My Entire Life to Create My images

[caption id="attachment_302" align="alignleft" width="287" caption="Artist Ann Rea"]Artist Ann Rea[/caption] Last Friday I met an account representative from a very successful publishing company at an art reception.  He was very interested in the prospect of licensing my images for reproduction.  His company would have full license to reproduce and to market my images in any way that they see fit.  That includes reproducing my images on canvas.  I have always founds this tacky.  Why reproduce a painting on canvas?  It’s not a painting, it’s a reproduction.  These reproductions belong on paper.  The frequent reply, “it looks like a painting.”  But it’s not!  Ugh! Anyway. The return to me would be a 10% royalty.  Passive income I would welcome.  But the short-term gain would not serve my long-term aim, and that it is to build my brand and to open my own galleries.  And if I’m building a brand, then I can’t dilute it by licensing without maintaining control over the reproduction of my intellectual property. I was also tempted last month when I chatted with a well-respected licensing agent; she was actually the licensing agent for the creator of Dilbert.  By the way, licensing for a cartoonist is much more appropriate. This experienced licensing agent advised me that licensing of wine related images was in demand more than any other category.  Again, passive and immediate income, tempting.  Very tempting.  But these are my creations and this is my brand, Ann Rea, Inc. This week I just received a second judgment that a former client was ordered to pay me for her willful copyright infringement.  I licensed my image for her wine label, but only her wine label.  Not the shabby sidewalk sign she created from sampling my image nor the electronic use of my image on her lame website.  It was an exhausting, but unfortunately a necessary fight. I think that I’ll let this fine gentlemen know that although I appreciate his enthusiasm my answer is no. It’s taken my entire life to create my images and I put everything on the line to start this business. The images and the brand are mine, all mine.
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