Jun 122007

The other day I came across one of my Peeps pictures on another blog. They had credited me and linked back to me, which was nice, but what was really flattering was that they were using the image as part of their own creative post. It was a strange feeling of success: I had created an image that other people wanted on their site. It was a little mind-blowing.

It also made me realize that if the blogger wasn’t ethical, they could have very easily claimed the picture as their own. I don’t have any copyright tags on my images, not that those can’t be removed with most paint programs. I have never aggressively defended my work before so I am not sure why I now feel this urge to at least put a stamp on my pictures.

Maybe it’s because when it comes to my writing, I have confidence in the uniqueness of my voice. Any time my writing group would have an anonymous submission contest, people had no trouble identifying my story out of the group. Not all of my stories are terribly original but I like to think the way I tell a story is all my own.

When it comes to pictures, I’m still trying to find my voice. Right now my images feel more like echoes of my own desires. I like boobs, therefore I take pictures of boobs. I like someone else’s concept, therefore I try my hand at recreating it with my own preferences. Theoretically that should mean my pictures are uniquely my own but right now they feel like something I have reacted to rather than created. At this point the only thing that feels uniquely mine about my pictures is the mistakes I make with lighting.

So if/when I make a little copyright stamp for my images, what should I use? Shon Richards? Erotiterrorist? Some funky symbol?

  5 Responses to “Flattery”

  1. That would depend if you want people to know you ARE Erotiterroist or to know you as Shon Richards or by your RL name.

    I used to be an avid cross-stitcher and actually have done some “advanced” stitching that is framed on my wall. However one designer was very angry that stitchers were making them and then putting them up on the net for views. She claimed they were design and therefore you had no right, without prior permission, to show them off.

    IMO anyone who cross-stitches known that the pattern they are using belongs to the creator and we are merely copying it onto linen with beautiful threads and time. If we change the base color of the fabric or frame it differently in the picture does it make the design any less hers and more ours? No – but we have pride in the accomplishment of what we have done.

    I inital all of my cross-stitch projects and date them. Not to claim ownership of the design, but so that others will know that I made this for them and when.

    Sorry I may have rambled and lost what I was trying to say….

  2. Musns- lol, actually I enjoyed hearing about the cross stitch copyright issues.

    A date stamp seems like a good idea now that you mention it.

  3. Copyright is a nasty thing, at least how it stands today. And there is no good way of putting something on a digital image that someone can manipulate. I’ve seen a bunch of artists jump through a lot of hoops to make sure their name remains on an image. Someone dedicated enough WILL get around it, no matter if you make a watermark across the entire image or just a small copyright on the bottom.

    In general, there is only so much you can do. My personal fondness is a light watermark (90% transparent), and a copyright, date, and URL at the bottom. If I had a sigil (never made one), I’d consider that. I’d also put the information in the comment field. The watermark is probably the most optional one.

    For the most part, in the few random images I’ve actually put up, I don’t worry about it.

  4. i vote for funky symbol. something a la Prince’s former unpronounceable symbol thing.

  5. t’sade- I like your idea about the watermark at the bottom. I’ll play around with it.

    red velvet- If I could do a jolly roger with a blindfold I would :)

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