This is my third–perhaps fourth year–participating in the first-round judging, and each year we see some of the same types of issues. (On a side note, one funny thing I’ve noticed is that, generally speaking, cows seem to be a favorite subject of landscape and animal artists. Holy bovines, Batman.)
Anyhow, it never fails to surprise me when I catch a copyright violation, and one entry was a clear example of it–a rip-off of a photograph by Brian Griffin, whose work hangs in the National Portrait Gallery, London. You can view his photos in that collection by clicking here.
Griffin has a cool website, where you can see the work in question. It originally appeared on the album cover of A Broken Frame by the band Depeche Mode. If I hadn’t been such a fan of the band back in high school, I might not have noticed. When I got home, I grabbed my copy of 100 Best Album Covers and opened right to the page, confirming both the album photo and photographer.
So just a reminder to entrants: Photographers are artists, too, and without their permission, you CANNOT borrow their images to paint from. Best to paint from life–or use your own photos.
On a more pleasant note, screening entries was a great experience and not much compares to whiling away the hours looking at art. Best of luck to all who entered the competition!