Wednesday, December 10, 2008

IP and Art of Action Art

Something's been bugging me for a while, and now, with the advent of several more bloggers on our little scene, I can't sit on it any longer.

And, I'm apologizing before-hand, if anyone feels I'm teaching my grandmother to suck eggs. BUT . . .

There is a lot of quite splendid images appearing in these blogs and I just want to make sure that folks are attaching at least the bare minimum of IPTC information to those images.

I know that most of you are painters and draughtsmen, but even though a digital image of your work is not THE work itself, it is still your property.

The "bare minimum" is your name, © Your Name 2008., and either your email or the URL of a website where someone can contact you.

Without this information, any image you put up on the web becomes what is now being referred to in the art world (and in Congress) as "an orphan work".

If you use PhotoShop or PhotoShop Elements, you can get this info into your image by the File Info selection under the File Menu. (Other image handling programs may have similar access, though it might be under IPTC.) If your image handling program does not have this, toss it, and get another. AND, if you use any version of PhotoShop BEFORE CS4, and use the option "Save for Web", any data you have put into the image file is stripped! Adobe has been pounded on this, and has corrected the situation with CS4.

If any one wants to know more or needs help, I am easily contactable and happy to help. My phone is here. (Just not after 4 p.m. I'm usually at the keyboard by 3:30 or 4 a.m. so I'm apt to be somewhat inchoherent at the end of the day!)


  1. hey Clair
    Thank for this info....
    I have always been hesitant about the web for all these reasons.

  2. Clair, Thanks for this important post. I have a copyright notice in the header on my blog saying that all images are copyrighted - is this sufficient?

    Again, thank you for this.

  3. Elizabeth --
    Not if you don't have the copyright embedded in each image. With that you are just depending on the kindness of strangers, which is fine, but you need to put the copyright in the image itself. It doesn't make them copyrighted, but it does make YOUR claim on that image as the creator.

  4. Clair, I have a couple of stupid questions:
    1) what does IPTC mean?

    2) I can't find a copyright sign on my keyboard - is there a way to work around this? Is it necessary?


  5. Elizabeth - again --
    Damn, I hate the fact that we can't edit comments. The "is the copyright box" should be "in the copyright box". And, sorry, I forgot that you might be using a Mac. If you are, you hold down the Options key, and while holding it down, type the 0169 on the keypad. (And, for anyone mucking about with their own HTML, the code entry for it is

    & # 0 1 6 9 ;

    With NO spaces and the semi-colon is part of it. (If I had not used the spaces, you would have only seen the symbol.) Most HTML editors, pages, etc. will also accept & c o p y ; Again, without the spaces.)

  6. Clair,

    Thank you once again; this is enormously helpful.

    BTW, I have a PC (at least I know what that stands for!)and I, too, hate the fact we can't edit comments!