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Hello! Is there a copyright issue in using an editing program to turn personal photographs into illustrations, also known as "cartoonizing" to be used in a picture book?

Thanks!

Ellen
#1 - October 28, 2016, 10:18 AM

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I don't know for sure, but I think as long as you have a license for the software (some distinguish between licenses for personal use and commercial use and you might need the commercial use one if you plan to publish the book) and the photos are your own, I don't think there would be an issue. But you could always check with the software developer. As long as you are using photos you took yourself or that you bought the rights for, the photos should be ok. But hopefully someone who knows more about this might chime in.


 
#2 - October 28, 2016, 11:30 AM
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Are you talking about the click to paint type programs? There is probably a section in the user agreement about commercial usage.

As long as you hold the copyrights for the original photos, you can manipulate them however you want.

On a more classical illustrator personal opinion note: If you are planning to pursue traditional publication, such imagery would not be considered original art, since anyone with the program can produce the same style of art, and unless you embellish it further to make it your own unique creation, I'm doubtful it will find a buyer. I would think that the 'original art' clauses in most publishing contracts would preclude using such types of cartoons.

 If, on the other hand, you are self publishing, as long as your software license grants you commercial usage rights, you should be okay. (FWIW many do not.) Also, I am not a lawyer.
#3 - October 29, 2016, 05:30 AM
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Cyn and Wendy, that brings up an interesting question... if we create Illustration via digital programs, like PS and the like, utilizing some of their textures or patterns, or even just using the programs brushes...could there be a problem there too? If not, what would be the difference with what Ellen proposes to what digital Illustrators do?
#4 - October 29, 2016, 05:41 AM
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My guess is that the cartoonizing of photos takes the photo and makes an almost exact copy, but it looks like a cartoon and not a photo. (Just a guess.)

The difference between that and when digital artists create with programs like PS, is that digital artists are creating an original piece of art. They are making all the brush strokes and choosing the colors, shapes, etc. So, even if it's based on a photo and even if it's realistic, it's not a computerized copy of a photo. It's hand made art on the computer.
#5 - October 29, 2016, 09:00 AM
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Chris, I create art digitally, but like Stephanie said, I'm the one doing the work, not some computer algorithm. These one click programs have gotten very sophisticated recently and with a single click the user can convert a photo into a digitized painting in any style they choose. Some even mimic the styles of famous artists. So the user isn't really creating original art, since anyone capable of pushing the button can get the same results.
#6 - October 30, 2016, 06:06 AM
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Thanks for chiming in on my question Cyn and Wendy, good to know! I get still a little concerned about utilizing patterns available in various art programs (since I personally have not created those and that is a point/click type of action) for things like a couch, wall paper or a girls dress. So far I haven't used them when it comes to commercial work, have used them for promotional material and "feel" that is different/ok?
I have got to get my butt in gear and make my own patterns but so far that's been all talk, on my part, and no action:)
#7 - October 31, 2016, 01:38 AM
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Making patterns in PS or AI is very easy, I do it all the time. Sometimes I do it for fun, but I'm weird that way. I love quilting and all things textile.
#8 - October 31, 2016, 06:49 AM
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Wendy, I have some other Illustrator friends who tell me how "easy" it is.... HA! Maybe but it all seems mysterious and challenging to me when I even just THINK about it:) Guess it's much like all techy stuff, it sounds worse reading about how to, then DOING it. It shall be one of my many New Years resolutions!
#9 - October 31, 2016, 07:13 AM
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