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Author Topic: Artist Request to copy my work as basis for painting  (Read 10800 times)
MarkBarbieri
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« Reply #20 on: July 12, 2009, 07:18:20 AM »
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I'm just a hobbyist, so I really don't know what I'm talking about.  It seems like a simple business decision to me.  What will make you the most money in the long run?  Refusing the request and presumably avoiding the dilution of sales of your images?  Licensing the image to the artist and gaining a bit of revenue and some additional exposure?
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alainbriot
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« Reply #21 on: July 12, 2009, 01:29:00 PM »
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Dave,

Personally I Just say "Yes."  All famous works have been copied.  I don't think it is preventable.

If contacted I ask the "copyist" to purchase an original print from me.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.

Asking the original artist is a courtesy since anyone can copy a photograph (paint it, etc.) without asking for permission and we would most likely never know about it.

I was once in a large gallery in Scottsdale, Arizona, when a client was there with a current copy of Arizona Highways Magazine, asking the owner the cost of making a painting from one of the photographs in the magazine.  They were negotiating the fee. It was clear the photographer whose image was going to be reproduced had not been contacted.  The whole transaction was conducted matter of factly.   It was clearly something that was done regularly by this gallery and artists.  

Alain
« Last Edit: July 12, 2009, 01:32:06 PM by alainbriot » Logged

Alain Briot
Author of Mastering Landscape Photography, Mastering Composition, Creativity and Personal Style., Marketing Fine Art Photography and How Photographs are Sold.
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JohnKoerner
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« Reply #22 on: July 18, 2009, 08:51:59 AM »
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I agree with the comments of John Camp and EnlightPhoto. The whole point of a copyright is to force people to purchase from you if they want your "intellectual property," not to just hoarde your images unto yourself. The fact that this woman came to the OP, respectfully and professionally, basically to discuss the prospect of buying his work (which is how I read the request) is both a compliment to you as well as an opportunity for you.

Without reiterating what has already been said, basically a sales opportunity was turned down by the OP, which strikes me as odd. The besic theme of this topic reminds me of the words of a "scholastically"-ignorant farmer friend of mine, but who had a whole lot of real-world smarts. He said to me one day regarding a similar subject, "You know, sometimes you can close your fist so tight on what you have, ain't nothin' good gonna get out, but ain't nothin' else good gonna get in there either."

Psychologists call this the 'scarcity' mentality versus the 'abundance' mentality. Some people really believe there's no room for others to share in their spoils, while others realize there is plenty of opportunity for everyone involved to win and come out ahead.

I am glad the OP had the opportunity to sort of make amends for what was a rather self-absorbed original response to a sincere and polite inquiry.

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alainbriot
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« Reply #23 on: July 18, 2009, 12:20:02 PM »
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Quote from: JohnKoerner
"You know, sometimes you can close your fist so tight on what you have, ain't nothin' good gonna get out, but ain't nothin' else good gonna get in there either."

John,

Good quote.  I'd add that sometimes you can clinch you fist on something that will run through it, no matter how tight your grasp is.  Water for example, or the belief that no one will copy your work if you tell them not to.  Such attempts are futile.  Just say yes, or better don't waste time worrying about it.

Alain
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Alain Briot
Author of Mastering Landscape Photography, Mastering Composition, Creativity and Personal Style., Marketing Fine Art Photography and How Photographs are Sold.
http://www.beautiful-landscape.com
Rob C
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« Reply #24 on: July 19, 2009, 11:28:41 AM »
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Personally, I think you have to adopt a simple stance.

That is always say yes, first, but request purpose and usage, exactly as would Getty or Corbis, thus indicating that a charge is naturally a matter of course.

You might expect your favourite bar to give you the odd - very odd! - freebie,  but you wouldnīt expect that from a bar to which youīd never been before, would you?

In both cases the product is product is business.

How complex, simple or different a painting and photograph are has nothing to do with it; the barter is done via money or some other valuable consideration which can be related to a monetary/measurable value that suits BOTH parties or there is no deal.

I suspect that most professional photographers or artists would find no problem with the concept of valuable exchange - thatīs what all sellingīs about. The worst attitude is where the person being asked feels flattered and becomes stupidly generous for that reason. It kills the profession. If that doesnīt matter to you, then give your work away - itīs only you being creamed, despite the collateral damage you do the rest of the photographic world which, no doubt, couldnīt bother you less. (This is NOT directed to the OP; itīs a general statement.)

Rob C
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Craig Murphy
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« Reply #25 on: July 19, 2009, 01:10:04 PM »
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If the painter bases a painting on a photograph but puts his or her mark on it by adding their own significant elements hence changing  the nature of the work from the original photo it becomes a new work.   No need to ask permission I believe.
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CMurph
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« Reply #26 on: July 19, 2009, 06:01:56 PM »
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Quote from: Craig Murphy
If the painter bases a painting on a photograph but puts his or her mark on it by adding their own significant elements hence changing  the nature of the work from the original photo it becomes a new work.   No need to ask permission I believe.

I suppose it all depends on how significantly the original was changed, which is probably a very subjective discussion.  Even after adding significant elements it might be quite obvious the painting was copied from an image.

 I'll be the first to admit I'm no lawyer, but some very quick research on google seems to contradict this.  

From US copyright law: "Only the owner of copyright in a work has the right to prepare, or to authorize someone else to create, a new version of that work."  What constitutes a new version?

There are several sites for painters that discuss this and they seem to follow the stance that you shouldn't do it unless the photograph is released for that use or you have the photographers permission.  There are probably other sites which state other points of view, but I didn't see any in a quick scan.

There probably is some case law somewhere, not sure how important it is.  If you get asked decide where you stand then politely say yes or no.  If you don't get asked and you actually find out about it ... guess that's a tougher question that falls in the category of "crossing the bridge when you come to it".

Then there is always another point of few ... even if it is legal it doesn't seem right to use a photograph without permission.

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