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3D Prnting of Celebrity Busts

Posted: Tue Jan 28, 2020 3:18 pm
by nortski
Busts as in statues, not the other kind :p
I am based in the UK and was wondering if it is legal to print 3D models of famous people, dead or alive, to sell on?
Thanks in advance.

Re: 3D Prnting of Celebrity Busts

Posted: Tue Jan 28, 2020 5:17 pm
by AndyJ
Hi nortski,

There are two aspects to this.

Firstly there is no problem with representing real people in either 2D or 3D provided that it is clear (as I am sure it would be in your case) that they are not endorsing the product. This situation is unlike that which occurs in several other countries, particularly many states within the USA, where a person's likeness may be protected to a lesser or greater extent.

Secondly when creating the drawing on which your print file is based, you need to be careful not to copy another work which is itself protected by copyright. So for instance using a single photograph (or perhaps a set of screencaps from a film) as a source would probably amount to infringement of that photographer's rights because of section 17(3) of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. However if you create your image from life or your own imagination, or from a broad range of different photographs such that no one image dominates your version, then you should be fine.