I have created a virtual art gallery of my own personal favourite works of art.

This is mainly the work of the great artists such as Picasso, Van Gogh, Dali, etc. I enjoy comparing work and seeing who influenced whom.

As I consider there are lots of good artists on Redbubble, I approached a few to ask permission to include them in my virtual art gallery. Most were delighted and flattered that I admired their work so much. for copyright purposes I keep copies of the emails granting permission to use work. This is uneccesary really, as those whose work I chose are also my friends and they trust me. Still, I like to do things properly and legally.

I’d like to record here the conditions under which I use art from Redbubble for my personal study in my own private folders on my own private computer:

1 – I ask permission first.

2 – I always reduce the images to under 40kb. If they fell into the wrong hands (for example, if my computer was stolen) and someone wanted to print them, they’d have to enlarge the image and it would become too blurred to use.

3 – I never copy anyone else’s art and if anyone can produce evidence to prove that I have accidentally plagiarised them I will remove any offending images from my portfolio.

4 – I am more than happy to send copies of the folders I produce to anyone whose art I have used.

5 – I have a conscience and would not sully it by using art for which permission has been refused. One of the only artists I recall who ever refused permission was Sword of Redbubble and I do not have any of his work on my computer, much as I still admire it.

By openly admitting that I admire other people’s work I suppose I am setting myself up as a target for all those mean-minded people who suspect everyone of plagiarism.

Truth is that as I try hard to be original, what I am doing by studying the art of other artists is actually making it MORE of a challenge for myself to be original, as I am more aware of what others have created in the past and have more to avoid.

If I was ignorant of the art of others, I’d be less likely to worry about accidentally plagiarising someone’s work. As it is, for example, I may start a drawing and think, “oops – can’t do that – Karin’s already done that” or “Oh dear, this looks too much like Deb’s style.”

One lady once did a couple of paintings in what she called “the Dave Edwards style” and I was really flattered. It did however make me feel that if my style is so easily copied then maybe I should develop it more and I am still striving to do that.

I am an honest and transparent person who never deliberately seeks to deceive. All my cards are on the table. I therefore make no secrets of my artistic influences. As a small boy I was sent to live with my Welsh grandparents for a few weeks while my mother was in hospital. My nain (grandma) tucked me up in an iron-framed bed covered with a lovely home-made patchwork quilt. Thus started my love of patchwork.

As my father was a Methodist preacher, I had to attend church four times a week from a very early age. Most of the lengthy sermons went over my little head and I spent a lot of time admiring the stained-glass windows in the various churches where my father preached. Thus started my love of stained glass.

I had a collection of loads of old Sunday supplement magazines and would cut out secti0ns of colour or pattern. I produced a lot of collage that way.

More recently, I visited Barcelona and walked in Parc Gruelle, which is decorated throughout with Antoni Gaudi’s mosaic tiles. Hence my love of mosaic.

I also love Celtic art, having Welsh, Cornish and Northumbrian blood running through my veins and being married to an Irish girl.

So look there if you seek my influences, but please everyone, trust me when I say that I never knowingly plagiarise anyone.

An account of my artistic influences.

I am a retired man who enjoys expressing himself in pencils and paints. I have had two solo exhibitions in my home town and I love Redbubble. I get as much pleasure from viewing the works of other artists as from creating my own.

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  • Malcolm Chant
    Malcolm Chantalmost 6 years ago

    This is a lovley Story, But therte wasn’t any need to have to defend yourself for anything.


  • That’s how I feel too, but it is distressing when someone questions my honesty.


  • Anita Inverarity
    Anita Inverarityalmost 6 years ago

    I’m sad you had to do this too Dave.
    I’m frankly quite fed up of people questioning an artists integrity and inspirations. We are inspired by everything around us and naturally by other artists too (we dont live in a vacuum).
    I’m very flattered to have a folder in your collection and trust you explicitly with my work.
    There is also no copyright on technique, if you liked a piece of cross-hatching in my work, its pretty obvious to me you could try it in one of yours and I look at others techiques a lot, to maybe try a new pattern, a new texture. I might see a theme or idea I want to try too- this could be off the TV, from a story, from a photo or painting (I know it will end up looking like I did it and no one else, because I wont copy- which is the exact same as your work- I know it when I see it).
    Its funny you should mention unintentional plagarism- My newest work Summer was done with no reference and direct from imagination- when finished it looked “familiar” to me, could be coincidence, or could be it looks like something I’ve seen (lodged in my subconcious).

    Geeeez- Lets just have fun and draw folks. This debate is somewhat ludicrous at times. These people should chase the real copyists, rip-off merchants- after all there are plenty out there. Real artists should not have to justify their existance.

    Rant over :))))) xx

  • Thank you my friend. You are absolutely correct … why waste time being picky when they could be seeking out the real plagiarists. I have had my work copied on one occasion and even publicly exhibited, so I know what it feels like and would ever hurt anyone in that way. Did you read the lady’s comments (link above)?


  • Deborah Holman
    Deborah Holmanalmost 6 years ago

    No need to defend yourself Dave I am flattered you have included my work. As for influences any artist that says their work is completely original and are not influenced by other artists etc are only lying to themselves. Of course we are influenced by everything we see with our eyes and this can only enrich what we produce. As for style I have found this is not something you choose, rather it chooses you and however hard you try to paint in a certain style yours will always come out and rather than fight it, it is better to go with it and not even think about it just do what you feel. Keep producing your unique artwork Dave and do not worry about what anyone thinks. I know it is amazing to get positive comments and they always spur you on to create, but we have to take the rough with the smooth too and hopefully learn from both types of comments. It is upsetting when your honesty is questioned but it is only one person and I’m sure you have the trust and support of many many people here on RB.

