The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Friday, September 24, 2021


Artists cash in on China's online sticker craze
This photo taken on July 12, 2019 shows shareable "Silly Piggy" images in Chinese social media app WeChat, in Shanghai. When "Silly Piggy" appeared in China's popular WeChat social media app, the sticker became an instant hit, with people sending it more than 30 million times in its first month to express their feelings in text messages. Stickers like the mischievous cartoon pig and other quirky creatures are all the rage in China, giving the artists behind them a way to make money and win fans -- as long as they stay within the bounds of censorship. MATTHEW KNIGHT / AFP.

by Matthew Knight



SHANGHAI (AFP).- When "Silly Piggy" appeared in China's popular WeChat social media app, the sticker became an instant hit, with people sending it more than 30 million times in its first month to express their feelings in text messages.

Stickers like the mischievous cartoon pig and other quirky creatures are all the rage in China, giving the artists behind them a way to make money and win fans -- as long as they stay within the bounds of censorship.

The creator of Silly Piggy, River Rui, was able to leave her office job with a design firm and set up as an independent artist thanks to the success of the character.

"'Silly Piggy' is more like how I am in my little world, how I interact with my friends, it's that 'Silly Piggy' kind of style," Rui told AFP.

The pig has many moods: he types furiously at his desk as tears stream down his face. He lays flat on the office floor as his spirit leaves his body.

"Basically anyone who has done overtime will have the same feelings as him," said Rui as she doodled on a scrap of paper in a Shanghai cafe.

Unlike memes and animated GIFs popular outside China, instant messaging stickers are often original creations of local artists who can see their little characters enjoy spectacular popularity among the country's 847 million mobile internet users and spread offline through commercial licensing deals.

"Friends feel proud of me when people they know share my stickers and they tell them 'I know the person who made those' and they feel proud. It's really flattering and makes me very happy," Rui said.

"It's like a dream."

Now more than two-thirds of her income comes from her cartoon pig, through licensing and selling merchandise online, including soft toys and keychains of Silly Piggy.

WeChat also allows people to send money to the artists directly via the application.

Some, like Rui, have a loyal following.

Scores of excited fans queued up for Rui's autograph at a recent fan meeting in a fashionable Shanghai mall with a pop-up Silly Piggy merchandise stall.

"It's so cute and it reflects how young office workers feel inside," said 23-year-old fan Yang Hao.

"Even though it's grumbling it can still express that in a really lively and vivid way."

Popular in Asia
Stickers are also popular in other parts of Asia.

In Japan, the LINE messaging service has launched 4.9 million sets of stickers, including officially-approved cartoon versions of famous characters from Harry Potter to Mickey Mouse.

South Korea's largest messaging app KakaoTalk introduced its first set of emoticons in November 2011 and now boasts 7,500 sets that generally cost 2,000 won ($1.70) each.

WeChat stickers are subject to strict censorship -- like all online content in the Communist-ruled country.

To be approved by the platform, stickers must not violate rules such as harming the nation's honour, disturbing social order or inciting unlawful assembly and protest, according to WeChat's regulations.

After people drew unflattering comparisons between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Winnie the Pooh, stickers of the popular portly bear became unavailable for download on WeChat.


© Agence France-Presse










Today's News

December 6, 2019

An exceptional Gravettian "Venus," some 23,000-years-old, was discovered by Inrap

Egyptian archaeologist Hawass sees role as 'custodian' of antiquities

Exhibition explores nineteenth-century travel imagery

What's the point of the Turner Prize, anyway?

Was this 18,000-year-old Siberian puppy a dog or a wolf?

Historic Gold Rush-era shipwreck reveals rare San Francisco coin

Sprüth Magers exhibits Gilbert & George's PARADISICAL PICTURES in Los Angeles

Small galleries assess the benefits of big art fairs

Exhibition of seminal works by Richard Tuttle on view at Pace Gallery

Christie's Paris Post-War and Contemporary Art department achieves €79M in 2019

Rare objects in Argent Haché acquired by Nationalmuseum

For Faith Ringgold, the past is present

Questions arise over Black Art in a new show

Artists cash in on China's online sticker craze

Española Way, an easy stroll from Art Basel Miami Beach

Royal gift up for auction at Cheffins in December

Final phase of major transformation at Mingei International Museum

Mr Doodle invades Sotheby's

Exhibition explores Scotland's role in the fight to eliminate tropical diseases

The MMFA creates a fund for the acquisition of works by artists underrepresented in its collection

Toledo Museum of Art installs two new works by artist Joseph Kosuth

Richard D'Abate named Interim Executive Director of Ogunquit Museum of American Art

The Winnipeg Art Gallery welcomes Riva Symkoand and Julia Lafreniere

Julio Valdez's work currently exhibited at the June Kelly Gallery

Touchstone Gallery opens an exhibition that features over 150 works by DC area artists

Rolex watches presented to balloon flight pioneer Julian Nott offered at Heritage Auctions

Some of the most unique auction items that truly were unique

How Photogrammetry Is Used In The Gaming Industry




Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 



Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

sa gaming free credit

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org avemariasound.org juncodelavega.com facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site Parroquia Natividad del Señor
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful