What's the policy on this?
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  1. #1
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    What's the policy on this?

    I am looking to print a few paintings from an artist I REALLY like, but his originals cost upwards of $10,000 and there doesn't seem to be any prints available. Is it pretty heavily frowned upon to take some high resolution images of his work down to Staples, and paying $20 per print to have them printed there?

    I would NEVER sell these. They would rest upon the walls of my studio from now until the end of time.

    A) I don't want to fuck the artist over.
    B) I don't want to do anything illegal.

    Thanks for any information.

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    I have a bunch of Mccaigs paintings, a piece by Hussar and one or two
    others printed and framed in my studio. I don't think I fucked them over.

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    yeah I'm not sure about the legality but i wouldn't say you are fucking over the artist, especially since you said the guy is sold out so i guess he is doing fine without you money :b

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    It's not like you're printing money. You're not selling them or exchanging them
    for anything. If you were, you would not have made this thread. People have
    been photocopying things for years and putting them up on their wall.

    If I was still a cop and I saw that, I honestly would not have given two shits.
    I doubt I would have even noticed. I was too busy looking for things like
    drugs and machine guns.

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    I have to disagree with SE here, Staples or any other printer should not allow you to make hi-res prints of someone else's work. If you do it for yourself with your own printer that's one thing; a company making prints of someone else's copy righted material for you is just wrong. Not everyone has the same morals and how do they know what the end purpose is?

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    Thanks for the replies. This was kind of what I was thinking too (google searches kind of came up with the same feedback).

    Now, what should be the bare minimum resolution for a good looking 24"x20" poster?

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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaint View Post
    I have to disagree with SE here, Staples or any other printer should not allow you to make hi-res prints of someone else's work. If you do it for yourself with your own printer that's one thing; a company making prints of someone else's copy righted material for you is just wrong. Not everyone has the same morals and how do they know what the end purpose is?
    Hmm, you've got a point dPaint. Although, if you agree with printing these out at any stage, then it can kind of get into a slippery slope argument.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaint View Post
    I have to disagree with SE here, Staples or any other printer should not allow you to make hi-res prints of someone else's work. If you do it for yourself with your own printer that's one thing; a company making prints of someone else's copy righted material for you is just wrong. Not everyone has the same morals and how do they know what the end purpose is?
    I would defer to Armand concerning any real legalities here anyway.

    Yeah I made mine using the laser printer at my old work. The place was going under
    liquidation, so I just gathered up a bunch of things I wanted printed and printed
    the shit out of it.

    Mine were not hi-res as such, decent, but not high res, but the printing quality was
    such that they look amazing. They are only A3.

    Have to say though, I doubt any print store here would care about printing what you
    gave them unless it was a photo depicting something illegal. I don't know if thats
    a reflection of South Africa or just general apathy.

    Would it make any difference that I own editions of the physical books that the covers I have
    framed are from? Looking over your post, probably not.

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    @dpaint- i can see what you are talking about with the rights and all that but i really doubt this is going to turn into a big deal for anyone

    Last edited by kevin_; October 9th, 2012 at 09:08 PM.
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    I'm waiting for dpaint and elwell to tell us how wrong we are so I can got to bed.

    Hurry up you codgers. I've worn the writing off my f5 key.

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    Yes, Staples probably won't do it for you, company policy is that they're not supposed to print/copy any copyrighted material. It totally depends on the local store and how diligent they are, though. On the flipside, I once had to get into a screaming match with a Wal-mart employee because he wouldn't believe that the paintings I was trying to get prints of were my own work.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    On the flipside, I once had to get into a screaming match with a Wal-mart employee because he wouldn't believe that the paintings I was trying to get prints of were my own work.
    How did that end? From what I've seen on the internet, a day without a fist fight at Wal-mart is like a day without sunshine.

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    I had to get a manager and sign something indemnifying them. It was incredibly stupid, since it was only because it was artwork. I could have gone in with a disk full of swiped photos and nobody would have blinked an eye.


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    So... wouldn't this basically be the same as pirating music?

    Not saying I necessarily take issue with it btw.

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    For the record, the artist I am talking about is John Berkey; he's no longer living So, if someone knows where I can buy some good quality (and affordable, less than $30 a pop) prints, let me know. My google search didn't turn up much.

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    Sorry SE I was painting.

    Individuals I don't have a problem with but companies I do. Its not really a moral issue I just think the more people involved the more chance for abuse. I own a fair amount of original art but I also have posters of some Bouguereau's and Lovell's and some other stuff. I bought them and didn't make any of it but that's just me. I would never let someone take a hires picture of my artwork that I didn't know, because again, too much room for abuse, low res I don't care.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaint View Post
    Sorry SE I was painting.
    Ha, thanks. I do understand where you are coming from as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    Have to say though, I doubt any print store here would care about printing what you
    gave them unless it was a photo depicting something illegal. I don't know if thats
    a reflection of South Africa or just general apathy.
    South Africa is a country where general apathy reigns supreme. :-)

    It seems to me that if copies are for one's own personal use, and commercial prints are not available in the first place, then it does the artist no harm if one makes such copies. If anything it may actually help to spread the artist's fame.

    How about compromising and painting your own copies by hand? Then you still get the pictures to hang on your wall, AND you learned a lot from it. Plus, this sort of hand-copying for study purposes is usually not as frowned upon.

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  33. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by blogmatix View Post
    South Africa is a country where general apathy reigns supreme. :-)
    I don't care.

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    Maybe he doesn't want his artwork splattered all over cheap print on demand websites. Maybe the guy has some respect for his artwork and thinks it is worth more than 30 bucks. Not every artist has the mindset that their stuff should be available to all comers for nothing, forever on the internet. It's kind of hard to sell books or projects that feature your art when all the demand is met by internet ubiquity. If an artist chooses to use the strategy of making their art available to everyone for free all the time, that is their choice. But if this guy has chosen not to cheapen his art and reduce demand like that maybe you should respect his wishes instead of just pirating his stuff.

