Republic of Ireland Law
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1. The legal situation if you sell a poster with your own original artwork is that the copyright in the poster and its artwork remains with you, but you grant a licence to the person who bought the illustration to use it for the purposes of the poster and resale of any copies. You are ok to say the poster is your work because you are the artist and the copyright in the poster remains with you throughout even though you have sold the actual physical poster and copies are going to be made from it. Essentially, "commercial use" allows the buyer to copy the poster and sell these copies. Commercial use incorporates a licence in the copyright to use the poster for commercial ends. You can put the poster in your portfolio, as it is your own original artwork and you continue to own the copyright in the artwork and makeup of the poster. Someone else cannot claim to have done this original artwork, and if they do, then you can sue them for copyright infringement. This includes a right to sue anyone who got a commercial use licence who claims the artwork is their artwork, because you continue to own the original copyright in the work. Finally, if something is changed on the poster, it has to be a substantial change for you to lose the copyright in the poster and for it to constitute a new "work" which attracts a fresh copyright protection of its own. So long as the work is identifiable as yours, then the work continues to attract copyright protection for you in the original artwork.
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