Monlux’s Tacoma Artist Initiative Project – Step 1: Scripts

My Tacoma Artist Initiative Project is creating two public service announcements using whiteboard animation. As part of that assignment I’m sharing this process on both my blog and the Cartoonists’ League of Absurd Washingtonians website. Step one of the project is drafting two scripts. My goal was to focus strictly on the dialog and time it to roughly 50 seconds per script. One I wrote each script I then sent it to my legal consultant, and then ran it past my editor. I gave my editor a few gray hairs because I did not write into the script the dialog in context with the images. I wanted to leave the script very open for when I came up with ideas during the next step, creating the storyboard.

Here are the scripts:

Voiceover Script for Defining Copyright Ownership.

Your creative expression can take many forms: writing, music, dance, sculpture, or visual art.

Copyright protects your creative expression.

Did you know that when you sell your original art you are not selling your copyright?

Just as an author does not lose the rights to his story when he sells his books, neither does a painter lose the rights to their creative expression when they sell their original paintings.

When a person buys original art, they become a curator of that piece, but they do not have the right to license the art.

Only you, as the creator, have the right to license your art.

Even after the original art has found a new home, you have the right to license and profit from your creative expression in any way you see fit.

The only legal way others obtain permission to license your work is in writing

Providing provenance to your art is a great way to inform buyers of their role as custodian.

It can confirm their obligation to keep the work safe from harm—and for you to have reasonable access to the original to make reproductions.

This message sponsored by the Tacoma Artists Initiative, and these fine creators.

@ 2013 Mark Monlux


Voiceover Script for Having vs. Registering Copyright

Your creative expression can take many forms: writing, music, dance, sculpture, or visual art.

Copyright protects your creative expression.

But there is a difference between having copyright and registering your copyright.

And since it can significantly affect how well your artistic rights are protected, you should know about it.

You have copyright the moment you physically create or record your expression.

But you need to register your copyright with the government to fully protect your work.

A registered copyright is your ticket into the courtroom.

It means that with a favorable judgment your legal fees can be collected in the settlement.

It also means that you can be awarded statutory damages for willful infringement.

Without a filed copyright you don’t qualify for any of that.

So, remember to protect yourself and your creative endeavors.

Register your copyrights early, and often.

It’s easy. You can do it online at

This message sponsored by the Tacoma Artists Initiative, and these fine creators.

@ 2013 Mark Monlux

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Mark Monlux Receives Tacoma Artists Initiative Funds

The Tacoma Arts Commission recently awarded $255,000 to nine Tacoma-based arts organizations through its Arts Anchor Fund program, and $40,000 to 16 Tacoma artists through its Tacoma Artists Initiative Program. The Arts Anchor Fund program awards range in value from $20,000 to $35,000 each, and the Tacoma Artists Initiative Program awards are $2,500 each. Funding for both programs is for the 2013-14 biennium.

“The arts are an important economic driver and community builder for Tacoma, and assist in building our cultural identity,” said Robin Echtle, chair of the Tacoma Arts Commission. “Organizations and artists funded reflect and strengthen the rich diversity of arts and cultural experiences happening throughout Tacoma.”

Arts Anchor Fund Program Awards

The 2013-2014 Arts Anchor Fund program award recipients are: Hilltop Artists, Museum of Glass, Northwest Sinfonietta, Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma Musical Playhouse, Tacoma Opera, Tacoma Symphony Orchestra, Tacoma Youth Symphony Association and The Grand Cinema.

In 2012, these nine organizations served 462,539 people, provided free admission to 76,021 people, and generated an estimated $8.82 million for the local economy.

The Tacoma Arts Commission established the Arts Anchor Fund program in 1995 to provide financial support to major local not-for-profit arts organizations that significantly improve the quality of life for Tacoma. These arts organizations serve Tacoma’s community through regularly scheduled performances, exhibits and events, and school and outreach programs.

Tacoma Artists Initiative Program Awards

The 2013-2014 Tacoma Artists Initiative Program funded artists are: Sean Alexander, Carla Barragan, Bill Colby, Alice Di Certo, Kyle Dillehay, David Domkoski, Oliver Doriss, Josie Emmons Turner, Sarah Gilbert, Erin Guinup, Meghan Mitchell, Mark Monlux, Kat Ogden, Scott Scoggin, Erik Steighner and Noah Struthers.

Funded Tacoma Artists Initiative Program projects include the choreography and production of a contemporary dance piece, creation and exhibition of two- and three-dimensional art, direction of a theatrical production, performance and recording of music, production and screening of a film, public reading of poetry, and production of whiteboard animation videos.

The Tacoma Artists Initiative Program was established in 1999 to assist artists with the generation of new work, and to share their talent with the public in a free and accessible format.

The Arts Anchor Fund program and Tacoma Artists Initiative Program are two of three funding programs administered by the Tacoma Arts Commission. For a complete listing of funding programs and information about the Tacoma Arts Commission, visit

Monlux reports, “The title of my project is “© PSA RSA”.”

RSA is an acronym for The Royal Society for the Encouragement of the Arts. It was via the RSA that “Whiteboard Animation” was developed. The status of the RSA has led its acronym to be widely-used eponymy for “Whiteboard Animation.” Whiteboard Animation differs from traditional animation, as it’s a video, usually informative in nature, in which a human hand drawing cartoons, text and other graphics on a whiteboard is accompanied by narration.

My goal is to create two one-minute RSAs, Public Service Announcements on Copyright, specifically on two issues:
1. The difference between “having” and “filing” a copyright.
2. How an artist’s copyright is not sold with the physical work.
This is an era in which intellectual property is quickly becoming more valuable, even as it is infringed upon, and at a higher rate than previously. These public service announcements would be informative and useful to the general public, as we all have a desire to create.

I’m going to provide updates as this project progresses on this website. These postings will be announced via Twitter and Facebook. The stages currently blocked out:

1. Writing the scripts
2. Storyboards
3. Capturing the narration of the script
4. Music composition
5. Capturing the visual elements
6. Editing narration and visuals together
7. Premier announcement of video
8. Permanent post of video

I’m very excited to be doing this project. I appreciate all of the kind support I’ve received. And I hope you will enjoy being part of the process.

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