Vectorizing a Skyline

I need to create a vectorized version of my local city skyline.

If I use multiple artists photos as reference, is there any copyright concerns?

I realize just taking one photographers work and tracing it would be against copyright law, but can I use multiple photos as reference? If I pull a mountain range from one photo and a building from another, is there an issue?

Do I need to take my own reference photos?

Does anyone “own” the skyline of a city, or the lines of a mountain range?


Tracing multiple photos means you are creating a derivative work from multiple sources. It’s just as wrong as using one photo. And can result in each copyright holder filing a complaint rather than just one.

You can use your own reference. You can use photos which are in the public domain. Many locations will have scenic photos free of restrictions you can use.

To be clear, it’s not the subject of a photo which is copyrighted (in many cases – no one owns a mountain range or skyline, but a building is owned), it’s the photo itself – the lighting, the angle, the exposure, etc. – which are copyrighted.

Source : Link , Question Author : Michelle , Answer Author : Scott

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