Paintings from our Botanical Art Worldwide exhibition, Éireannach, are currently on display at the North Mayo Heritage Centre. You can combine a visit to the exhibition–which runs until 31 October–with the upcoming Enniscoe Biodiversity Blitz:
Many thanks to June Wright for this post on something all artists should know more about – protecting our art! After graduating in Classical Animation in the early 90s, June began her animation career in Don Bluth Animation Studios in Dublin and has since worked in the US and Europe with many film studios over the years including Fox Animation in Arizona. She has also lectured in Traditional Animation and Digital Design. Currently, June is working as a Product Designer for clients based mainly in the UAE and Hong Kong, such as Legoland Dubai, The Louvre Abu Dhabi and the tallest building in the world ‘The Burj Khalifa’. She has been an artist all her life and loves botanical art and drawing portraits, using coloured pencil, graphite and watercolour.
As an artist, when you create a painting, your intention may not be focused on its commercial value; however once you start to exhibit and sell your art, it is in your best interest to become aware of the potential positives (and not so positives) that may occur as a result of exposing your work to the grand public.
There can be a lot of confusion–still–on the ownership, legal aspects and expectations of how your work may be used. Therefore, in order to protect your art, it is important to know the fundamental guidelines both for protecting your original images and commercialising your work.
Selling Original Art – Who Owns What?
When you sell an original painting, it’s important for both you and your buyer to be aware that the ownership rights of the painting’s image do not transfer with the physical painting itself and unless it is specifically requested and agreed upon in writing between the artist and buyer before the sale, all rights remain solely with the artist. A painting is sold on the basis that although the buyer will own the original piece of art for their enjoyment, they will not own the rights to make any commercial gain from its image in the future. This is irrespective of whether the painting was bought from the artist’s own collection, through a reseller or gallery, or on a commissioned basis.
Following any sale of their art, the artist can still go on to create prints of the painting and use the painting’s image for further commercial purpose, as and however they wish. If the current owner of a painting wishes to reproduce the painting for any purpose commercially or non-commercially, they must first request written permission from the artist.
Reproducing your art in print format
If someone wishes to reproduce your painting in part or full, for example, within a book, magazine, online or on products, they must obtain written permission from you prior to doing so. It is solely at your discretion whether you choose to allow use of your images for payment or for free, however if you are unintentionally lax in protecting your art, not only can you lose out commercially, but your painting may be used in a way that may harm the integrity of the work or your reputation as an artist and what you stand for. You may have to consider whether it is most suitable to agree a one-off fee for a single-use permission or create a licencing agreement for more complex or larger-scale use.
Licencing your art commercially
If you are approached with a request to reproduce your art, especially for commercial purpose, it is normal to licence art for certain agreed usage. This will protect you from any unauthorised commercial use of your art. In most cases, it is normal that the artist agrees an initial licencing fee, plus royalties per sale of each item containing your image. A possible circumstance is where the image may be used, for example, on greeting cards, homeware, fabrics, prints etc.
Some artists may allow non-commercial use of an image for free (in which case, it is a good idea to make sure you receive an artist credit), but commercial use should be considered carefully in advance, in order to prevent the artist being poorly compensated, where no clear written terms were agreed by both parties prior to the handover of any imagery.
Terms between the artist (the licensor) and the individual or company requesting permission to use the painting’s image (licencee) should generally cover at least the following and should be agreed in writing and signed by both parties:
- Fees agreed: initial upfront fee and/or percentage of royalties that will be paid per piece sold.
- Permitted usage: most licences are limited to a certain amount of reproductions within any given specified format. For example, if you agree permission for your painting to appear only on mugs, another agreement would need to be further negotiated where the licencee wishes to later add the image onto plates.
- Duration of licence for its specified use: you may want to limit the time of specified usage to a certain period or time-frame.
- Territorial restrictions: whether the use is limited to one location or country, or whether it is allowed to be used worldwide.
