Another person painting my photo for painting

An artist on social media commented on my photo and said she is going to use my photo of my dog to make a painting of and will be sure to share.

When I see a photo I would love to paint (which I don’t do much anymore), I track the person down and ask for permission and sometimes they decline. When they do allow, I change it up some and I thought it weird that this artist said that when I already use my own photos to paint my dog a lot.

Can you all give me feedback on this? What do you think?

Is it a photo of your painting of your dog, or your photo of your dog?

Did you post the photo on instagram?

As far as I understand you own the copyright on all of your photos but the nature of instagram has made it a photo sharing site, and most of the time people will ask permission but a lot of the time they do not as long as they credit the original photographer when they share the picture.
I think it’s up to you to say no, you do not want your photo used, unless you are comfortable sharing it.

I think the person who asked you should have asked if would be okay to use it, not that she IS going to use it.
Really it’s up to you. If you don’t want your photo used, say no.

Here are some guidelines: copyright

1 Like

Yes, photos of my dog. I posted on Insta, yes. Not so worried about copyright but more about how they didn’t ask, they informed me. Either way, I don’t want them to use it but then I feel selfish and like I am making a big deal about nothing. Mostly because I am painting my own photos and I don’t want someone else to.

I guess just asking how you all would feel about it. I am not going to say anything to this person…I just feel a little bummed about it.

If it were me Sunny, personally I would say sorry, but no I’m not comfortable with the photo being used for that purpose.
As you say, it would have been easy enough for the person to have asked rather than informed.
I don’t think you are making a big deal out of nothing at all.


Thank you @Jacqueline_Davis, I really appreciate your answer.

You’re welcome. I’d have felt the same way.

Yeah, I think not asking is tacky. When I want to paint someone’s photo, I ask.

You have the right to say no. And you probably should think about saying it because you don’t want to imply that it’s OK to do it in the future again. It’s so complicated. Non-artists don’t know about copyright. They think all facebook, Instagram, and google images are a free-for-all. I’ve spent years sending take-down notices to Amazon after unscrupulous vendors outright stole my artwork (even with a copyright watermark right in the middle of the image!!!). It gets tiring, and they wear you down. Hard to ignore, but still - it’s not their work. Yet, I still post my photos and artwork, because after all, where else can you show it?

1 Like

Thanks for the support! She left it in a comment, and not even a message.

One real worry I had is that her art of my photo of my dog could be better than mine!! Haha. No joke though. :frowning:

1 Like

It depends on what you think. Is it okay for others to use photos of yours or not? I would say as long as they ask permission I would usually allow it. Its those who do not ask permission that drive me up a wall…especially those making money off my art. I’ve found numerous people using copies of my artwork in jewelry, pendants and such, on Ebay and Etsy. I contact them and then turn them in if they don’t comply. So, its how you feel that counts…nobody can advise you on this.

1 Like

Thank you! I’m sorry @Patricia_Ann_Rizzo your art has been taken like that! That’s terrible.

Basically, I told her I’m flattered but I am using a lot of those photos for my own paintings and told her to try I guess it was just the way she informed rather than asked.

Thanks everybody!


Yours probably has been taken too. I wouldn’t doubt it. Mostly the chinese take it and just make pendants and such with it and there’s no way to stop them.

Stealing is NOT OK. And you should tell her so. And that if she had asked permission you would have said yes. Last time someone stole my art I sent them an invoice and I got paid. (Off the web to print in a catalog) When I have asked photographers for permission I have even offered them a commission if it sold. They say no.

I have been in a dilemma the last two days. One of my Facebook and Instagram followers (and vice versa) put up a painting and I knew as soon as I saw it that it was a copy (albeit in another medium, acrylic as opposed to oil) of a painting by a contemporary famous artist whose work I am very familiar with since I admire him greatly. She gave no credit whatsoever. Do I keep my mouth shut? Do I inform the copied artist? Do I say something to the copier? I also see that the person who copied has obviously done this many times before with different artists. Her latest painting she said that she was inspired by a painting she saw on the internet. This infuriates me!

I would definitely inform the copied artist!
This is terrible!

1 Like

Thank you, Jacqueline. It is the right thing to do and what I would want someone to do for me.

I always make sure that I ask the photographer, and usually don’t ask professional photographers since they have to make a living off it. Work, even on the internet is copyrighted, and it is stealing just to take it. An artist who is serious about their work won’t do this.

Hi Sunny, I’m sorry that you went through this but glad you spoke up for yourself. I would feel the same way about being informed that my photos are being used instead of being asked! Social media has changed everything and brings up so many proprietary questions.

BTW, thanks for suggesting Unsplash as a source for good, free photos - I didn’t know about this site but will be looking at it more closely!

This is a pretty good article. It’s about protecting paintings but may have some tips that would apply to photos, as well.


Now days with so many pictures on the internet, there could be a similar photo to yours. Anyway it is a compliment if they want to use your photo, and the chances of their painting looking anything like yours are very slim.
I wouldn’t worry about it!!!