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  1. #1
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    Intellectual Property

    Intellectual Property
    Last edited by dr01d; July 17th, 2006 at 07:22 AM.


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  3. #2
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    I'm pretty sure this is in the wrong forum, but meh...

    Usually companies want you and all your talent all to themselves, and usually they're paying well enough to agree to that... If they're not paying well enough, then there's no real worry about saying no...
    Art calls for complete mastery of techniques, developed by reflection within the soul. - Bruce Lee

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firewalker
    I'm pretty sure this is in the wrong forum, but meh...

    Usually companies want you and all your talent all to themselves, and usually they're paying well enough to agree to that... If they're not paying well enough, then there's no real worry about saying no...
    Sorry, this was the closest description i could find for this forum, but anyway the problem isnt the money. it's the fact that im going to be doing a job where the end product is almost wasted. I can take that drawing and put it on my site, or put it in a book, and nobody will ever even realise it wasnt created for the sole purpouse of my enjoyment.

    It just seems a waste.

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    Welcome to the world of NDA artistry... You do a lot of cool ass stuff and then don't even get to show it to your friends.

    I'd just say suck it up, you can always just draw something else that is equally as impressive and post that up instead... It may seem like a waste, but meh, that's what contracts are for...
    Art calls for complete mastery of techniques, developed by reflection within the soul. - Bruce Lee

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firewalker
    Welcome to the world of NDA artistry... You do a lot of cool ass stuff and then don't even get to show it to your friends.

    I'd just say suck it up, you can always just draw something else that is equally as impressive and post that up instead... It may seem like a waste, but meh, that's what contracts are for...
    the thing is, I reckon i can get them to go along with dual ownership rights, im just not sure how to word it into the contract ????

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    Yeah the Academy and I guess Art Schools, Education & Employment Info were the wrong forums.
    Similar threads are always posted here in the Lounge. Hope you get more replies here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dr01d
    the thing is, I reckon i can get them to go along with dual ownership rights
    If you get that to work, you'd be the only person I've heard of to get a deal like that, especially for publishing usage. I think most people around here have tons of stuff they'd love to show in these forums or put on a website but can't. I'm one of them.

    Alot of contracts and NDAs go so far as to prohibit you from even saying anything about what you're working on to anyone. To not only have the rights to show your work but then to also be able to publish it is pretty unheard of.

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    It sounds like the situation you are in is a work-for-hire situation. That means you no longer own the artwork you create for a company. Not even any originals. EVERYONE SHOULD AVOID THIS TYPE OF THING IF THEY CAN HELP IT. However, even if you don't own it you are still legally allowed to use it for self promotion. Yes you can put an example of your work on your website, mailings, cards.. ect. Some clients insist on having all the rights to the work and they should have to pay more for it as a result.

    If you want to have your cake and eat it too you should treat yourself as an independant contractor. You then can have a contract with your client spelling out the exact rights to the work you are transferring. Try to sell them first publication rights. You will then be able to use the artwork for your own puposes at a later date, maybe even selling second publication rights to somebody else if you wish.

    Get a copy of the latest "Graphic artist's guide to pricing and ethical guidlines." It will have a copy of existing contracts that you can use. It will also have example of what rights you can sell and how to go about doing it.

    Sorry to go on a rant here, but I'm sick of artists getting taken advantage of when they don't know there rights. Seams like they always end up selling everything they got for chump change and getting hosed.

    BTW this is the lounge. The man can talk about anything he wants here. If he wants to talk about fluffy bunnies he can do that too.
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    if you are working for anothers IP...and are working in the games industry on their machines in their building then you will have a hard time convincing them why you should own your images. After all, it is their content which you want to sell in your book. Sure, it is your pictures of their content but it is also theirs.

    artists tend to only keep right of self promotion in those instances (ie being able to use the images in portfolios or on conceptart.org)

    if you want your cake and eat it too then you need to start your own company, build your own IP rather than illustrate some others vision and ideas, and get out there.

    Honestly, even if you worked for my company, you would not keep any images for use in books for sale or other product. You would only retain right of self promotion.

    Most game companies...nintendo..lucasarts....interplay..bliz zard....if you do work even outside the studio, they can claim to own it per the contracts you would be forced to sign. anything done on their equipment, supplies or using their facilities would entitle them to ownership.

    look at the art of starwars books...does ryan church get to go out and make the ryan church art of star wars books? absolutely not.

    I wouldnt waste your energy on the matter to be honest. You are better off making images from your own vision for your book.

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    - Mr Pale.
    -------------------------------------------
    Thanks, this is just what i was looking for. I recon I'll definatley look into that 'Graphic artist's guide to pricing and ethical guidlines' sruff. I'm not to worried about getting screwed over though, they people in question are a new startup and seem ok.

