1. Pixelmoon

    Pixelmoon New Member

    May 24, 2012
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    Advice on writing an art / technical book.

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Pixelmoon, May 24, 2012.

    Hey All,

    I wanted to get some advice before I started working on something which has interested me for many years. I want to create a book based on a popular art form, and wanted to explore the various methods used, its history and application etc. However, because there is already a lot of material on the web I became a little worried about referencing and not copying anyones work.

    Are there guidelines and rules for people making these sorts of books? If I were to discuss certain art techniques would I need to reference them - even if they are quite commonly known and I do not actually think there is one person solely responsible for its creation?

    My apologies if this isn't explained very well, but your help would be greatly appreciated.

  2. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Nov 21, 2006
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    Coquille, Oregon
    you would only have to cite written sources you used for your research, in the bibliography... and reference well-known experts in the field, if you're discussing their contributions... and of course you would have to have signed releases for any art work you include... and may have to as well, for direct quotes from written sources still under copyright... for the official skinny: www.copyright.gov
  3. Islander

    Islander Contributor Contributor

    Jul 29, 2008
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    Legally speaking, there's no need to cite sources for facts or techniques you write about in your own words.

    There's no need to cite sources for facts or techniques which are generally known, either. For example, if you write about postmodernism, you don't need to mention who coined the term "postmodernism", unless it's important for the reader's understanding.

    However, it's considered good form to give credit to the person who discovered a fact or technique if it's not generally known. If it looks like you're passing it off as your original research, you may be accused of plagiarism.

    You don't need to give credit to a source just because it was there you happened to read about it. If credit is due, it's better to go to the original source and cite that.

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