The Original Art Register

Hooray! At last there is somewhere on the world wide web that provides a vital long-overdue service and resource for current visual artists and photographers.

[Clue…check out what is different about this image and the title.]

COLOURS OF LONDON’ by Colin Ruffell    [ OAR100293 ]

The Fine Art Trade Guild here in the UK have just launched a new benefit for Guild members, and non-members, and a whole new dimension in their service to the fine art industry.

The service is the provision of a central register of images with details of the copyright holder, and a date, plus other information.

The Original Art Register [OAR] will enable any artist, or any art gallery, or any photographer, or any art publisher, to register and provide proof of origination that will deter and prevent copying or copyright theft, and protect intellectual property and their copyrighted images, for ever.

And as a huge bonus the central library archive of images and details will also be available as a secure searchable source for collectors, dealers, and licensing business queries.

This register needed to be established and maintained by a reputable, international, not-for-profit organization.

The Fine Art Trade Guild fulfills this condition perfectly.

Fine Art Trade Guild logo

Fine Art Trade Guild logo

This is why the scheme is so good.

  • It is affordable
  • It is secure.
  • It is comprehensive.
  • It is global.
  • It is simple.

And this is what it does.

  1. Archives image.
  2. Records image properties.
  3. Establishes copyright details.
  4. Provides a free, secure, public, searchable, data-base of an artists work.

And this is why this is so wonderful.

Artists, designers, and photographers can create an image. Then for a small affordable registration fee they can lodge the record of that image into a secure globally available data-base. The record will establish crucial details about the image so that full-value and reward will be ensured and obtained by the creator.

How it works for artists, photographers, etc:

  • You first log in the Guild website and apply to become a registrant. Easy and free!
  • Artists, photographers, publishers, and galleries do not have to be Guild members to register and add images.
  • Currently it costs just three pounds to register and protect each image.
  • Thereafter there is an annual maintenance fee and admin charge of a few pennies per image.
  • Guild Members get access to the recording process at a reduced rate, with a 33% discount, at £2 per image.
  • For Members, if required, the database can also provide links from the image to the artists or dealers own website.
  • The online system records the image, and copyright owner.
  • The image is assigned a unique OAR ID number.
  • The register shows artist, title, medium, date, and dimensions of the image.
  • It can also show whether the image has been licensed for prints, calendars, fabrics, greetings cards, etc.
  • Details of limited editions or open editions can be recorded.
  • Plus details if the image is used to create any other products directly from the artist.
  • The registrant can download the unique Certificate of Registration and point-of-sale card for each image.
  • Anyone can discover and contact who created and who owns the image.
  • The register is available free for everybody to examine.
  • The register can be accessed 24/7 online from the Guild website.
  • The OAR database can be searched using a variety of terms like landscape, cityscape, floral, people, animals, etc.


An artist or photographer who creates an image can now record that image and register the date and other details so that they have proof that they are the legitimate copyright holder of that image.

This will enable them to freely promote their work without the danger that it could be copied or stolen without redress. In the event of a copyright challenge the proof of a registered date would be an invaluable asset for the designer to help prove ownership.

Artists and photographers can thereby establish that they own the copyright of their image.

They can use the archive of registered and searchable images to attract galleries, dealers, publishers, licensors, investors, and collectors.

They can also use the register to archive previous existing images, not just new images.

The future.

Much more importantly it is becoming obvious just how significant this register can be in the future.

If an artist or photographer creates a new artwork that they feel is up to scratch they will be daft not to register that image straight away for such a small sum. This quick and simple process will ensure that that image is forever safe and that they have a visual record of the date and other details. What is more their work will be recorded in the secure archive so that they can be found and contacted by potential collectors and other interested people.

Link to the Fine Art Trade Guild …  click here


P.S. I have been very lucky because I was aware that this new service was in the pipeline. My own membership of the Guild, and 12 year spell on the board of directors, meant that I was available to test the system as it was being created. I was asked to provide some sample images and details and try out the registration process.

As I write this I have over 850 of my own images recorded. And you can bet there are more to come. My painting and print ‘Colours of London’ is OAR number 100293.