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Author Topic: Copyright and Great Masters  (Read 24720 times)
Rob C
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« Reply #20 on: April 24, 2012, 01:31:27 PM »
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I'm perfectly happy to accept Annie L's affidavit on Life Through a Lens that nobody can catch character.

That's just a wish, hype, and nonsense for the great unwashed to wallow in to their hearts desire, to allow them to think they really, really have insights into the hearts and minds of George, Angelina etc. etc.; it sells magazines, high-gloss as well as the yellows, as they called them in Italy... For family members, they see the person they already know so well, so of course they know the character; but as far as knowing anything at all about an actor or any other stranger from a photography, yep, pull the other one too, please!

Rob C
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cocasana
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« Reply #21 on: May 03, 2012, 03:24:58 AM »
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Back to the original subject: if you don't make money from a copy (declared) of a copyrighted photo you don't get into troubles. Is that correct?
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bill t.
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« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2012, 11:05:55 PM »
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Is "Photography for Curmudgeons" still in print?

And going back to the OT, best practice is to stay as far away from copyrighted material as possible.  Best advice is, for between about $100 and  $250 you can have a chat with an attorney specializing in Intellectual Property law.  It could be money very well spent.
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Timprov
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« Reply #23 on: May 14, 2012, 11:33:24 PM »
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Back to the original subject: if you don't make money from a copy (declared) of a copyrighted photo you don't get into troubles. Is that correct?

Not at all.  If no one makes money from your imitation of a copyrighted photo, it would take a seriously baroque scenario for you to see any liability, but it would be possible.  If no one makes money from an actual copy of a copyrighted photo, you could still see liability.  However, most copyright holders don't pursue such things even if they're aware of them, most of those who are left will be satisfied if you desist to a polite letter or a C&D, and you can generally sniff out the few hardcore litigious types with a little research.  (For instance, the photos posted in this thread are copyright violations, and the posters could be held liable, but nobody really cares enough to do it.  One of the reasons everybody hated SOPA is that it would have allowed a copyright holder to hold LULA and its advertisers responsible for the posting of those photos.)

In short, you would have some legal exposure, but your real-world risk is limited unless there's significant money involved.  It's up to you how much risk you want to take on.  If it really worries you, you always have the option of asking the copyright holder for permission.  I would expect that if you're going to do an imitation you'll usually get it.
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Slobodan Blagojevic
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« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2012, 07:58:46 PM »
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... For instance, the photos posted in this thread are copyright violations, and the posters could be held liable...

No... that is a textbook example of the fair use doctrine.
« Last Edit: May 16, 2012, 10:55:10 PM by Slobodan Blagojevic » Logged

Slobodan

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amolitor
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« Reply #25 on: May 16, 2012, 08:05:33 PM »
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You can be savaged for liability even if nobody made any money from your copy, what on EARTH are you talking about?

Liability has nothing to do with whether you made money, and everything to do with whether the copyright holder lost money. If I had printed up, at my own expense, and given away 1,000,000 copies of the hottest Harry Potter book 1 day after its release, my world would have ended in a blizzard of liability. If someone is making money off the genuine article, a credible copy is pretty much guaranteed to reduce, or potentially reduce, the money being made, and the person making the credible copy is liable.
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Frank Sirona
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« Reply #26 on: August 27, 2012, 05:18:34 PM »
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Indeed, by today's standards, the MM image is a Recycle Bin candidate on every level - soft, OOF, unflattering, badly-timed...

Sorry, thatīs off topic again - but I couldnīt (respectfully, of course) disagree more. This is the best portrait of MM Iīve ever seen.

Why?

Because it doesnīt show her professional false front which you do see on every other published photo of her (and which we know so well from virtually every authorized portrait of any public figure as well). What this portrait unveils is the endless confusion and perplexity of a young lady which has become the object of projection for a whole nationīs (or even the Western worldīs) unfulfilled desires - a role slightly too big for a twenty-something.  A role too big for anybody. I donīt think that portrait photography can get better than this: respectfully unveiling a personality, without unduely exposing the person. Great art, in my opinion.
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Frank Sirona. Large format photography of the Desert Southwest.

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WalterEG
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« Reply #27 on: August 27, 2012, 07:55:44 PM »
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I'm perfectly happy to accept Annie L's affidavit on Life Through a Lens that nobody can catch character.

More importantly, for me, Dick Avedon said the same thing.  "All you have to work with is the surface".

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RSL
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« Reply #28 on: August 28, 2012, 10:49:36 AM »
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Back to the original subject: if you don't make money from a copy (declared) of a copyrighted photo you don't get into troubles. Is that correct?

You don't tell us in your personal summary where you are, so we don't know whether you're talking about U.S. copyright law or the laws of some other country. The most recent major change to U.S. copyright law was in 1976, when the U.S. made changes to bring its copyright laws into conformance with the Universal Copyright Convention (UCC.) Before the 1976 changes you could, with registration and an extension, copyright your material for 56 years. 1976 changed that to life plus 50 years. The change also added 19 years to the copyright term for works copyrighted under the old law that hadn't yet fallen into the public domain. A later change in 1988 eliminated the requirement for a copyright notice (Đ) on the work, though it's still a good idea, just to keep somebody else from inadvertently getting into trouble.

In order to know whether or not you're violating someone's copyright by copying his work, you're going to need to know when and where the work was copyrighted. That's why we have attorneys who specialize in intellectual property law. If you're not willing to do the appropriate research and/or consult an attorney who knows what he's doing, it would be best to stay miles away from copying someone else's work. I guarantee that if you were to copy my work I'd sue your butt in a heartbeat. Lots of other folks feel the same way.

By the way, it's not a question of whether or not somebody "copyrighted" his work. He "copyrighted" it simply by producing it. If he also registered his copyright he can get the government to help when he sues you.
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Justan
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« Reply #29 on: September 04, 2012, 11:19:25 AM »
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Hi everyone
during my university I've been studying a lot of History of Art. One aspect that comes back to my mind quite often since I shoot photographs is related to the formation of artists between the 14th and the 20th century. In those times before even thinking having a personal style you had to be able to paint the way all the great Masters of your age and before did. That made me think that, for my very personal enjoyment, I would love to bee able to photograph as the great Masters did.
But I was considering that in those time they didn't, but in these times I can possibly have a copyright problem. What about if I try to get closer as possible to a portrait of Nadar, Karsh, Man Ray, Wharol...? Specifying that is after XXX? Would that be copyright infringement?
Thanks,
Carlo


If you are talking about approximating the same lighting and poses as a past master used, but using different subjects/models, there is no legal issue. No one can hold copyright(s) to specific lighting angles and poses.

If you are talking about exactly duplicating a previous work then there may be copyright issues. But even here, as it is expressly done for educational purposes it probably will be considered Fair Use, which typically expressly permits duplicating works for educational purposes.

When I was studying photography at the U, we were encouraged to take examples of what we thought to be great portraits and/or commercial product works, as examples, and do our best to duplicate the techniques. That was part of the curricula. Part of this kind of project was to critique the works done by students as direct comparison to the original works. Much was learned through these sessions.

See this for a statement from the US Copyright office for a definition of fair use http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl102.html

« Last Edit: September 04, 2012, 11:33:03 AM by Justan » Logged

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