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Author Topic: Using a purchased stock photo as a reference for sellable art  (Read 1681 times)

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« on: March 10, 2021, 13:26 »
+1
Mat (or anyone else who knows (not guessing) the correct answer):

I want to purchase an extended license of a stock photo. I want to use that photo as a reference photo for a fine art piece. I will be selling that fine art piece. Is this considered a derivative piece, and does that ext license cover this application?

There is some confusion as to whether ANY license covers this.

Thanks!


« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2021, 14:01 »
+3
Licenses vary from agency to agency, so it might matter where you license, but I believe you are covered by an extended license - in that almost every extended license allows you to sell physical items with the image on it (whether mugs or canvas prints). Every agency allows you to alter images when you use them (as long as you don't get into the sensitive use areas for images with people) so how you alter it isn't really an issue.

Remember years ago there was an artist (might have been Leroy Neiman) who sold his art of NFL games and the NFL went after him for not licensing the rights to use their games - he hadn't used anyone's photos, but this was just about what he was depicting. I wouldn't imagine you'd run into this, but perhaps stay away from editorial images.

The only other issue is whether you can copyright your work - I think the court rulings have to do with how much has been altered as to whether your work deserves its own. May not matter to your planned use, but just to think about.

« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2021, 14:13 »
0
Licenses vary from agency to agency, so it might matter where you license, but I believe you are covered by an extended license - in that almost every extended license allows you to sell physical items with the image on it (whether mugs or canvas prints). Every agency allows you to alter images when you use them (as long as you don't get into the sensitive use areas for images with people) so how you alter it isn't really an issue.

Remember years ago there was an artist (might have been Leroy Neiman) who sold his art of NFL games and the NFL went after him for not licensing the rights to use their games - he hadn't used anyone's photos, but this was just about what he was depicting. I wouldn't imagine you'd run into this, but perhaps stay away from editorial images.

The only other issue is whether you can copyright your work - I think the court rulings have to do with how much has been altered as to whether your work deserves its own. May not matter to your planned use, but just to think about.

Thanks Joann. I was thinking an extended license would cover it. A person in the fine art group said she checked with 123rf, who said NO license covered it, which I dont think is right, but I wanted to check with Adobe, too, since I still sell there.

Were just trying to establish if that fine art piece can be sold with no copyright repercussions if a stock photo is used as a reference. I looked at a couple agencys licenses, and its not spelled out specifically, so its confusing.

Good point about re-copyrighting.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2021, 14:15 by cathyslife »

« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2021, 14:31 »
+3
I mean, there's no requirement I've ever seen that a products for resale EL -has- to be used unaltered, so if "altering" it means painting a version of it or whatever, I can't see how that's an issue. 

As long as you aren't -licensing- the end result...

« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2021, 14:56 »
0
I mean, there's no requirement I've ever seen that a products for resale EL -has- to be used unaltered, so if "altering" it means painting a version of it or whatever, I can't see how that's an issue. 

As long as you aren't -licensing- the end result...

Thats what I think too. Thanks Sean.

« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2021, 02:41 »
+2
Thanks Joann. I was thinking an extended license would cover it. A person in the fine art group said she checked with 123rf, who said NO license covered it, which I dont think is right, but I wanted to check with Adobe, too, since I still sell there.


May be 123rf was talking about re-selling as stock ?  I don't think any EL covers derivative art being sold as stock (because you would need copyright for that), while it does cover selling it in print ?

« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2021, 08:12 »
0
Thanks Joann. I was thinking an extended license would cover it. A person in the fine art group said she checked with 123rf, who said NO license covered it, which I dont think is right, but I wanted to check with Adobe, too, since I still sell there.


May be 123rf was talking about re-selling as stock ?  I don't think any EL covers derivative art being sold as stock (because you would need copyright for that), while it does cover selling it in print ?

No, it wouldnt be resold as stock. For instance, if I find a cool photo of a horse. I buy an EL. I would use it as reference to do a pastel painting. I mat and frame it and take that painting to an art show and sell it so someone can hang it on their wall.

