Orphan works licensing scheme

January 21st, 2015 by Special Projects

Scheme enables the licensing of images which have become detached from their creator

A creative work (eg an illustration, a photograph, a text) can be classified as an orphan if its creator/rights holder cannot be identified, or if they are known, not traceable by someone who wished to use that work in some way. The work may still be under copyright and therefore requires permission from the creator or rights holder to reproduce it in any way.

Government launched their orphan works licensing scheme at the end of October 2014, see here. This scheme was introduced to enable the licensing of orphan works, in the UK for both commercial and non-commercial use.

Cultural organisations may be the primary users of this scheme to enable them to copy works into new formats for preservation (which requires permission of the copyright holder), but as the scheme also allows for commercial use of an orphan work, other entities may use it to licence works for any other purpose. A fee will be applicable to licence orphan works.

AOI participated on the Intellectual Property Organisation (IPO) Working Groups for consultation, technical review and development of guidance for the scheme.

To see if your work has been registered as a possible orphan work that an applicant wished to use, view the register of orphan works here. This is a list of artistic works with thumbnails of visual works which have had an application for use, and you can search through Still images and Moving image. AOI advise that illustrators check this list regularly to see if any of their works appear on the register.

Other links:

Apply for a licence If you wish to licence an orphan work for your use

Guidance for returning right holders Use this if you discover your work has been licensed through the orphan works scheme

Diligent search guidance and checklists What is required to be done when searching for the creator/rights holder of a work you wish to use

For additional info go to AOI Campaigning News

20 GOTO 10 – Walter Newton

January 15th, 2015 by Special Projects
Walter Newton

Walter Newton

The Coningsby Gallery, 30 Tottenham Street, London, W1T

Monday 19 January – Saturday 31 January 2015

Opening times Monday to Friday 9am – 6pm Saturday -Sunday appointment only



Walter Newton was born in 1981 in Glasgow. He remained there for the next 21 years, attending the Glasgow School of Art before moving to London to attend the Royal College of Art. Five years later, Walter lives and works in the Midlands, illustrating and animating.

20 GOTO 10 is an exhibition Walter’s pixel-based illustrations and animations from 2012 to present. The show comprises of both original creations and commercial work for the likes  of GQ, Maxim, Men’s Health, The Atlantic, Harvard Business Review, The Guardian and Edge Magazine.

Walter Newton

Walter Newton

Freedom of expression

January 15th, 2015 by Special Projects
Jacqueline Bisset

Jacqueline Bisset

Cartoonist and illustrators from across the world, including AOI members, have been reacting visually to the attacks on French magazine, Charlie Hebdo, widely interpreted as an attempt to challenge freedom of expression. AOI, along with other European illustration organisations – members of the European Illustrators Forum – stand by the right of freedom of expression and against repression of this right. Below are some of the images from AOI members.

Nate Kitch

Nate Kitch

The French Angoulême Comics festival are creating an area to show visual responses on their website, and have issued this comment:

‘In solidarity with Charlie Hebdo and the spirit of freedom it represents, we have created this space, open to all those who wish to express graphically what the tragic events in Paris on January 7 at Charlie Hebdo means to them.’ Contact them here: jesuischarlie@bdangouleme.com

Laurindo Feliciano

Laurindo Feliciano

Anna Steinberg

Anna Steinberg

Penny Dann

January 13th, 2015 by Special Projects


The children’s book illustrator Penny Dann has died from cancer at the age of fifty. She will perhaps be best remembered for the series of Secret Fairy Handbooks published by Orchard Books in the 1990s and early 2000’s achieving sales of over a million copies, however this was a small part of a highly successful thirty year career.

Studying illustration at Brighton art college in the mid 1980s, she was encouraged to develop her characters sketches found at the back of her sketch books by her tutor Raymond Briggs, creator of the Snowman. Her end of college project about the history of tea, called ‘One For The Pot’ was picked up by agent Allan Manham, and the Artworks Agency and became her first published book in 1985.


The Highline – personal work by Penny

Her illustration style originally consisted of unique character led ink drawings that were rendered and coloured in gouache and water colour. She had a strong line that defined her early illustrations which showed influences of Quentin Blake, one of her early heroes. Over time her technique developed into a more mixed media and collage approach. It was incredibly versatile and along with her talent for hand lettering covered a huge range of children’s book subjects. Anthologies, early readers, fairy tales, poetry collections, her books are published all over the world. Her wry sense of humour and enthusiasm was very much a part of her illustrations and a major ingredient in the success that she achieved. Her most recent book Polly Parrot Picks a Pirate, published by Macmillan Children’s Books, showcased a new and polished approach to her illustrations and suggested a wealth of new images that will sadly no longer be realised.

She was an avid fan of illustration and became a prominent member of the Brighton Illustration Group otherwise known as BIG. She is survived by her mother and father, sister and husband.”

Flim Flam Flum – Nous Vous

January 9th, 2015 by Special Projects
Nous Vous

© Nous Vous

KK Outlet, 42 Hoxton Square, London , N1

Until 31 January 2015

Opening times Saturday 12pm – 5pm Monday to Friday 9am – 6pm

02070337680  www.kkoutlet.com

Nous Vous are a London based collective made up of Jay Cover, Nicolas Burrows and William Edmonds. A group of artists and friends working together with gusto since 2007; across the realms of illustration, print design, animation, art direction and set design.

