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If you mean using clip art, when you talk about canned images, then
there are several things to consider. First of all, art students should
learn how to use computer graphics programs in order to create their own
original images - definitely. And some assignments in a computer
graphics unit or course should require totally original student work.
But - the entire comercial art field is driven by the creative use of
images, whether created by the artist or taken from copyright free
sources such as stock photography files or clip art. When you see a well
done book cover or CD cover, chances are at least part of it consists of
images or designs or textures that came from one of these copyright free
sources. The art really comes into play in terms of creating
compositions, knowing how to manipulate, revise, and modify images to
suit the mood or intent of the artwork. So if we are making a valid
effort at graduating students that understand something about the arts
in the real world, then they better be informed about the use of
copyright free images. Also, it's not only comercial artists who do this
- look at what Andy Warhol or Roy Lichtenstein produced. There are
others too, who use comercial or stock images as a starting point for
art. Therefore, rather than avoiding the use of images other than one's
own, I think it would be better if we at least taught our students about
how and why it's done, and under what circumstances it is appropriate.
-- Sandra Hildreth Home Page: http://www.northnet.org/hildreth Art 7-12, Madrid-Waddington Central School, Madrid, NY 13660 School Pages: http://www.northnet.org/mwcsart/mwart.htm Art Methods, St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY 13617