How to copyright graphic designs? | Ventsi Stoilov | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

14 Lessons (29m)
    • 1. Welcome to the class

    • 2. Why is copyright so important for every designer?

    • 3. What is graphic design?

    • 4. Types of graphic designs

    • 5. Why are graphic designs a copyright subject matter?

    • 6. Requirements for copyright protection

    • 7. What cannot be a copyright subject matter?

    • 8. How does copyright protection for designs arise?

    • 9. Who is the author of a graphic design?

    • 10. What copyright does a graphic designer have?

    • 11. Fair use of graphic designs

    • 12. Duration of copyright over graphic designs

    • 13. Copyright Inheriting

    • 14. Conclusion

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About This Class

Welcome to the class “How to copyright graphic designs?”

Nowadays graphic design has become extremely popular both from a creative and business point of view.

With the advent of new modern technologies and the internet as a whole, the graphic design field has attracted a lot of attention and interest.

Doing business with graphic designs, apart from the necessary creative skills, requires specific knowledge related to the available copyright protection too.

This class is designed to teach graphic designers how copyright law can help them to control and benefit from their works in order to build a sustainable business model.

Why is copyright so important for graphic designs?

There are two main reasons.

First of all, copyright is a legal framework that protects every artistic work, including designs, against unauthorized use.

Copyright gives every designer a tool to control the way his/her work is used and to prevent all sorts of infringing activities.

This is crucial because without such control it would be near impossible for designers to make their living because everyone would be able to use their designs for free.

The second reason is that copyright gives designers a ground for doing business with their works. That is to say, copyright stipulates particular rules that allow business transactions with copyrighted designs.

  1. What will you learn from this course?
  • This class will teach every graphic designer how to deal with copyright rights over graphic designs;
  • You will learn what copyrights over designs exist, 
  • You will learn what the requirements for copyright protection are;
  • You will learn what the term of protection of a graphic design is;
  • You will learn what fair use of designs is;
  • You will learn how copyrights over designs are inherited;

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Ventsi Stoilov

Intellectual property manager, lecturer


Hi, I am Ventsi, an intellectual property expert with more than 12 years’ extensive experience in the field of management and protection of trademarks, industrial designs, internet domain names, copyright, etc.

As an academic background, I hold both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in intellectual property management as well as a certificate by the World Intellectual Property Organisation which is part of the United Nations.

I have a corporate background in managing an intellectual property portfolio as well as I've gained significant expertise dealing with different corporate IP projects on a national and international level.

I am also a University lecturer in the field of intellectual property management for more than 7 ye... See full profile