- Termination basis: for larger agreements, it could also be worth adding the basis in which the agreement can come to an end, such as a certain period of notice for either side.
Online, the potential for unauthorised downloading, sharing, or misuse of your paintings is fairly high. It is natural to want to share images of paintings online, whether it may be to contribute and participate in the larger art community and art groups, or to gain wider audience exposure and build a fan-base of admirers for your art through social media platforms etc., but no artist wants to see their art stolen or misused for the commercial gain of another, without prior consideration for its use. Although the internet proves to be the easiest, most cost-effective way to reach people with your art, this undoubtedly leaves you wide open for the misuse and theft of your intellectual property.
The fact is that no matter what lengths you go to, there is no 100% foolproof way to prevent images being saved and shared over the internet; but weighing it up, it’s usually better to take a couple of simple measures to minimise these risks, rather than to deny yourself such great opportunity of exposure to a world-wide audience for your work.
The easiest forms of reducing the misuse of your art online would be to add a copyright warning on or beside your image, or better still, add a minimally-invasive watermark over the image itself, before uploading it to the internet. This at least means that if an image is shared, your name is attached to it and at least travels with your picture which can have its own advantages, as it may even attract new viewers to your site to view more of your work.
There are many apps both for iPhone and Android that will allow you to easily place a watermark over your image. They allow you to experiment with suitable placement and opacity of your watermark, so that it won’t interfere too much with the enjoyment of viewing your paintings online. If you don’t like to obstruct your image at all though, you can still use these apps to add your copyright and contact details more discretely to the side of your image before sharing.
It is often a fear for many artists–especially those less familiar with computing and digital imaging–that once you upload your images online people may just print out copies of your work. In addition to adding watermarks, a good way to enure your image is not going to be printed successsfully from the internet is to make sure it is only uploaded at 72dpi instead of full resolution of 300dpi required for full print quality. Many social media platforms will automatically compress your image on upload, meaning a low resolution image is all that is seen online. Although your image will still appear nice and clear for online viewing, once it is printed, it may be too pixilated to reproduce at any great quality.
Another good option, is to take a photograph of your work at an angle, for example, on your desk with pencils or paint brushes on or next to the painting itself. This means that viewers online can still admire your work, but again, can’t print it out for use as a straight-on image.
The above measures are often enough to show the average person that you are serious about protecting your images and may at least make them think twice before using your art without your permission.
Hopefully this has given somewhat of an introduction into how you can protect yourself from unauthorised copying or misrepresentation of you and your art and may have broken down some of the confusions and misconceptions associated with the commercial and legal side of being an artist. The information given is not intended as definitive legal advice, but as an initial guide to how you can begin to better implement the safe sharing and comercialising of your art. www.junewright.com
Our Éireannach exhibition was scarcely over when the 6th Annual Botanical and Floral Art Exhibition took place. The exhibition was, as always, held in the Visitor Centre in Phoenix Park, at the heart of the Bloom in the Park festival. Well done to all who entered, many of whom were ISBA members, and many thanks to Éanna Ní Leamhna who opened the exhibition in such style! You can find out more at the Botanical & Floral Art in Bloom Facebook page. Congrats to all who exhibited and to the medal winners! You can see the list of awards here, and you can read a review of the medal winners on the Botanical Art and Artists blog here.
When the Bloom exhibition closed, many of the paintings headed over to the Claregalway Botanical Art Expo, held in the beautiful setting of Claregalway Castle, during its annual Garden Festival. Many thanks to the ISBA members who ferried paintings safely across the country in both directions!
Summer activities were rounded off with a stand at the RHSI Summer Garden Show at the end of July, which didn’t leave a lot of time before our Autumn activities start, with two workshops in August and another in October. See our Calendar for more details.
Our exhibition ran in the National Botanic Gardens for three weeks, we held a very successful Open Day on the 18th, we published a beautiful and informative book, Éireannach, to accompany the exhibition, we ran videos of the other exhibitions from around the world… to read more and see selected moments from the celebrations, visit the update on our Botanical Art Worldwide page.
