Al Forster, “My Architecture in Perspective Experience”

Dear ASAI Membership,
Al at U of H '62
Al Forster at University of Houston in 1962
My wife and I just returned home to The Sea Ranch from a 5200 mile driving trip over 8 states, the focus of which was the yearly ASAI/AIP Conference, this year AIP 32, held in Houston, Texas.  For those who couldn’t make it this year and didn’t hear my story, I attended the University of Houston, College of Architecture in 1961, smack dab in the middle of Hurricane Carla.  It was at the U of H that I started my long journey in design and presentation drawing and, as fate would have it, here I was returning there, now 56 years later and at the tail end of Hurricane Harvey, to humbly accept the Hugh Ferriss Memorial Prize just across town from where it all began for me.  It is the very best, professional honor an architectural illustrator can hope to be awarded.  I can only imagine myself there at school, the quiet but ambitious 17 year old with dreams of becoming an architect, utterly incapable of even hoping that such an honor could lay ahead for me. I mentioned to the crowd in attendance the night of the award presentation that it was so very special to speak to a gathering of renderers because virtually everyone there would know the effort and the struggle it takes to complete one of these art pieces we create, day after day, year on end for a lifetime.  Unlike the fine artist, our art has a responsibility, first and foremost, to depict and display the built environment as a product for sale in the very best light while engaging the viewer to join in the experience and visit this creation we have staged and arranged just for them. Each effort needs to be a homerun.  Some of them are not.  And so we fall short and we learn to be better at our craft over time.  If we are successful in that effort then we hope that it results in more work, better projects, involvement with bigger and more experienced firms and some success and recognition by our architectural purveyors and our peers.  And with all of that comes responsibility, the kind that can weigh you down and break you or the kind that can make this skill we’ve learned the impetus for a lifetime’s dedication to being the very best we can be at what we do. I have been so very fortunate to remain busy with wonderful clients and inspiring projects these last 5 decades.  I am proud and humbled now to be considered worthy of the Hugh Ferriss Memorial Prize and to be able to share the stage with a distinguished and legendary group of my contemporaries who have won the award in year’s past.  For me it is a culmination of a lifetime of hard work and dedication to my craft and it is truly an honor and a thrill to receive.  As a member of ASAP and ASAI for some 22 years I have been presented with a professional forum to exhibit and compare the results of those projects alongside the best of the best in architectural illustration.  It seems, therefor, that I have spent this lifetime of mine chasing the perfect rendering.  I think I’ve come close two or three times but never quite there.  So I must continue the chase and hope for success one day.  The Ferriss Prize has convinced me I am on the right path and worthy of the pursuit…..and just in the nick of time!
AIP 32 Hugh Ferriss Award Winner
Al Forster accepting the Architecture in Perspective 32 Hugh Ferriss Memorial Prize.
I salute this year’s class of fellow award winners and all the members at large.  It is an honor to be in the same company of people with such skill and talent.  I marvel at your work and seek it out as inspiration and example each time I begin a project.  I look through this year’s AIP 32 Catalogue and feel blessed to be included among such gifted and hard working illustrators. And from the bottom of my heart, I want to thank all the dedicated people in ASAI who do all the heavy lifting behind the scenes in the day to day running of our organization and, especially, in the effort to put on a Conference each year.  Thank you Tina and your dear daughter Grace, special thanks to Corey and the hardworking Tiltpixel folks, the judges, the sponsors, the venues, certainly Frank, Steve and Jon, all the volunteers and helpers who always seem to go unnamed and everyone else I missed who did all that it took to arrange and execute this wonderful event.  You have made this an unforgettable experience for me and for my wife, Gayle.  Thanks to all. Finally, and not counting all the many dozens of illustrators who’s work has inspired me over my lifetime, I have dedicated this award to 5 people who got me to that podium;  Mr. Moore, my high school Mechanical Drawing teacher who’s class forever change the course of my life, my grandfather, Robert S. Anderson, who directed me towards architecture and gave me my first drafting tools, my dad, Al senior, who remains my true north, Doyle Jenkins, one of my U of H design and drawing instructors who sits on my shoulder each day of my life and does not allow me to settle for anything but my best effort and my dearest Gayle, without whom there would be no me! Most Sincerely,  Al Forster, Architectural Illustrator AL FORSTER Architectural Illustrator PO Box 326 The Sea Ranch, CA 95497 707.785.2184 al@afai.biz Hoover Ext. 1 Gavin Hoover Int. 2 Gavin

