So why am I leaving? The short answer: ownership. With the exception of just a few published pieces of art (which belong to other companies), Marvel owns the copyrights to my entire professional portfolio. And why shouldn’t they? I was, of course, compensated fairly for it, and for that I’m grateful — but the sum total of that work is not enough to support me in the distant future. My page rate is essentially the same as when I started at 21, so I’ve decided to invest in myself. What I create in the next decade needs to pay dividends when my vision gets blurry and my hands start to shake (and who knows what else). Now is the time to make that choice, while I’m still young, possess “great power,” but have few responsibilities.
-Paolo Rivera, explaining his decision to leave Daredevil and his exclusive contract with Marvel Comics. He hasn’t closed the door to working with Marvel in the future, but will focus on creator-owned work, commissions and other projects.
I hope that this is the wave of the future. No rancor, or bad feelings (unless they are necessary). Just a rational cost-benefit analysis. Creators should care about Marvel/DC precisely as much as the corporations care about them.