At last May has arrived and after a lot of work by our artists, mentors, framers, (and the committee!), our exhibition at the National Botanic Gardens will be officially opened this weekend on 05 May, by Dr Liam Lysaght, Director of the National Biodiversity Data Centre. Opening to the public on 06 May, the exhibition will run until the 27th. Forty-eight native plants, painted by 43 artists, will feature in the exhibition. The book that we’re publishing to coincide with the exhibition contains all the paintings, plus articles by Irish organisations involved with botanical, environmental and biodiversity issues, plus articles and paintings from the other 24 participating countries. On the 18th, which is the official Worldwide Day of Botanical Art, we’ll hold an open day at our exhibition, where artists will provide demonstrations of how they work; Zoe Devlin (Wildflowers of Ireland) will provide a tour of the exhibition, and there’ll be a chance to see paintings from all the other exhibitions from around the world. For more details, check our Éireannach page and our Calendar.
March and April have been very busy times for the ISBA; our AGM in March saw our chair for the last two years, Jane Stark, step down, passing the baton (or should that be the paintbrush) to Lynn Stringer. Jane didn’t sit back though as she has spent most of her time since then on the design, layout and typesetting of the book that will accompany our Botanical Art Worldwide exhibition: Éireannach: Celebrating Native Plants of Ireland. To find out more about the progress of the project, and how to buy the book, check the latest update on our Éireannach project page.
April sees us hosting An Evening Celebration of Orchids in Botanical Art , part of a series of orchid events at the National Botanic Gardens in April, including an exhibition of paintings by Deborah Lambkin and Margareta Pertl, both ISBA members. Check out the event on our calendar page.
If all these events have whetted your appetite to learn more about the practice of Botanical Art, two of our members are providing tuition in two very different locations in April and May. Yanny Petters will hold a two-day course in Wicklow in April and Jane Stark a five-day course in the Burren in May.
May will see our Éireannach exhibition open on the 5th, with an open day on the Worldwide Day of Botanical Art on the 18th.
And in June, there will be an exhibition of Botanical Art at Bloom. Those who submitted their work for this exhibition should hear by the end of April whether their submissions have been accepted.
Many thanks to our judges who worked hard to choose the paintings for the upcoming Éireannach exhibition, part of Botanical Art Worldwide. The judges have chosen 48 plants, painted by 43 artists.
Many thanks too and well done to all the artists who have taken part in the project so far. We have a lovely array of native Irish plants that will feature in the exhibition and the accompanying book, including such treasures as the Large-flowered Butterwort, which features in a painting by Holly Somerville:
Here is the list of selected works, sorted alphabetically by the last name of the artists. We’ve repeated the list below, sorted by common name of the plant in English. You can also download the list as a PDF.
