SCBWI's Blueboard - A Message & Chat Board

Depicting famous art in illustrations

Discussion started on

I am writing/illustrating a PB about a little monster girl whose parents (Mummie and Deadie  ;D ) take her to an art museum.  I want to show her creatively interacting with art there- for instance for a Monet painting I want to illustrate her swimming in a pond with lily pads.  I want to show her, her "ghost" kitty and her stuffed bunny running from the spooky "Scream" by Edvard Munch. My plan was to illustrate the famous art in a way that is recognizable but in my own hand. (I didn't plan on using actual images of the art) The artwork and artist would be referenced in the text.  I'm concerned about legal issues...does anyone know how/what you are allowed to depict in regards to famous works of art?  Preliminary research left me more confused than when I started  :gaah
Any advice would be wonderful! Thanks.
#1 - October 14, 2013, 01:42 PM

New Poster
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region illinois
It goes without saying (but I'll say it anyway, of course) that this is in no way legal advice, but generally anything produced prior to the early 1900s is public domain, meaning there is no copyright restriction on its use.  Your searches will probably be more fruitful if you search for the specific title of the piece you wish to depict along with the term "public domain."  For example, googling "munch scream 'public domain'" produced this informative page:

Although far from gospel, the permission section of the wikipedia images pages provides guidance on copyright issues.
#2 - October 16, 2013, 01:43 PM

Thank you!  You're right- searching with the term "public domain" got me the information I was looking for.
#3 - October 16, 2013, 03:03 PM


0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.