English translation starts here... But first one really important notification about two Reijo Viljanen persons here in Finland
Attention! I have been notified that there are at least two Reijo Viljanen named painters, so PLEASE DO NOT MIX THESE PERSONS!.|
The first REIJO VILJANEN is born year 1950 in Pori and he is an oldtimer artist in Finland, who has a long history of artistic creations since 1970s.
You can check out this Finnish art school ex-headmaster from his home pages here: http://www.reijoviljanen.com/index.html
The other REIJO VILJANEN is born year 1954 and he is the "copy artist" presented on this page. His home page is here: http://reijoviljanen.fi/esimerkkisivu/.
Some history of my previous home pages and the beginning of this copyright violation case
I have presented earlier my old vintage nature photos (my slide period in the 1980's and 1990's) on these web pages, but sadly this is now history due to harsh copyright violation.
These pages have been a non-commercial oasis for those seeking Finnish nature photos, but now I have been informed that one of my photos has been taken by force into a copyright violation act done by one Finnish "copy-replica-artist".
The photo of the original Kodachrome 64 slide + the screen capture of my previous web page can be found above. You can also see there my screen capture of this replica painting of that same subject, which has been produced by the copy artist Reijo Viljanen.
The unauthorized copy of my original (fully copyrighted) photo can be seen on this gallery page (for the time being until the "artist" removes it from there): http://viljanenreijo.galleria.fi/kuvat/El%C3%A4imet,+Animals/Linnut,+Birds/Metso.jpg.
As you can see, the price bid for this presumably illegal copy material is pretty high (359,60 euros / 1 209,00 euros) and it consists fully from my copyrighted material, which has been presented freely for the viewing pleasure of nature photography enthusiasts. For the record: the supposed oil painting has been created in year 2009, but I received info about this copyright issue only recently.
Here's the link for the web pages of this "artist": http://reijoviljanen.fi/.
And here's his facebook profile: https://fi-fi.facebook.com/pages/Reijo-Viljanen-Art/367510173297041
If you want to tell your opinion on this copyright violation to the copy artist, then here is his email address too: email@example.com.
Thank You for your support in this matter, it's mostly appreciated!
Internet is not supposed to be a place for people, who pitilessly nick from your honest neighbours like amateur nature photographers!
I found this blog writing, when I browsed for the contents of this copy artist.
I am not sure how copyright laws around the world handle this kind of violations, but here in Finland this can be somewhat controversial. Anyway I have started this case against the "copy artist" by myself and I would like to see that I am not alone in this fight.
So I have set up this web page for my own case, where I will collect similar copyright violations with Reijo Viljanen's art to support my own personal case if possible. I have also contacted Finnish Copyright Council), which should issue opinions on the application of the Copyright Act here in Finland.
I think that none of current opinions on the application of the Copyright Act do not apply directly to this kind of copyright violations, so I started this case on behalf of other photographers, whose photos have been taken and used by Reijo Viljanen just like my own capercaillie photo was...
Anyway, other countries (at least in EU) have their own legislation on copyright issues, which should refer to cases like this in your own country.
I have used Google image search (http://www.google.co.uk/imghp) in my spare time and I have tracked down other suspected copyright violations made by Reijo Viljanen.
(Btw, you can do that by yourself quite easily too! Here's some guidance for this...)
Here is the first one of these nasty cases:
http://viljanenreijo.galleria.fi/kuvat/El%C3%A4imet,+Animals/Linnut,+Birds/Saalistus+lennossa.JPG This is a 100% copy of a Finnish image agency (Leuku) photograph seen here:
http://www.leuku.fi/source/kansiohaku_ajax_14.php?kansiohaku=1&lang=finnish&mode=folder&ko=1&kid=32&rid=248&ro=1&lang=finnish#nayta_lista (last photo on that page)
The original photographer Jari Peltomäki has been contacted with this copyright issue and he has told me that violation of his Barn Swallow photo's copyright has happened just like in my case too.
I have also written about this case into two Finnish discussion forums, where I have received support for my case: (in Finnish only)
More possible copyright violations found, I think:
http://www.reinfriedmarass.com/austin-healey-road-story-editorial-photography (From there directly to the copied photo.)
