Wednesday, February 22, 2012

YesterCards - I just have to Vent!

Hi Everyone!
How have you been? Great I hope! I'm anxiously awaiting spring. I know it's coming pretty quickly the birds and squirrels around here have been pretty busy trying to get their families started for the next season. I know, TMI, but it just reinforces that the dreary weather will soon be gone and the flowers will soon be showing their gorgeous colors.

I'd like to get on my soap box for a little bit today. I was browsing through Pinterest the other day and I noticed a pin on an image that I have in my collection. Of course whenever I run across something like this, my curiosity gets the better of me and I have to check it out. And boy was I surprised and disappointed.

I discovered that the site has several of my images listed for sale and that one of my images is their top seller. Now comes the mixed emotions. I'm pretty proud that from all the sellers of vintage images that mine were selected for their site - my images must be pretty darn good. Then the anger sets in. How dare they use my images without first consulting with me!

Now, you may be wondering how I know they are mine. Well, I can tell by the way the graphics present themselves on my images. I've cleaned up and edited so many cards that I can pretty much tell whether it's one that I've had my hands on or not. It's kind of like asking a person how they know that a painting is the one that they painted. One becomes intimately involved in their creation and can recognize the results of their habitual practices. Over time, I have developed a method to my madness and I can see my work in the resulting image. I know that there could be multiple copies of the card floating around out there and I've seen copies of the original card being sold and they could have legitimately acquired it from a different source. I have also encountered other image sellers who do sell some of the same images as myself. But this particular site has too many of the same images that are contained on the same CD for it to be a happy coincidence.

The next thing I always look for is their terms of use and the copyright information that they display. Isn't it funny, that their copyright information follows almost word for word as to what's stated in my TOU but they also add a disclaimer about rote scans not counting toward creating a new copyright. This I totally agree with, no one can ever claim that a plain scan of a Public Domain document now has a new copyright and that the original document's copyright now belongs to them. But then again, if the image is part of a collection that collection can be protected under the copyright laws. I can't help but think they added this rote scan information to cover their "borrowing" practices.

My images are not rote scans. I can spend hours and hours working on a card, cleaning up the flocking, removing the tears and worn spots, straightening it up and making it square and all of these changes and modifications are strictly due to my hard work and make my images anything but rote scans.

I wonder how they can arbitrarily assume that it is a rote scan. The only way I can even see this happening is if one has the actual card right in front of them and can verify that the image is 100% positively the same as the original image. Which of course, it never will be because with time and age and the type of paper the graphic changes. With tears and wear, pieces need to be recreated in order to fill in the missing spots. All of this requires judgement calls and decisions on how best to fill in the space and some creativeness to figure it all out.

In my opinion, if they don't have the card, they can't even begin to make the claim that it is a rote scan. Maybe a simpler option might be contacting the owner of the image and simply asking if it's ok to use it. And if the owner says no, then go shopping, look for the card, purchase it, check out the copyright, scan it yourself and use your own image. Any of these options would be better than just assuming that it's ok to use something that's not yours.

The reselling of images produced and created by someone else can be a copyright violation. If this company wants to sell images then they should darn well make sure that what they are using is approved by the creator of the image. Or they need to get their butt off of their chairs, purchase the original card, check out the copyright, and then scan and create their own images to use versus "borrowing" them from someone else. I can produce the card that was the starting point for my images. I wonder if they can do the same? My guess is probably not!

What does this practice say about the honesty and integrity of the company. I sure don't think that I would buy something from them - the trust factor sure wouldn't be there for me.

Now comes my dilemma, what do I do? I've always said that my primary goal is to share these gorgeous images with the world and in a sense this expands the sharing. My sis always tells me that I share too much... lol But I'm not in this to make tons of money. I'm the happiest when I get to share, make a little money so that I can buy more scrapbooks (lol) and put a smile on someone's face because the image brings back a memory or tickles a sweet spot. But I also find it really upsetting when someone feels they are above the law and can do whatever they want. So I really am torn on this issue. What would you do?

Ok, I'm done, sorry I just really had to vent for a while.