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Your copyrights are about to change {video}

This video was recorded by Will Terry with guest Brad Holland. The information below is information that Will has provided in the description of his podcast. Please watch the video to get a better understanding of what is at stake and then TAKE ACTION and send your letter. Read a previous Artist Alert here
Your Copyright is About to ChangeArtists! There’s a good chance we’re going to lose the rights to our work unless we stop legislation that’s being proposed to congress. This has the potential to infect every country in the world. We need your help to stop this as soon as possible! Brad Holland is an expert in this new legislation and explains why artists worldwide will suffer if our current copyright law is replaced by the new proposals. Submit your letter here! http://copyright.gov/policy/visualwor… Sample letters from other artists: http://myemail.constantcontact.com/Ar… Illustrators’ Partnership Blog: http://ipaorphanworks.blogspot.com IPA Artists Alert http://conta.cc/1KvRTCR To sign-up for IPA Artists Alert http://visitor.constantcontact.com/ma… Copyright Office page where comments must be submitted online: http://copyright.gov/policy/visualwor… 4 articles written about this: Trojan Horse: Orphan Works and the War on Authors by Brad Holland http://www.jbiocommunication.org/free… Orphan Works Legislation—A Bad Deal for Artists by Bruce Lehman, Esq. http://www.jbiocommunication.org/free… Perfect and Strengthen Your Copyrights by Cynthia Turner http://www.jbiocommunication.org/free… Artists’ Rights are Human Rights By Chris Castle http://www.jbiocommunication.org/free… VIDEO: An Evening with Bruce Lehman Webcast presentation from Society of Illustrators (SI) New York – February 21, 2008 Sponsored by ASIP And SI Q & A about illustrators’ reprographic rights and their right to remuneration. http://www.asip-repro.org/resources.html Orphan Works Roundtable Conducted by the Small Business Administration Salmagundi Art Club, New York, NY Initiated by the Illustrators’ Partnership of America, the Artists Rights Society and the Advertising Photographers of America, and conducted by Tom Sullivan, Director of the Office of Advocacy of the US Small Business Administration. This was the first effort to assess the economic impact of the Orphan Works Acts H.R. 5889 and S. 2913 on creators and small businesses. Seventeen distinguished panelists spoke, all freelance working artists and stakeholders who would be directly impacted by this proposed legislation. Six 3’x4’ exhibit panels demonstrated orphan work infringements. Presenter Bio Reactions Quote Video: https://vimeo.com/channels/artistsrights Presenters submitted written statements to IPA after the meeting. We compiled these into notebooks and distributed 14 notebooks of SBA Orphan Works Roundtable statements to key members of the Senate and House Judiciary Committees.

Artists Alert: The Return of Orphan Works Part 2 – ARTISTS’ LETTERS

Two weeks ago, we warned that Congress is drafting a new US Copyright Act. The new recommendations would resurrect the failed Orphan Works Act of 2008. But there are new proposals that go far beyond Orphan Works. The Copyright Office says that these artists’ issues are also “ripe” for legislation: copyright small claims, resale royalties, and other forms of secondary licensing which most artists have never heard of. Many of you have already written. We hope many more will do the same. Therefore we’re asking all artists concerned with retaining the rights to their work to join us in writing.
The deadline is THURSDAY: July 23, 2015    American Artists can submit letters online to the Copyright Office HERE.      Non-U.S. artists can email their letters to the attention of:      Catherine Rowland      Senior Advisor to the Register of Copyrights      U.S. Copyright Office      crowland@loc.gov      Read the Copyright Office Notice of Inquiry.      Read the 2015 Orphan Works and Mass Digitization Report.