These cases have been also reported to the said photographers or page admins, which have been linked here.
Update: From Austria Reinfried Marass has confirmed this copyright violation with his photo too, so you can support him here: https://www.facebook.com/reinfried.marass
Just for convenience, here is the replica artist's FaceBook home page too: https://fi-fi.facebook.com/pages/Reijo-Viljanen-Art/367510173297041
More info coming up as this story unfolds...
Even more (still not confirmed) copyright violations found by other photographer colleagues from Finland:
http://xenianova.files.wordpress.com/2013/02/n693444217_653437_1165.jpg from this page http://xenianova.wordpress.com/2013/02/09/rottweilers/#more-7284
The case with blue flowers (http://500px.com/photo/9936903) was confirmed today to be 100% copyright violation. The original flower photo's photographer Lafugue Logos (Sanae Matsuzaki in Japan) wrote to me like this:
"Hi Timo, I hasten to reply. Thank you for a really important announcement. I did not know at all. I'm very angry against him" (ie. Reijo Viljanen) "Yes, I also this act that can not forgive him, I'm going to inform as many people as possible. I understand that Google Translate is also not very accurate.
English and Japanese just to be sure and send in two sentences Going forward. Be sold when he put a sign in his work of others, Should be punished."
Despite of the poor Google Translate from Japan to English, the contents of her email statement is very clear to you and me! I'm really sad that skillful artists like Sanae Matsuzaki encounter this kind of theft from my co-citizen from Finland :-(
Shame on you Reijo! => Latest update to this case is already here! http://500px.com/photo/55314620
Btw, did you know? You can find Reijo from Twitter too: https://twitter.com/RVReijoViljanen
More news from this case: It looks like Reinfried Marass made some progress with this case. His Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/reinfried.marass) tells us that "Facebook has removed my two photographs shown in his FB-Galleries https://www.facebook.com/pages/Reijo-Viljanen-Art/367510173297041
Facebook might come with some 'disadvantages' but at the end it cares more about copyright issues as the law does! (once noted to them) And FB does it quick and dirty."
I have also informed two local image agencies about possible copyright violations by Reijo with two of their original (copyrighted) photographs. I was told in the reply that they will try to send him (Reijo Viljanen) an invoice from his usage of these two photographs here in Finland. (Good for our Finnish photographer Jari Peltomäki and another so far unnamed photographer here in Finland.)
This sends us a clear message: "If you have used our photos, then you must pay for your usage." Plain and simple plus some small steps in the right direction, IF this really happens! On the other hand the image agencies were doubtful with the result (until Copyright Council here in Finland has given their opinion on this issue).
Well, some photos for a change. This is something, which any "copy painter" artist cannot do... I'm presenting here for the first time more parallel photos from the original capercaillie photo series of my own :-) Beat this Reijo!
Here you can see the "crazy" capercaillie running around the forest trail and attacking human by-passers (me ;-). This nature phenomenon occurs when wild capercaillie cock cannot find any capercaillie hens from his patch of forest. This happens in Finland due too excessive/intensive timber cutting and increasing forest industry. I'm quite sad to watch original nature creatures like capercaillie "go nuts" due to human interaction.
Yesterday I wrote an email to Reijo (for the second time) and asked him to take a look at http://500px.com/photo/55314620 page, which handles now his copyright infringement case with Sanae Matsuzaki's original photo.
I also asked him to REMOVE ALL COPYRIGHT VIOLATING MATERIAL from all of his web pages. So far (after 22 hours) still no reply from Reijo. That does not surprise me, because the whole web site of his seems to have ONLY copyright violating material even he claims otherwise. It looks like we need to spread this whole case (not just my photo theft) as much as possible to the public and amongst all the artists whose copyrighted items have been violated by Reijo's ruthless actions.
To be continued, look for more updates in the future from this page and other similar ones emerging all over the Internet quite soon (hopefully ;-)...
I added the information about the two Reijo Viljanen persons to this page...
Christmas Update 24.12.2013
Sorry for missing updates, but I've been busy preparing Christmas for my family. I'll be back with this case after Christmas holidays...
Thank You all for your continued support, without it all this wouldn't be progressing so nicely!
