Cross Stitch Patterns from Fine Art by Scarlet Quince
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Scarlet Quince Ramblings

Cross stitch ... life ... art

Licensing woes
July 23rd, 2008

I mailed a letter to the Escher Foundation about three weeks ago since I can’t reach them by email or fax, and asked them to send me an email to let me know that they got the letter. So far, nothing.

Someone recently suggested several works by artist Jim Daly, who primarily paints nostalgic pictures of children playing. He has a web site which shows a bunch of pictures available for licensing but my email bounced and the fax machine doesn’t answer. I wonder if the mailing address is any good? I realize that a lot of people pay someone to set up a web site for them and then it’s never maintained again but it’s SO frustrating.

I regularly get requests for Jack Vettriano’s work (“The Singing Butler”, “Dance Me to the End of Love”) but the gallery that represents him says that he won’t license his work for cross stitch. I asked them to point my web site out to him so he could see that this is not typical cross stitch but they didn’t dignify that with an answer. I suppose if I was paying someone to see that I was not bothered, I’d like them to see that I wasn’t bothered (but then I usually leave the sound up for TV commercials in case there’s a product I’m interested in, so I don’t really see myself having someone else do my filtering for me).

Another piece we’ve been turned down on is Edvard Munch’s “The Scream”. I’m amazed at how many people have asked for that. I understand that his estate has decided that the ubiquitousness of the image is cheapening it (a little late, since it’s on everything from posters to mouse pads).

The Rene Magritte estate won’t give permission to use his works either. They are copyrighted for another 29 years so that pretty much takes care of that.

Today I emailed off for permission to use several pieces by Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse. It doesn’t take very long to ask the question but it will probably be months before I get an answer (and I will have to follow up in a couple of weeks, if past experience is any guide, to ask the Artists Rights Society rep if she saw the previous email, and then she will ask me to send it again). And I don’t know how good the chances are of getting permission at affordable rates, either.

7 Responses to “Licensing woes”
  1. From Rifestitch
    12 years, 2 months ago

    In this day and age, with copyright infringement being such a huge issue, you would think that people with serious enquiries on pieces known the world over, and doing things the right way, would at least be rewarded with a response. What is wrong with people, and what happened to professionalism?? The ‘web made all of that obsolete? I don’t think so, but then I’m a cranky stickler, the bane of electrical engineers everywhere :) And I’m also not PC – professional but not PC; can that even be these days??

    I hope you get some results – we here thank you for your troubles!!

  2. From Julie
    12 years, 2 months ago

    I second Rife’s comment that we are here to say thank you for all of the work you do. How you got so many wonderful patterns already I can’t even imagine. But we are so very appreciative!!!

  3. From Alanna
    12 years, 1 month ago

    Yes, I still haven’t gotten a reply from Escher either, and that’s so curious about The Scream, because I swear my mother in law has a cross stitch pattern of that (a big one too, done in the US I think). Good luck with it all!

  4. From David Roberts
    12 years, 1 month ago

    Hi have you tried going to this is a relatively new site and seems to be in Vettrianos control, it does mention licensing requests. Worth a try!

    Thanks, I will give it a try!

  5. From Anna
    11 years, 9 months ago

    Thank you for your beautiful site. I would like to suggest to you a Marc Chagall paintings for a cross stitch pattern. Sounds like it’s hard to get permission for these at times, but I think these would make amazing cross stitch works!

  6. From Alycia Novotny
    11 years, 5 months ago

    Hello, any word on the Vettriano license yet? I have my own cross stitch program and a huge book of his beautiful work but I don’t think my program is sophisticated enough to really give me the qualtiy of a pattern that I’m looking for. Vettriano is one of my favorite artists and I would love to cross stitch his work. Also, would it be possible for you to get a license to reproduce Jeanloup Sieff’s work? Thank you!

    I have finally reached someone who looked at Scarlet Quince and agreed that this is not what they were thinking about when they ruled out cross stitch. I’ve sent some information and samples and we’ll see what they say. (You should be aware that copyright applies not just to patterns for sale but privately created patterns. You probably wouldn’t get caught but just saying.) Please email suggestions for Sieff. Thanks.

  7. From Kaira
    11 years, 2 months ago

    The Munch descendants are a bunch of grumpy pants. A few years ago they got a hissy fit because people didn’t pronounce the Munch name right. Although they can’t do anything to make the Norwegian people stop pronouncing it the way they have always done, they refused the national TV company to show Much paintings on their programs if they did not pronounce it the way they prefered.

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