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Friday, February 18, 2011

David LaChapelle vs. Rhianna

A moderately long discussion has been going back and forth on my Facebook page about photographer David LaChapelle and singer Rhianna's new scuff, so I decided to blog about it. A somewhat interesting case from the photographer's perspective, or any other artist for that matter. LaChapelle is saying that Rhianna, her manager, and others involved copied from 6 of his images to create her latest video called S&M.

I read all about the lawsuit before ever seeing any imagery comparing the video to the images. It sounded like a solid case, with Rhianna's video copying the images to a "t". After viewing the video and seeing the image comparisons, I wasn't so sure. I can very much see where Rhianna has taken LaChapelle's style, and even some individual elements, & incorporated it into her video. I'm not sure if it is strong enough of a replica to hold up in court. There is a fine line between recreating an image & infringing on a copyright and recreating an idea or style. From first glance, it seems that Rhianna has just recreated LaChapelle's world famous style in her video. When all things are taken into consideration, maybe LaChapelle does have a strong case behind him considering he is claiming there were 6 images, not just one. LaChapelle has also produced music videos in the past, so that is one thing on his side as well.

I'm more than curious what the final ruling will be on this case. View the comparisons and judge for yourself here:

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