Ooops... last minute update, thanks to http://www.fsnordic.net/discussion/index.php?FSNSESS=4t7omhsm839k5dbaqlj9pnssg3&topic=108244.20 :
How does this look like?
http://www.hankstruckpictures.com/pix/trucks/dmckenzie/fergus2001/js_crawford_sons_kw_w_900_l.html (Updated this link to a better one 26.12.2013)
This "copy artist" does not disappoint you: where ever you look at in his "art" gallery, there you can find out copyright infringements...
How about Reijo's portraits, does he have any originality in these? You guessed it right; nope, there's nothing of his own, just copying from an original photos (once again, sigh...)
Take a look at these two portrait photos:
(The fashion blog owner has been contacted, but the real copyright ownership of this photo does not belong there... Update below!)
Do we have here a pattern forming up or what? I think so...
Once again Reijo, YOU SHOULD REMOVE ALL COPYRIGHT VIOLATING MATERIAL from all of your web pages and galleries, but instead you promote them in an increasing pace (example) telling us this message: "New paintings dating back to 2013. A long time is spent in the studio with frenzy of inspiration. There are so many new ideas for painting the subjects that it is difficult to decide what to paint. And more is yet to come."
Yeah quite right, the Internet if full of COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL which you should not touch with your dirty fingers!!!
If you support my opinions, then please tell Reijo to stop this frenzy by Facebook, Twitter, email, whatever suits your needs... Thank you!
The "Hindu girl" case (yesterday) was more difficult to track down than I first expected. The photo usage linked above (primaetalvina.tumblr.com) is probably just as un-authorized and copyright violating as Reijo's painting is too!
I'm glad to say that I got some help from Austria (Reinfried Marass), who linked me the author of Hinduskie Zaslubiny book, which has this Hindu girl photo as a cover. Thanks to this I managed to track down the publisher of this book and from there I received info on the possibly original copyright owner of this photo!
You can check this fact out by visiting this web site: http://www.fayenightingale.com (This site relies heavily on Flash Player usage and thus it cannot be linked properly from the outside. This is why you need to find the photo from her "Commercial" portfolio by yourself.)
Here's another link for the "Hindu girl" photo (I found this today): http://fayetography.deviantart.com/gallery/?offset=48
This is the old gallery of this exactly same photographer (Faye Nightingale). I was hoping to get a confirmation for this photo from this photographer, but I cannot get any reply from her (or maybe new mails to her). Anyway, this gives me a good reason to find out who really is the mystery photographer behind this beautiful portrait from a model with some international fame since year 2009.
But one things is for sure: Reijo Viljanen is NOT the artist, who has created this nice mystery portrait ;-)
To be continued in the near future, when I'll announce the model's name in that portait...
(Edit 14.1.2014) I have now received an email from Faye and it says this clearly to our "copy painter" Reijo: "...I haven't granted permission of usage prior to the completion of your painting... " Case closed and verified from my point of view -> ie. Reijo has used that photo too without the original photographer's permission (once again)!
Another (possible/not confirmed) copyright infringement case emerges from Daniel Cheong's Helsinki in Gold & Blue photo seen here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/danielcheong/2944182420/
You can find Reijo's copy from Daniel's magnificent harbour night scenery here: http://viljanenreijo.galleria.fi/kuvat/Maisemat,+Landscapes/Meriaiheet,+Seascapes/Kauppatori,+Helsinki.jpg (Here's a bigger one; does that look original to your eyes compared to Daniel's photo?)
While you are witnessing this case, you might also take a peak at Daniel's statement about his photography usage:
"All pictures in my photostream are copyright © 2006-2011 Daniel Cheong. All rights reserved.
They may not be used or reproduced in any way without my permission. If you'd like to use one of my images for any reason, please contact me."
Let's see if Reijo has asked any permission for this painting... (I have contacted Daniel via his 500px account and will update this page after next weekend due to my own busy personal life.)
Back here after a while... It's time to get back to the basics. I have here a "photo of my capercaillie photo", when it was presented in the Wilderness Exhibition in the city of Riihimäki year 2008. During that time the Finnish taxidermy society wanted to use my photo as a case study for capercaillie taxidermy practicing. That event was a demanding task and it received only two competitors for the presentation, both of which can be seen in this photo. This kind of photo usage was done by my written permission and I had given a limited copyright license for the Finnish taxidermy society for their exhibition and web pages during that time.
