Friday, November 5, 2010

Protect Your Art from Thieves!!!

People are unbelievable sometimes. An artist named Brazen Edwards-Hager (Christine Edwards) from BC, Canada, has taken one of my copyrighted images and was listing it as her own on her Etsy page and on ArtFire. This painting was a commissioned portrait of a friend's child and they would have been upset to know that it was being misused. I contacted both sites and I am hoping they pull her off. Ironically, she uses the name Brazen and states that she has a former background in Criminology! Double irony, she posted my image right above her copyright notice! Thankfully, someone e-mailed me to let me know or it would still be there.

Luckily, I headed the advice of a fellow artist to start copyrighting my images. It is an inconvenience to copyright each painting but, at $35 per image, it is relatively inexpensive. The nice part is, if you have a series of paintings, you can copyright them all as one series. It is easy enough to do online, so please consider it. Here is the link to the copyright office.


Studio at the Farm said...

That's horrible [and Brazen] Peggi. I'm glad you wrote about the issue, as I am very lax concerning the copywriting of my art. Thank you for the nudge!

Jim Serrett said...

I don't get it. What did she think she would do with your image? She could not sell the work, at best maybe make a cheap print?
The safest avenue I believe is not to post images that are high resolution.
I think joining Creative Commons is a good idea. But I've had whole articles lifted from my site and not given credit or a link.
So sorry this has happen to you.
And I can not believe this person says they are a artist.

Peggi Habets said...

Hi Jim,
She was passing my work (and someone else's) off as her own to solicit new commission work. In fact, she said as much after I notified her of her infringement, except that she didn't seem to see theh harm in it. (I'm guessing that's why she isn't in Criminology any more.)

I agree about posting lo-res images although it makes it harder to sell art that way. Potential clients like to see exactly what they are buying. There is also a way to disable right-click; Fine Art America has that so I can post higher res images there. Thanks for your comment.

Costescu said...

That is so bizarre (and just simply un-Canadian ;))

How on earth could she think that passing your art off as her own would help her get a commission? Ok, it may get her a commission but she would quickly lose it when the client realized after seeing her work that it is nothing like yours, bizarre :(

wandamarie said...

Thanks for the reminder, Peggi. I keep procrastinating about this.

Candace X. Moore said...

Very useful post, Peggi. I hear about this frequently. Thanks for the link to the copyright office, and good comments from your readers, too. I think we have to protect our output, but bottom line is that nowdays, many people don't see anything wrong with stealing someone else's intellectual property, whether it is visual art, music, or a dvd. Are you planning to litigate?

Peggi Habets said...

I know, it is bizarre.

No, I am not litigating. You have to prove that someone made money from your work. I have no way of proving that. I'm just glad she removed the work after I contacted her. All I can hope, at this point, is that she learned her lesson and that others take the time to copyright their work.

devotedmomof7 said...

That is hard to believe someone would not realize that is illegal! Thank you for this post of warning.

sam said...

Its disgraceful Peggi and very sad. I used to have many of my images stolen on eBay. They would take the image and make prints of them to sell passing them off as the genuine painting. I now always put 'copyright sam dolman' across the images that appear on the internet. As ugly as it is it has stopped peopl using the images. Thanks for the imfo on the copyright sight Im going to check it out now.

Anonymous said...

I put a copyright logo on each painting I post.