I would love to share with you two of the Valentine cards that I made this year. I keep practicing my skill and hope that someday I will really turn out a WHOA-SHER!. But anyway I'll keep trying... lol Sorry for the blurry pictures... lol

Sure wish I could point you to a CD or Cut Out that has these images on it, but sadly they haven't made it there yet. If you're interested in purchasing a copy of either of the images, send me an email and I'll get it to you.

Have a great week, plumb full of smiles!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Free Vintage Valentine Image

Hi Everyone,
Burr! Is it cold! I guess I shouldn't complain because we've had a very easy winter so far. This past week, we celebrated my daughter's birthday and it seems like every year Mother Nature saves the best (NOT!) weather for her birthday. The biggest snow storm of the year always shows up right on or very near her birthday. Well this year, we got our storm again but it was only a light dusting. Yipee! I'm always a last minute present buyer and I didn't have to worry about trudging through the snow this year. What a relief!

Do you have your Valentines all finished? As usual, I'm rushing to finish mine. Are you in the same boat? If so, here's a cutie image that might help you out. Make sure you click on it before you save it.

I used this image to create my son's card. I had to get it mailed off to Afghanistan so it was my first Valentine for the year. I kind of like the way it turned out. I wish had used something other than red card stock as my base and it is kind of girly for a guy but what the hay! Valentine's is supposed to be mushy and gushy right? It has lots of layers and I made cupid and the heart and flowers dimensional. Then I added lots of hearts and sparkles - which of course doesn't really show in the pic.

It really is the same image even though the colors on the completed card look different. Maybe one of these days, I'll learn how to work the camera. lmbo

Well gotta rush, I have to get working on my other cards for Valentine's Day.

Have a great week, plumb full of smiles!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Help Me Please! and Free Vintage Military Valentine Card

Hi Everyone,

I hope all is well for you. A huge welcome goes out to my new friends! Glad to see yah and I hope you come back often!

The weather here has been just absolutely gorgeous. I can't believe how lucky we've been this year. Illinois weather is usually pretty yucky but we've been very blessed this winter. Thank you Lord!

My DFIL was an avid collector of things. He loved going to estate sales, flea markets, auctions, garage sales or whatever kind of place he could find. He would pick through the trinkets and find stuff that he liked and if he picked it up for a song and a dance, out the door it went with him. His dream was to have enough stuff to fill up a trailer and travel around the US selling and trading his stuff. Sadly, he was never able to actually complete his dream and now we are left with all of his stuff. I'm not sure we have the same dream as his. Yes, we'd love to be able to travel around the country and visit tons and tons of different places, but I'm not sure setting out and then picking up all that stuff sounds like fun. lol

But anyway with that knowledge in hand, I'd like to share this pic with you. It is one of dad's finds that was buried in his "little" shed waiting for him to pack it in a trailer and find it a new home. When we ran across it, I was intrigued by it and I guess I still am. The frame is definitely very old. But I can't decide whether the picture is as old as the frame or not. I can't see the artist name on it, the frame hides the bottom part of the painting(?). I haven't wanted to take it all apart and check it out, I'm so afraid I'd mess something up. But I can feel the back of the paper and it does feel like it might be a canvas. It is definitely a hand painted image because you can see the brush strokes but you can't feel them. In fact the front of it is very smooth almost like it is on a laminate board but it is definitely paper. So I'm totally confused. I'm thinking about having an appraisal done but I'm worried I'll pay huge bucks for the appraisal and find out that she's a poster that was printed in 1990 and put into a vintage frame. lol... What do you think? Have you ever seen this painting anywhere? Click on her for an up close view.

I'm thinking it's supposed to be Cleopatra but looking at just the face it reminds me a lot of some of the masters paintings of the Virgin Mary. But, I know no one in their right mind would paint an image like this of the Virgin Mary.. lol

Oh also, it's huge! The inside frame is 19 1/2" x 25 1/2 inches and the width of the frame adds another 6 1/2" to all sides. Like I said, HUGE!

Anyway, I think it's absolutely gorgeous. The whole thing is very intriguing to me and if you have any info or advice to share, I'd love to hear from you.

This week I'd like to share a Military Valentine card. I've included two versions for you, one with the sentiment and one without. As always, make sure you click on it before you save it.

Have a great week, plumb full of smiles!