Ownership of a charecter design if one design and one draws?

Tracing copyright owners and asking permission.
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HornedDragon:P
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Ownership of a charecter design if one design and one draws?

Post by HornedDragon:P » Tue Feb 07, 2012 4:28 pm

Hi my first post and it's a question I have been trying to find an answer to for ages, I designed a charecter and my art work isn't so great so I asked my freind who's really good at drawing to redraw my charecter, during the redrawing stage I started to make change to the design so in the end the charecter looked different from the original drawing though I was saying what was to be changed and my friend illustrating is the charecter still mine or not?

Thanks

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AndyJ
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Post by AndyJ » Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:24 pm

Hi HornedDragon,
This sounds like a classic case where joint copyright has been created. This situation occurs where two (or more) people collaborate on a project but their individual contributions cannot be separated in the finished work. This differs from a partnership like Gilbert and Sullivan, where Sullivan wrote the music and Gilbert wrote the lyrics, each of which could stand on their own.
Joint copyright means that you both have an equal say in the way in which the work can be exploited and how the proceeds (if there are any) are shared. Obviously if your friend has no real interest in exploiting his share he could assign it to you whilst still retaining the moral right to be credited as one of the artists.
You don't say what you want to do with your character, but if it is to be extended in a commercial setting, say within a computer game or a cartoon strip, then it might be worth registering your character as a trademark to add greater protection against it being copied commercially.
Advice or comment provided here is not and does not purport to be legal advice as defined by s.12 of Legal Services Act 2007

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