Legal Rights to sell photographs for profit.

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Legal Rights to sell photographs for profit.

Post by Fivedeed » Fri Oct 28, 2016 5:31 pm

Hi Everyone !

I'm hoping that somebody will have experience of this issue, as I have been a trifle 'foxed' by someone's reaction to a question I posed them today ...I lack experience with such issues, so please excuse me if it is a silly question from your point of views 8-)

I have purchased numerous 'collector's edition' teddy bears over the years from various different companies and shops. I recently purchased a unique bear from an individual who makes and sells her own bears on line. She does not issue special certificates with them. Some of you may have seen my online photos of this bear. I established friendly email contact with her, as I wish to buy future bears - and complemented her on her advertising photography, which was above normal standards for online selling. We therefore established a rapport.

Getting to the point ... As part of my new 'career' of trying to make some money from my images, I am considering producing notelets and greetings cards as a small sideline - one of my ranges will be my cast of teddies, including hers. Being polite, although probably naive - I asked her whether she would be happy with this, as I wasn't sure of the etiquette.
I supposed that she would be ok about it, especially as I said that I would be mentioning the origin of each bear on the reverse of the card ( hence a plug for her).
She has come back surpringly to say that she will think about it - so I am wondering if a hand-crafted bear comes under the same category as a piece of artwork - with the legal copyright belonging to the artist ?
I own the bear - so thought that it would be ok. She didn't specify anything regarding rights in her paperwork - the bear just turned up in a box !

Wishing I hadn't asked - this is now putting the mockers on my future plans :shock:

DOES ANYONE KNOW WHERE I STAND WITH THIS ? I would really love your advice, as getting my business off the ground is proving much much trickier than I ever imagined !!

Thanks all

Amanda X

Posts: 289
Joined: Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:39 pm

Re: Legal Rights to sell photographs for profit.

Post by Trevor » Fri Oct 28, 2016 8:21 pm

Hi Amanda, as I understand it she has no rights to it as intellectual property.

It is an inanimate object and therefore does not fall under any "rights" by her.

You only need a model release for a recognisable person or a building.

It you are being creative and using the bear for your own needs either personal or commercial she has no say in the matter.

I would just carry on. You only need to look at the miriad of cards for sale in the shops that use everyday objects creatively. Does Nikon or Canon refuse permission every time you see someone has photographed one of their cameras? No it wouldn't work.

You are the owner and the author of any images you produce and no one has the right to refuse you to use them. (Except in the above exceptions of people and buildings)

Carry on being creative!!


Re: Legal Rights to sell photographs for profit.

Post by Fivedeed » Sat Oct 29, 2016 1:33 am

Thanks so much for your help Trevor ...

It looks like I am in the clear to carry on with my plans. I think I need to be a little more savvy in future - as I tend to play into people's hands by being too obliging. This ( ridiculously) seems to get me into trouble - but says more about other people than it does about me !!

Have a great weekend and thanks again..

Amanda xx

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