One basic lecture for our "copy artist" Reijo Viljanen: this is how a normal photo usage should be practised here in Finland. You are supposed to ask a permission from the copyright owner to use any copyrighted photographs as sources of your 1:1 derivative paintings without any originality! Was it this exact exhibition, where you took my capercaillie photo without my permission?
(What would Reijo think, if I would go into his art gallery and take a photo with my camera from one of his paintings and then state the result as my own/personal artistic creation with a certificate?-)
I promised earlier to tell you the model's name, who was in the "Hindu girl" photo seen here: http://fayetography.deviantart.com/art/Crystal-122384060
This beautiful girl is called Krystal Vee and she has starred in several Hollywood movies!
You can find out more info on Krystal with these links:
I'm pretty sure, that our "copy artist" Reijo Viljanen did not know this fact, when he infringed Krystal's photograph with his replica painting!
I have tried to contact Krystal Vee's manager too, but I fear that my message has been rejected for some reason. Anyway I'll continue my personal life quite happily knowing that truth will be revealed in the end and copyright violations like this shall not go unpunished... :-)
A short one this time, because I found an interesting discussion forum thread. This handles almost similar copyright violation case than my own is and it is from a Finnish discussion forum (info), so here is the direct link for a Finnish language discussion: http://www.pingstate.nu/foorumi/259445
And for our English speaking visitors I have here a pretty poor (sorry!), but hopefully at least slightly useful Google Translate version of the same discussion: http://bit.ly/1e8DsV6 (That proves out that Finnish visual art hobbyists do not accept copyright infringements any more than other Western European citizens do.)
First something general about copyright legislation and then a new copyright violation case once again.
One can easily find out lots of info for copyrights from the internet, but when it comes to copyrights in Finland it is not that easy to translate our local legislation to English. On the other hand Finland is part of the EU and the decisions made in the Berne Convention do apply here too and the local legislation should follow these decisions.
For starters I can link to this Artist's Copyright FAQ, which asks May I Make a Painting of a Photograph?.
This is an US based article, but it has similar clausules than our own legislation here in Finland has too. http://painting.about.com/cs/artistscopyright/f/copyrightfaq5.htm
It says: "The creator of the photograph, i.e. the photographer, usually holds the copyright to the photo and, unless they've expressly given permission for its use, making a painting based on a photo would infringe the photographer's copyright."
Well, has Reijo Viljanen asked any photographer's permission for his copy paintings from copyrighted photographs? Nope, I think not!
Then another short quote from that same page: "The easiest solution to avoiding copyright issues when painting from photos is to take your own photos... (clip)...or to use several photos for inspiration and reference for your own scene, not copy them directly." Does Reijo Viljanen use several photos as source of his painting ideas and try to create something new with his art? No, but instead he takes other photographer's single copyrighted photo and then uses it commercially without any photographer permission! How wrong can he be in his opinions with his own "original" art?
I also needed here something to describe Derivative Works, because in our cases they all consist of paintings made directly out of single photographs.
This excerpt is from the Irish Copyright and the Visual Artist article: http://visualartists.ie/advocacy/resources/infopool-2/legaltechnical-guides/copyright-and-the-visual-artist/ (a pretty good read all-in-all)
"It is possible for a derivative work to enjoy protection? By employing sufficient labour and skill or judgment in transforming an existing work into something new, a fresh copyright can be obtained in the new work. It is necessary however to obtain the permission of the creator of the original piece, unless it is out of copyright."
Still the same requirement for obtaining the permission of the creator of the original photograph pops up. And Reijo fails to comply with that! Also you need to create something creatively new & fresh, independent and original out the original (copyrighted) source photo. Reijo is still failing here, because he tries to hide his direct copying act(s) behind the concept of "photorealism". Real photorealistic artists (example) create their new art without infringing copyrighted sources like Reijo does here! Can you spot the difference?
Anyway, you are my judges here in this matter.
