After years of legal wrangling, including being forced to sell her studio to pay her lawyers, Robynne Raye of Modern Dog Design Company announced on January 2, 2014 that a settlement had been reached in her copyright infringement case against Target, Disney, and Jaya Apparel. The settlement amount was undisclosed. But the case is a victory for every artist who has ever been bullied by corporate entitlement.
During the legal saga, Robynne was floored by one of the opposing counsel's comments (implying that her case had no merit) because, "You know, there are only so many ways you can draw a beagle."
As an artist and graphic designer, Robynne knew this was false and that the best way to illustrate it was to illustrate it. The first chapter of 1,000 Dog Portraits: From the People Who Love Them was born; "How Many Ways Can You Draw a Beagle?"
Her call to artists then surpassed just the Beagle to include all breeds, mixed breeds, and imaginative canine interpretations. When I sent in my image of Darby, I had mixed feelings. I don't know why. Well, I do know why; it was because I was feeling like here's another opportunity for "great exposure" and no return.
But, FOMO (fear of missing out) took over. And now, I am so glad I submitted a piece and feel so honored to be included.
Robynne Raye fought a brave and tenacious battle on behalf of us all. I don't know anyone else who would have forged ahead and accomplished so much facing similar odds. And I don't know how, in the middle of it all, without knowing the outcome, she had the presence to create such an exuberant love letter to dogs and art. It's hard for me to review it without bias because it includes by beloved boy, so I will defer to Amazon reviewer K. Niles who says:
"This book is Awesome! It's like CRACK for dog addicts and dog-art lovers."
I will add, that I was delighted to see so many names I knew, and humbled by so many names I didn't. I think it would be an incredible book to give to a young artist, or use in an art class. And, it would be a terrific Mother's Day gift for your dog crazy mom.
Also, if you purchase it on Amazon via this link, 1,000 Dog Portraits: From the People Who Love Them I receive a nifty little percentage of the sale, and I would be ever so grateful.
Darby aka My Guru by Moira McLaughlin, Henry by Ratko Cindric, Dachshund by Phil Toscano, Toulouse by Linda Solovic, Sausage Dog by Kirsti Davidson
Thank you, Robynne. And thank you Robynne's attorney, Thomas Cline.
Get your copy of 1,000 Dog Portraits: From the People Who Love Them and let me know what you think.