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stolen and abused artwork



In response to your query regarding your "art", looking at existing imagery
of dinosaurs by paleo artists is an excellent way to help get familiar with
dinosaur anatomy.  HOWEVER, whether or not you actually sat down and
physically "traced" an existing image or simply looked at it as an example,
if the result is recognizable to the original artist and / or others in the
community as being a modified version of their work, your version (if not an
outright infringement of copyright), is still nothing less than bad form on
your part. I briefly skimmed through your site yesterday and saw many
"reworked" but very "recognizable" images by established paleo artists.  In
addition, in not approaching the artists of the original works for
permission to use their artwork on your site and instead opting to make your
own interpretation of their work,(which is most often done by individuals
lacking either the artistic skill or anatomical knowledge in creating their
own original art), not only will the result in most cases be less than
satisfactory, more importantly it will only serve to insult the artist
responsible for the original work ( you obviously are attempting to
circumvent copyright issues and payment to the artists that took the time to
research and execute the original work).  In the end, rather than create
some sort of "homage" to paleo artists who often have spent years developing
their artistic skills, understanding of dinosaur anatomy, and relationships
with professionals within the field of vertebrate paleontology, you will
only foster resentment from the artists and alienate yourself from the
paleontological community in general.
What can you do at this point?  I would suggest you remove any and all
images from your sight that bear a striking similarity to existing dinosaur
art references you have used.  Contact the artists involved ( perhaps with a
word of apology for your oversight) to see if you can arrange to use their
works on your website.  Lastly, if you would rather use your own artwork,
that is perfectly acceptable as long as the work is in fact your own.  You
can gain knowledge and insight from looking at the broad range of paleo art
out there.  Use that information in concert with some research in
dinosaurian anatomy to develop your own unique artwork which will serve to
attract people to your site and encourage you to go forward.

sincerely,

Mike Skrepnick (paleo artist)