Though I am frequently here at DA, it has been a while since I posted a journal entry. I have a blog ([link]) where I do most of my posting, so, this journal gets neglected, unfortunately. This is where I post my art pieces, but also where I obtain much of my stock. So, on that note, I have a couple of comments to make.
It is so very sad to see so many of the artists I adore pulling their stock off DA. I do not blame them one bit! Still, it is sad to see some of the wonderful stock images no longer available. There have been several artists whose images I frequently use and they are among those who have pulled their stock. That someone would come here and help themselves to an artist's images and use them without so much as a mention is ridiculous! It is theft any way one looks at it. I know this has enraged the artists, though they have been more than patient.
Looking through my own 'art', I realized that I neglected to list my sources on several. I have been 'a thief'. I am here today to fix that. I guess I justified my using the images with the fact that I don't try to profit or claim any of the images I used. But, that doesn't matter to the artists. I still took something they created and used it without so much as a mention. Doing photo-manipulations for the first time and using stock images was new to me when I started with DA. It never occurred to me to list my sources. I know that isn't an excuse, but, I do know better now. Once I realized my neglect in this, I began keeping track of the images I use.
I did one piece, then, had to change the model in it because I just couldn't find the image again. It is so important to note the source of the image at the time it is downloaded. Here, at DA, most of the images have the title and the artist in the file name, which is awesome! Other sites don't do this as much. I have worked out a system, though, to prevent my not remembering the source. When I save any image, I type in the artist's name first, then, the site's name or abbreviation. Finally, I type in the title of the image exactly as the artist posts it. An example might be, "johndoe sxc Image1'. The artist is 'John Doe', the site is Stock Exchange and the title is 'Image1'. This only takes a second, but, saves me hours of going back and searching for my source. And, it is the right thing to do. These artists put a lot of effort, and often expense, in creating images for others to use. That is the least one can do!
My memory and my only using the images for personal art aren't excuses, but, I didn't ever intend to take advantage of anyone. I am truly grateful for the stock images provided here and on other sites. I couldn't do what I do without them. As I am on a fixed income and do not sell anything I create, I must stick to the 'free' images sites. That is even more reason, though, for me to list the sources. That is my 'payment' so to speak.
I personally believe that some people 'neglect' to list the sources, relying on the 'anonymity' of the internet. They hide behind their pc, feeling quite comfortable that no one will know or care that they have used other's images. LOL Believe me! It matters! Once, I used some 'arms' that I had downloaded to my files to make a freebie 'collage sheet' for a group I was in. The 'arms' didn't have an identifying label, so, in my mind, it wouldn't matter. HA! The 'arms' turned out to be stock that a fellow group member had created! How utterly embarrassing that was! Thankfully, the lady was very nice about it and I pulled the collage sheet. Still, a few people had already downloaded what I made. It just wasn't right to use anything without knowing and citing the source. In my case, karma came back and bit me on the butt! LOL Fortunately, for me, the lesson wasn't too harsh. It could have been so much worse!
Throughout my time here at DA, I have heard some doozies where people have used and abused an artist's images. I think the one that stands out the most to me, though, is an artist who had her entire gallery of stock stolen and used to create a store on another site. There, they were sold, though, here at DA the images were free. The site was even named for the artist since her name was on every piece! Can you believe the audacity!? When the artist contacted the thief about it, her comment was to the effect that 'the images are online and 'available', so, what did it matter'! In other words, because they are 'there', they are 'fair game' and free to use as one wishes. The thief's store was on Etsy, I believe, and, finally Etsy closed it down.
Last year, there was another case of theft that affected a bunch of the artists here at DA. That thief was selling prints on his own site, complete with his own identifying label/watermark. He charged a hefty price for 'his' art and, I guess, he sold some of them, though, who knows how much he made on them. I just can't fathom how someone can take advantage of so many others, claiming that they are the artist who created all those images and profiting from them! What nerve! What some people will do for monetary gain is phenomenal! I sure hope he gets his come-uppance!