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Author Topic: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)  (Read 1383 times)

Offline Rex T-Rex

Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«: November 25, 2011, 02:09:43 PM»
So here's what the title means.

Let's say that someone commissions you for a patch. It's a rather unique patch that they have told you (the artist) what they wanted and didn't want. They gave you examples of other artwork to explain what they were looking for, but you yourself created this new patch from start to finish with nothing but you own lines.
Now then, for whatever reason the commission falls through. Nothing bad happens, it's just the commisisoner realizes that no one want a dream that they are planning for your patch.
The commisison is cancled before the patch is actually finished, and you are never paid.
That being said, there is a good bit of the patch done and other people have shown interest in it.
So you decide to contact the original commission and express that you wish to eventually finish the patch and make it a pay per use.
Their response is that they will only let you do this IF you split the profits with them/you can't sell it or distribute it at all.

What is your take on this? Do they have the right? They never paid for it because they cancled the commission, so do they really have a say? While they did have a big part in telling you how to design the patch it is technically generic (meaning it was not made specifically for one fo their characters).

Do they, as the ex-commission who never paid have the right to decide what you do with this patch?
What do you all think?
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Offline Pastor

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #1: November 25, 2011, 02:34:52 PM»
Split the profits with them? They didn't pay in the first place. In fact, if the art/photos weren't theirs that you referenced the patches from, they have zero rights over the patches. What a crock. If the patches are based on a fandom or idea in history or even just a general idea, that commissioner has zero rights over the patches.

Because they did not pay in the first place, you owe them zero profits. Period. If they had paid in the first place they'd have a say. They didn't.

What kind of patches are they, just out of curiosity? Maybe that'll help clear up something in our understanding of the issue. Doctor Who? Skyrim? World War II? x3

Offline Rex T-Rex

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #2: November 25, 2011, 02:37:22 PM»
Mermaids.
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Offline Pastor

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #3: November 25, 2011, 02:40:58 PM»
Mermaids.

I've done several mermaid portraits lately for different people. It's a popular concept - and not just in Furcadia. The commissioner does not own the idea of mermaids. They have zero rights over your patches. Kindly reply to them and tell them that while you will make sure not to infringe on their intellectual rights, mermaids are a general fantasy creature/character in cultures around the world and on Furc and can't be copyrighted.

Offline Pastor

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #4: November 25, 2011, 02:42:15 PM»
I mean, if you want. LOL. Mermaids.. I thought you were going to say like, 'their own godstruct of a creation they made out of Frankensteining things together.' xD

Offline Rex T-Rex

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #5: November 25, 2011, 02:48:16 PM»
No.. just mermaids. XD Granted they are different form most other mermaids I've seen on Furc and in general but they're still mostly regular mermaids... They just have whale/dolphin bodies... And that part was honestly my idea. The original was more of a fish, but I suggested a change to aquatic mammal and she liked the result.
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Offline Foedus

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #6: December 03, 2011, 11:49:09 AM»
The fact that they didn't pay, in my opinion, forfeits their rights to control the patch by any means.  Splitting the profits with them when they themselves didn't bother giving money for your hard earned time?  I don't think that should fly, at all.

I'd say make it pay per use, with no involvement with the commissioner.
Give a man a fish, and he may eat for a day, give a man religion, and he will starve to death praying for a fish.[/i]

Offline Tate

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #7: December 06, 2011, 05:02:05 PM»
I'm going to agree with the rest. The person is bonkers, you're in your full right to do whatever you want with it, be it PPU, put it up for free (I wouldn't, because then they might use it for free, too. I'm just vindictive like that), or sell it for a single large chunk.

I'm sure plenty of people will be willing to pay a reasonable price, and that should all go to you. You did all the hard work, you deserve the cash. Delicious cash.

Offline Ridia

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #8: January 28, 2012, 06:30:26 PM»
Old thread I know, but for anyone on the same topic:

You hold the copyright. It is your artwork, they rejected your artwork, and you never sold them nor transferred to them the copyright nor any license regarding it. Assuming this was never stated to be Work For Hire, they have absolutely no rights to your work and you are the only person who need profit from it.

This is not an assumption nor an opinion, this is a legal fact.