How original is this piece of copy art hanging in Reijo's art gallery? http://viljanenreijo.galleria.fi/kuvat/Autot+ja+muut+kulkuneuvot,+Cars+and+other+transportation/Vespa.jpg (bigger one here)
Just compare it to the original copyrighted photo taken by Ian Cameron? http://www.transientlight.co.uk/photo/barcelona-chic/
I have contacted Ian too for his photo's copyright violation suspect.
One important thing about legislation here in Finland:|
We do not have here a thing called "class-action suit". So you do not have to be afraid of being too much involved with my own copyright case with Reijo as I'm pretty much alone in this s*** by myself. But I would surely like to see this copyright violation case to spread all over the Internet, because all of you could have your own photo copyrights violated by Reijo in the future (reference here!). You know this will happen, if well defined rules for this are not created here in Finland.
Like said in the beginning of this blog, I have also contacted Finnish Copyright Council, which should issue opinions on the application of the Copyright Act here in Finland. This should result as a new opinion on fotorealistic paintings created directly out of copyrighted photographs.
I think that none of current council opinions on the application of the Copyright Act do not apply directly to this kind of copyright violations, so I have started this case on behalf of other photographers too, whose photos have been taken and used by Reijo Viljanen. In return I could use your help by getting this issue as much publicity as possible. I believe that public discussion about copyright infringements can't be that bad goal. Thanks! :-)
For those who are interested about Copyright Act here in Finland, I have here a link to English translation about the law: http://www.finlex.fi/en/laki/kaannokset/1961/en19610404.pdf
Here are three (now four!) GIF-animations to prove out my point how Reijo's paintings are missing artistic "originality and creativity" quite totally.
My animations blink original photos and the copy paintings on top of each other with a one second frame delay.
This "copy artist" might have some sort of skills with his paint brushes in a technical sense, but for creating new art he requires new photographs as visual sources of his work. All of his paintings linked on this page look only like photocopies to my eyes. Not even adding a some shadow below my capercaillie's body or giving some length to the blonde MG girl's hair does not rescue him from our copying accusations!
Please note my apologies: I have now removed these four GIF-animations after a better thought, because I do not have the other image's (ie. painter's) permission to use these paintings in my GIF-animations. Well, you guessed it right! If copyrights work in one direction, then these should work in another direction too (from Reijo to me). This should happen even if the opposition does not deserve this kind of courtesy.
Please be advised that you need to have some internal sensitivity with your behaviour when you upload anything to the public Internet!
Anyway, if someone wants to see four really nice GIF-animations showing exactly how closely Reijo has copied my capercaillie photo, Reinfried Marass' "MG lady", Jari Peltomäki's "Barn Swallow" or Sanae Matsuzaki's "Quiet Epilogue" then you can email me to my "timo.p.inkinen@REMOVE-EXTRA-TEXT.gmail.com" address and ask these from me. Thank you!
I'm still just wondering what kind of unmoralic person dares to put his signature in these paintings and claim afterwards this replica art as "original pieces of art with his authenticity certificates"???
I have added one GIF-animation more to fullfil the set of four (look for blue flowers a.k.a. "Quiet Epilogue" pair above). These kind and brave persons have responded to my contact attempts and with this action they are proving out that they have original copyrights for their own violated photographs. (Not to mention their just and righteous minds with this issue!)
To proof this courage against copyright ingringements, here's Sanae Matsuzaki's response page to Reijo's copyright violation act once again. Please support her too, thanks!
I have now removed the GIF-animations from my web page, but you can email me to my "timo.p.inkinen@REMOVE-EXTRA-TEXT.gmail.com" address and ask these from me. Thank you!
I will be back after a while with something new to publish...
You might have been wondering "Who is this crazy guy behind these updates?" Well, I do have my old Amateur nature photography pages available in the non-profit Internet Library called Web site archive, so you can start from there by reading some ancient history about myself.
You may also agree on the crazy characterization I used, because I have (and will be) updating my copyright violation blog by editing HTML source code directly in the fine HTML-Kit editor's free version.
Now over 300 lines of code and still counting...