Join us and send your letter TODAY!


Please write the Copyright Office

Because of our past opposition to orphan works legislation, the Copyright Office has issued a special Notice of Inquiry on Visual Works. In it, they acknowledge that visual artists face special problems in the marketplace and they’ve asked artists to respond to five questions:
  1. What are the most significant challenges related to monetizing and/or licensing photographs, graphic artworks, and/or illustrations?
  2. What are the most significant enforcement challenges for photographers, graphic artists, and/or illustrators?
  3. What are the most significant registration challenges for photographers, graphic artists, and/or illustrators?
  4. What are the most significant challenges or frustrations for those who wish to make legal use of photographs, graphic art works, and/or illustrations?
  5. What other issues or challenges should the Office be aware of regarding photographs, graphic artworks, and/or illustrations under the Copyright Act?
And we might suggest a 6th question of our own: 6. What are the most significant challenges artists would face if these new copyright proposals become law?

Since most artists have never written to lawmakers before, many of you have asked us for sample letters.

Eight artists have provided their letters to inspire you to write. The letters are poignant examples written respectfully by artists telling their own unique story about their experience and concerns: Letter 1: Brad Holland’s, which is a very deep primer on these issues, and well worth reading, and adapting points as need be; he has written a legal article for the Columbia Law Journal, among other writings; “I’m writing to stress that for me, and for artists like me, copyright law is not an abstract legal issue. Our copyrights are our assets. Licensing them is how we make our livings.” Read more. Letter 2: Ken Dubrowski, from the Boston area, who was one of the Founders of IPA; “As a freelance illustrator, I need to maintain revenue streams in order to make a living for my family. The resale of my past images is part of my day to day way of doing business.”  Read more. Letter 3:  Keith Ferris, who is the founder of the Aviation Artists group; “My art is reasonably well known since it has served the advertising, editorial, public relations and historical documentation needs of the aerospace industry, publications, the military services and air and space museums for 68 years.” Read more. Letter 4: “I am writing to you as an award winning professional illustrator of over 40 years whose work has appeared in many major publications, books and advertisements, both nationally and internationally.” Read more. Letter 5: “I have been a professional medical illustrator since 1975, and self-employed since 1981. During the course of my career, I have created thousands of illustrations…” Read more. Letter 6: “Copyright is the basis of my income and ability to support my business. It is the only way I have to protect the accuracy and integrity of my work, and to negotiate an appropriate fee for re-licensing.” Read more. Letter 7: “My specialty area is fetal development and women’s health illustration…The protection of these images is of utmost importance to my livelihood, and I have struggled to fight the rampant piracy of them, especially by political groups.” Read more. Letter 8: Cynthia Turner, Co-President of ASIP, and deeply learned on copyright matters; her letter might also be adapted. “I am writing to ask that you create policy to protect visual authors and their exclusive rights, and support a sustainable environment for professional authorship. Read more.

Remember no one is asking you to write a legal brief. Copyright law is a business law, and the lawyers writing these laws know little or nothing about our business.

Let’s explain to them how the laws they’re writing will affect us.

– Brad Holland and Cynthia Turner for the Board of the Illustrators’ Partnership
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1Receive Artist Alerts from Illustrators Partnerships Updates for visual artists on copyright reform and 2015 Orphan Works draft legislation SIGN UP HERE

Convergence: 30th Anniversary Issue

Inside this issue of Convergence: ASAI 30th Anniversary Conference, AIP 30 in Toronto Last Year – Dallas Conference Notes 2015 President’s Letter Anniversary Message from one of our co-founders ASAI History at a Glance People in Illustrations, Jen Mahoney Vice President Greeting Member at Large AIA Convention DOWNLOAD FULL ISSUE HERE

Artists Alert: From the Illustrators Partnership

The Return of Orphan Works Part 1: “The Next Great Copyright Act”


For more than a year Congress has been holding hearings for the drafting of a brand new US Copyright Act. At its heart is the return of Orphan Works. Twice, Orphan Works Acts have failed to pass Congress because of strong opposition from visual artists, spearheaded by the Illustrators Partnership. Because of this, the Copyright Office has now issued a special call for letters regarding the role of visual art in the coming legislation. Therefore we’re asking all artists concerned with retaining the rights to their work to join us in writing. When and Where Deadline: July 23, 2015 You can submit letters online to the Copyright Office HERE. Read the Copyright Office Notice of Inquiry. Read the 2015 Orphan Works and Mass Digitization Report.