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1. Welcome to the class: Welcome to the course how to cooperate graphic designs. If you're a graphic designer or someone who deals with graphic designs for business purposes, this class is for you. By the end of the class, you will be able to understand the most important aspects of copyright protection over graphic designs. This will help you not only to enforce your rights if necessary, but you will be more prepared when negotiating with clients. Hi, I'm renting and intellectual property manager our university lecture and IT bulgur with oppression in the field of intellectual property rights, you might be wondering why this is important. The main reason is that nowadays, thanks to the internet, you can do business with your designs all around the world. However, apart from the benefits, there are some possible problems. For example, it is so easy for one designed to be copied and used by everyone without any permission. One of the ways to fight against this is to round the copyright coal that will give you the necessary tool to deal with such negative consequences. From their perspective, it is vital for graphic designers to know at least the bare minimum for the copyright protection over there works in order to take advantage of it. These quasi suitable for students from all levels. Thanks for your interest and I hope that the cost will be a helper to you in your graphic design activity. 2. Why is copyright so important for every designer? : Many people are confused when it comes to copyright protection and why it is important to put it simply, copyright protection is the bread and butter in case of doing business with creative works. The reason for this is quite simple. When we talk about tangible products such as phones, quotes, and even food, they can be controlled physically in the case of intangible products such as music, literature, art into graphic designs. Physical limitations don't always exist. In the age of the internet and the digital economy, everyone can access it works with the copy and download, much easier than in the case of physical goods. From that perspective, copyright over presents a tool by which you can control who can use your creative works. This is crucial because we doubt such protection. Everyone will be able to use them for free and the creators will not make a living out of them. This is the main idea behind the copyright law as a whole, to serve as an incentive for every older to put efforts in the creation of new and original works against receiving an equitable renumeration. Copyright is important for every graphic designer for two primary reasons. First and foremost, Copyright is a legal framework which can protect the end product of the designers work against unauthorized use. What I mean is that based on the copyright WHO every creative and original graphic design can be protected in a way which will allow its outer to control its use, including commercial one and to prevent possible infringements. The second reason is that copyright gives designers a ground for doing business with their products. That is to say copyright stipulates particular rules that allow business transactions with copyrighted works. Copyright allows designers not only to protect their works against illegal use books, to monitor, raise them, which in turn is a stimulus for creation of new works. If we have to summarize all benefits that copyright provide designers with, we can say that it gives a legal protection over graphic designs. Designers can control who, how, when and where can use their works. Designers can claim ownership over their designs based on the wall, copyright provides rules for commercial exploitation of graphic designs. Copyright ensures that the designers can make their living based on the creative products, cooperate services and additional stimulus for the designer to continue doing their creative work in the future. 3. What is graphic design? : Before starts talking about copyright rights, let's summarize what is a graphic design in general, this will help you to understand what exactly subject matter to copyright protection and rights transfer. In brief, according to the American Institute of Graphic arts, graphic design is defined as the art and practice of planning and projecting ideas and experiences with visual enter textual content. According to Wikipedia, graphic design is the process of visual communication and problem solving through the use of typography, photograph HE, economy era, he, and illustration. The field is considered a subset of visual communication, but sometimes the term graphic design is used to synonym history. Graphic designers create and combine symbols, images, and text to form visual representations of ideas and messages. 4. Types of graphic designs : There are many types of graphic designs, but some of the most well-known and widespread are visual identity. Graphic design refers to the visual elements of a brand that is used to create a memorable image. For example, accompany wall surfaces, a visual identifier for a specific brand through visual identity, Graphic Design businesses certainty for their audience using shapes, colors, and more. Here one example, marketing and advertising, graphic design. These type of graphic design relates to different marketing tools that promote and communicate the company's products and services more effectively. Such designs could refer to postcards and billboards, infographic and brochures, email marketing, two plates, PowerPoint, presentations, menu's, etc. User interface graphic design is the process of designing interfaces in digital environments to make them user-friendly. Design focuses on the users visual experience entered the design of on-screen graphic elements like buttons, menu's micro interactions and moral. It includes things such as web page designer, team design, game interfaces up design, etc. Packaging, graphic design. This design communicates messages to the customer assertTrue visual elements of the product packaging. Motion graphic design. This design includes animation, audio, topography, imaginary video, and other effects that are used in online media, television and films. Environmental graphic design works with woes, signs, advertisements, and exhibits to make space more memorable and engaging. Such designs could be off his branding, bubbling, transportation, navigation, retail store, interiors, event and conference spaces, etcetera. Are there. For graphic design. The design codes take a number of forms from a fine arts to the curation tool storytelling, illustrations, for instance, tissue redesign, graphic novels, video games, comic books, et cetera. 