Oh, one more news from the front:
Faye Nightingale contacted me (look for Update 2.1.2014) and she says this loud and clearly to our "copy painter" Reijo:
"...I haven't granted permission of usage prior to the completion of your painting... "
Judging by that this beautiful Krystal Vee photo has also been used without permission. This is just like Reijo likes his copy art to be done, if we do not stop him somehow... :-(
Time to get back to Reijo's countless copyright ingringement suspicions. First we had the case with Blue flowers and now I can present you a case with a Red flower!
http://www.vastavalo.fi/displayimage.php?pos=-300028 Photo by Esko Turkkila, who is a deserving photographer with a resume this long about his skills :-)
And here is our good-for-naught copy artist's version directly out of Esko's closeup photo: http://viljanenreijo.galleria.fi/kuvat/Kasviaiheet/Punaiset+kukat.jpg
I found this image pair a while ago, but then forgot to publish it instantly. (I described Esko in my "Update 18.12.2013" as "so far unnamed photographer here in Finland" and then forgot him totally until now. Sorry, Esko!)
I have contacted your photo agancy (in December), who's representative does not approve Reijo's actions any more than I do. And now I'll try to contact you via your local camera society just to tell you about your copy case's publishing on my web site.
I ask you once more; what kind of originality and creativity do you see in this Red flower photo copy painting by Reijo?
I have been looking for original photo on this steam train from Reijo's "copy collection". No luck so far, but maybe someone else can find the original source for that copy...
What I do have found is quite interesting, because you can search steam locomotives by their numbers too. Just browse here and look up that number (4965) from the database ;-)
Some googling after the new data from the database and ta-daa... Here's a sharp photo about the same train and there you can see other kind of "photorealism", which Reijo's copy painting(s) cannot offer! For example the headboard in the nose of that specific locomotive says "The Red Dragon" and the nick name of that impressive piece of machinery is "Rood Ashton Hall". In addition of that info I can link you to this Wikipedia article on #4965 over here.
And if you got more interested about these magnificent steam engines, then Gordon Edgar's photostream is a great place to start looking ;-) http://www.flickr.com/photos/12a_kingmoor_klickr/
(He confirmed me that none of his photos has been taken by Reijo... not at least so far, so let's be vigilant out there if Reijo gets more "artistic" inspirations on old locomotives!)
More of these steam locomotive paintings of Reijo... If you thought that this steam train was an original art by Reijo Viljanen, then you are wrong again. The original copyright owner of that image is Aitor Ruiz de Angulo Ruiz, whose home town is Irun from the Basque Autonomous Community in Spain. Aitor has traveled and photographed the classic Brocken Harz Steam Train in the middle of Germany.
Well, what has Reijo done? He has just copied directly Aitor's original photo into his painting (without any derivative vision of his own from this subject).
Shame on you Reijo, once again (sigh)...
This screen capture is taken from Aitor's Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/aitorruizdeangulo/ web page, but the original photo can be found from his personal web site too.
Is Reijo lowering his standards for the source photos? This comes to my mind, when he copies his new paintings directly out of certain images that have been very widely spread all over the web community and no real originator for these can be found.
That's a link to my Google Image search for that copy painting and it found myriads of sources for this copy painting, mostly from Russian web sites. (Well... how convenient, because now his copy painting is amongst endless clone images, where Reijo's so called "original" paintings should really be located!!)
Or is he finally feeling the heat and pressure from the angry copyright owners of these original photographs I have presented earlier on my web page?
C'moon Reijo, don't you ever get bored doing your copying act directly out of photo images? You know, all creative artists try to recreate something new instead of copying clichéd subjects and images (like this Santorini windmill) one more time all over again ;-)
Maybe I should end collecting these examples of suspected copyright infringements and just let the local officials here in Finland do their job with my own capercaillie photograph's copyright violation? Local officials may be slow while doing their work, but they do not stop until they are finished with their task. (These thoughts came today, because I myself do feel like circulating around and around with Reijo's endless copy paintings and "deja'vu" concept or Groundhog day movie comes to my mind from it.)
Beware all studio portraitists in Finland!
It looks like all portrait photos in Finland become free to use for copying after these have been published on any Finnish "yellow press" tabloid magazine (or on their web page).
http://static.iltalehti.fi/viihde/karitapio_j091210PP_vi.jpg (Image taken from this page.)
