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Imagine hiring an artist to view a series of photographs of a famous celebrity or corporate executive - John doe, for example - then create an original drawing - not a derivative, but a unique work of art that's legal.

Now imagine selling some of your artwork on a website. Maybe you have a separate web page with the heading "Pictures of John Doe," featuring half a dozen pictures the artist created for you.

Again, each individual image is legal; you can personally use them on your website or in a book. I assume it would also be legal to allow others to use them free of charge; you could put them in the public domain or license them under Creative Commons, for example.

But can you legally charge a fee for such pictures?

  • "Can you legally charge a fee for [the original drawings which were legally created]"? Which part of your situation makes you think that you cannot charge a fee? The fact that you hired an artist, or the fact that you licensed them as Creative Commons or "public domain"? – Brandin Oct 19 '18 at 8:16
  • The fact that the subject is a famous/rich/powerful person, one who might use any legal trick in the book to torpedo you. For example, could such a person claim that the page title "Pictures of John Doe" unfairly seeks to profit from their fame? – David Blomstrom Oct 20 '18 at 23:49

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