It seems there has been a bout of copyright infringement going on - again. This stuff never ends and people don't seem to realize what is okay to post and what is not okay to post. Here are some hints:
If I post a painting I painted that was influenced by a painting you did - and don't mention that it's influenced by your work and link to your blog - that is wrong. It may be an oversight - if so, then fix it. If it's not an oversight, don't do it; it's wrong.
If I post a painting that is obviously your painting but cropped and the color temperature changed - and don't mention that I have just posted your painting on my blog with your name and a link to your blog - this is creating-some-very-bad-karma wrong.
Seems like this has happened to Jane Minter. Now, Jane has a style all her own - soft, lovely, loose, beautiful. I don't think just anyone could take a Jane Minter painting and copy it and make it look just like the Jane Minter painting. I think someone could take a Jane Minter painting and crop it and put it on their blog and say they painted it. But that is wrong.
What do you think? Here are the paintings (1) done by Jane and (2) claimed by the other blogger...
Jane's painting that I cropped from her original.
The painting claimed by the other blogger as a painting she did "from a painting." She didn't mention Jane's name or blog.
Look at these two paintings and tell me - do you think this other blogger actually painted this painting? Or is it a copy from Jane's blog?
You can find more information and voice your opinion at Jane's blog here.
The problem is, this is acceptable behavior, especially in the big leagues.
You don't think so?
Well, what about Shepard Fairey and his work on the Barack Obama Hope posters - that were photos illegally appropriated from an Associated Press photographer who took the photo during Obama's campaign.
From Wikipedia about this issue:
The HOPE poster was based on a copyrighted photograph taken in April 2006 by Mannie Garcia while on assignment for the Associated Press (AP), which wants credit and compensation for the work.
However, Garcia believes that he personally owns the copyright for the photo
, and has said, "If you put all the legal stuff away, I’m so proud of the photograph and that Fairey did what he did artistically with it, and the effect it's had." Fairey has said that his use of it falls within the legal definition of fair use. Lawyers for both sides were discussing an amicable agreement. In February 2009, Fairey filed a federal lawsuit against the Associated Press, seeking a declaratory judgment that his use of the AP photograph was protected by the fair use doctrine and so did not infringe their copyright. In October 2009 Shepard Fairey admitted to trying to deceive the Court by destroying evidence that he had used the photograph alleged by the AP. His lawyers announced they were no longer representing him, and Laurence Pulgram, an intellectual property lawyer stated that the revelation definitely put Mr. Fairey's case "in trouble".[
50] In May 2010, a judge urged Fairey to settle. The parties settled in January of 2011.
Fairey was questioned about criticism surrounding his use of images from social movements, specifically images created by artists of color, in an interview with Liam O'Donoghue for Mother Jones
. O'Donoghue later posted an article, titled "Shepard Fairey’s Image Problem", on several independent media sites. The article explored Fairey's use of copyright protected images while at the same time defending his copyright protected works from being used by other artists and corporations.
Fairey cited his collaboration with Public Enemy
, his funding of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation
, and his six-figure charitable contributions for Darfur
assistance as counterpoints to the charges of exploitation.
Full article here:
So... if this happens when people are talking about big bucks and big names, how is a smaller artist who isn't a household name to defend his/her work from another who claims it as their own? I don't know the answer to the problem. Each person has to find the answer within. I hate that this has caused one of my favorite bloggers (Maggie Latham) to stop posting her 1,000 Washes challenge blog (because she, too, has recently been the victim of copyright infringement).
I think I'll continue to post my stuff as I create it. In fact, I'm thinking that putting my work out there gives me a solid background to prove the work is mine, especially since I do a lot of works in progress paintings.
What's your take on this? Have you ever had someone simply cut and paste a work of your own into their blog and claim it as their own? If so, what did you do? Have you ever had someone paint an exact copy of a work you put on your blog without giving you any credit for the original or stating that their painting was an homage to your painting?
Did you know you cannot copy any living artist's work?
Did you know you can copy the work of "the masters" because they have been dead for so long? (My local art museum says you cannot photograph works of any living artist and any artwork that was made after 1978.)
Have you ever made a mistake (like when we all begin painting from books and DVDs and teachers, etc.) and not realized it? What did you do to fix the problem?
Do you think teachers who put out DVDs and books should allow others to copy their work and sell it, if it's in the book? Would you want to do that?