What photos or pictures are used to make the cover of the book

I was wondering what picture should I use in making the cover. Should I use mine? Or should I use pictures from Google or other resources that aren't mine? Cause I just want to know if it's okay to use pictures from Google.

Comments

  • SphinxCameronSphinxCameron Southern Escarpment Hill Country ✭✭

    If you use a picture you didn't take, the image either has to have a Creative Commons License allowing free use (usually non-commercial), or you have express written permission for use from the entity who holds the copyright, or the image has to be Public Domain (i.e.: out of the term of copyright).

     

    Often it's easier for you to take the picture or have someone create an image for you than it is to chase down a copyright owner and get written permission.


    CE_RoseQuartzRe wrote:

    I was wondering what picture should I use in making the cover. Should I use mine? Or should I use pictures from Google or other resources that aren't mine? Cause I just want to know if it's okay to use pictures from Google.


     


  • CE_RoseQuartzRe wrote:

    I was wondering what picture should I use in making the cover. Should I use mine? Or should I use pictures from Google or other resources that aren't mine? Cause I just want to know if it's okay to use pictures from Google.


    Simply because a photo has been found online doesn't mean it is OK to use. You have to make sure that you either have permission from the owner of the photo, that the photo is in the public domain (most historic images will be, but you still need to check to make sure) or that it is under a Creative Commons licence. 

     

    And you need to make absolutely certain that it is one of these. Many copyrighted images can be found on websites that do not give proper credit, so you need to be sure that the image you found is from a legitimate source. I'm an illustrator by profession and am always finding my artwork popping up on sites that neither asked for permission nor give me proper credit. Someone taking one of my illustrations from one of those sites and using it is in immediate trouble from me.

     

    Here is a good list of safe places to find images online: http://forums.techsoup.org/cs/community/b/tsblog/archive/2015/02/2/top-10-sources-for-free-images.aspx

     

    Another good source is the US Goverment. Most of its agencies have image collections that are free to use, from the branches of the military and NOAA to NASA and the Park Service. The Library of Congress is a real gold mine, with hundreds of thousands of images available, almost every one of which is free to use (there are a few exceptions, but they tell which ones these are).

     

    If, as you suggest, you have images of your own that you could use that is always the safest thing to do.

  • @Ron MillerHow about pictures that are from Google and then edited it in photoshop or any editing software?


  • CE_RoseQuartzRe wrote:

    @Ron MillerHow about pictures that are from Google and then edited it in photoshop or any editing software?


    The answer is much the same.

     

    "From Google" really doesn't mean anything. Google is just a search engine. When you see pictures on Google, they are from hundreds of different sources. It's a little like saying that you found an image "in the library." Just as a library is a collection of individual books, Google is just a collection of individual websites, and just as you would need to ask the author of a book for permission to quote from it you also have to go to the original website that hosts an image and ask permission to use it.

     

    The images from some of these sources may be free to use, some may not be. But the first thing you need to do is find where the image came from, then go to that site and find out if it's OK to use it.

     

    For example, if you were to do an image search on Google for "cat," you would find hundreds and hundreds of different pictures. Each one will be from a different source. You can find out what that source is by clicking on the picture and then clicking on "Original Page." That will take you to the website where Google found the photo. From there you may or may not be able to determine whether or not you can copy it. A legitimate site will have contact information.

     

    One word of caution, however: Not every website includes images that belong there. For instance, if you were to Google my name you would find a lot of my artwork online...but not all of that art is there with my permission. So you will also need to make sure that the site on which you find an image has the rights to it.

     

    And the general answer to the second part of your question is also "no."  Here is what the US Copyright Office has to say about this: "Only the owner of copyright in a work has the right to prepare, or to authorize someone else to create, a new version of that work. Accordingly, you cannot claim copyright to another's work, no matter how much you change it, unless you have the owner's consent."

     

    The best and safest thing to do is to find images from one of the legitimate sources of free images---and several have already been mentioned in a previous post---or create an image yourself entirely from scratch.

  • Skoob_ymSkoob_ym ✭✭✭

    CE_RoseQuartzRe wrote:

    @Ron MillerHow about pictures that are from Google and then edited it in photoshop or any editing software?


    To expand a bit on what Ron said:

     

    If you take a copyrighted picture and change it, you have made a derivitive work, which is covered under copyright. So, no, you can't do that. Even if it can't be recognized.

