Today started much like any other day: a late summer headache, a hand coated in paint, and hunting through Halloween stores.
I'd actually been thinking about Dark Candle a bit after I pulled out some of my unused votives to fill my witch lanterns. As part of the cosmic balance, I got an e-mail from them today and thought, "Why not see if there's anything new. Ooh, an RPG themed pack."
Perusing the lists of scents I froze and did a double take when I saw the listing for their Dark Grove™ candle.
That forest behind their trademark is my painting. A painting that I've only sold once and it certainly wasn't as a commercial image.
The candle is listed as being added in 2013. I painted my Dark Forest way back in 2010 and uploaded it to deviantArt.
Usually this would lead to rage, gnashing of teeth, etc etc, but I really like Dark Candle. I've even blogged about them before. Their Nosferatu is as much a part of my Halloween as Nightmare Before Christmas.
I sent off an e-mail showing evidence of my painting and got a response back. She claims that the person hired for candle art passed off my painting as her own work. If this is true, then Dark Candle should be just as pissed and possibly shame this thief "artist" themselves.
I'm sure some would say it's my own damn fault, that putting the painting out there means people can and should steal it whenever they want. I'm not asking for compensation, or even that she takes it down entirely. A credit link is enough for me. The painting itself is long since sold, I don't have any prints of it.
But it does suck to think someone gained something, if not money then prestige and possibly other work, for passing off my creations as their own.
I have tons of things people can download and use for whatever they want. My nerdy baby shirt templates, my nerdy valentines, my years of All Hallows Read posters. But please, if you want to use something of mine I haven't explicitly said is free for anyone to use, just ask. More than likely I'll say "sure, go ahead."