Michelle Coleman & Little Dreamer Design Terms of Use

 

At Little Dreamer I have three licenses: Personal Use, Professional Use, and Commercial Use.
I reject the notion of making people feel like criminals for wanting to download and build upon my creations.
These licenses are intended to be as simple and freeing as I can make them.
(read my manifesto to learn more about my philosophy).

Personal Use

This license is intended for personal use, or for any use that does not generate income, and is not attached to your profession.

Please Do:

  • Use the item however you want for personal use.
  • Use the item for any non-profit, non-professional purpose (flyers, yearbooks, non-profit posters, etc.).
  • Adapt and remix the item, then post or give away the resulting adaptations for non-commercial use (as long as you do so for free, and you are not a professional designer).
  • Attribution is not required.

Please Do Not:

  • Use the item for commercial purposes (anything where you make money, or attached to your profession).
  • Distribute the item “as is” directly to others (refer them to the item’s page instead).
  • Upload any derivative works to a stock image website.

Derivative Works Licensing:

  • Derivative works must be distributed for free, and under any non-commercial use license of your choice.
Professional Use

This license covers any  professional use of an item, or any use which generates income or profit. Professional designers and photographers should use this license for anything they distribute, including freebies.

Please Do:

  • Use the item in commercial layouts, designs, posters, advertisements, etc.
  • Use the item on physical products like mugs, fabric, shirts, etc. which you sell.*
  • Adapt and remix the item, then sell or distribute the resulting derivative works as digital files.**
  • Use the item for commercial logo design
  • Attribution is not required (though always appreciated).

Please Do Not:

  • Resell or distribute the digital file “as is”
  • Upload any derivative works to a stock image website.

Derivative Works Licensing:

  • Derivative works may be distributed under any license that you choose, as long as it does not directly contradict this TOU. Most common “PU”, “CU”, “S4H”, and “CU for CU” licenses are fine.
Commercial Use

This license covers any commercial use of an item found in our commercial use section in the shoppe.

Please Do:

  • Use the item in commercial layouts, designs, posters, advertisements, etc.
  • Use the item on physical products like mugs, fabric, shirts, etc. which you sell.
  • Adapt and remix the item, then sell or distribute the resulting derivative works as digital files.
  • Resell or distribute the digital file “as is”
  • Use the item for commercial logo design
  • Attribution is not required (though always appreciated).

Please Do Not:

  • Upload any derivative works to a stock image website.

Derivative Works Licensing:

  • Derivative works may be distributed under any license that you choose, as long as it does not directly contradict this TOU. Most common “PU”, “CU”, “S4H”, and “CU for CU” licenses are fine.
Commercial & Professional Use FAQs

What are the basics of how I can use commercial use items that I download from Little Dreamer?

If you are not distributing a digital file directly to other people, you may generally use it as you like, without restriction–no need to modify or remix the design (so go ahead and make printed papers, clothing, accessories, etc. to sell as you like). If you make more than $100,000 per year related to selling printed physical goods, please contact me to work out a special contract before selling items printed with my graphics.

If you are distributing a digital file directly to other people (for example, as an item in your own digital scrapbooking kit, or as a freebie on your website), you will generally need to modify or remix the item before you distribute it.

As long as you modify/remix an item, you may distribute it as you like (for example, in your own kits, as a freebie on your website), under any license you choose (“CU for CU” is okay), with one exception: no uploading to stock image websites (see below). If you make more than $100,000 per year related to the sale or distribution of digital files, please  contact me to work out a special contract before distributing any derivative works.

As a rule, I am quite tolerant when it comes to people using my designs, and distributing their derivative works. I realize that licensing can be tricky, and I’m on your side. I always give people the benefit of the doubt, I’m happy to talk things out, and I won’t come after you in a nasty way unless you are intentionally and blatantly abusing my work in a malicious way. So take a breath, and rest easy (read our manifesto to learn more about my philosophy).

Read the FAQs below for more specifics.

What counts as modifying/remixing an item?

That’s a tricky question. Before I address specifics, you need to understand the point of the “remix” rule: at Little Dreamer, I want you to be able to use my designs to springboard your own creativity, without having to worry that you’ll get in trouble for distributing the cool derivatives that you come up with. I believe that creation builds on creation, and I want you to have the full freedom to take our designs, mix and match, build, layer, flatten, enhance, color, change–and then distribute and sell the creative “remixes” you come up with (see my manifesto).

But what if someone were to download everything on Little Dreamer, throw the stuff together into a few “kits”, and then sell those “kits” on their own website, without making any changes to the files? That would clearly be an abuse of the system, and that’s why I say that you need to modify and remix my designs before you distribute them: the goal is to springboard the creativity of other people, not allow people to steal my work and sell it as their own.