    There's another perspective to think about. (But I don't know anything about that guy)

    Last edited by Atreides; October 10th, 2012 at 02:05 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Syle View Post
    For the record, the artist I am talking about is John Berkey; he's no longer living So, if someone knows where I can buy some good quality (and affordable, less than $30 a pop) prints, let me know. My google search didn't turn up much.
    I don't know about prints...but if you are planning on doing some for yourself I have some hi-res Berkey files I can send you. Like about 30 of them, each a minimum of 2000 pixels per side, some like 3000x3000. I dunno how easy they are in general to find online, hopefully some are ones you don't already have. PM me if you are interested.

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    it's illegal, and they're dead, so you're just fucking over their children if they were smart enough to protect their rights, but only a little bit, cuz you won't be able to match fine art quality prints tbqh, your copies will be pretty much worthless to a collector.

    I don't condone this behavior but I'm not about to freak out about it.

    But why not just...you know...support the arts. if you can spend $20 on a print you can spend $20 hiring some weirdo on Deviant art to paint you something cool in hi res and print that out and you can feel super proud to have it in your living room instead of feeling like you have a stolen Mona Lisa or something. Someone comes over and asks you about it and you don't have to make anything up you can say "YES I hired this artist for this commission I AM A PATRON OF THE ARTS"



    Last edited by Izi; October 10th, 2012 at 03:23 AM.
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    This is interesting… I’ve printed out the occasional image on my home PC and stuck it on my office wall, like most people here I don't see it as a massive crime. But the internet gives you access to things you normally wouldn’t have, or rather – previously wouldn’t have. When I was a kid if I liked an artist’s work, I bought a book with it in or on and either kept the book or occasionally cut out a pic I really liked and clip-framed it. But I BOUGHT the books, the print or whatever. Today, access feeds entitlement. Because it is seen on the internet it’s apparently there for the taking. In t’old days (before t'internet - if you can remember back that far), if I couldn’t get a print or book that used an image I liked I did this weird thing called ‘do without’. If an artist doesn’t have their work available as a print, then actually, it’s not available. The fact there’s a reasonable sized jpeg of it on the net is not reason enough to do what you like with it. I’m not ‘having a go’, or making a judgement, just pointing out that our perspectives have changed in regard to ‘ownership’ and how access implies entitlement.

    Last edited by Aly Fell; October 10th, 2012 at 09:24 AM. Reason: grammar... slipping like a slippy thing
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  42. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Izi View Post
    it's illegal, and they're dead, so you're just fucking over their children if they were smart enough to protect their rights, but only a little bit, cuz you won't be able to match fine art quality prints tbqh, your copies will be pretty much worthless to a collector.
    As I said, these aren't to be sold or touted to anyone. Just for my personal use for inspiration in my studio; nothing more or less.

    But why not just...you know...support the arts. if you can spend $20 on a print you can spend $20 hiring some weirdo on Deviant art to paint you something cool in hi res and print that out and you can feel super proud to have it in your living room instead of feeling like you have a stolen Mona Lisa or something. Someone comes over and asks you about it and you don't have to make anything up you can say "YES I hired this artist for this commission I AM A PATRON OF THE ARTS"
    You seem to be of the notion that I want these only to "show them off" to show how hip I am or something...That's not my intention at all.

    Thanks for the replies everyone. There's really only 1 right position in this matter, and it's to NOT make prints...if I try to justify it any way, it just becomes a slippery slope argument. So, I'll hold off printing them and just make due with the high resolution jpgs. Thanks again, it was a good discussion.

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    In the old days I got art books from the library for free. I also nicked magazines out of the recycling and cut out illustrations or reproductions I liked...

    Then there were the kids in my art school who would cut pictures out of library books. THAT to my mind is way worse than printing out any jpegs because you're depriving everyone else of looking at the pictures (and mutilating books...)

    Anyway, as for "things you previously couldn't have", I wouldn't sweat it. Once upon a time we couldn't have reproductions at all, because there was no printing. Times change. We roll with it.

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  46. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by QueenGwenevere View Post
    In the old days I got art books from the library for free. I also nicked magazines out of the recycling and cut out illustrations or reproductions I liked...

    Then there were the kids in my art school who would cut pictures out of library books. THAT to my mind is way worse than printing out any jpegs because you're depriving everyone else of looking at the pictures (and mutilating books...)
    Indeed, when I go to the library I can't believe it when I find books that have had their pictures cut out.
    Theres a photocopier and a scanner in the library...

    I can't even bring myself to throw books away. Even crap ones, I give them all to charities. Even the
    Chris Hart ones.

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    You know, you could always write his estate, or whoever is taking care of his art stuff now, if you could make prints for personal use, that would probably be the best way to go about it. Or they may be able to work something out with you to get a print or two as well. Doesn't hurt to ask.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    Indeed, when I go to the library I can't believe it when I find books that have had their pictures cut out.
    Theres a photocopier and a scanner in the library...

    I can't even bring myself to throw books away. Even crap ones, I give them all to charities. Even the
    Chris Hart ones.
    I know this guy who once made a pirate copy of the Bible. He got struck by lightning. :-)

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    I think it might come down to intent. If the reproduction is for reference/inspiration/motivation in your studio and it is relatively low production quality (not a huge lightjet print matted and framed) then you can sleep at night. I guess I feel like if you want something more than that the right thing to do is buy a print.

    More places are starting to get very uptight about this sort of thing. I have a photo of my grandparents from the 1930s and getting an enlarged print made has been a hassle. Inconvenient but they have good intentions at least.

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