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Thread: A Newcomer's Concern

  1. #11
    Guild Master Gracious Donor Midgardsormr's Avatar
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    Jax: You have to download an image to be able to view it; the web browser does that automatically as soon as it hits the page. The download stats don't say anything about how many people have actually saved your images to their hard drives, as that activity (barring some javascript or flash trickery) is invisible to the server.

    As with everything, securing your work against theft is a matter of evaluating the risks and taking reasonable measures to guard yourself. Who wants it? What measures are they likely to take to get it? How much do you want to inconvenience yourself to protect it?

    In the case of these maps, the major "threat" comes from people who gather large collections and can't be bothered to track where the images come from. Then they post them all on another site without attribution. Something as simple as putting a visible signature on the image, preferably with a link to your own website or deviantArt page, will protect the image. If you really think there's a risk that someone will try to pass your work off as their own, then the best solution is to keep that work under wraps. That sort of thing is quite rare, though; I am not aware that it has ever happened to someone here. It helps that this is still a relatively small community and fantasy mapmaking in general is a very specialized niche. There aren't many places where a map could be posted that one of us won't eventually see it, and if it's not in one of those places, then its exposure will be so low as to be immaterial.

    So the big question to me is: How much do I stand to gain by posting here? Nothing is as beneficial to a piece of art as a good critique. I consider the risk of theft to be quite low and the advantages to be quite good.

    If you're still concerned, though, consider posting just a segment of the map—enough so that we can see the style and technique so we can give you some feedback, but not so much as to compromise your ultimate use of the map should that segment get out of control.
    Bryan Ray, visual effects artist
    http://www.bryanray.name

  2. #12
      Sigurd is offline
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    Nobody can responsibly give you any words of confidence. If you share it it will be shared.

    Many people will respect your wishes but it is highly likely that some will not.


    The bright spot I can offer is sort of a left handed one:

    A substantial element in the value of an image is confidence and appreciation of the artist. Should you have 100 pieces of art and nobody knows about you, your art collection is worth less in value and utility than if you'd given away 10 of those pieces and became famous. The remaining 90 are worth more than the previous 100.

    That presupposes that you'll produce more than 3 pieces of work. But showing off your work is the best way to get feedback and inspiration. You will likely create more work if you share it.

    It is of course everyone's right to determine what they do with their work and how they share it. I think many creative people mistakenly keep work rather than set it free. They lose the attention free work might give them. As they progress in their skills your earlier work becomes more valuable as a calling card than as an ultimate achievement. The work you release for free may not be paid for in dollars but it will be seen by more eyes and get you more responses and attention. Free work that resembles the buyers needs is the best way of establishing yourself.


    Most people with very little are convinced to value it highly by people who have a lot to sell. Keeping your small contribution from the public eye also reduces your stature and enjoyment of your art. That in the end can be too big a price for you to pay.

    Sigurd
    Last edited by Sigurd; 08-04-2010 at 01:21 PM.


    Dollhouse Syndrome = The temptation to turn a map into a picture, obscuring the goal of the image with the appeal of cute, or simply available, parts. Maps have clarity through simplification.

    --- Sigurd

  3. #13
      RobA is offline
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    If it was featured, then CG could post it on their homepage and other sites could possibly link to it (I think?).
    Just a note on this. We only select featured maps from the finished maps forum, so if you only post in the WIP forums, no worry. I'd also suggest if you do post in the finished maps forum to include a comment stating "please do not consider this map as a featured map". We will certainly respect it.

    -Rob A>

  4. #14
      Jaxilon is offline
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    Thanks for the clarification Mid, I had wondered if that was the case but wasn't sure. Now I know and it makes better sense.

    Great comments on here so far folks, it helps me to relax that inner urge to over protect my creations as well.

    What would it take for us to have our own CG watermark ala dA has? It seems we have had this conversation a few times and maybe we should look into the possibility of making one available for whomever wants to use it. (If this is going to hijack the thread maybe I should post this separately).
    “When it’s over and you look in the mirror, did you do the best that you were capable of? If so, the score does not matter. But if you find that you did your best you were capable of, you will find it to your liking.” -John Wooden

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  5. #15
    Guild Master Gracious Donor Midgardsormr's Avatar
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    We just had that conversation a few weeks ago, and somebody posted several designs, but I can't for the life of me find the thread. I was going to put one on my solar system map.
    Bryan Ray, visual effects artist
    http://www.bryanray.name

  6. #16
      Ascension is offline
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    Look in that thread about the keychains, Red and tilt were putting up images there.
    If the radiance of a thousand suns was to burst at once into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One...I am become Death, the Shatterer of worlds.
    -J. Robert Oppenheimer (father of the atom bomb) alluding to The Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 11, Verse 32)


    My Maps ~ My Brushes ~ My Tutorials ~ My Challenge Maps

  7. #17
      Rythal is offline
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    nowadays I put my name in the bottom corner of my maps, and then descretely placing my insignia in the map so that it cannot be cropped out.

  8. #18
    Guild Journeyer Gallifreyan's Avatar
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    Immolate nicely put "creative commons licensed. . ." and the license's logo/sign in his wheel of time map. It is not very visible, but you would have to destroy part of the image to remove it.
    Last edited by Gallifreyan; 08-04-2010 at 07:23 PM. Reason: added link
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  9. #19
      Crayons is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redrobes View Post
    Thats interesting about the watermark Crayons. I looked at your image and seen the Digimark noted and saw how robust it is. Not bad really. Copes with resize and some slight blur but 10 degree rotation took it out. Also I noted that if you clamp the black then it goes too. I think this is a good idea in the way of registering that this image is owned by you in a kind of digital signature kind of way.

    However I would just like to submit the following image for your appraisal Crayons.... you might want to try it ! I think this says everything you need to know about these paid watermarks. So I do hope they have improved it since then.
    Re: "Fake" Image
    Very nicely done! I hope you had fun with that?
    Ultimately, resolution, is the key, as mentioned, or more simply, perhaps, keep a few of the stage images as you created it. The digital watermark is just another tool in the armoury, I guess. The fact that I no longer use it rather expresses my valuation of it (and my work!) and being able to fake it so that it looks like my work is rather the opposite of the intent here? Unless of course you want to destroy my non-existant artistic reputation! I wonder if I could sue you for deformation or something - is it libel or slander???
    That, ultimately, is the question, as someone stated earlier. If someone claimed your image as theirs, would you take them to court? How much money and effort is it worth? How much money do you want to pour into the lawyers' pockets? It depends on who stole it and how much you could get out of it.
    Sadly, some internet bozo lifting your design and pasting some nekkid porn (or something) on it and using it for their website is probably going to lose you money in legal fees --- and the really big boys won't steal it, they'll pay an artist to do one for them just different enough to get past the law...

    I thought about all this stuff back in 2003. I tried the digital watermark because it was cheap and I could easily afford it. A few years on, now, and it seems a bit dumb but what the hey?
    My advice is: don't worry about it but be aware... if you can, sign it normally, don't publish at full resolution, keep all your notes and previous versions, then have a glass of wine and share it with like minded people.
    One last point - if you go public here, there are "witnesses" to your claim.
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  10. #20
      Dmitri is offline
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    Well, you people pretty much have me convinced! A quick question now, how do I post something at lower resolution? I currently have a PDF and JPEG version of a scanned copy of my map. Is it possible to post lower resolution images of a scanned hand drawn map? Or is such a thing only possible with computer generated images?

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