Saturday, April 10, 2010

Thief! No, not you...

So I was perusing blogs today, and one of the blogs I went to was Amanda Raquel Worr's because I love, love, love her artwork. She had some information about books and resources to help budding illustrators, and illustrators who are having a hard time getting published.
One of the things she linked to is a blog called Escape from Illustration Island. I had actually come across this blog some time ago, and then as my 4-year old attention span is wont to do, I promptly forgot about it, so I was thrilled to make its re-acquaintance, so to speak. (Thanks Ms Worr!)
EII has lots of good info about copyrights and other legal stuff for artists. As I was reading through some of the older posts I found a link to an article about artist Chris Buzelli (again, love his stuff too!) who had a problem with a blogger at who used one of Chris's pieces without permission.  Chris called for a "posse" after getting a somewhat snarky reply from the offender. Go here and read the comments to see what ensued.

Now, I get that it's really easy to find works online that you like and want to use for a variety of reasons.  I'm sure we've all seen a picture here or there that we want to use to illustrate a story or whatever. The point is that "right clicking" a piece and saving it to copy and use is, most of the time, illegal. There are some "unless-es". And sometimes, no matter how you dig, you can't ever find who actually took a picture or how to contact them.
But really, the effort should be made. I think most people would say okay to using something if they were contacted properly and credit would be given.  (Unless someone has already purchased the rights to said image, of course.) I know I am guilty of it as well... but I think what really gets me is that, to me,  it's one thing if it's some kind of generic picture that is plastered and  re-plastered all over the internet (I know, legally it's probably not, but hello - LOLcats anyone?) but to use someone's artwork is a whole different deal. And the fact that once contacted the "thief's" response was rude and uninformed was really too much. If someone ever contacted me like that about something I posted, I would take it down immediately and profusely apologize. End of story. And I would expect the same consideration. Not that anyone has. So far. (I guess I'm not famous enough, huh?!)

Anyway, it's an interesting and informative read for you artists out there. Check it out.

Oh yah, how do you like my new "kids"?


  1. Love your new one - she has a bit of Scarlett O'Hara to her I think.

    Going to click your links too, sounds like an interesting dialogue.

  2. You're quite welcome Tera. : )
    I read the same thing about copyright, it made me wonder if there is anything an illustrator can really do to protect their work.
    I try to have my name on all my work, but I've heard that art directors find it distracting... Guess I just have to hope for the best.

  3. Oh wow, very informative. Dana's got big cajones. Thanks for all the cool links.

    And your kids are very chic! Beautiful faces, and I love the girl's pose.

  4. So what legal recourse does one have if their artwork is used without permission?

    I am super guilty of copying internet photos and using them, but if I don't do it if it looks like someone's artwork. Although...sometimes photography IS someone's artwork. Like the stack of pancakes on my current post? Maybe it is someone's pride and joy.


  5. Yeah, girl, you need to protect your stuff! I love it!

  6. I had two people steal the same image, one claimed it as her own work on a social network (promptly removed when I contacted the site owner)and a band promoter who used it for a promo poster. I was told to eff off by the band leader who promptly apologized after I had contacted his record company.

    I don't mind it if a blogger uses a pic and I am credited and linked back to, but when people use my work for profit or false claims grrrrrrrrrrrr.

  7. Here is another problem people don't understand, once someone steals YOUR image and uses it online, that image directs traffic to THEIR site on search engines. I am then deprived of traffic to my artblog and a chance to build art buyers/connections.

  8. After reading the comments and then Dana's half-assed apology followed by CBS's apology for Dana's apology....I'm surprised the guy still has a job. What a jerk.

    I'm going to make a new watermark for my pictures soon. But, I've been saying that for a year now. *sigh*

  9. I found a piece of art I wanted to use as an intro to one of my blog posts, and I asked the artist for permission to use her image, explaining that I'd link back to her site. She was very gracious and flattered and pleased, and, of course, granted me permission. If she had said No, I would have found something different. It's not that difficult to do, people, and it keeps the peace.

    And yes, I love your new people! :-)


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