artists: protecting creative works

artists:  protecting creative works

On June 11, 2016, I delivered a presentation to Works in Progress Louisiana, a non-profit organization funded by grants and donations formed by artists to assist artists in the commercial ventures of creativity.  Upon being awarded a particular grant, I was asked to give a presentation on intellectual property.

Intellectual property is an amorphous, ever growing area of law, and almost devoid of clear cut answers.  Over the course of several months, I gathered information on this amorphous topic of artists and intellectual property.  And, finally, made the final focused push to organize all this information into a presentation:  an overview of intellectual property for creatives.

Intellectual property (sometimes referred to as IP) refers to creations of the mind, such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names and images used in commerce.

Intellectual property includes:  trademark/tradename; copyright; and patent.  Related concepts, although not technically “intellectual property” are trade secrets, confidentiality agreements/clauses, and model releases. These latter items are constructs of contract and, trade secrets, of course, are constructs of practice of your business (proprietary formulations and practices) for which you in fact maintain secrecy, through contracts and otherwise, thereby offering some protection over your proprietary information. It is notable that in May, 2016, a new federal law was passed, creating a federal cause of action and federal jurisdiction of and over trade secret violations.

My presentation focused on an overview of federal law on intellectual property:  trademark/name, copyright, and patent.  It also touched on trade secrets and other matters, including confidentiality agreements/clauses.  Creativity and intellectual property are each as limitless as the other. There is no way in a two hour talk or one presentation that the entirety of law that is significant to creative artists can be conveyed. However, the presentation is stocked full of information and is an excellent overview of intellectual property. I included throughout the presentation links to useful sites.  The last two pages itemize numerous useful links.

You can view the powerpoint online here:

To download, visit this link.

Please note that I will be updating this presentation from time to time; and, in fact, already have numerous times since the June 11, 2016, presentation.

To ensure you have the most recent version, expand the powerpoint presentation embedded and use the download/print option from that page.


Kathryn S. Bloomfield