Commercial work aside, Nous Vous also work individually as artists. Jay recently released a book published by Hato press entitled Flat, Nicolas is currently working on a small body of small collages/paintings and William is continuing to develop his ceramics line ‘Somewow’.

The work on display is the product of their studio practice, and also includes some of the objects created as part of their residency and show A Watery Line, which took place during Summer 2014 in Leeds.

A book about the exhibition and other recent work will be available at KK Outlet. The launch event for this takes place on 31 January 2015 and will be accompanied by a live performance.

Ladybird by Design

January 9th, 2015 by Special Projects
© Ladybird Books Ltd, 1963

© Ladybird Books Ltd, 1963

De La Warr Pavilion, Marina, Bexhill On Sea, East Sussex, TN40

Saturday 24 May – Sunday 10 May 2015  Opening times 10am – 5pm

01424229111  www.dlwp.com

The De La Warr Pavilion will display over 200 original illustrations that cover a selection of Ladybird books from the late 1950s to early 1970s. Focusing on those books which reflected the world in which the world in which the reader lived, the exhibition will feature selections from the People At Work series, Shopping With Mother, the Science and Nature series as well as the Well Loved Tales and Key Words series.

The exhibition takes its title from the new book Ladybird by Design, written by Professor of Illustration and Dean of the School of Design at the London College of Communication, Lawrence Zeegen. The book publishes on 5 March 2015 and will portray a unique slice of Britain’s social and design history, as seen through the eyes of Ladybird. Professor Zeegen has been closely involved in curating the exhibition that has been inspired by Ladybird by Design.

Varoom in ‘dpi’ magazine

January 6th, 2015 by Special Projects

dpi magazine in Taiwan has featured Varoom in it’s recent 188 issue, showing covers from Varoom issue one onwards, as well as spreads from recent issues. dpi is one of the most widely read design magazines in the Greater China region.


The new issue covers some intriguing artwork, including illustration created with embroidery (see the two spreads below).



dpi is certainly worth taking a look at (note text is in Taiwanese). Copies are available from their online shop.


dpi magazine


Society of Illustrators Comic and Cartoon Art Competition

January 6th, 2015 by Special Projects

Chair: Steven Guarnaccia Co-Chair: R. Sikoryak

The Society of Illustrators in the USA has extended the deadline for their second annual Comic and Cartoon Art Competition to 9 January. Open to artists worldwide, entries are considered by a jury of professionals, including renowned cartoonists, illustrators, publishers, and editors. The competition will result in an exhibition that will showcase the most outstanding works created in this genre throughout each year.


The original works will be exhibited in the MoCCA Gallery at the Society of Illustrators from June 16 through August 15th, 2015.

For more info go here. Illustration by Bendik Kaltenborn

I Am Henry Finch – book review

January 5th, 2015 by Special Projects

By Alexis Deacon illustrated by Viviane Schwarz

Published by Walker Books    ISBN 978-1-4063-5713-4

Review by Jennifer Leem-Bruggen

I Am Henry Finch_cover

For the philosophical thinkers and the daydreamers amongst us, I Am Henry Finch by Alexis Deacon is an ideal book for thought-provoking inspiration to start off the New Year. A unique story of a young finch, destined for greatness who begins to challenge the normality of his ordinary everyday life with his flock. Philosopher Rene Descartes once quoted “I think, therefore I am”. Henry Finch reflects this, and during the story proves his courageousness by being swallowed by a massive Beast and surviving to regale his flock with the thoughts he began to have whilst inside the creature, in turn encouraging them to do the same.


Viviane Shwarz’s unique illustrative style of simplistic, yet charming, finger and thumb print birds enrich the text. Quirky and animated, with cartoon-like wings and faces, the fluttering birds wrapping around the text create commotion as well as dynamic compositions. The Beast’s faded blue green water-colouring slightly contrasts with the bright red of the birds. However, the compositional angles of the monster allude to its great size, reflecting the impulsive yet daring risk Henry makes.


The fast paced, accessible text allows this book to have great read out loud potential. The drama of Henry’s quest for greatness to dive into the Beast’s mouth to prove his heroism is illustrated expertly in contrasting black and white to portray the dark insides of the Beast’s stomach. Eventually convincing the Beast to become vegetarian, the silhouetted creature spits Henry out, setting him free. The small black outlined illustrations throughout are simple, yet instantly convey the playful tone of the book.

Aimed at younger readers, the story telling should test a child’s curious mind, expanding their imagination and allow them to engage in the complex topic of philosophy, in a simplified, lighthearted manner. Yet amusing and intriguing enough for the older reader, allowing us to briefly reflect on our own philosophical thoughts and aspirations.


Amid Deacon’s witty undertones and Shwarz’s appealing illustrations the story of Henry’s courage unfolds. Overall, I Am Henry Finch is an appealing children’s book, and suitable for vegetarians too.

You may also be interested in these book reviews:

A Bed for Bear


Dutch PLR – Jane Ray

January 5th, 2015 by Special Projects
Image by Jane Ray

Image by Jane Ray

DACS talks to children’s book illustrator, Jane Ray, about Dutch Public Lending Right (Dutch PLR) royalties. She explains why illustrators should sign up for them, and provides some useful tips for first-time applicants.

Debi Gliori also comments on Dutch PLR through DACS. AOI encourages members to check if their work has been published in Holland and fit the Dutch PLR criteria