist alley the dealers room will be paying them as well.