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Forums » RP Discussion » Face claim questions

First, if I asked this in the wrong spot, please tell me I'll move it, I just didn't think this was help necessarily, because it's not a website thing.

I have four characters. One I have no idea who he is or where from, he's just there.
I have one who is Avril Lavign, which she has been for like 10 years, and Avril is famous so I think that's okay.
And 2 from Skyrim. One of them a google search and one of them my picture that I took in the game.


Where do you guys get Face claims for characters? I don't have money to make a request from the art community for a specific drawing or that'd be my first option. I will probably do that later for my two most important characters, because personal drawings are the best...
But anyway.

Okay so I found some cool ones that I would love to use as a face claim, they are from Deviant art. So do I need to make an account ask them, or would it be sufficient to just link back to their profile, or should I not use it at all.

Or other suggestions, too!

Thank you <3 <3
Ideally, always ask.

Folks are also discouraged from playing as individuals who have not been deceased for a long time, regardless of celebrity status. Additionally, celebrities are more likely to have a trademark on their appearance, and photos are copyrighted by the photographer and anyone the photographer has agreed to authorize, and sometimes sign agreements surrendering their copyright of a photo entirely to the one who purchased it.
If you are just using Avril Lavign as your faceclaim, and not specifically writing Avril Lavign, you should be fine.

When it comes to finding faceclaims I am usually on pinterest, and I use those images to track down artists on ARTSTATION and Deviantart to ask the artist permission to use their work as a reference. 90% of the time I get a yes. :)

It's also possible to search google for specific images by using the "tools" feature where you can choose the usage rights option and place "available for noncommercial reuse" It's quite handy!

You can also search sites like Pexel. They have lots of models and faces on them that are free use images for anything noncommercial.

There are also sites like Picrew and RinmaruGames where you can use an avatar maker or doll maker to create your very own images. They are limited, but they're SO useful for anyone who can't afford to pay for commissions and don't want to just use references from free use images or have trouble tracking people down to get proper permission.

I also highly recommend diving deep through picrew because they have SO MANY different styles of doll makers FOR ALL KINDS of character types. From what I've gone through, which have been hundreds of different ones, they're all permissible for noncommercial reuse without requiring attribution. :) They're also tons of fun to make!
Just my two cents here but please don't use face claims of cosplayers or "normal" (not famous) people's selfies with out their consent. This happened to me once, my own pictures were used as a face claim and it is really weird, I am well aware that they meant no harm and picked them solely on appearance but still. If one really want to use a non-stock image as their character at least ask first, I'm sure some people will find it rather amusing and will agree, I particularly would have agreed with the usage have I been asked previously.
I would say that if you want to use art someone has made, always ask. I think that asking and gaining permission should be built in to the process of using existing art, such that if you are unable to ask about a particular piece, that option should be taken off the table and another source should be considered. That’s what I feel is right, as an artist.

In my own case, I very rarely draw characters that don’t already have a purpose, story, and personality. Hypothetically, seeing their picture being used to represent a different character would just feel wrong. At best it would feel like theft; at worst, it would be deeply creepy. Like, imagine if someone who looked exactly like you and ran in all your same social circles had a personality that you found unpleasant, and they did things you would never, ever do, and you had to live in your day-to-day knowing that there was a “version of you” out there that was totally antithetical to who you are as a person. Creepy! Super creepy!

But, the good news is, not every artist out there draws for the same reasons I do, or has these issues I have. XD At the very least, as long as you respect their answer, it shouldn’t do any harm to ask them for the use of their art! It just really is important that you do ask.

Also consider the use of “doll makers.” I used to use one called “elouai candybar doll maker” and there are tons of newer and even better ones out there in probably any style you can think of. Using them, you can make a unique character that only has the traits you want to give them.

If you really prefer person-created art to the doll maker look, though, try looking for “adoptable” characters. Artists often sell them for less money than they would charge to do a fully customized commission - and if you became an adoptable character’s owner, you could make any changes you wanted to the base concept to bring them closer to the look of the character you had in mind.
This is a personal sore topic for me as an advanced illustrator who has been a victim of theft and had friends who have had their hard work "claimed" for someone's IP.

I would say in all honesty, either commission an original design, or ask. I know for myself I will always refuse people who ask because it is not their work nor their concept. I have had to dmca many people to the point that I do not post much of my personal work for people's lack of integrity towards IP.

Honestly, and real talk, some commissions are very cheap on DeviantArt if money is your main concern. Even in the art forums where people offer free art. Would it not be better to have something that is solely your own than to plagiarize and piggyback off someone else's hard work?

But in the end, by commissioning something that can be used solely as yours, it will feel better because it is yours. And in so doing you supported an artist which oftentimes makes their day.
I actually don't normally use faceclaims when it comes to my characters. There are several reasons for this, but the most preponderant ones are tied to the fact that I often cannot find a faceclaim that looks exactly like how I want my character to look like and also due to copyright issues.

When it comes to the character's own idiosyncrasies: sometimes I like to give my characters certain distinguishing features (scars, tattoos, piercings, skin marks, etc.) and it is hard to find a faceclaim that matches exactly how I imagine my character to look like.

About copyright issues and identity: I feel uncomfortable about using one's art or photographs without asking for permission. I can't know for sure if celebrities/models/artists would be fine with me using their image/art pieces and associating themselves/their creations to my character, even though my character and themselves/their creations would be, of course, two different people. Copyright issues are also important to notice, as artists/photographers could be unhappy about someone else using their intellectual property without asking/paying.

If you like to draw, maybe considering drawing your characters might be a practical idea: that way you know exactly that they will look like how you imagined them. Alternatively, as it had been suggested before, you can also use avatar sites, in order to create an image of your characters.

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