Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Cam » Mon Nov 03, 2014 1:14 am

Books can be filled to the brim with lots of good information, they're(usually) cheap, and as I said before, I find they're more about exposure. You can go to a bookstore and sample books.

College seems like a waste of time and money to me. They work for some people, I know. But I think it's more efficient to learn by yourself on your own terms in general.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Jellydong » Mon Nov 03, 2014 3:15 am

I see... Well thank you for your reply buddy, see you around in the forum ^^
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Malta » Wed Nov 05, 2014 5:13 am

I think its kinda funny how as an artist you have to buy all this expensive stuff (brushes, software, tutorials, etc.), and then once you get good, you make tutorials/books/classes to sell back to the younger less experienced artists. Guess you gotta make money somehow. There was a good chapter on this topic in the book, "Art & Fear", where the author was talking about how artists would pay thousands of dollars to learn how to make art, just to become teachers in the same school that they learned from. It's just the older artists taking from the younger artists, a vicious cycle of artists cannibalizing one another.

But yeah, gumroad dude! that stuff is cheap (and addicting).
Main fact, you're gonna have to pay your dues one way or another (payments can be made in money or time), so you might as well just bend over and take it.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Cam » Thu Nov 06, 2014 5:45 pm

I'm not really sure what your last paragraph meant.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby chazillah » Fri Nov 07, 2014 12:43 pm

I'm not really sure what your last paragraph meant.


by 'pay your dues' he means that you're going to be putting in the time anyway. which is costly in its own sense. 10-12 hrs a day into art takes away from money you could be making in another job, social life, travel, health, exercise, etc. so even if you don't pay for the education, you're still paying with the time you put into learning this skill-set.

which takes us back to the possibility that it may not be such a bad thing to charge for the thousands of hours you put into learning.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Cam » Sat Nov 08, 2014 5:28 am

chazillah wrote:
I'm not really sure what your last paragraph meant.


by 'pay your dues' he means that you're going to be putting in the time anyway. which is costly in its own sense. 10-12 hrs a day into art takes away from money you could be making in another job, social life, travel, health, exercise, etc. so even if you don't pay for the education, you're still paying with the time you put into learning this skill-set.

which takes us back to the possibility that it may not be such a bad thing to charge for the thousands of hours you put into learning.

I would never charge other artists just because I didn't make 100% optimal profit every day for the extent of my hobby-to-career, but I can only speak for myself.

This is a principle thing for me, and it's really difficult to tell someone to adopt principles even if you feel they're essential. The sensible thing to do is make an optimal profit and make up for "lost" money by selling anything you think someone will buy. But I don't think there's any integrity in that, and I also realize that that is my own personal principle that I apply to myself.

Life is full of choices and chances. Worrying about how efficiently you're choosing your path should only be considered before you make a decision. One will never be able to compensate for past inefficiencies while perfectly maintaining the current path that they're on.



Anyways. I didn't mean to get so haughty all of a sudden. I think it's sound advice, but I'd imagine there's not much a mere 19-year old could teach you, in the real world or philosophically. Thanks for the reply.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Cestarian » Tue Dec 09, 2014 12:25 pm

I wouldn't pay for a tutorial, I would pay after I finish it and confirmed that it helped me though.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Cam » Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:15 pm

Cestarian wrote:I wouldn't pay for a tutorial, I would pay after I finish it and confirmed that it helped me though.

For the fair few like you, this would be a pretty good way of doing it.

Unfortunately, there's a lot of cheap bums out there, and I can't see anyone expecting a reasonable profit out of this. But that's why I think educational information should be free anyways, and if people want to support you, they can donate to you.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Luna » Thu Dec 11, 2014 3:46 am

Good point when you don't know or trust someone yet, Cestarian!
And Cam, Donate sounds a very nice idea! =)
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Enydimon » Thu Dec 11, 2014 6:34 pm

Cam wrote:Unfortunately, there's a lot of cheap bums out there, and I can't see anyone expecting a reasonable profit out of this.

I think that depends. While there are a lot of people who would just as likely pirate it or not donate, there are still a lot of people who would pay/donate because they believe it is worth that much, especially when you look at all the success crowd funding has had in the last few years. People are willing to pay for something they really like or believe in and brand loyalty is a very real thing.

Neil Gaiman had this similar fear about piracy but he found it actually turned a profit for him: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Qkyt1wXNlI

But even so, there are ways around it if you feel like piracy is inevitable. Like setting up a system where you only release the videos to the public once you get a certain amount of cash. This way the artist can cover any expenses needed to distribute, such as Internet usage fees, hardware/software to record, cost for materials if it's traditional, potential costs if there are models involved, etc... and turn a profit if they wanted to. Through this the people who are unable to pay or are unsure don't have to worry about it, while the ones who think it's worth investing in can help crowd fund it for everyone else.

If people like the free content they see, they'll be willing to pay you to see it done even better or to have access to more. Which is why those premiums exist in the first place.

But in the end, if they care more about teaching than profit then covering the fees to actually put on the production should suffice. I suppose it depends on your goals.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Cestarian » Sun Jan 04, 2015 12:47 pm

Cam wrote:
Cestarian wrote:I wouldn't pay for a tutorial, I would pay after I finish it and confirmed that it helped me though.

For the fair few like you, this would be a pretty good way of doing it.

