Monday, 9 March 2015

Copyright Violation : Artists Please Read

I'm sure many of my followers will recognise one of my favourite hares, the above painting,  which was painted in aid of the David Shepherd Wildlife Fund. I was thrilled when this painting was not only accepted as a finalist for the annual David Shepherd Wildlife Artist of the Year exhibition at the mall Galleries in London. But because it sold, raising funds for what I believe to be a fantastic charity.

So imagine my surprise today when I read an email from a kind supporter this morning, who forwarded a link showing that my painting is being sold as a design on tea towels, without my permission. No one has contacted me to ask if the painting can be used.  To be honest I was initially in complete shock.

But now I have contacted the company and I am waiting with interest their explanation as to why they are selling my art violating copyright laws.

I will follow up this blog post with their reply.

There is a lot of art on the site so possibly other artists may find their work has been copied too.

Please check this link 

My painting

I would be interested in any comments please.



Sophia Khan said...

My blood is boiling regarding this! This is so wrong and it not only infringes on your rights as an artist but is insulting to the very profession of all artists. I will be following closely to see how they respond as there is no excuse that can justify this. For some reason, this is becoming such and increasingly big problem these days despite the fact that these companies should know that there is no place to hide when they do something like this. Similar cases have arisen around the artist Lisa Congdon:
and also artist Janet Hill:

Good for your for standing up and speaking up about this quickly and know that we as an artist community are hear to help in any way we can to make sure this is stopped.

Jean Haines SWA, SFP said...

Thank you so much Sophia. I will update this blog post as soon as I hear from the company. I am surprised as copyright law is common knowledge and this company seems to use many designs by artists.Auwful isnt it? And I would never have known had someone not kindly told me.

Wilf said...

Last year a friend told me to look on the web at a site promoting on-line jigsaw puzzles. Viewers could sign up, pay and select a puzzle from a
bunch on the site. The pieces flew apart and the payee remade the puzzle on-line using the mouse pointer. Imagine my surpise to find one of my landscapes offered as a puzzle. Two lawyers letters later I did get an apology and my work was withdrawn. All the offending company ( based in the Netherlands ) would say was, " the puzzle had been sent to them by someone in my hometown who signed an affidavit that it was theirs. But, even worse, at a show a year ago, where I was displaying some 30 works, I was approached by an oriental gentleman who offered to buy ALL my
work right there and then. Cash! He wanted to send them all overseas to have them copied and copied and recopied. Ouch!

Christy Lemp said...

Wow! This is the most blatant disregard for artists' work I have seen lately. Sophia has echoed my feelings completely. I really hope there is a way to guard against and stop this action . Thanks for informing us Jean and hope it turns out well for you.

Anonymous said...

It is such a shock, isn't it? I spotted two of my pictures on a website in New Zealand, including a full YouTube video as a demonstration! I contacted the artist to express my surprise and point out copyright and she was very apologetic and added full credit etc. However a commercial company selling your image is different from passing off, so I wish you every success. It will be interesting to see where they sourced the high res image from - that should give you the audit trail.

Lynn Norton said...

I think it is appalling that this company thought it could get away with this - but maybe as they are based in Australia and you are in the UK, they thought you'd never find out? I hope you get a satisfactory reply from the company - although I can't think what they would say in their defence. As an artist, I don't know how you stop this, other than to deface every image you upload with a copyright logo - which then ruins your image for potential buyers? Anyway, good luck with this.

Asha Sudhaker Shenoy said...

This is atrocious! It has happened to me too and what's worse inspite of my protests it continues on the websites. Some one used my art for "World Women's Day" Logo and are yet to bother to reply me!!

The boon that internet has been, it has also become a curse for artists! And for the thieves it's just heaven out there, no questions asked!!

In India, Gallery visitors armed with DSLRs click pics under the guise of ardent art lovers and how many of them sell the prints is never known!!

I am glad you have taken up with the website on the "theft". I wish you all the best in this war against the thieves and their supporters.I hope you will by amply compensated too.

May be you could think of watermarking your works before you post them on the net, to stop this menace to some extent!