Oppose the new US Copyright Act

The Illustrators Partnership has brought to my attention the efforts of lobbyists and big business (especially internet businesses) to change the US Copyright Act. The proposed changes would essentially allow anyone to use any art that has already been published without paying to use it.

So they are proposing a law to make stealing art legal. Sounds dumb, right? Well I guess when enough people throw enough money behind something, they think they can make something legal (and therefore right in their minds). But stealing is stealing...no matter if they make some of it legal or not. I pray they don't. I pray they realize what they are proposing, what they are doing, and what it will do to the livelihood of so many.

I call all artists, photographers and friends of artists to read the information HERE http://ipaorphanworks.blogspot.com/ and write a letter immediately to oppose this insane proposal. #thenextgreatcopyrightact

Deadline: July 23, 2015
You can submit letters online to the Copyright Office here.

Read the Copyright Office Notice of Inquiry.
Read the 2015 Orphan Works and Mass Digitization Report.

Here is the text of my letter I just submitted. Feel free to read it and then PLEASE go write one and send it off today.

July 2, 2015

To Whom It May Concern:

My name is Julie Olson and I have been a freelance illustrator for seventeen years creating art for everything from board games, to magazines, to websites, to books.  I paid for my own college education and graduated with a BFA in Illustration in 1998. I am registered as a limited liability company and run my business just like any small business owner. My art is my source of income and I rely on that income to help support my family of four children.

It has come to my attention that there is an effort launched to change the copyright law to allow for Mass Digitization of artists’ intellectual property, extend collective licensing to replace our voluntary business agreements with clients, and overall strip the rights we have over our art after it has been published. This has already been happening illegally and it seems the people doing it have finally joined together and thrown enough money at the law makers to try and say what they are doing is legal. Saying stealing is legal certainly doesn’t make it right.

If the copyright law is changed to allow for the proposed alterations, thousands of small business owners, artists, and the like, will no longer be able to earn a living. The copyright law is not some abstract legal issue, but the basis on which my business (and the thousands of others like it) rests.
The copyrights of my work ARE the products I license. Therefore, infringing on artists’ work is like stealing our money. It is important to our businesses that we remain able to voluntarily determine how and by whom our work is used. My work does NOT lose its value upon publication. I sell the rights for someone to use my art in certain publications for a certain period of time. Once that contract is up, I still own the product (the art) and can then allow others to use that art for their purposes upon agreement. When companies or people use art they did not create themselves or contract the use of, they are stealing another person’s intellectual creation. Everything I create becomes part of my business’s inventory and then I sell the use of that inventory to others. That is the livelihood of my business. And now, in this digital era, inventory is more valuable to artists than ever before.

Imagine a costume rental company created some beautiful, original costumes and then rented out a costume to a customer. Then that customer wore the rented costume, came back to the company and said, “Ok, now that I’ve worn this and used it, I’m just going to give it away to someone else to use. You already got your money out of it by me renting it. It’s no more use to you.” And that costumer walks away with the costume. The renter at the rental company calls the police and says, “A customer of this description just stole one of my costumes.” That customer would then be charged with stealing property.

The same is true with using art. A customer should not be allowed to pay for the use of art only one time and then allow the world to use it for free in perpetuity.  Please do not allow this proposed copyright law alteration to take place. It is stealing and will ruin the livelihood of many people.


Julie Olson, Professional Illustrator
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Indianapolis Temple Coloring Page

Out in my home state, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is building a new temple. This is amazing to me as the closest temple to my hometown (while I was growing up) was out of state, a 6-8 hour drive away. And now there will be access to a beautiful temple for so many more people within a short distance.  I'm so excited for my Hoosiers who now get a temple of their own.

The open house is scheduled for Friday, July 17th through Saturday, August 8th. At the open house, anyone of any faith, any age, any circumstance may go through a tour of the temple before it is dedicated. If you've always wondered about the temples, here's your chance to see inside. Once reservations officially open for tours, free tickets will be available HERE.