I have approached this freelance photographer (Janne Aaltonen), who took this Kari Tapio portrait. I told him about his portrait image's very likely copyright violation, but I have not received any reply from him either.
My conclusion from this indifference (it's not just you Janne) is that Reijo can use your photos freely for his copy paintings, because he has created a surprisingly new and refreshingly original rendering of your fine and copyrighted studio portrait, which must have taken some time and efforts during the original studio session. (Yeah, you got it right... I'm just being sarcastic and cynical too here.) If you all know something like this has occurred for the period of several years in Finland, but you ALL have decided not to contradict Reijo Viljanen or stop him doing this... That's weird! Did you really believe this "Copy Painter Emperor from Ylöjärvi" has any clothes on himself (according to H.C. Andersen's "The Emperor's New Clothes" failytale ;-?)
Or do you still think that Copyright Council's old opinions from fully different situations like this (2004:3 PDF in Finnish language) could refer to these shameless copyright infringements presented on this web page too???
Well... maybe am I just wrong with my sense of justice and my personal opinions, which by the way have received quite positive accaptance from ordinary people all around the world? I think the great majority cannot be wrong in this case anymore... not in current time!
Well... The Finnish Copyright Council has finally (after 1 year and 2 months) taken my appeal into consideration and they have given a statement in this matter. I had mixed feelings when waiting for this statement and after reading this statement I still have these feelings.
In their statement they said that my capercaillie photo is not that kind of photo, which could get copyright protection from the copyright law's CHAPTER 1 / Section 1 which says this:
A person who has created a literary or artistic work shall have copyright therein, whether it be a fictional or descriptive representation in writing or speech, a musical or dramatic work, a cinematographic work, a photographic work or other work of fine art, a product of architecture, artistic handicraft, industrial art, or expressed in some other manner. (24.3.1995/446)
(Source for this quote is here: http://www.finlex.fi/en/laki/kaannokset/1961/en19610404.pdf)
On the other hand my photo qualifies to CHAPTER 5 / Section 49a level of protection. It says lot's on things so you are better off by looking that section up from the Finnish Copyright Law.
Here is the start of that section for you anyway:
(1) A photographer shall have the exclusive right to control a photographic picture, be it in an original form or in an altered form:
1. by making copies thereof;
2. by making it available to the public. (14.10.2005/821)
(2) The right to a photographic picture shall be in force until 50 years have elapsed from the end of the year during which the photographic picture was made. (24.3.1995/446)
(3) Photographs referred to in this section shall be correspondingly governed by the provisions of section... (LOTS of sections there after this sentence).
The conclusion for my case from the council is here:
They say that they cannot judge the difference between my photo and the copy painting done by Reijo based on the material given to their usage!
Well... what can I say? "How much pixel-peeping they need for their decisions?" kind of question comes to my mind first... :-O
I think it is better for us all to think this statement all over in peace, because I do not yet fully understand the consequences of the Council's decision in a larger scale.
But weird "Thanks for nothing!" disappointed feeling here is rising due to these almost meaningless official statements...
UPDATE: Maybe there is something useful from this statement, but more info will come later on this...
If you want to download this Finnish Copyright Council's six page long statement, then it is available on the Copyright Council's own web pages (Look for statement 2014:16).
A very long time has passed without any real updates, but there have been a reason for that... (some explanation about it coming up pretty soon).
Anyway, I thought that this page might need some new content and colorful pictures as a welcomed change, because lots of text has been written above.
So I'll add here two animated GIF photos to remind you (my trusted blog readers :-) how clear this copyright violation case has been to us photographers all around the world.
Here you can see a GIF animation from my original capercaillie photo and Reijo's copy painting (image taken from his web page). These images have been resized to the same pixel size, then aligned on top of each other in PhotoShop layers and finally saved as an animated GIF file for web. No other editing has been done in PhotoShop to Reijo's painted image, because there was absolutely no need for that :-D
For the record this never ending animation has one second's frame rate with these overlapping images. You can spot that there are several small differences between these two images, but the overall look of this copy work tells us a clear story: "No matter how much you decorate someone else's photo, you should not claim this new piece of image as your own original copyrighted art!"