5. Why are graphic designs a copyright subject matter?: Copyright is part of the intellectual property universe whose main characteristic is the protection of products creating based on intellectual efforts. So the simple answer, wide graphic designs are copyright subject matter is defects data. They are creative, original products of their authors. They representing tangible assets for their authors which have the potential to generate value if used properly. In brief cooperate is a correction of rights that automatically vests to someone who creates an original work of ownership, including literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works such as poetry, novels, movies, songs, photo designs, computer, software, etc. Copyright gives every author any incentive to invest his or her time and resources in the creation of the relevant works. Because the author will be able to return these investments that are by giving permissions for their use against the appropriate remuneration. Without copyright protection, every design is possible to be used for free, which means that designers probably will not choose these professional pet because they will be not able to make their living out of it from one site. Copyright Law is the necessary foundation on which every designer can base his or her design business. Because it provides the designer with a tool to protect the ends and transactions with the design products. On the other side, cooperate war aims to balance the interest of the authors with the public interest in having the widest possible access to debt content. This happens through different routes setting, such as a limited duration of rights, exceptions of protection, fair use, etc. Bear in mind that debt copyrights are considered its territorial rights, which means that they do not extend beyond the territory of specific jurisdiction. While many aspects of national corporate walls have been standardized, true international agreements cooperate wall may variety country by country. 6. Requirements for copyright protection: Requirements for copyright protection when it comes to cooperate protection of graphic design is, there are two main requirements. Switch protection to be awarded. Originality, bearing in mind that graphic design, sir, artistic works. In order to receive protection, they have to be original. This is widespread requirement in most jurisdictions around the world. However, there is no uniform understanding of what exactly originality is. For the European Union, for example, something original is an intellectual creations of his older. This means that it reflects the personality of his creator, displaying here her free and creative choices. In the US, originality means that the work needs to be independently created by the order possessing cadres some minimal degree of creativity. That is to say it is not copied from someone else one-to-one. We're originality, the specter of a creative work that makes it new or novel and thereby distinguish it from reproductions, quantizer, derivative works, fixation. The second requirement is that designs must be fixed for at least some period of time on a tangible medium, on paper or another material or digital media. It cannot merely be an idea or concept for a design. This is a requirement for receiving copyright protection in many countries around the world, including the US and Canada. All in all, this means that in most of the cases, the design can be protected if it is fixed on certain medium, if it is printed or it is in a digital form like a JPEG file, for example. When it comes to graphic designs bearing combined, they are created through computers. The fixation will occur when designing safety relevant file formats. 7. What cannot be a copyright subject matter?: What cannot be a copyright subject matter? Not every work can be protected by the Copyright role. Apart from the previous mentioned, IT requirements for protection. Some elements subject matter to graphic design are not copyrightable. Dsr, ideas, facts, list of data, blank forms, common geometric shapes or symbols such as circles, squares, etcetera, names, titles, slogans, expressions, short phrases, symbols, measuring charts, calendars, letters or color variations. Bear in mind that if a graphic design is attached to a product, their artistic elements of the product receive copyright protection, but the utilitarian aspects may not. For example, if you place your graphic design on standards T-shirt, the graphic elements can be copyrighted, but the t-shirt itself cannot. 8. How does copyright protection for designs arise?: How does copyright protection for designs arise? Copyright protection over graphic designers is automatic. It arises in the moment when they are created, provided that all criteria necessary for receiving a copyright protection are fulfilled. That is to say, the design is original, it is fixed on a medium, and it is not excluded from protection. There is no mandatory requirement for a design to be register it with the patent office or other governmental authority. However, in some countries, such as the US, every original design can be registered before the US Copyright Office, which doesn't give protection over it, but Services, Evidence in copyright lawsuits. 9. Who is the author of a graphic design? : Who is the older how graphic design? The order of graphic design is the person who created it based on his or her intellectual efforts. Although there is now a debate whether artificial intelligence or even animals can be authors of works for the time being, the Altar of designs can be only human beings. For example, there was recently a wall shoots in the US where the question was whether a monkey which took a picture accidentally is the author instead of the photographer who prepared the camera and all other stuff, the court ruled out that according to the world, the voter can be only a human being because intellectual efforts are unnecessary in our copyrightable work to be created. There two cases, however, where copyright can be automatically given to another person or even companies. Graphic designs made in the course of employment. If a designer is an employee and the creative designs are part of his or her employment duties, then the copyright of the designs belong to the poor. Unless a copyright agreement stipulates something cows, the employer has all necessary copyrights to use the designed commercially for the purpose for which it is created. In some countries, the designer retains some moral rights. So to be identified and credited as an author of