Robert Genn's June 15th. letter about appropriation has sparked a lot of interetsing viewpoints. Click appropriation to go to "The Painter's Keys" page with his letter and all of the responses. Be sure to scroll down the entire page to the bottom to read all of the comments. You will see the following response from me there as well.
(left) collage by Jill Ehlert (right) original image fromWikipedia
I used Photoshop to enhance the contrast of the head and printed it onto transparency film with my Epson printer. The Phrenology image appeared in Wikipedia and stated: This image is in the public domain. Its copyright has expired in the United States and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years or less. I used that transparency to transfer the black ink onto my painting. I took the picture of the trees with my digital camera and again transferred the image/ink with the same technique as the head. I pondered for a time about the ethics of using this appropriated image of the head. I have the ability to draw, but the idea of using this image was more appealing to my artistic process. I feel that this is what the spirit of collage is about - found materials and images that can have a rebirth. I would like to think that the original artist would be delighted to think that the image lives on in a painting in the year 2007.