|Artist||Plant, English||Plant, Latin||Planda, Gaeilge|
|Hazel Beehan||Marsh Thistle||Cirsium palustre||Feochadán corraigh|
|Janet Bockett||Marsh-marigold||Caltha palustris||Lus Buí Bealtaine|
|Fionnuala Broughan||Hawthorn||Crataegus monogyna||Sceach gheal|
|Ann Burn||Wood Anemone||Anemone nemorosa||Lus na gaoithe|
|Heather Byers||Cowslip||Primula veris||Bainne bó bleachtáin|
|Marcella Campbell||Great Willowherb||Epilobium hirsutum||Lus na Tríonóide|
|Michael Campbell||Bloody Crane’s-bill||Geranium versicolor||Crobh stríocach|
|Giulia Canevari||Hazel||Corylus avellana||Coll|
|Grainne Carr||Elder||Sambucus nigra||Trom|
|Betty Christie||Wild Carrot||Daucus carota||Mealbhacán|
|Janet Colgan||Creeping Jenny||Lysimachia nummularia||Lus an dá phingin|
|Janet Colgan||Navelwort||Umbilicus rupestris||Cornán caisil|
|Jo Cummins||Shepherd’s Purse||Capsella bursa-pastoris||Lus an sparáin|
|Diane Davison||Ash||Fraxinus excelsior||Fuinseog|
|Sally de Bromhead||Red Clover||Trifolium pratense||Seamair dhearg|
|Marie de Lacy Clancy||Crab Apple||Malus sylvestris||Crann fia-úll|
|Mary Dillon||Honeysuckle||Lonicera periclymenum||Féithleann|
|Shevaun Doherty||Common Knapweed||Centaurea nigra||Mínscoth|
|Noeleen Frain||Ragged Robin||Silene flos-cuculi||Lus síoda|
|Noeleen Frain||Pyramidal Orchid||Anacamptis pyramidalis||Magairlín na stuaice|
|Niamh Harding Miller||Hart’s tongue||Phyllitis scolopendrium||Creamh na muice fia|
|Tim Hatatip||Thrift||Armeria maritima||Rabhán|
|Ann Kane||Bird’s-foot-trefoil||Lotus corniculatus||Crobh éin|
|Mary Killion||Wild Pansy||Viola tricolor ssp. Tricolor||Goirmín searraigh|
|Tara Lanigan O’Keeffe||Sea Bindweed||Calystegia soldanella||Plúr an phrionsa|
|Siobhan Larkin||Bramble||Rubus fructicosus||Dris|
|Sarah Lewtas||Sea Holly||Eryngium maritimum||Cuileann trá|
|Claudia McManus||Rowan||Sorbus aucuparia||Caorthann|
|Sandra McTurk||Strawberry-tree||Arbutus unedo||Caithne|
|Ida Mitrani||Sessile Oak||Quercus petraea||Dair ghaelach|
|Elaine Moore Mackey||Foxglove||Digitalis purpurea||Lus mór|
|Elaine Moore Mackey||Round leaved Sundew||Drosera rotundifolia||Drúchtín móna|
|Patricia Morrison||Guelder-rose||Viburnum opulus||Caor chon|
|Helen Noonan||Bush Vetch||Vicia sepium||Peasair fhiáin|
|Rita O’Mahony||Primrose||Primula vulgaris||Sabhaircín|
|Yanny Petters||Wild Strawberry||Fragaria vesca||Sú talún fiáin|
|Oonagh Philips||Maidenhair Fern||Adiantum capillus-veneris||Dúchosach|
|Liz Prendergast||Blackthorn||Prunus Spinosa||Draighean|
|Nayana Sandur||Common Spotted-orchid||Dactylorhiza fuchsii subsp. fuchsii||Nuacht bhallach|
|Susan Sex||Marsh Helleborine||Epipactis palustris||Cuaichín corraigh|
|Joy Shepherd||Tufted Vetch||Vicia cracca||Peasair na luch|
|Helen Simmons||Harebell||Campanula rotundifolia||Méaracán gorm|
|Holly Somerville||Large-flowered Butterwort||Pinguicula grandiflora||Leith uisce|
|Jane Stark||Lords-and-ladies||Arum maculatum||Cluas chaoin|
|Jane Stark||Common cotton grass||Eriophorum angustifolium||Ceannbhán|
|Lynn Stringer||Meadowsweet||Filipendula ulmaria||Airgead luachra|
|Lynn Stringer||Yellow Horned-poppy||Glaucium flavum||Caillichín na trá|
|Alison Walker||Water Avens||Geum rivale||Machall uisce|
|Plant, English||Artist||Plant, Latin||Planda, Gaeilge|
|Ash||Diane Davison||Fraxinus excelsior||Fuinseog|
|Bird’s-foot-trefoil||Ann Kane||Lotus corniculatus||Crobh éin|
|Blackthorn||Liz Prendergast||Prunus Spinosa||Draighean|
|Bloody Crane’s-bill||Michael Campbell||Geranium versicolor||Crobh stríocach|