  • I think the lady now realises I am perfectly harmless :)


  • Esther's Art and Photography
    Esther's Art a...almost 6 years ago

    I am so glad to hear that you are very honest. I am like that too. Sometimes it’s good and other times it can work against you.
    If you have permission from the artists then you have nothing to be guitly about. And there was no need to add this journal, really. There are maybe lots of people who do it but don’t tell. I want to wish you good luck with the art you make where ever you get your inspiration from. There will always people question somebody , that’s some peoples nature. Don’t take that personally. If you know in your heart you done the right thing and be honest to yourself than you can be a proud person !!! Take care.

  • Thank you for your emotional support. I have seen your portfolio and admire your work.


  • Esther's Art and Photography
    Esther's Art a...almost 6 years ago

    Thank you very much, I had a look at your work and I can see that you are starting to developpe your own style. Very nice. Keep up the good work !!! Cheers Esther

  • Marilyn Brown
    Marilyn Brownalmost 6 years ago

    I feel people get caught up in all of this type of stuff and if everyone took a stance that things are plagiarized then we might as well put all pencils down.
    Lets be frank, everything has been done before, what makes it ours is the fact that we have done it.
    Photographers tend to be very touchy about artists using their images as reference.
    Seek permission, as you do, but sometimes it gets all to hard, doesn’t it.
    Painters for centuries have been emulating the masters and becoming masters themselves.
    Rembrandt copied Titian, so did Manet.
    This topic causes me pain as well Dave and I am conflicted. I love portraiture and celebrity portraiture is rewarding as observers recognize the subject and see the skill that has been accomplished, but then somebody slaps a copyright infringement on you and you just throw up your hands!
    I feel for you Dave because I’ve been in the same position. I have nothing to add to this eloquent journal except to say, I’m with you buddy!

    Titian Venus of Urbrino Manet Olympia
    Titian Man with Blue Sleeve This sytle of portraiture was loved by Rembrandt who emulated it in
    Self Portrait, 1640
    Da Vinci Duchamps Warhol

  • Thanks Marilyn for all the work you put into your excellent comment. I have spent a lot of time reading copyright laws and to be honest I often end up confused, because particularly on an international site like this you have to remember that USA and UK for example have different laws.

    So far as I see it, if you ask permission and keep a record of the permission, you are fairly safe in storing images for your own personal education.

    I have learned on Redbubble that it is okay to base a painting on someone’s photo (as I once did with a photo belonging to Cadence Gamache) if you first seek permission and ALWAYS remember to acknowledge the donor. Someone did a painting based on one of my photos and sought my permission and also added, “based on a photo by Dave Edwards” and surely that is all we need.

    It gets complicated if, for example, Mister X did a painting based on a painting by Van Gogh and I also did a painting based on Van Gogh and Mister x accused me of copying his painting. what I am struggling here to express is that often when we think someone is copying somone else’s style it turns out that they were both copying the style of a famous artist anyway.

    Here is some info on UK copyright (and I do hope information on copyright isn’t itself copyrighted, or I am snookered):

    The duration of copyright

    The time period for copyright has grown continually longer over the last three centuries. Many think it is now absurdly long. In Britain the Copyright Act of 1842 introduced the idea of post mortem copyright protection; it established a copyright period of 42 years from the date of first publication or 7 years after the author’s death, whichever was the longer. The Copyright Act of 1911 extended the period to 50 years after an author’s death; and the European Union Directive on Term of Copyright (adopted by the UK on 1 January 1996) further extended the standard period to 70 years p.m.a. Thus in 2009 works by authors who died in 1939 or any year thereafter remain “in copyright”.

    If you think that sorts things out – read on:

    “Revived copyright”

    As a result of the European Union Directive, published works of authors who died between 1 January 1926 and 31 December 1945 came back into copyright on 1 January 1996. These authors, including some of the great names of English literature, had been out of copyright since the end of the year of the 50th anniversary of their death and returned to copyright for whatever remains of the period until the end of the year of the 70th anniversary of their death. The published works of Virginia Woolf, for example, came out of copyright on 1 January 1992 but have gone back into copyright for the period from 1 January 1996 to 31 December 2011.

    By my reading of this, if anyone wished to copy the work of any artist who died before 1926 that would be okay.

    BUT – what is the point of copying their work anyway – famous artists’ work is, well … duh … famous … so everyone would know we’d copied it … crazy.


  • Starz
    Starzalmost 6 years ago

    hi Dave, oh i love to make collages too and do exactly the same thing !! i enjoyed reading your writing and learning about your interests and influences. i like you Dave and i love your art, you have a delightful style which i find to be so creative and magnificent.

  • Beverley  Johnston
    Beverley John...almost 6 years ago

    Sorry to hear you needed to do this dave,Bev

  • Anita Inverarity
    Anita Inverarityalmost 6 years ago

    I read the journal Dave and I think the lady is misguided by her suspicions- It seems she thinks you may be mass producing prints to sell. I will have a giggle at the thought of you printing away in your shed and furtively going down the market on a Sunday to flog our works for a few pennies. Roll up Roll up, 2 for the price of one :)))))
    Deborah and Marilyn are spot on !! Very eloquently put xx

  • Anita Inverarity
    Anita Inverarityalmost 6 years ago

    Oh I feel a little bad now for making fun :(( The lady has obviously taken care to understand and appreciate what you are doing and has apologised for misunderstanding. I have utmost respect for her approach on this. Its a happy ending and I’m verrrrry happy for you.
    WTG Dave x

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