Offline Rex T-Rex

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #9: January 29, 2012, 11:13:32 PM»
I'm not sure if it was "work for hire", at least by going off what seems to be the running definition of WFH. I was commissioned to make the mermaid for this person. Before the work was finished they canceled the commission and I was never paid. The work in and of itself is entirely my own design and creation.
Now I don't know if being commissioned for art can really cont under the terms of WFH, since I wasn't making a product to be the "selling point" of a company (like a programmer making Windows OP for Microsoft).
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Offline Ridia

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #10: January 30, 2012, 03:39:49 PM»
I'm not sure if it was "work for hire", at least by going off what seems to be the running definition of WFH. I was commissioned to make the mermaid for this person. Before the work was finished they canceled the commission and I was never paid. The work in and of itself is entirely my own design and creation.
Now I don't know if being commissioned for art can really cont under the terms of WFH, since I wasn't making a product to be the "selling point" of a company (like a programmer making Windows OP for Microsoft).


If it was never stated to be work for hire, then it was not work for hire - and there are artists out there who do WFH.

Offline Rex T-Rex

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #11: January 30, 2012, 05:35:43 PM»
I do not feel that this would fall under WFH. That being said, I don't even know if the excommissioner is still on Furc. That being said, if and when the mermaid si inevitably released I'm not going to go out of my way to contact her. If she wants to bring up any kind of "issue" with me over it I'll jsut handle it when it happens.
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Offline Ridia

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #12: January 30, 2012, 06:39:35 PM»
I do not feel that this would fall under WFH. That being said, I don't even know if the excommissioner is still on Furc. That being said, if and when the mermaid si inevitably released I'm not going to go out of my way to contact her. If she wants to bring up any kind of "issue" with me over it I'll jsut handle it when it happens.

Just remember that you owe her nothing.

Offline Matsunaga

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #13: February 15, 2012, 10:42:44 AM»
So here's what the title means.

Let's say that someone commissions you for a patch. It's a rather unique patch that they have told you (the artist) what they wanted and didn't want. They gave you examples of other artwork to explain what they were looking for, but you yourself created this new patch from start to finish with nothing but you own lines.
Now then, for whatever reason the commission falls through. Nothing bad happens, it's just the commisisoner realizes that no one want a dream that they are planning for your patch.
The commisison is cancled before the patch is actually finished, and you are never paid.
That being said, there is a good bit of the patch done and other people have shown interest in it.
So you decide to contact the original commission and express that you wish to eventually finish the patch and make it a pay per use.
Their response is that they will only let you do this IF you split the profits with them/you can't sell it or distribute it at all.

What is your take on this? Do they have the right? They never paid for it because they cancled the commission, so do they really have a say? While they did have a big part in telling you how to design the patch it is technically generic (meaning it was not made specifically for one fo their characters).

Do they, as the ex-commission who never paid have the right to decide what you do with this patch?
What do you all think?


If the ex-commission did not pay for the artwork, they have no right to control what happens to the piece they decided not to buy.

If someone orders a lamp online, then gets to the store to pick it up, decides it doesn't really match their decor and then declines to purchase it, they do not have the right to deny the store the right to sell it to someone else. This isn't different; in this case, the ex-commissioner may have come up with the concept, and it wouldn't be unreasonable to ask for credit for that concept, but since they did not pay for the actual design work they have zero right to decide what the artist does with it.  The ex-commissioner has no right to expect to make a profit on poor judgment (abandoning a project because they think it isn't profitable) and poor conduct (cancelling a commission nearing completion). 

If they insist on being paid for the concept and the artist is agreeable, then they should be allowed to pay a very small fee for the concept, but no, they should not get royalties for someone else's work that they specifically abandoned.
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Offline Rex T-Rex

Re: Ex-Commissioner's Right to Control Art (What's your take?)
«Reply #14: February 16, 2012, 06:25:43 PM»
I would have to say that, in the particular case, she really had nothing to do with even the concept. She said she wanted a female mermaid. She gave my drawings other people had down to should what she meant by "sexy mermaid" and what kind of poses she wanted. Which, mind you, for the specific poses I made to the drawings they were pretyt much dead on in the pose but then she wanted me to change them. Nothing specific as far as changes go, just she'd say something like "I don't really like the head, could you try a different angle?" And, again, I'm not really sure this is even an issue any more. I'm mostl convinced that she's quit Furc as it is.
Visit my site-> http://rext-rex.webs.com

currently have alts on sale! http://altmarket.net/index.php?topic=31876.msg468272#msg468272

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