Join us and send your letter TODAY!


Here are the Basic Facts

“The Next Great Copyright Act” would replace all existing copyright law.
  • It would void our Constitutional right to the exclusive control of our work.
  • It would “privilege” the public’s right to use our work.
  • It would “pressure” you to register your work with commercial registries.
  • It would “orphan” unregistered work.
  • It would make orphaned work available for commercial infringement by “good faith” infringers.
  • It would allow others to alter your work and copyright these “derivative works” in their own names.
  • It would affect all visual art: drawings, paintings, sketches, photos, etc.; past, present and future; published and unpublished; domestic and foreign.

Background

The demand for copyright “reform” has come from large Internet firms and the legal scholars allied with them. Their business models involve supplying the public with access to other people’s copyrighted work. Their problem has been how to do this legally and without paying artists. The “reforms” they’ve proposed would allow them to stock their databases with our pictures. This would happen either by forcing us to hand over our images to them as registered works, or by harvesting unregistered works as orphans and copyrighting them in their own names as “derivative works.” The Copyright Office acknowledges that this will cause special problems for visual artists but concludes that we should still be subject to orphan works law. The “Next Great Copyright Act” would go further than previous Orphan Works Acts. The proposals under consideration include:      1.) The Mass Digitization of our intellectual property by corporate interests.      2.) Extended Collective Licensing, a form of socialized licensing that would replace  voluntary business agreements between artists and their clients.      3.) A Copyright Small Claims Court to handle the flood of lawsuits expected to result  from orphan works infringements.

Join us and send your letter TODAY!

In your letter to the Copyright Office:

It’s important that lawmakers be told that our copyrights are our source of income because lobbyists and corporation lawyers have “testified” that once our work has been published it has virtually no further commercial value and should therefore be available for use by the public. So when writing, please remember:
  • It’s important that you make your letter personal and truthful.
  • Keep it professional and respectful.
  • Explain that you’re an artist and have been one for x number of years.
  • Briefly list your educational background, publications, awards, etc.
  • Indicate the field(s) you work in.
  • Explain clearly and forcefully that for you, copyright law is not an abstract legal issue, but the basis on which your business rests.
  • Our copyrights are the products we license.
  • This means that infringing our work is like stealing our money.
  • It’s important to our businesses that we remain able to determine voluntarily how and by whom our work is used.
  • Stress that your work does NOT lose its value upon publication.
  • Instead everything you create becomes part of your business inventory.
  • In the digital era, inventory is more valuable to artists than ever before.
If you are NOT a professional artist:
  • Define your specific interest in copyright, and give a few relevant details.
  • You might want to stress that it’s important to you that you determine how and by whom your work is used.
  • You might wish to state that even if you’re a hobbyist, you would not welcome someone else monetizing your work for their own profit without your knowledge or consent.

1Receive Artist Alerts from Illustrators Partnerships Updates for visual artists on copyright reform and 2015 Orphan Works draft legislation SIGN UP HERE Because this is a complicated issue, we’ll follow up next week with some expanded thoughts of our own. . – Brad Holland and Cynthia Turner for the Board of the Illustrators Partnership
The Illustrators Partnership has filed multiple papers with the Copyright Office regarding this issue. You can download them from the Copyright Office website: Remedies for Small Copyright Claims January 17, 2012 Orphan Works and Mass Digitization Initial Comments February 3, 2013 Orphan Works and Mass Digitization Reply Comments, March 6, 2013 Orphan Works and Mass Digitization Additional Comments, May 21, 2014 Please post or forward this artists alert to any interested party.