I'm not a writer so I'm going to keep this shitty and weirdly formatted.
I get that a lot of people use photos now, as ref or within the paintings themselves. I have no problem with this, I understand that it's an efficient way to put down accurate information quickly.
However it seems that along with the widespread acceptance of photo-bashing, the theft of design has crept in too. I'm not talking about copying the design of something generic or common, I'm talking about stealing unique works. I'm not talking about concept art either, oftentimes the offending images are meant only for eyes of an internal team. This is about illustration.
I see it often with fashion photography, some designer somewhere has put in the thought and effort into realising (and being able to realise) a bold unique vision. Then some digital painter comes along and just uses the photo as 90% of their own "new" piece. To be clear, a great deal of the impact of the painting can be attributed to the photo they've used. The final image can involve a horizontal flip so you know there's been some attempt to cover their tracks.
I would be forgiving if the piece was something personal, a photo study and nothing more. but I've seen people do this as work for high end clients and I've seen people selling prints of these studies too. How is that ok?
When a digital artist copies a key component from another digital artists work and uses it to the same effect in their own work they get chastised by the community to a ridiculous level, especially so if the thief is technically weaker and unestablished. But if the victim of theft is from outside our industry do we still care? Am I right in thinking this is sleazy or is this the new standard we should all accept?
This is not a call out post, I have no interest in naming names, providing evidence, creating drama or burning bridges. I'm just disappointed in some artists that I used to look up to and felt annoyed by this trend.
Listening to: Norther
Reading: tangential research for an upcoming project
Watching: da vinci's demons
Eating: my stylus