T-Shirt Forums banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
To all the t-shirt designers and graphic artist: I just read a article about t-shirt designers/ graphic designers being able to charge royalties even after the client pays in full for the art work the client commissioned to the graphic designer. Is this true? How is this possible once the work is paid in full and the intellectual property is turned over to the client? Is there anyone on here charging royalties? What if it is a logo for the client's company?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
9,864 Posts
A logo design intended for printing on shirts(based on your post) is still basically a t-shirt design or artwork. It is different from "a logo for the client's company" or a corporate logo which is intended to be used in corporate communication, on flyers and advertisements, on business cards, etc.

PS: I don't think artists charge royalties on corporate logo meant to be used on all sorts of unspecified items. But on t-shirt designs royalties is not uncommon
 

· Registered
Joined
·
3,633 Posts
To all the t-shirt designers and graphic artist: I just read a article about t-shirt designers/ graphic designers being able to charge royalties even after the client pays in full for the art work the client commissioned to the graphic designer. Is this true? How is this possible once the work is paid in full and the intellectual property is turned over to the client? Is there anyone on here charging royalties? What if it is a logo for the client's company?
Yes. Very possible. So few artists explore the business aspect of their craft beyond doing a job and getting paid. That's why I am a strong proponent of colleges and universities making the business side of art a required course study for all graduates. Too often artists underprice what they do and as a result their craft and skills are undervalued. But when you think about the value and impact of visual representation, it takes on a new light. Think about it. How much is the swoosh worth to Nike? The concentric circles to Target? Three letters in a square to the Gap? Who by the way faced a serious backlash from fans when they tried to change it. And then there's the ultimate Golden Arches and bitten Apple. You're talking big, big money.
So corporations and businesses have a clue. They value and understand the visual as critical. It's time artists jump on the bandwagon and develop more of an understanding of how what they do shapes the whole world.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
736 Posts
It depends entirely upon how the work was contracted. Up until recently it was almost always agreed that the design firm would retain all rights to the image so you would have to keep coming back to them for anything you needed (business cards, letterhead, etc.). The practice has declined somewhat, but has hardly gone away. Artists will often offer to sell the rights at a higher price point.

If the customer did not buy the rights to the design and didn't read their contract, it's their own fault. However, I think artists should make this very clear when they are commissioned.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
For starters, Don't EVER assume that your right of copy ( Bill of rights) has been handed over.... Even when someone pays 12 billion for a Picaso, they do not have the right to reproduce it...

This has to be stipulated in righting for each piece... However the Work for Hire clause of the copyright bill changed an 1979 may play some part. However in order for a company or person to enact the Work for Hire clause they have to fulfill certain requirements... They canot simply put it in a contract like so many of these idiots now days try...
They must in part supply or pay for some of the materials or space you use. this is the way the bill is written. Most people writing these contract don't have any more a clue then most artist today....

If you sign one of these fraudulent work for hire contract on the other hand.... You may need to consult an attorney that specializes in Copyright.

Even if it was "agreed" upon or put in writing, Unless you stipulate in writing a handing over of rights for each work, such agreements are likely null and void in the court of law.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
9,864 Posts
For starters, Don't EVER assume that your right of copy ( Bill of rights) has been handed over.... Even when someone pays 12 billion for a Picaso, they do not have the right to reproduce it...

This has to be stipulated in righting for each piece... However the Work for Hire clause of the copyright bill changed an 1979 may play some part. However in order for a company or person to enact the Work for Hire clause they have to fulfill certain requirements... They canot simply put it in a contract like so many of these idiots now days try...
They must in part supply or pay for some of the materials or space you use. this is the way the bill is written. Most people writing these contract don't have any more a clue then most artist today....

If you sign one of these fraudulent work for hire contract on the other hand.... You may need to consult an attorney that specializes in Copyright.

Even if it was "agreed" upon or put in writing, Unless you stipulate in writing a handing over of rights for each work, such agreements are likely null and void in the court of law.
Do you have a link to the bill and the specific paragraph or section?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
BroJames, I do not, I actually read the whole thing from the law library at the University of Denver Law department in 1979 when they changed it as I was both freelance and getting royalties, and some of my clients tried using the new law....
I am sure it is easily researched..
http://search.loc.gov:8765/query.html?style=Copyright&col=loc&cn=Copyright&charset=iso-8859-1&ht=0&qp=url%3Awww.copyright.gov+url%3Awww.loc.gov%2Fcopyright&qs=&qc=&pw=100%25&ws=0&la=en&qm=0&st=1&nh=20&lk=1&rf=2&oq=&rq=0&si=0&qt=work+for+hire&go.x=0&go.y=0&go=submit
 

· Registered
Joined
·
736 Posts
The Work for Hire thing mainly applies to permanent employees of companies. If a Disney artist draws a brand new character, Disney immediately owns all rights to it. If you hire a print shop to design a logo, unless a copyright transfer has been signed, the print shop (not the employee who designs it) owns the logo. The employee is under the Work for Hire law, the print shop is considered an "independent contractor" for the job. If you hired a graphic designer at your business, you would own it. If you contract a freelance graphic designer, they own it.

There are, of course, huge grey areas in the realm of copyright law that require a lawyer (and sometimes a judge) to decipher for you, not random strangers on an internet form.

This all leads back to a thread I posted earlier this month, if a customer comes to you with a letterhead (or worse, a business card) of their logo to be redrawn from scratch, and don't bring you the original files, what burden of proof is upon you to find out whether or not you can legally do it? What if they're legitimately unaware that they can't do this? What if the design firm went out of business ten years ago? What if a freelance designer died? Who owns it then? Most of these questions probably do have answers but you would need a lawyer that specializes in copyright law to search case records for precedent.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top