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2021, 08:27 »
+1
Alamy has a 'personal use' licence which specifically covers 'reference for artists'. That is 9.99 in the UK, but AIUI the prices can vary a lot between countries.
However, it then says 'personal use only' not for resale (which also applies to the other 'Personal uses').
IMO, it would take a very public-spirited person to say, e.g. I want to just practice drawing a horse today in my sketchbook and for no other purpose, so I'll license a photo from Alamy.
Peer comments on their forum (but you'd probably be better to email them to check your use):
https://discussion.alamy.com/topic/9667-a-new-one-on-me/?tab=comments#comment-172910

« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2021, 13:15 »
0
Alamy has a 'personal use' licence which specifically covers 'reference for artists'. That is 9.99 in the UK, but AIUI the prices can vary a lot between countries.
However, it then says 'personal use only' not for resale (which also applies to the other 'Personal uses').
IMO, it would take a very public-spirited person to say, e.g. I want to just practice drawing a horse today in my sketchbook and for no other purpose, so I'll license a photo from Alamy.
Peer comments on their forum (but you'd probably be better to email them to check your use):
https://discussion.alamy.com/topic/9667-a-new-one-on-me/?tab=comments#comment-172910

Thanks!

« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2021, 14:51 »
+1
Mat (or anyone else who knows (not guessing) the correct answer):

I want to purchase an extended license of a stock photo. I want to use that photo as a reference photo for a fine art piece. I will be selling that fine art piece. Is this considered a derivative piece, and does that ext license cover this application?

There is some confusion as to whether ANY license covers this.

Thanks!

Interesting question, thanks.

« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2021, 03:33 »
+1
Analog printing, using a machine vs manual "printing" (by hand).

If the license allows running the source image through an "oil paint" Photoshop plugin before printing, I don't see why you shouldn't be allowed to do it manually. But you have to remember to credit the photographer as the author.

« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2021, 06:07 »
0
Analog printing, using a machine vs manual "printing" (by hand).

If the license allows running the source image through an "oil paint" Photoshop plugin before printing, I don't see why you shouldn't be allowed to do it manually. But you have to remember to credit the photographer as the author.

That makes sense. And if an extended license allows someone to use a photo on tee shirts, then sell the t-shirts, seems like using it as a reference photo for a painting to sell would be the same. Would be nice to get a definitive answer from Adobe. I have emailed them. I was hoping Mat would weigh in here, but no problem.

The art group is now saying that crediting the photographer isnt enough, you have to have written permission, too. But thats if you just go find an image thru google and use it. Not if you are purchasing a license through adobe. Its apparently a big can of worms.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2021, 06:38 by cathyslife »

« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2021, 08:00 »
+1
A 'painting' would be a derivative work, which I don't think is allowed by the license. You should clearly label the product you sell as a 'print', even if the process of transferring the digital image on canvas is manual.

« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2021, 09:35 »
+1
I was hoping Mat would weigh in here, but no problem.

Sorry Cathy, I can't give you specific legal advice. My recommendation is to refer to the terms of the license agreement.

https://stock.adobe.com/license-terms#extendedLicenses

-Mat

« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2021, 09:51 »
0
I was hoping Mat would weigh in here, but no problem.

Sorry Cathy, I can't give you specific legal advice. My recommendation is to refer to the terms of the license agreement.

https://stock.adobe.com/license-terms#extendedLicenses

-Mat

No problem. I cant even get to a sales person who can clarify it for me. My email went to contributor relations, and she sends me to a page that has nothing that covers my question. And she says no one in sales has an email. 😳

Heres what the license says: Extended licenses
With an Extended license, you may:
Use the asset with all the rights granted in the Standard license.
Reproduce the asset beyond the 500,000 copy/viewer restriction.
Create merchandise or products for resale or distribution where the main value of the product is associated with the asset itself, such as a coffee mug or t-shirt.

The last sentence seems to imply that an extended license covers it. I would be creating a painting (merchandise or product), the main value of the painting IS the image I am using as a reference, and I would be selling it. But since it doesnt specifically say photo reference and since I cant get to anyone who can confirm, I will just use other sources.

Can of worms. But thanks everyone for the input.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2021, 09:54 by cathyslife »

« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2021, 10:11 »
0
A 'painting' would be a derivative work, which I don't think is allowed by the license. You should clearly label the product you sell as a 'print', even if the process of transferring the digital image on canvas is manual.

I dont see any mention of derivatives in any of the forbidden uses.

« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2021, 11:12 »
+1
A 'painting' would be a derivative work, which I don't think is allowed by the license. You should clearly label the product you sell as a 'print', even if the process of transferring the digital image on canvas is manual.

I dont see any mention of derivatives in any of the forbidden uses.

Just think about it. If you label your product as a painting, it means that you're an artist and this is your artistic interpretation of the original image. This would automatically make you a co-author of this new piece of art. A can of worms, as you said.

If you just label it as 'Print of [original stock image name] by [photographer's name] done with oil paints on the Cathy-3000 Plus printer' you can safely sell it, without claiming that any part of it is your artistic creation. ;)

And of course there's the separate question if this specific license allows you to sell prints (not on mugs and t-shirts). The wording there is not clear about this.


 

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