|Bramble||Siobhan Larkin||Rubus fructicosus||Dris|
|Bush Vetch||Helen Noonan||Vicia sepium||Peasair fhiáin|
|Common cotton grass||Jane Stark||Eriophorum angustifolium||Ceannbhán|
|Common Knapweed||Shevaun Doherty||Centaurea nigra||Mínscoth|
|Common Spotted-orchid||Nayana Sandur||Dactylorhiza fuchsii subsp. fuchsii||Nuacht bhallach|
|Cowslip||Heather Byers||Primula veris||Bainne bó bleachtáin|
|Crab Apple||Marie de Lacy Clancy||Malus sylvestris||Crann fia-úll|
|Creeping Jenny||Janet Colgan||Lysimachia nummularia||Lus an dá phingin|
|Elder||Grainne Carr||Sambucus nigra||Trom|
|Foxglove||Elaine Moore Mackey||Digitalis purpurea||Lus mór|
|Great Willowherb||Marcella Campbell||Epilobium hirsutum||Lus na Tríonóide|
|Guelder-rose||Patricia Morrison||Viburnum opulus||Caor chon|
|Harebell||Helen Simmons||Campanula rotundifolia||Méaracán gorm|
|Hart’s tongue||Niamh Harding Miller||Phyllitis scolopendrium||Creamh na muice fia|
|Hawthorn||Fionnuala Broughan||Crataegus monogyna||Sceach gheal|
|Hazel||Giulia Canevari||Corylus avellana||Coll|
|Honeysuckle||Mary Dillon||Lonicera periclymenum||Féithleann|
|Large-flowered Butterwort||Holly Somerville||Pinguicula grandiflora||Leith uisce|
|Lords-and-ladies||Jane Stark||Arum maculatum||Cluas chaoin|
|Maidenhair Fern||Oonagh Philips||Adiantum capillus-veneris||Dúchosach|
|Marsh Helleborine||Susan Sex||Epipactis palustris||Cuaichín corraigh|
|Marsh Thistle||Hazel Beehan||Cirsium palustre||Feochadán corraigh|
|Marsh-marigold||Janet Bockett||Caltha palustris||Lus Buí Bealtaine|
|Meadowsweet||Lynn Stringer||Filipendula ulmaria||Airgead luachra|
|Navelwort||Janet Colgan||Umbilicus rupestris||Cornán caisil|
|Primrose||Rita O’Mahony||Primula vulgaris||Sabhaircín|
|Pyramidal Orchid||Noeleen Frain||Anacamptis pyramidalis||Magairlín na stuaice|
|Ragged Robin||Noeleen Frain||Silene flos-cuculi||Lus síoda|
|Red Clover||Sally de Bromhead||Trifolium pratense||Seamair dhearg|
|Round leaved Sundew||Elaine Moore Mackey||Drosera rotundifolia||Drúchtín móna|
|Rowan||Claudia McManus||Sorbus aucuparia||Caorthann|
|Sea Bindweed||Tara Lanigan O’Keeffe||Calystegia soldanella||Plúr an phrionsa|
|Sea Holly||Sarah Lewtas||Eryngium maritimum||Cuileann trá|
|Sessile Oak||Ida Mitrani||Quercus petraea||Dair ghaelach|
|Shepherd’s Purse||Jo Cummins||Capsella bursa-pastoris||Lus an sparáin|
|Strawberry-tree||Sandra McTurk||Arbutus unedo||Caithne|
|Thrift||Tim Hatatip||Armeria maritima||Rabhán|
|Tufted Vetch||Joy Shepherd||Vicia cracca||Peasair na luch|
|Water Avens||Alison Walker||Geum rivale||Machall uisce|
|Wild Carrot||Betty Christie||Daucus carota||Mealbhacán|
|Wild Pansy||Mary Killion||Viola tricolor ssp. Tricolor||Goirmín searraigh|
|Wild Strawberry||Yanny Petters||Fragaria vesca||Sú talún fiáin|
|Wood Anemone||Ann Burn||Anemone nemorosa||Lus na gaoithe|
|Yellow Horned-poppy||Lynn Stringer||Glaucium flavum||Caillichín na trá|
We’ll be hosting An Evening Celebration of Orchids in Botanical Art in association with the Dublin Orchid Fair at 6.30 pm Friday 20 April 2018, in the Visitor Centre of the National Botanic Gardens. The evening will feature a talk:
The RHS Orchid Committee and its artists: a history of the RHS orchid award paintings
A talk by Clare Hermans, Chairman of the Royal Horticultural Society’s Orchid Committee, author of many articles and co-author of Orchids of Madagascar and a research fellow of the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew.