Ok, moving on... Below you can see a similar animation from my original Finnish squirrel photo and my PhotoShop edit from the same photo image. As you can see, you can create images that have a similar "oil-paint-like" outlook in a very short time with Photoshop. I used PhotoShop's "Oil paint" filter and then added "Photo Filter" adjustment with "Warming filter (85)" on top of it. These minor changes in my squirrel photo do not make it any more original art piece (painted or not!) from the original copyrighted photo.
As you can see, my PhotoShopped and animated copy of this squirrel photo is just another piece of this same original copyrighted photo.
If you really want to use phographs as a template to your oil paintings, drawings (whatever your desired art form is), then you should read tips for that usage from this page:
You can also read more artist opinions on this same question in "Wet Canvas" forum thread here: http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48864
"A general rule of thumb I use for copyright is: use any photographs for reference you want, but you better make darn sure you can't tell which photographs you've used. Photographs are protected by copyright the same way artwork is, because photographs ARE artwork, too."
"Photographs may be used as source material if your painting transforms the final image so that the source photograph is no longer recognizable in a side-by-side comparison."
I'll rest my case here. And I do hope that this kind of opinions open up this Finnish copy painter eyes to common morality too...
Well, well... you never know what you can find!
First I thought that you can see here one capercaillie bird with some white patterns in its' tail feathers. Now I have learned, that these white patterns in this male bird's tail feathers variate from bird to bird so that you can identify individual birds from each other with these details. For what it's worth, this really seems like a "Smoking gun" in Reijo's hand and this proves very clearly that he has copied these white patterns directly out of my copyrighted photograph! (Not from some other capercaillie individual near his own home.)
If this copy artist would have painted some generic capercaillie individual from some other place in Finland (and only used my capercaillie photo as a reference image for that painting), then he should have painted different white patterns in the back feathers of this magnificient male bird! But what did he do instead??? He copied my photograph's tail feathers directly without any real variation in these patterns. Shame on you Reijo, once again! I can tell you all that it is not possible that he could have seen the same bird individual, because my bird was photographed in year 1991 almost 300 kilometers away from his home town! Capercaillie male is also a very local bird staying on the same region for all of his life.
I can share you some other capercaillie images, where you can see this pattern dispersion by your own eyes:
Three different capercaillie birds there with slightly different tail feather patterns for each bird. Just compare this feather detail info with the tail feathers of my capercaillie animation blinking some rows upwards. No noticeable pattern variation there in these white tail feathers the way you should see in naturally different male birds. I would say our copy painter is guilty as charged based on this new feather evidence! :-D
You know I usually link my reference pages for any important info I present here and below you can find this linked page: (this page is written in Finnish language, sorry!)
It says there in Finnish this sentence: "Pitkässä, pyöreäpäisessä pyrstössä on 18 mustaa sulkaa, joissa on vaihteleva määrä valkoista kirjailua."
The same text translated in English is here: "There are 18 black feathers in the long, round tail with variable amount of white patterns."
It's time to move on to a new web page with some District Court news on this copyright violation case!
But before that a short synopsis of the recent hidden events behind the scenes if needed.
After the Copyright Council's indecisive verdict on this case (my update 05.02.2015), the official prosecutor in Tampere (in Western Finland) moved on with this case very quickly and made some decisive actions. Great news for us :-D
Here in Finland it's prosecutor's job to look at all the facts from a case like this against the Finnish law and then decide, if this kind of case is worth prosecuting in the District Court. In the beginning of March 2015 local prosecutor decided that a real copyright law violation has happened here in my copyright case and then the same prosecutor started to run my case actively into District Court! There he tried to proof to judge that Reijo has offended Copyright law in several places here in Finland and Reijo Viljanen was charged for breaking copyright law in Finland!
This is the part where the plot starts to thicken and I decided that it's better to turn the page (instead of continuing this l-o-n-g web page) and start a brand new web page for this copyright violation case.
So please CLICK HERE FOR THE CONCLUSION of this trial in June and the additional steps behind that phase. Thank You!
Copyright © 1997-2017 Timo Inkinen. Email address: timo.p.inkinen@.REMOVETHISPART.gmail.com