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  • Writer's pictureBethann Garramon Merkle

Commissioning SciArt Illustrations? Know what you want and what you can spend. (Using Images-A Primer, part 6)

Updated: Jan 26

This article is the sixth in a series aimed at helping you enhance your scicomm and sciart by avoiding visual plagiarism. It will do so by laying out some best practices for dealing with images (which are, by their nature) visual intellectual property protected by copyrights.


NOTE: I am not a lawyer, and no part of this article or series should be construed as legal advice. 


Please chime in, in the comments or by contacting me, if you have suggestions for how to enhance this article or the series.

 
Sketches of butterflies and moths, with illegible handwritten notes
Knowing what you want can make commissioning illustrations way more efficient and enjoyable. This entails planning ahead, being decisive, making lots of choices, and balancing budget vs. other constraints. (Lepidoptera sketches from Saskatchewan, Canada; © B.G. Merkle, 2017)
 

PLAN AHEAD, SO YOU KNOW WHAT YOU WANT AND WHAT YOU CAN SPEND.


In the last article in this series, we discussed contract considerations, which are the core of any commissioned illustration project.


In this article, we’ll take a look at some other important elements of planning an illustration project. To increase efficiency (which usually helps with budgeting), do what you can to know what you want and how much you can spend before you approach an illustrator and ask if they are interested in working with you.


This means you’ll need to do your homework.


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1. Do preliminary research to find likely illustrators.

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