Unfortunately, there's a lot of cheap bums out there, and I can't see anyone expecting a reasonable profit out of this. But that's why I think educational information should be free anyways, and if people want to support you, they can donate to you.


Well, for you Americans, tipping seems to somehow have worked out as a system, this is a similar deal, it's all a matter of how things are arranged. And like Enydimon says, crowdfunding seems to be working pretty well (although that's the other way around), and like Gaiman says, piracy = the best kind of publicity. (People don't get some shitty demo, they get the full deal and see if it's worth it), I became this way because back in my younger days I pirated a whole lot. Now I'm buying a whole lot instead, instead of just buying "stuff" I put my money in the hands of people I'd like to support, either because they made a product type I would like to support (for example Linux compatible video games) or I take leaps of faith because everything I've seen this person/developer pump out up till now I have liked. (And it's that latter thing that most people end up doing, which is why business rises upon piracy)

But you still always have to ask. "Will people pay for it?" will people pay for tutorials? not today. Will people pay for education? yes. Will people buy educational books? yes (that's essentially one big tutorial). Will people pay for tutorials after you give it to them? Those who can afford it will. How much? That varies by how much they can afford.

And finally how do I set it up so that it's easy for people to donate to me after they watch my tutorial? (This is the really tough question, how do you remind them that if they liked it they should say thanks with some $$? and how do you make it easy to give you that $$? Donate button? Does it accept credit cards? Does it accept paypal? etc...)

It can be done, and in the long run it might be more lucrative than asking people to pay up front for tutorials.

Although I haven't yet, I am planning on producing a lot of digital content, and what I plan to do is simply in all of my products ask nicely something like "If you like this game and you didn't pay for it, please buy it @ *insert webpage here* or donate to *insert donation link here*, thanks for playing" (<- example for video games) saying something like that I'd basically sneak in the thought to anyone who did pirate it, that he can still give me money for it if he enjoys it that much.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby rezzealaux » Wed Apr 29, 2015 1:16 am

I pay because/when I believe the person/tutorials in question will help me enough to justify their cost.

This takes into account more than just "the information itself", the other primary factors being "the information's presentation / its presenter", and "how long it would otherwise take me to find and absorb this information". The former is arguably as valuable as "the information itself"; the latter has also always been true but exceedingly relevant in the deluge of the internet. Time is money; I pay money to save time.

I paid to get some of CTRLPAINT's tutorials because the free videos demonstrated sufficiently that the guy (Matt Kohr) knew what he was talking about, and could explain it to me in a way that made sense and a way that I'd like. Certainly I could learn on YouTube, but how long would it take me to get to a video that isn't 2 hours long with just babbling, or one that even has decent skill to begin with? Certainly I could learn it myself, but what's the expected average trial-and-error time before I reach something resembling the basic principles of drawing/rendering/whatever the thing is in question? I happen to prefer learning by myself on trial and error, but I can't disregard premade structures. Several years ago I tried to learn figures for a decent period of time and got literally nowhere, but recently with Loomis I've finally made some headway into things that don't look absolutely amateur.

Yes, I found Loomis because he was free. But if he was alive today and made tutorials or had a paywall of some kind, I wouldn't mind the slightest in paying to obtain it. I've taken drawing classes on and off when I was a kid and even in high school, all essentially for free, I can tell you that of all those hundreds of hours I have absorbed approximately 0 ideas from them.

That being said, I don't pay for much. From the artists out there I've seen, most of them do think they're just selling their knowledge, and I find most of them largely incomprehensible - more explicitly, not more comprehensible than the free materials, which is the cutoff point they should be interested in, but aren't for whatever reason. Or to put it another way, if a theoretical "best artist" makes the "best tutorials" and makes them free, reputable, and easily accessible, I imagine most people in the tutorial field would go out of business pretty quick. See: Mikhail Kalashnikov, AK-47. Or maybe Andrew Loomis.

Whether or not the information should be sold to begin with is a different question, but the scale of it is so large and beyond my power I don't see much point in thinking about it.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby caseylarae » Thu May 14, 2015 11:34 pm

This is a really interesting topic; personally, I just about always buy rather than pirate. Part of this is because I teach kids art at my day job and I know how much time and energy it takes to disseminate information to other people. It's a lot! I find it to be a little sad that some people don't pay for it at all :( On the other side of the coin, I love the idea that you can try before you buy, in large part because a lot of people who are great artists also happen to be terrible teachers. It's awesome when artists offer a bunch of free content so that you can see how well they explain things before you throw your money at them. People like Chris Oatley, Jonas de Ro, and Feng Zhu are great at this -- they all offer tons of free content that proves their success as a teacher.

It's interesting that somebody brought up the idea of tipping in the U.S., because in the U.S. most educators are extremely underpaid in relation to the amount of work they do in preparation for classes. Another reason why, on principle, I like to pay for tutorials. I feel like if someone creates something of value to someone else and there's some sort of demand, why not compensate them for their time? That's the key part, creating value. Just my two cents though.
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Re: Why would you ever pay for tutorials?

Postby Cam » Mon Jun 01, 2015 7:35 pm

The way I see it, sticking knowledge behind paywalls just sets the world's creativity back and sets personal gain ahead of global gain, which is nothing to be proud of. Books are different, because you can sample the contents at a library before deciding whether you want to buy it or not. There's no "paywall".
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