    - Jason
    -------------------------------------------
    I understand your concern, but I'm not talking about a 'Star Wars' or 'Half Life 2' level of project. I'm talking about simple Web Based flash games - which will use a standard engine and incorporate my artwork as the theme. The Theme itself isn't a theme but more like pretty pictures to throw on top. I just feel it'll make me want to work harder if I know I'll get to use the work I create on my website or in a book.

    It just seems like such a waste to use such detailed work on a small web based system. If the company in question has no desire to publish anyrging. Then I feel it's only fair to let me recycle (horrible analogy, but anyway..) my artwork.

    When Masamune Shirow / Or Yoji Shinkawa do artwork for a games company, they always seem to publish that work later in one of their collections. It just helps their fans learn a little bit more about their style of artwork without having to go and buy each and every product their working on.

    Just in case their was any confusion - My aim is NOT money. I'd simply like to be able to print and share my work without being sued.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Pale
    It sounds like the situation you are in is a work-for-hire situation. That means you no longer own the artwork you create for a company. Not even any originals. EVERYONE SHOULD AVOID THIS TYPE OF THING IF THEY CAN HELP IT. However, even if you don't own it you are still legally allowed to use it for self promotion. Yes you can put an example of your work on your website, mailings, cards.. ect.
    First of all, if you try and avoid situations where the company owns all rights to the work you do, you won't be working very much. Of course it would be ideal to always end up in working situations where you have rights to reproduce your work, but it's just not quite as common as you make it seem. Probably 80% of the projects I've been involved in over the last few years specifically indicate in contracts that all rights to the work done are owned by the company.

    And no you are not always legally allowed to use work for self promotion. This has been a hot topic of debate throughout the years, but the general consensus is that you should ALWAYS seek permission before using any work in a portfolio, on a website, on a mailer, etc. Alot of people think that since you are not using the work to make a profit, you're legally in the clear when using it for self promotion. This might be a correct interpretation of the law, but only if there is no written contract or NDA in place that would take precedence. And since no one does any work these days without a contract, ownership and repro rights are almost always outlined in them. Granted that even if you posted work on a website or something and it did violate a contract or NDA, most companies would just ask you to take it down without pursuing any legal action. But if by posting something online you somehow jeopardize a product release or in some way cost the company money, expect a shit storm to be coming your way.

    If we could legally post anything on our websites for promotional purposes, don't you think we would? Why do you think Feng only has a small fraction of his work on his site? Why doesn't he just post everything since he's only using it for self promotion?

  13. #12
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    helix - I know what you mean. If it was a clear and simple solution I wouldn't have posed the question. Can you imagine how cool it would be if that were the case though. They'd obviously have to be a time delay before you could use it for Self Promotion (competition and all that)

    but imagine being able to see all that stuff that never makes it into the light of day because of some bloody copyright law.

    can you imagine if the cistine chapel was © to the catholic church.

    i mean, business is business, but when the lines blur between business and art there has to be some leeway.

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    I think we all should go into the fine art industry! I wonder what would happen if all the artists stopped pimping themselves out to work for hire contracts and just did their OWN work?

    If you ask me, artists like Thomas Kinkade, Wyland, Goddard etc all have the right idea. They OWN their work, And they are RICHER than shit!
    "If one advances confidently in the direction of
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    unexpected in common hours."
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    Quote Originally Posted by otis
    I think we all should go into the fine art industry! I wonder what would happen if all the artists stopped pimping themselves out to work for hire contracts and just did their OWN work?

    If you ask me, artists like Thomas Kinkade, Wyland, Goddard etc all have the right idea. They OWN their work, And they are RICHER than shit!
    we should start a movment!!!! of course as soon as we do, we'll just have emplyers getting into bed with easier to please artists.. It suck's we need a Union! or Just be good enough to be an independant contractor

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    I don't get it. People use art in books all the time- you just have to ask ofr permission- check this book out next time you're at the comics shop, and not just because I'm interviewed in it. Using your own art for self-promotion never hurts anybody, and since you're asked (or required) to give proper copyright identification, everybody benefits. I've always been up front about keeping my original concept drawings and have almost never had a problem. Sure, I had one guy stonewall to keep some art as "trophies" and another actually steal my originals, but that's two cases out of many. Intellectual rights? Your employer keeps that- what the hell are you getting paid for? If you expect to re-use art and make money doing so you've got unrealistic expectations. There are exceptions: if you actually own the physical artifacts (i.e. a drawing, painting, etc) you can sell it to a collector, as in original comic art. Even in that sector the publisher makes proprietary restrictions- Marvel offers the art back to the artist as a "gift" or some such legal nonsense, meaning they don't necessarily have to give it back. In short: be up front, be realistic and above all, be wary!

