The beauty of using someone else's artwork

I find that while a lot of my actions are initialized through selfish motivations, it's much more satisfying to explore the range of possible alternate motivations and discover something that's more world-serving. I was just thinking through the process of designing my new business card (more like not-business card) and happened upon a possible alternative thought process that opened things up in my mind a little this morning.

My immediate desire was to have something that was nice to look at, and after playing with a few ideas in Illustrator and Photoshop, my limitations as an artist frustrated me into doing some stock art searching. I eventually found a really nice piece of retro-style vector art and paid the reasonable licensing fee to use it.

I had to think through this a little, because I wasn't sure how I felt about using art that wasn't mine on the card. Through the years, I've kind of gotten used to doing everything myself for almost any type of project. Getting involved with the Drupal project was the first step in admitting that I had reached the edges of what I could accomplish as an individual, and since then various other aspects of my world have shifted to be more trusting and reliant on others. In this shift, I also learned more of the value of allowing others to be reliant on you. There's a real human need to find a place to fit in your world, and I think we find it by discovering what we have to offer to others.

I realized that in using this particular piece of art, I'm may be ultimately serving the purpose of the artist by adding to the overall beauty in the world (as opposed to using my own art and adding to the overall cruft). As a creator of sorts myself, I recognize that in creating something with quality part of me wants the attribution for the work, but if I think about it a little I can also muster the higher motive of just improving the overall experience of people in my world, regardless of its source. So, even though his name isn't on my card, the artist's work will still get out there just a little more because of it.

So, Kudos to Aleksandar Velasevic for creating a really nice piece of art, and thanks for letting me use it for a very reasonable licensing fee.


Way back in the dinosaur age... that would be the 70s when I was in college ... we were taught that there are really no new ideas, just adaptations, updates and reuse of old ideas. After watching design evolve over the last three decades, I'm convinced those professors were right.

Even though you're using Aleksandar's amazingly awesome work, there's a big part of you in how it's used, where's it's used and what that piece of art now means in the real world. And that's why he does what he does... at least, part of the reason anyway. (BTW, he's one of my favorite designers too.)

I was always interested whether it is possible to learn working with photoshop on my own. I am actually one of such enthusiasts, have read several ebooks already (e.g. ) but still lag behind... Perhaps, there's something I miss... Need your help!