the relevant design. For instance, if you work for a company as a designer and your work is to create designs related to the company's activities. The copyright over these designs will be launched automatically to the company against which you will receive remuneration in the form of monthly salary. Graphic designs made for hire, as I've mentioned it to the concept of works made of higher in the US includes works created under employment contracts. However, in other countries, these are only worst created by independent odors hard for our particular project. In case that design mission it to the designer under an agreement, the Commissioner will all all necessary cooperates to use these designs for the purpose for which they are commissioned it. For instance, if a company wants a designer to create a corporate war, the company will become a holder of the copyrights over this wall, according to the wall, and will be able to use it for its activity without further permissions by the designer. However, if the company wants to use the same logo for things different from the purpose of the initial commissioning. This use you have to be stipulated a dictionary in the agreement with the designer, the wall transfers automatically copyrights to the commissioner, but only for use related to the commissioning main purpose of cause, the scope of the rights which the Commissioner will have in case of works made for hire can vary in the different countries. In some countries, the author can retain some moral rights over the design. For instance, to be credited in the US, if the design is created by an independent designer or the design may be considered a work for hire. Or if all the following conditions are maps, the work must come within one of the nine limited categories of works. Our contribution to a collective work are part of a motion picture or other audiovisual work of translation. A supplementary work. Compilation and instructional texts are test answer material for a test and Atlas. The work must be specificly order it or commissioning. There must be a written agreement between the parties specifying that the work is a work made for hire. Another important moment here is the statutory termination right under the US Copyright goal. And author who has transferred copyright still has the right to terminate that transfer 35 years later. This is a scenario for works that become more profitable or marketable or runtime under the work made for hire doctrine, however, the Commissioner is considered the author of the design from the beginning, and soda designer does not have the statutory termination, right. 10. What copyright does a graphic designer have?: What cooperate. This, a graphic designer have copyright gives every designer the right to control who can use his herd designs and how graphic designers can prohibit any US debt is not authorized explicitly, with exception of cases of fair use, the designer's copyright consists of two main groups of writes. Moral rights. They're recognizable in most of the countries around the world, including in the US where However, moral rights are possible only for visual art, which is why the graphic designers can benefit from them. Moral rights come historically from France. Their scope can vary in the different countries. In the US, for example, the designer has the moral right to claim authorship, to deny authorship of designs that are not created by the designer to prevent the continued use of designers name on any designs that have been distorted, mute, irritated, et cetera. To prevent the use of designers name as the author of a design in the event of distortion, I meet irritation or other modification of the design, which would be preachy decode two authors, owner or reputation to prevent any intentional distortion, mutilation, or other modification of the design, which would be political to designers on our reputation. In some countries, additional moral rights can be to decide whether the design can be made available to the public. To require that designer's name, pseudonym, or other identifying marker be indicated in a suitable manner whenever designers work is used to modify the design provided it does not infringe the rise acquired by other persons. This means that after designer finishes the design, he or she has the right to make additional changes even though the design is used by someone or free to stop the use of the design due to changes in his or her beliefs. In other words, every designer can claim ownership of his graphic design to expect a credit when the design is used to prevent distortion or modification of the design if this is against his or her creative perception and so on. Bear in mind that in many countries these moral rights are not transferable, or at least not all of them, like the right to claim ownership, enter the right to control the integrity of the work. Some jurisdictions can only allow these rates to be waived. Economic rights, apart from the moral rights, graphic designers have the following Christ to allow or prohibited the commercial exploitation of their designs. Reproduction of the designing various forms such as printed items or digital product, etc. For example, if someone wants to put his war on 1000 coffee cups, he or she will need to acquire the right of reproduction from the altar of the wall to distribute copies of the design to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership or by rental, lease or lending. For instance, if a publisher needs to sell comics, the right of distribution is necessary from the authors of the graphics, including, included there in the communist book Inner it to be distributed amongst the customers. Are there right is public display of the design. This right means that if the relevant design has to be displayed in an exhibition or a show, this right has to be acquired in advance. Broadcasting or other communication of the design to the public, including Gerd transmission over the internet. For instance, if you need to include some graphics on your website, you need to ask for permission from the relevant designer. Translation of the work into other languages. You've heard their words disparate into design. In some cases where the graphics are text-based, these rights can be necessary in case that the text has to be translated. By the rotation of the design for creating derivative works. In brief, these means that the, if you want to use one already designed, tends to modify it, creating the derivative who design, you need permission by the author of the original design. If we need to summarize the economic rights, we need to say that every time someone