This is probably going to fall under the category of "stop being a cranky little thing and get over it", but I need some advice from all you folks out there.
A few years ago, I commissioned some work from a struggling new artist. I supplied a description of what I was looking for, and the artist's first attempt wasn't quite what I expected. I went back to the person and asked that they make a second attempt. They were understandably disappointed, but did agree to try again. (The first pieces sold rather quickly to someone else…)
As an artist myself, I took the time to design, full-color, detailed illustrations for the commissioned artist to reference. I posted these illustrations to my dA account, and sent the links to the artist. Some months later, the commissioned pieces were delivered, and I have been enjoying them ever since.
Should be the end of it right?
Well, not exactly.
The artist I commissioned has since achieved success and popularity for their skill working in that particular medium - which is great!
Over the past couple years, I've noticed this person using their new-found friendships with other talented, well-known, and in some cases, professional artists in the fandom to increasingly profit off my designs. Don't worry; I can hear all of you out there crying "sour grapes" from here. Maybe you're right. But maybe credit should be given where it's due, too.
If the artist was using my design to create more items in the original commissioned medium, I don't think I'd be so upset. Unfortunately, they aren't.
This person has taken my illustrations, had them redrawn by their professional artist friends, has taken the work of those artists and reproduced it into a variety of products, and is selling them. I can't say for sure that the other artists approved use of their works, but I know I didn't give mine.
No, this person isn't making butt loads of money off my designs. And that really isn't so much the point for me - it's more the lack of recognition. It's the apparent disregard for other artists and their work. It's failing to give credit where it's due.
As artists, we are all influenced by those around us - whether personally acquainted or not. A vast majority will acknowledge that their work was influenced artists whose skill they admire. Most will incorporate elements of other styles when creating one of their own.
So, I suppose after all is said and done my question is this: should I confront this person and request that they give credit where it's due? Should I request that this person stop using my design and create one entirely their own? How would you guys suggest I handle this?