Urban Outfitters Takes Artist’s Artwork Found Online, Prints On Mini Skirt–Without Artist’s Consent!

blogtumblr_n5xovxTWPT1qztou0o2_r1_1280

Artist James Soares aka Spires, sells his art prints and art designs printed on 3-D items in his store on the e-commerce site Society 6. Spires created the above side-by-side comparison of his artwork obviously used on the Urban Outfitters mini skirt.  On his Tumblr blog the artist is asking others to reblog his story and share. The Huffington Post wrote this article about the design printed on the mini skirt without the artist’s knowledge, permission, any licensing contract, or payment. The Village Voice published an article on the mini skirt design yesterday. In the comments from readers of the Huffington Post article, one artist wrote, “It’s happened to me. I had my painting “Arizona Sunset” turned into a print for a dress . . . flattering and maddening at the same time.”

According to other artists, and other news stories, Urban Outfitters has copied more than one jewelry design. A necklace in the shape of New York State with a heart cut out, that was designed by Etsy artist Stevie Koerner and available in his e-commerce Etsy store as part of his United States of Love line, appeared in a new Urban Outfitters line of the same name. Steve Koerner wrote, in part, “The World/United States of Love line that I created is one of the reasons that I was able to quit my full-time job.  They even stole the item name as well as some of my copy.”  The story of this design theft appeared, with photos, in the Huffington Post article Urban Outfitters Steal and on the artist’s Tumblr page as Not Cool Urban Outfitters.

Some non-artist commenters on the recent Huff mini skirt article bring up questions of originality. Are these original designs– a map of New York state, the heart shape, a landscape of an Arizona sunset in a painting, or the geometric triangle pattern in the artist’s print (the one obviously copied and used on the mini skirt)? Haven’t we seen these things before and aren’t they part of our collective consciousness owned by all?  Another question, does Urban Outfitters work with another company, BamBam, and are they responsible for the ripped off artist’s design on the mini skirt? Yet, it’s also reported  by The Brooklyn Paper, and in an article in The Village Voice that an Indie jewelry designer selling at a Brooklyn flea market found her designs sold as very similar items by Urban Outfitters. Are such artworks and designs deliberately searched for, copied and used by large companies for the very reason that they doubt small business owners have the resources to fight back? Can these artists prove loss-of-income or originality of design?

It is time-consuming for artist-owners of small businesses to pursue matters legally,  yet one artist that we featured in our blog last year did just that. She received a check in payment, compensating her for the unauthorized use of her artwork on three album covers. The lawyer she worked with was available free of charge via Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts.

I’ve always found the Huffington Post to be artist friendly–publishing artist news  and featuring quality art news columns by several writers. Is Huffington Post the largest news source to cover these matters for artists? The Village Voice supports artists with reports on these artist rip-offs as well.

I can’t help but wonder how many times they get away with it? That is, how many times do such infringements go unnoticed in relation to the few instances companies are caught in outright copyright infringement?

 

 

Advertisements

Get Online Shopping Discount Codes For Art Supplies + Free Shipping at Coupon Chief

Screen Shot 2013-03-12 at 7.44.19 AM

Recently, in an online discussion, a group of artists talked about the importance of getting as many things as possible delivered to their studio doors– from food to art supplies–so they can spend their days at work on their art and waste very little time running errands. It is possible to get just about everything you need delivered, but then concern shifts to all those shipping fees you’re paying. If you want free shipping, then next time you are about to place an online order, stop, and before you click that final *buy button* take a minute to search the Coupon Chief site for coupon codes that you can immediately use to get free shipping and discounts.

Coupon Chief asked me to review their site and I am so glad to discover that they currently have discount coupon codes for buying just about anything online–clothing, pet items, stationery, beauty supplies, and yes, art supplies!

Use Coupon Chief coupon codes to get Free shipping for your Jerry’s ARTARAMA orders, Blick, MisterArt, Flax, Greatart UK, Ink Supply, Utrecht and others.  I easily found coupon codes for 15% off, 20% off, and 25% off an entire store order at Jerry’s ARTARAMA, plus coupon codes to get a free Facebook T-shirt with purchase, a free tube of white paint with purchase, and a free brush-washer, (and who doesn’t  like those free items?).

Coupon Chief has several current coupon codes for Utrecht, to get free shipping on orders over $25 dollars, to save 15% on orders over $75 dollars, to save 40% on any 1 item, to get 20% off plus free shipping on your $75 order, to get 40% off one item + free shipping, and  15% off + free shipping on $100 or more, and new coupons codes to get $30 off on orders of $100 or more.

How would you like to save 20% on CafePress orders? Or get 40% off ebooks? Those were the top two coupons when I visited the Coupon Chief website yesterday.

I also found 14 printable coupons for Staples for substantial savings on ink pens, paper, paper shredders, Flash Drives, Laser Jet printers and a coupon code for free shipping for any online purchase. While reviewing the Staples coupons, related coupons appeared in the sidebar, including 31 printable coupons for Office Depot, and 16 Coupons for Office Max and coupons for Viking-direct UK.

The site currently has discounts for stores such as Walgreens, Macy’s, Overstock.com, Urban Outfitters, Home Shopping Network, and sites such as Emeals.com and 48HourPrint.com.  I reviewed the alphabetized list of stores on the Coupon Chief site and discovered the Army Navy Shop . Using a Coupon Chief coupon code I  placed an order for %15 off with free shipping for some new vintage paratrooper pants I use as art studio work clothes.

In that Coupon Chief store list I also noticed the Apple iTunes Store and the Apple Store had some incredibly low prices on iPads and iPhones. And that list of stores is a great resource for researching new sites you may not discover otherwise.

Post sponsored by Coupon Chief.