Oil painter's prize-winning canvases look an awful lot like these photos

I really, really hope this “artist” gets what’s coming to him, namely infamy for being a thief of others’ hard work, and the arrogance of him using the originals as a “reference” when it’s really a half-ass disguising of a carbon-copy. Chef’s kiss if it he is found out to have used outsourcing for the ACTUAL PAINTINGS!


Photorealistic painting is a party trick, and not a particularly difficult one to learn. There’s a reason museums don’t bother hanging much of it.

Here’s an extremely amateur hack at this. This is about my tenth painting ever. For the record, even my noncommerical hobby projects, I use reference stills from TV trailers because I know that everyone involved got paid and consented to their image being in the world. Also Star Trek is the tits, so…


Russian designers routinely use photos of American and German soldiers (and planes, tanks, etc.) for Victory Day posters, passing them off as heroic Red Army soldiers.


He copied the photo but how is that a “mechanical reproduction”. That term popularised by Walter Benjamin in 1935 refers to the opposite: reproduction of an image through photography and printing.


Swipe files: used by the best and brightest for decades.

Painting over a photograph printed to canvas is a really common technique for mass market “art” used in hotel rooms, corporate offices, etc. It’s cheap, fast, and relatively easy to do. I have a vintage one from the 1970s, in fact, and another that was an office gift from five years ago.

It has no business hanging in galleries and winning awards. :woman_facepalming: The judges and gallery curators should certainly know better.


Sigh. I have two words for you: “Richard Prince.” His “art” is on the right. He won this lawsuit.


Worked great for Norman Rockwell.


Jeff Dieschburg was “by far the most talented artist in the country,” said Gaston Vogel [Dieschburg’s lawyer], a veteran lawyer who was acquitted last year of hate speech after writing a letter to a newspaper about foreigners asking for money

… while Dieschburg ‘robbed’ a foreigner. Everything about this makes me sick.


Yep - I remember seeing an article about The Rocketeer creator Dave Stevens’ reference photos with himself and his partner all dressed up!


Flipping the photos seems a good indicator of mens rea.

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I dunno, man. It takes talent to read and paint by all those backwards numbers.

That looks like super lazy collage… but if it is a painting, its a twist on it.

And lots of other illustrators. I used to be a dumb dumb who thought using references was cheating, but my Illustration teacher made me see the light.


Eh, I’d honestly say that that work is more transformative. Lazier, yes, perhaps, but more transformative. Also, it wears what it is on its sleeve. Everyone can see that it’s a collage of a photo. It’s not pretending to be something it’s not.


Ugh, it’s even grosser than Rob’s article. (Source: photog’s insta here)

Wherever she’s from. Whatever. It’s an allegory doncha know?


Yeah, Prince has made his entire career on crap like this.


In this case, there isn’t the same blatant, transparent superimposition. It’s much sneakier and self-serious.

Another way of putting it is that two of the three paintings in this post lack even the superficial pro-forma art-school justifications that have helped other plagiarising vultures win in court. (He evokes them, though, and there is an element of it in the Turandot one, as it’s accompanied by a self-portrait in a similar style)

And it should be mentioned that no-one has even threatened to sue this guy. He’s lawyered up—forgive me, lawyers—because he got caught.


Why is it called Turandot? Did he get his Puccini operas mixed up and confuse Turandot with Madam Butterfly?

EDIT: I’m an idiot. Turandot is a Chinese princess.

EDIT: He says it’s an “allegory of the European femme fatale”.


the thing about copyright is laughter is just not conjurable

I would’ve thought the models also have some sort of case here too?