     

    There are exceptions, but it's a very fine line. For example, if there were a famous news picture of, say, Elvis kissing a baby -- just for an example -- and you drew a parody of it in which the Baby is Elvis, and he's being kissed by a polar bear -- that would fall under a "fair use" as a parody or satire, in that you were making a satirical point about why we love pictures of people kissing babies. This is off the top of my head; there are probably better examples.

     

    But that's still a fine line, and if Elvis felt that the picture was libelous, you might be in trouble; if the copyright holder of the original photo could argue that you lessened the value of his photo by making the parody, then you could have trouble, and so forth.

     

    So the best answer is to steer clear of any photo, EVEN IF YOU CHANGED IT, to which you do not have copyright or the owner's clear written permission to use.

     

     

  • I hope that you have not found all of this daunting or discouraging!

     

    There are still a great many resources available for you.

     

    You can take advantage of the great many legitimate sources for free, public domain images that are available on line. And, of course, you can create your own images from scratch.

     

    If you do use something you find on line, be aware that I used the word "legitimate" very deliberately. Just because you find a picture on line doesn't automatically mean that it belongs there or that it is OK to copy it. 

  • SphinxCameronSphinxCameron Southern Escarpment Hill Country ✭✭

    Easiest answer is take your own picture, create your own art, or commission someone to take a picture or do the art for you.

     

    ** Edited for clarity **

     

    Since finding an image online can lead to legal problems, it's better to create your own or pay someone to do it for you. If you're talented as a graphic artist, create your own. If you aren't so great with graphics, there are a lot of inexpensive options to help you get a good cover at an affordable price.

     

    Do a web search for aspiring graphic artists who are trying to build a portfolio.

     

    There are websites that offer decent low-cost cover art, with affordable customization fees.

     

    Some professional artists are sick of bad cover art and will actually do work for an aspiring author on a budget, meaning you might as well try asking as the worst you'll hear is "No".

     

    Once I can get the time to edit one of my books, I could ask the artist who did three covers for me to do another. Since my budget is in the crapper at the moment, I don't feel like asking him to do it for free and I can't afford to send a piece of my art even if he was interested. [I work with steel, bronze, and wood to craft edged weapons.]

     

    Instead I'll likely dig out my old jungle camo, a sword, and an antique shotgun, go out in the thicket behind the house, and have the Wife take a picture. Since the theme of the book is related to conflict, it's a start.

     

    Whatever avenue you use, try to avoid getting sued for copyright infringement, as most attorneys have little sense of humor when it comes to legal matters.


  • SphinxCameron wrote:

    Easiest answer is take your own picture, create your own art, or commission someone to take a picture or do the art for you.

     

    There are also a number of safe, legitimate sources for free, public domain images. Here is one good list;

     

    http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/6-free-websites-public-domain-images-free-stock-photos/

     

    And this list was endorsed by the Harvard Law School https://designschool.canva.com/blog/free-stock-photos/

     

    I can also highly recommend the many US government agencies that maintain image archives. These images are usually of high quality and absolutely free to use.

     

    One that I have consistently mined over the years is the Library of Congress.

    NASA has an incredible collection as so does NOAA and the National Park Service. There are many others. Depending on the subject you are looking for, go to an agency's main site and look for its image archive.

     

    ** Edited for clarity **

     

    Since finding an image online can lead to legal problems, it's better to create your own or pay someone to do it for you. If you're talented as a graphic artist, create your own. If you aren't so great with graphics, there are a lot of inexpensive options to help you get a good cover at an affordable price.

     

    Do a web search for aspiring graphic artists who are trying to build a portfolio.

     

    DeviantArt would be a good place to start.

     

    There are websites that offer decent low-cost cover art, with affordable customization fees.

     

    Some professional artists are sick of bad cover art and will actually do work for an aspiring author on a budget, meaning you might as well try asking as the worst you'll hear is "No".

     

    I can think of at least one who has done this. Smiley Wink

     

     

    Whatever avenue you use, try to avoid getting sued for copyright infringement, as most attorneys have little sense of humor when it comes to legal matters.

     

    Indeed. I have been on the godly side of a copyright infringement suit and I can guarantee that you don't ever want to be on the other end. It ended neither happily nor inexpensively for the infringer.


     

  • Skoob_ymSkoob_ym ✭✭✭

    I know you weren't fishing for it, Ron, but I'm still going to say it: Thanks again for the help on the cover of Daddy, Who's That Man?. Rick and I are both still very grateful... what we had at first was actually embarrassing.

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