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    Quote Originally Posted by chukw
    I don't get it. People use art in books all the time- you just have to ask ofr permission- check this book out next time you're at the comics shop, and not just because I'm interviewed in it. Using your own art for self-promotion never hurts anybody, and since you're asked (or required) to give proper copyright identification, everybody benefits. I've always been up front about keeping my original concept drawings and have almost never had a problem. Sure, I had one guy stonewall to keep some art as "trophies" and another actually steal my originals, but that's two cases out of many. Intellectual rights? Your employer keeps that- what the hell are you getting paid for? If you expect to re-use art and make money doing so you've got unrealistic expectations. There are exceptions: if you actually own the physical artifacts (i.e. a drawing, painting, etc) you can sell it to a collector, as in original comic art. Even in that sector the publisher makes proprietary restrictions- Marvel offers the art back to the artist as a "gift" or some such legal nonsense, meaning they don't necessarily have to give it back. In short: be up front, be realistic and above all, be wary!

    all i want to do is be able to publish a book at age 50 and use everything ive done to put in it. is that unfair?

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    I hope to do the same, and fully expect to. Like I say, ask politely and you'll likely get what you want. The difference between you and I is that I'll be fifty a fuckload sooner than you will! Posters? I don't think so. You're being paid to create for a company so that they can make money. It's not fair of you to expect to compete against them with their own property, is it?

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    all i want to do is be able to publish a book at age 50 and use everything ive done to put in it. is that unfair?
    #
    No that's unfair. But you've opened up a question that's very near and dear to alot of our hearts. It makes a lot of us... myself included touchy.

    As I understand it, and believe me I'm going to do some more research about it, unless you sign over your rights or sign into an agreement where you specifically can't use the artwork for self promotion then yes you can use it for that purpose. Work-for-hire is one of these situations where your signing over everything including that right for self promo.

    You are legally required to ask permision to use your artwork for self promo if you do work-for-hire, otherwise you don't technically have to. Although it's a good business practice if you ask anyway. It's not a good idea to piss off your clients.

    BTW It doesn't matter what we think is fair, it matters what the law says. I've seen people do a book cover, later they sell the same artwork for a magazine cover, then for an add, then for a puzzle, cards ect. You can make quite a bit of money reselling your art work over and over. Hell, second publication rights can be more profitable than the initial commision. And it is perfectly legal and ethical.
    Last edited by Mr. Pale; September 10th, 2004 at 12:52 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Pale
    As I understand it... unless you sign over your rights or sign into an agreement where you specifically can't use the artwork for self promotion then yes you can use it for that purpose. Work-for-hire is one of these situations where your signing over everything including that right for self promo.
    That's true, but I think this such a strange issue that some people could easily think they're in the clear and not be. For example, you could think you're legally OK with using work for self promo in terms of how the NDA was worded, but there could be other circumstances that might make your posting of that work a violation of the NDA. For instance, some NDAs just outright prohibit you from talking about/showing/pretty much even hinting at what the project is or what you've done. Some contracts might allow you to show the work, maybe even use it in your portfolio, but posting it in an online portfolio might cross some lines. If I put something in my personal portfolio, the only people who are seeing it are me and the guy interviewing me. If I post something online, it's now open to global viewing, which has far greater potential for damaging a project that might have required some level of secrecy. Or suppose you have rights to use something for self promotion but you jump the gun and post it online before the product is released by the company.

    My point is this: Just be careful about what you use and how you use it, and when in doubt ask for permission. Obviously this is a confusing topic and it's hard to tell which information is accurate, and I think that's all the more reason to just watch your ass and be careful with your work.

    For better or worse, the policy where I work is pretty simple: Your work is company property. Don't show it to anyone, don't talk about it. Even sketchbooks are company property, which is a policy I've seen before at another job. I actually had to turn in all my sketches, books, notebooks, print outs, etc., when I left a job last year.

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    helix7: I think your right this is a pretty complicated issue. It's probably one we should all do a little research on so we don't get sued for doing something wrong or screwed for not knowing our rights.

    It's probably a good practice to make sure all the rights are spelled out in whatever contract you choose to use just to cover your butt. Asking permision before hand, a good idea as well.

    BTW they made you turn over your sketchbooks! I'm sure they had there reasons, but ouch! That sucks.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Pale
    BTW they made you turn over your sketchbooks! I'm sure they had there reasons, but ouch! That sucks.
    Yep... The reason is that their policy was any creative work that I did from from sketches to final renderings, no matter how conceptual or unexplored an idea might have been, was their property. I could never really imagine someone actually taking my sketchbooks and turning an idea from one of them into a finished product, but I guess it was more to prevent me from taking an idea I came up with while being paid by them, and using it for myself or some other company.

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    That's awefully paranoid of your company, surprised now they didn't frisk you as you were leaving the building. At the very least I hope they were paying you enough to put up with that. Otherwise I'd start smuggling art out, just out of spite. ...that and smuggling can be fun.
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