Monday, March 1, 2010

Fair use?

These book-cut illustrations are by Thomas Allen, one of my favorite artists:

Over the weekend, I spotted these ads at Ads of the World, and assumed they were by Thomas. They're not.

I contacted Thomas to ask about them. He was outraged and investigated. The responses from the advertising company, which claims fair use, and their "client" offer a fascinating look into the world of advertising competitions.

*Previously: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Thomas Allen.

*Buy Thomas Allen: Uncovered at Amazon.


  1. This really goes to show the true nature of "creative" advertising. Rather than coming up with original ideas, just rip off someone else's! It's typical corporate thinking of reducing output and time spent on a campaign to maximise profits.
    Thomas Allen must have been seething, quite understandably. Luckily he has eagle eyed people like you who can bring these things to his attention.

  2. I agree that the ad agency stole Allen's idea and mimic'd his execution but ideas and general aesthetics are not the elements of creative works that are protected by copyright, sorry. The ad agency is wrong in citing "fair use" and they probably just mentioned that because its a buzz word. If your interested in learning more about the real reason the ad agency is allowed to do this kind of shitty idea stealing, google a little copyright concept called the "idea expression dichotomy"