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Thread: People claiming other peoples work as theirs?!

  1. #1
    Not so newbie member lardbros's Avatar
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    Angry People claiming other peoples work as theirs?!

    Hi guys and gals...
    i have just had a pretty disturbing thing happen. A guy (who i have done freelance work for before) phoned me up asking if i would like to work on some housing project, and said
    "I have someone else who can do architecture stuff too, but i'm not too keen on him so am asking you first"

    Great i thought... then he said "His work is pretty incredible"

    So i asked if he could forward this guys examples of work, so i could see what i was up against!

    Anyway, i took a look at the work, and i was pretty gobsmacked, it's stunning!! BUT when i got to the last piccy, i thought hang on, i've seen this one before... and it was on these forums!

    I searched the forum for the Tokyo subway image, and found the thread. It CERTAINLY wasn't the guys name who was claiming it was his work. The original image was done by the very talented Gerald Abraham, and it was published in some book by Ballistic.

    So this guy who was applying to do some freelance work, was sending out images of other peoples work claiming it was his! The work he was sending out wasn't just nice architectural work... it was THE CREAM OF THE CROP. Some of the best images i've ever seen!

    Now this gets me even more irate than pirate software users, how on earth do they think they can get away with it? Surely when it comes to the crunch they won't be able to deliver anyway!!!

    UN-BE-BLOODY-LIEVABLE!!!

    Just in case i'm wrong and this James Barry is an agent for the people who make these images (which i very much doubt indeed) then i'm sorry. But i searched for this guys name and the internet came up blank... no nice 3d art by anyone called that. Surely if he was that talented, he would have an online portfolio?
    LairdSquared | 3D Design & Animation

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  2. #2
    Running at 29.97 fps Titus's Avatar
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    So what? anyone trying to get jobs with other's people images will need to show with real work his talent. Just show to your client where the stolen images came.

  3. #3
    Dreamer MooseDog's Avatar
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    SO What?!

    Lardbros has been put at a competitive disadvantage by a competitors mendacity. That's food on his table and a roof over his head.

    I agree, Lardbros, do as much research as possible, then expose the fraud to your potential client, ask for his help in further exposing the fraud (if he likes you, prob won't be a problem for him), and anyone who will listen.

    It's just me, but w/o a ton of references and proof, I'd be careful about bandying the fraud's name about publicly.

    Good luck.
    We are pirates, we are artists...

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  4. #4
    Some people lie all the time to get jobs, especially in any tech related sector. I knew this girl once, a friend of my Ex. If you asked her "can you use a cash register?" she say yes. If you asked "do you have a drivers licence and a clean driving record?" again she'd say yes.

    The key here for employers and contractors, you need to check before you hand over the company van and the keys to the till

  5. #5
    Super Member SplineGod's Avatar
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    Ive seen even worse then that. I knew of a situation where this guy had a demo reel full of animations lifted from other peoples websites. He claimed he did them all and was hired as a vfx supervisor. When the company found out and eventually they do he was fired. Its ridiculous but it happens. It can sure much things up for legit people.

  6. #6
    I got a demo reel that was full of 3DS Max content CD artwork, and a re-textured Hitman character.

    It's really hard to check up on some artist as an employer, but the artist who are in the trenches doing the work would have a keen eye for who did what.

    But eventually they will be found out. So if they are willing to screw their name up, so be it. Word travels fast on the net.
    Lamont G
    Artist Ubisoft Osaka/大阪

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by MooseDog
    I agree, Lardbros, do as much research as possible, then expose the fraud to your potential client, ask for his help in further exposing the fraud (if he likes you, prob won't be a problem for him), and anyone who will listen.

    It's just me, but w/o a ton of references and proof, I'd be careful about bandying the fraud's name about publicly.

    Good luck.
    My two cents on this:

    I agree, stealing work is definitve the worst thing wich can happen towards a creative person, but just a note on this:

    I wouldn't make it such a big issue towards your client: Inform him, that you think his work is stolen, and if he shows real interest, come up with two or three examples.
    But keep the whole thing on a calm, professional level, trying to avoid getting him "involved" in the whole issue as much as possible.

    Such issues allways causes trouble, and clients doesn't like trouble...

    About making it public: If you are 100% (and I mean 100%) sure, IMHO theres nothing wrong posting the issue publically with some proof....

