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 Specific FanQuarter Rules

Welcome to the rules page for FanQuarter. In the General Rules page you will find rules that apply to all areas of Elfwood. Here you will find only the individual rules that apply to FanQuarter. FanQuarter was created to keep fan art distinct from original artwork for copyright and legal reasons and to make browsing Elfwood easier.

 What is Fan Art?
Elfwood defines fan art as any picture depicting characters or scenes from any form of published visual media, including - but not limited to - television shows, movies, comic books, graphic novels, video and computer games, and webcomics. This includes original characters you created in any fan universe.
Illustrations from novels are not considered fan art and as such they do not belong in FanQuarter. The exceptions to this are novels based on visual sources (such as the Star Wars series) and the Harry Potter series; these would all go into FanQuarter.

Pictures of characters belonging to friends or people you know are not considered fan art unless they happen to be published or exist in a fan universe.

All video games with a visual interface are considered to be a source of fan art, even if you create original characters within the game.


Each picture must have two (2) things in order to be accepted.

  1. A list of all character names being portrayed.

  2. The name(s) of the source from which the picture is fanart of. We need the full title and not just an acronym, such as Harry Potter instead of HP.

 What kind of Fan Art does Elfwood NOT allow?

On Elfwood, all fan art needs to be from a source that is science fiction or fantasy in theme. This means that drawing a character from a non-genre series in a fantasy costume is not acceptable; the character must be from a series which is in genre. For example, drawing characters from Titanic as elves. Although elves are in genre, the movie Titanic is not, so such a picture would not be accepted. To meet Elfwood’s genre requirements, the source must not only contain sci-fi and/or fantasy elements, but the theme must revolve around them. It is insufficient if a show which is normally not in genre has one episode with some magical influence, for example. In this case we would likely accept fan art depicting the fantasy elements of that one episode, but not general fan art from the same series. Example: A picture of Kodos and Kang from the Simpsons is alright, but general pictures of Simpsons characters are not.

This being said, pictues that don’t break the forbidden content rule and are fan art can be moved to the Other Works tab by a moderator if they are found to be unacceptable for FanQuarter. Pictures that are not fan art should be submitted to the SF&F art section, which is for original art. The Other Works tab is a catch all section for material that is either non-genre, or wasn’t up to the standards of Elfwood, but is PG-13 approved.

Celebrity art: FanQuarter only allows celebrity art where you draw an actor in a role he/she played where the movie/TV-series is considered fantasy/sci-fi, such as Elijah Wood in the role of Frodo. If you draw Elijah Wood as himself or Elijah Wood in a role he did not play, such images will belong in the SF&F art gallery or your Other Works tab.

Fan Art of things like weapons, maps, plants, buildings, and other "still life" are generally not accepted by themselves. If it is portrayed in a very original way, however, we will most likely allow it as long as your gallery is composed mostly of character pictures. Reproductions of movie props such as weapons or jewelery are rarely accepted, as they are generally viewed as copies. However, you may submit a photo of a person in costume with the props; we consider full costumes original and acceptable. Keep in mind, however, that the costume in its entirety must be designed and created by -you-. Simply putting on a leather coat and sunglasses and calling a picture "Neo from the Matrix" is not acceptable. Landscapes are acceptable as long as they are clearly depicting a distinctive scene from the universe they are representing.

Pictures that have been copied in any way from other sources are never allowed. The moderators will reject any picture that is copied regardless of quality or skill. There is often a fine line between using another picture as reference and copying it (see below for a more detailed explanation of reference and copying).

 Copy, or reference?
With fan art, it is often necessary to use a reference picture to get the clothes, hair, or facial features of a character right. We recognize that there is often a fine line between something which is copied and something which is referenced. To ensure that you do not cross that line, here are a few pointers to consider when using a picture as a reference.

Use more than one (1) picture as a reference point if possible, to ensure that you do not simply reproduce the details you see for lack of other perspectives. If you are referencing a pose, do not use a picture of the same character you are drawing as reference. Use a picture from elsewhere, and change the body shape, clothes, and other features accordingly. Only use your reference picture for a basic idea of anatomy, not for the entire posture. Do several practice sketches of the character in different poses and from different angles to give yourself a good idea of his/her appearance. After you have done this a few times, you may not even need a reference picture. Use a reference picture for only -one- thing in your picture; either composition, pose, light source, clothing, etc, but not all of the above. If you try to use a single picture to reference all of these points you will most likely end up with a reproduction, not an original work. Always try to draw a character in your own style, instead of copying the style of the creator. With fan art from live action movies, if you are aiming for realism, then try to learn how to draw the character’s features rather than copying them directly from reference photos.

We feel that you will find creating original work much more rewarding and satisfying than copying pictures somebody else already drew. You may not get the best results at first, but you will improve much more this way than if you only copy all the time.

If ever you are unsure if you have copied a reference picture too closely, the answer is probably YES! Always ask a moderator before uploading it; the support staff would be more than happy to help you out if you are not certain. Copied pictures tie up the queue because we need to search for the originals before we reject them. The most common elements that decide a copied picture are pose, composition, and lighting, or any combination of these things. Secondary elements are things like facial expression, the fall of hair or clothing, and accessories or background details.

For more on copying versus reference, please see the wonderful Woodworks article.


  • Illustration created by Michelle Mayo
  • ERB Logo created by Devon Cady-Lee


    Elfwood™ is a site for Fantasy and Science Fiction art and stories. The site was founded by Thomas Abrahamsson and is maintained by helpful assistants and moderators, owned by the Elfwood AB corporation.