The talk was originally given at the World Orchid Conference held in Ecuador last November.
The talk will be followed by a wine reception and a tour of:
Three Threads – of the orchid tapestry created by Frederick William Moore – an exhibition.
Organised by staff of the National Botanic Gardens, it features archival material from the Library at Glasnevin, orchid paintings by Deborah Lambkin (an ISBA member and official artist to the RHS’s Orchid Committee), and a collection of orchid portraits that celebrate Frederick Moore, painted by Margareta Pertl (also an ISBA member). The exhibition runs from Saturday 29 March to Wednesday 25 April.
There is no admission charge and all are welcome, but we would be grateful if those who wish to attend would email firstname.lastname@example.org and include the number of guests attending.
The Dublin Orchid Fair takes place Saturday 21st April and Sunday 22nd April and will be held in the Teak House at Glasnevin. This is the premier annual orchid event in Ireland, with a selection of species and hybrids for sale. It promises to be an exciting weekend for orchid lovers, gardeners and botanical artists alike.
The sixth annual Botanical and Floral Art in Bloom open submission exhibition will take place as part of Bloom 2018 from Thursday 31 May to the end of June 2018 at the Visitor Centre in the Phoenix Park, Dublin. Please note the new extended exhibition time. The OPW Visitor’s Centre have kindly offered the exhibition space for the month of June so that the exhibition can remain in place after Bloom. This exhibition is a showcase for Irish botanical and floral artists and will include an exhibition opening on Thursday, 31 May at 6.00pm.
- The exhibition is juried
- Approximately 40 pieces of work will be shown
- Artists are invited to submit up to three pieces of work.
Medals may be awarded for works of particular merit by an independent judging panel.
Applicants will be contacted after 27 April 2018 following review from the Judging panel.
If you’d like to keep up-to-date, check the Botanical & Floral Art in Bloom Facebook page.
Our judges are meeting on 29 January to assess all the submitted paintings, which are being safely stored in the Library of the National Botanic Gardens. The judges will decide which paintings will hang in the exhibition that takes place from 5 to 27 May in the National Botanic Gardens. As well as paintings for the exhibition, the judges will choose paintings for a digital slideshow which will be seen at other botanical art exhibitions all around the world. Many countries are taking part in Botanical Art Worldwide and we will be seeing some of their paintings at our own exhibition via the digital slideshow. Artists will be notified as soon as possible after the judges make their decisions.
We will produce a high-quality catalogue to accompany the exhibition and this is already in process. We hope to find sponsorship for the book. The exhibition will open with a wine reception on 5 May; we are awaiting confirmation of our guest speaker to open the show: watch this space! On 18 May, which is the Worldwide Day of Botanical Art, we will hold an open day and we encourage everyone to bring along family and friends and to spread the word. Zoe Devlin has kindly agreed to guide a wildflower tour of the paintings. The exhibition closes on 26 May and we’ll be taking down the paintings on 27 May. For more details, see our Éireannach project page.
The content provided on this website is for information only and does not imply endorsement by the ISBA nor any of its members.