wants to use an original graphic design for any commercial purposes, the user should ask for permission from the designer because all of these activities constitute economic copyrights belonging to the last. 11. Fair use of graphic designs: Fair use of graphic designs, fair use or limitations related to copyright protection are cases that permit limited use of copyrighted material without having to first acquire permission from the author or the copyright holder. The intent of fair use doctrine is to balance the interest of copyright holders with the public interest in the wider distribution and use of creative works. This means that in some situations, copyrighted designs can be used for free under some conditions. However, fair use Canvas on country-to-country and can be use of graphic designs for non-commercial and private study. A student can use a copy of a design for private stood in current use for non-commercial research. This means using design story for analysis and researches with a non-commercial purposes. Criticism, quotation, review, and reporting current events, use of copyrighted designs for the purpose of reporting current events. However, newspapers and other media can rely on the fair use concepts in case the US transformative. That is to say news article has to be relevant to the graphic design work or to be a commentary or criticism about the design. In addition, as efficient acknowledgment will be required. Teaching copyrighted designs can be used for educational and non-commercial purposes. The use of the works has to be fair. Such use can be, for example, making copies by using a photocopier or similar device on behalf of an educational establishment, creating a presentation with the designs, recording video materials with including the graphic designs for non-commercial educational purposes in education establishment, etcetera. In case of supporting disabled people, copyrighted works can be used for free to help disabled people in situations such as making large print copies of books, newspapers or magazines for visually impaired people. Making accessible copies of books, newspapers or magazines for this people, et cetera. Parody, enter caricature. Use of limited amounts of protected works is possible without permission in these cases, for example, a comedian may use some designs for a parody sketch. Bear in mind that these exceptions can have some specifics based on the national wall in the relevant country. In some countries, for example, Fair Use requires only cropping and using a portion of the protected, protected work. 12. Duration of copyright over graphic designs: Duration of copyright over graphic designs. In most other countries around the world, copyright duration of our original graphic designs is the life of the designer who was 70 years when his or her hair's can benefit from these rights. This is determine the US, however, for designs created after January first 1978, for design taken anonymously or under a pseudonym or a design made for hard, cooperating euros for a term of 95 years from the year of its first publication, or a term of a 120 years from the year of its creation, whichever expires first, the tariff protection in the European Union is against the life of the author and additional 70 years for anonymous designs, 70 years from the publication or if unpublished 70 years from creation. In the case of designs made for her, the evil regime is the same as the term for a personal copyright is the life of the designer. And 70 years after that, if the designer is not identified nor become known subsequently, then the cooperates term in the EU is the same as that for an anonymous or pseudonymous work, 70 years from publication of the design. 13. Copyright Inheriting: Copyright inheriting. Upon the death of the author, the copyright will pass to his hairs buy wheel or by wall. According to the wall, inheritance, copyright over graphic design sees inherited until expiration of the term of protection. In case the author does not hear heirs are any such hares die prayer to the exploration of the term of protection. In some jurisdictions, the copyright can pass to the state, which will exercise it until expiration of the term. After expiration of the term of protection, the protected designs can be used freely. However, in some countries, the following moral rights cannot be infringed. The author's name to be indicated in a suitable manner whenever he's her work is used and the integrity of the author's work to be preserved. 14. Conclusion: At the end of this course, we can summarize some of the essential points when it comes to copyright protection of graphic designs. First and foremost, copyright law provides designers with Alito protection over their works. This means that they can control the way their designs are used, by whom, how, where, etc.. Copyright registrations defines the rules for licensing of designs, that is to say for commercial exploitation. This is important because it allow designers to make their living. Last but not least, copyright can be a motivation for every designer to continue creating new original works because it ensures that there will be financial benefits and credits for them. Graphic designs are corporate subject matter because the result of intellectual creative efforts. In order to receive this protection, however, every design has to be original and fixed in a tangible or a digital medium. Copyright protection is automatic, there is no need for registration. The protection arises in the moment when designs are created and fixed on a medium. In some countries like the US, you can register your design, but this is only to facilitate possible rights enforcement. For the time being, the water can be only a human being. There are two groups of copyrights, moral and economic. In some cases, you cannot prohibit the use of your design. This is the so called Fair Use Doctrine. Copyrights over graphic designs are valid for the life of the author and 70 years after that, when his or her hair's take advantage of these rights. In conclusion, I want to say that it was a real pleasure for me to be your teacher. And at the same time, I hope that the knowledge from this course will be available to you in your future activities. Although it could sound to legal isotopic, I believe that every designer can gain real advantages if he or she has the bare minimum knowledge how to benefit from the copyright law, not only for protection purposes, but for doing business to. If you enjoy the course, please post a review. It will be a valuable support for me as a motivation for new classes. Good luck and all the rest.