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Depicting the work of an artist in your illustrations

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I'm working on a pub biography of an artist. She's deceased but her work is still under copyright.  I'd like to use her art as a two page spread at one point during the story. But the piece I'd like to use doesn't fit the dimensions of the book & I don't see any suitable way to crop it. Do you think it would be better to:
1. use it as a spot rather than full bleed or
2. Create my own cropped version inspired by the piece & make a note about this in the backmatter. It would be a different composition but reflective of her style & subject matter.

The family is very supportive of the project & I don't think it will be an issue to get permission to use her work. I'm not 100% sure I'll be able to get a high quality photo of that particular piece. 
#1 - March 11, 2018, 08:05 AM
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The answer may depend on how much authenticity you want, if this is more like a biography, or a fun, informative book. I had a book published by MeeGenius that taught about art in a fun way, but the pieces had to be within public domain for the publisher. They did not want to deal with permissions, so I had to eliminate a piece by Escher.  The images ended up being photos of originals inserted into the spreads.  (Rights have been reverted back to me at my request since the publisher folded and I may be doing my own illustrations when I submit it again).   

If you take a look at other books that do this, it may give you an idea. "Anna's Art Adventure" has authentic representation of the artwork.  However, "Babar's Museum of Art" has illustrated interpretations of the work.  And then there's the extremely fun and informative book by Nina Laden "When Pigasso met Mootisse" where each illustration representing either artist is represented in their style.

If you are doing this with an inspirational, yet informative approach, I would lean toward spot art inserts. For submitting, if you get the permission beforehand, it may help ensure that this project can more readily be acquired.
#2 - March 11, 2018, 09:39 AM
Fur Balls & Feathers & Fins, Oh My! Animals Are My Kind of People


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