To commemorate this event, I created a coloring page that can be downloaded, printed and used for personal, non-commercial use. Feel free to share with your friends.  Click on the link below the picture.

Click here to download a printable file

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Payson Temple Downloadable Clip Art

I just want to share something too beautiful not to share... (not the picture of it, but the place)

Payson Temple, Photo Credit: Julie Olson
Look at this temple the #paysontemple. It is gorgeous inside and out. Until the end of May 2015, any person of any religion or walk of life of any age can go see this beautiful piece of architecture and art in Payson, Utah. It isn't far from my home (only about an hour south of Salt Lake City, UT) and I am so excited for that. Yes, it is a temple built by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and yes, I am a member of this church. I was able to visit it the other day and take a tour and the stained glass and original artwork astounded me. I hope you get a chance to see it for yourself. You can reserve tickets HERE to make sure you get into a tour in a timely manner. But if you don't have tickets, they won't turn anyone away either. So go ahead come!

To commemorate its completion, I have drawn up a coloring page and created some vector art to share free of charge with the world. You are free to use it for personal/non-commercial use. Please give credit to me or my website when using if you would be so kind. Click on the links below the pictures and Enjoy!

Print your copy from HERE

Click to download the vector art HERE (photoshop or adobe illustrator required)

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Writing For Charity

Happy St. Patrick's Day! (yes, this is a little late but hey, it's still March) This image was actually done completely digitally in ArtRage on my Yinova Tablet Monitor.

I've been really busy trying to finish up 2 books worth of final sketches all due at the beginning of April. One of the book's sketches are done, and the other is 1/2 done. Lots and lots of sketching going on. But it's pretty awesome that I've been able to use my new YINOVA tablet monitor and the ARTRAGE program to sketch these books. I won't be painting digitally but this sketching digitally is saving me a lot of time and paper. Love it. Highly recommend it.

Today I am presenting along with a bunch of amazing authors and illustrators at a yearly even we all donate our time and some books to. It's called the Writing For Charity conference. You can keep up on the event for next year and what it's all about on their site writingforcharity.blogspot.com . But essentially it's an awesome day full of professional authors and illustrators sharing their knowledge and all the proceeds go to charities to get books into the hands of children in need.

These are the baskets I'm donating this year for the silent auction. Patriotic themed baskets with a signed book, signed fine art print from the book, and other trinkets and candy. Hopefully someone will bid and enjoy them so other kids can enjoy books.

Don't miss it next year!

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2015 Valentines Printables

Hello my friends! If you are like me, you are once again trying to get your kids' valentines boxes made and all those valentines signed and ready to go. But why go to the store...here are some free valentine printables. This year the card can be made double sided.

 download and print the images below,  double sided, then cut in 4ths
(For personal use only, not for resale, copyright Julie Olson 2015)


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Groundhog Day 2015 and Caldecott Announcement

In honor of Groundhog Day 2015, Amazon has placed my "Tickle, Tickle! Itch, Twitch!" book on sale for today. Don't miss out on your hardback copy for only $7.79 and have some tickle tickle fun with your little one.

In this book, Gus the groundhog gets an annoying little itch on his back that he just can't scratch. Through a series of seemingly unfortunate events, Gus finally gets that itch scratched and makes some new and unexpected friends. A great read-aloud, this book will have you and your little one giggling and tickling the whole way through.

Here's the book trailer for the little book...

Also, #Caldecott awards for 2015 were announced this morning.  I think they made quite the variety of choices for awards this year. And I was very pleased to see the wonderful artwork of Dan Santat win the Caldecott Medal. Check out the rest of the awards HERE.

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I'm a freelance illustrator working in the children's book industry. I love kids and raising my own 4 children. They are the inspiration and the passion behind all I do in art and in life. See my website at JulieOlsonbooks.com

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