    I would rather go the following way, (especially if there is a certain uncertainity, or you just doesn't want to be guy making it public):
    Write an email towards this guy stating that you know what he is doing, and if he does not stop doing it, you will make it a public issue.
    Depending on how he reacts you can plan further actions.

    and keep us up to date (because I have to admit, there is a certain "entertainment" in such threads)....

  8. #8
    I might suggest your client asks this guy for references so he can check out his past employment and character.
    You can then say to your client you think some of the work is not his own (which you can provide evidence for if required) and would advise your client, if he decides to use this guy to check his employment references thoroughly.

    That way you are being honest with your client and not sounding like you are just trying to get the business to go your way. The decision of who to choose still lies with the client.

    If you wanted more evidence, you could contact this guy directly and say you are representing an interested party and require references from past employers. If he is who he says he will have no problem providing good references that can easily be ratified.

    Personally, I'm not sure you should involve the client in 'exposing this guy' as such - although I agree it is a breach of copyright and an act of plagiarism if he is doing this. But be very careful what you write about him - if you are wrong he will have a case for libel.

  9. #9
    CORE 5718 mattclary's Avatar
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    It sounds like your potential client's bullsh*t meter was already giving him a reading, I don't think you will have any problem when you show him the subway shot here on the forum.

    It takes really huge balls to do something like this. You know there is no way people like that can produce the level of work they are stealing, so it has to come back to bite them some day.

  10. #10
    Not so newbie member lardbros's Avatar
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    Thanks for the responses... i don't blame it on the client whatsoever... he's only the middle man really, he gets me work almost like an agent.

    I don't need any more proof than these two images. Exspecially the subway one... unless Balistic Publishing have printed it under the worng artist.

    ANYWAY... if this guy was as good as the images he's showing around, he would surely have a website. This Gerald Abraham does training DVD's for Kurv studios etc which i found out just by searching on the net. I truly believe that the fraudulent guy didn't create that subway image. I remember the thread on this forum a while back, and although the images are no longer present... it wasn't the guys name.

    If anyone wants me to post all the images he sent to my client/agent bloke, then feel free to ask, it could be interesting to see if anyone has seen the others or not.

    I have been 100% concise with the poor client. I explained to him
    that i think i have seen it before, and that i'm not sure that this guy had produced it. Anyway, he didn't like the guy for being way too pushy. I don't put any blame on the clients part whatsoever... and if the guy has done the work, then he's the better man for the job, the work is incredible.


    Search for Gerald Abraham to find the tokyo subway scene he did.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by lardbros; 10-28-2005 at 07:43 AM.
    LairdSquared | 3D Design & Animation

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  11. #11
    Not so newbie member lardbros's Avatar
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    The only reason i named the guy here was because i am 99% sure anyway... take a look at this image:

    and this CGtalk thread... CGtalk thread of Tokyo Subway

    Also Gerald Abraham has a profile on Newtek, clearly a bloody good artist!

    Only problem is, now that my client has seen this unbelievable work, i will have to do something like it to impress. Although even getting something half as good will be good enough!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by lardbros; 10-28-2005 at 07:44 AM. Reason: spelt gerald wrong... how rude!!
    LairdSquared | 3D Design & Animation

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  12. #12
    CORE 5718 mattclary's Avatar
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    Be funny if he asked you, "So, do you know how I can get ahold of this Gerald Abraham guy?" LOL!

  13. #13
    Not so newbie member lardbros's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattclary
    Be funny if he asked you, "So, do you know how I can get ahold of this Gerald Abraham guy?" LOL!
    Hahaha, yeah it would!! Wouldn't blame him!
    LairdSquared | 3D Design & Animation

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  14. #14
    Red Mage Celshader's Avatar
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    Unhappy For what it's worth...

    For what it's worth...this kinda stuff goes on outside of 3D, too. I remember reading a Mark Evanier story years ago about a similar situaton. He hired an artist with an incredible portfolio to illustrate a comic book...only to find out too late that the guy had passed off the work of Al Williamson as his own.

    This happened decades ago, so I guess this kinda thing isn't new.
    Jen's 3D -- LightWave stuff.
    Jen's 2D -- my comic book.

    Python is my smashing board. LightWave is my S.M.A.K.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by lardbros
    The only reason i named the guy here was because i am 99% sure anyway...
    Also Gerald Abraham has a profile on Newtek, clearly a bloody good artist!
    well in this case it would be quite fair to contact gerald and inform him about this fraud.

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