Here are some examples of great remixing:

  • Using one of my templates, elements, papers, patterns & combined with your own work to create a unique design, paper, or embellishment.
  • Combining my templates, brushes or elements to create your own creative designs (using a heart brad together with a ribbon that you color to create a unique ribbon with a repeating heart pattern, for example).
  • Taking a layered psd template, moving the layers around, recoloring some layers, flattening some layers, and adding some of your own layers.

Here are some examples of less creative remixing which are sometimes acceptable:

  • Recoloring a template or asset in a creative way, as long as the colors are very different from the original.
  • Taking a layered psd template, recoloring some layers, and flattening the image.
  • Adding some of your own textures to a graphic you download.

These techniques are sometimes okay for very simple items (like buttons, brads, ribbons, etc.) as long as you are also distributing more original work–but don’t distribute a kit that has nothing but recolored/re-textured graphics in it, for example.

Here are some examples that would generally not count as remixing:

  • Taking a red heart illustration, and applying a basic hue or saturation change — not enough of a change.
  • Taking a layered psd template, and nudging the layers around a little bit, without any other modifications — not enough of a change.

What counts as a “remix”, in the end, is always going to be subjective. One rule of thumb is to imagine asking (or actually ask!) a few random people if they think the file you’ve edited is essentially the same as the original, or a “remix.” If most of them would say “remix,” then you are probably good to go.

At the end of the day what you should keep in mind is the intention of the rule, and your intention as a designer: if your goal is to make some quick money by passing other peoples’ work off as your own, and you want to know the least you can do to get away with it, then you’re not abiding by our remix philosophy, no matter what you do. If, on the other hand, you’re like most designers, and are interested in using our designs to springboard your own creative work, then you can rest easy: don’t sweat a particular edge case here or there (“oh no, I’m not sure if recoloring this one item is enough of a modification in this particular situation–will I get in trouble?” The answer is almost always going to be “no”).

May I use your items to decorate mugs/clothing/accessories/etc that I sell in my Etsy store?

Yes.* You can always use my designs on physical goods that you sell, regardless of whether or not you change the design (for example, you could take any element put it on a mug, and sell it directly, without modifying the image at all). If you don’t change the design at all then I, as the designer, retain full copyright, but you are given full permission to use that design on physical goods.

* If you, your company, or your subsidiaries make more than $100,000 per year related to selling printed physical goods, please contact me to work out a special contract.

May I use your items in online or print advertising, website design, magazines, billboards, etc.?

Yes. As with physical goods, as long as you are not distributing the digital file directly to other people, you can generally use it as you like, without modifying the design at all. If you are creating a commercial logo, please contact me first.

If you are distributing a digital file directly to other people (for example, as an item in your own digital scrapbooking kit), you will need to modify or remix the item before you distribute it.

May I use your items in a commercial logo that I am designing?

When using our graphics in commercial logo designs,  I  ask that you contact me first. Generally I am happy to give the okay for logo use. If you or the company you are designing for make lots of money, we may need to work out something special.

May I use one or more of your items to make my own digital designs which I then sell/distribute?

Yes. As long as you are “remixing” the items that you download, you are free to sell/distribute the resulting adaptations in your own kits, or as freebies/downloads from your own website. The only restriction is that you do not distribute the resulting design via a stock image website.

Does recoloring an item count as modifying/remixing it?

Recoloring is an example of an edge case which is sometimes okay for very simple items (like buttons, brads, ribbons, etc.) as long as you are also distributing more original work–but don’t distribute a kit that has nothing but recolored/filtered/re-textured graphics in it. If you are using this technique a lot without adding more of your own creative twist, please contact me on an individual basis to “okay” things with them before you distribute anything.

Does applying basic hue/saturation/brightness/etc changes, or other basic Photoshop filters count as modifying/remixing an item?

Generally, no. Like recoloring, this is an example of an edge case which is sometimes okay for very simple items (like buttons, brads, ribbons, etc.) as long as you are also distributing more original work–but don’t distribute a kit that has nothing but recolored/filtered/re-textured graphics in it. If you are using this technique a lot without adding more of your own creative twist, please contact me on an individual basis to “okay” things with them before you distribute anything.

Does applying a basic texture to an item count as modifying/remixing it?

Like recoloring and filtering, this is an example of an edge case which is sometimes okay for very simple items (like buttons, brads, ribbons, etc.) as long as you are also distributing more original work–but don’t distribute a kit that has nothing but recolored/filtered/re-textured graphics in it. If you are using this technique a lot without adding more of your own creative twist, contact me on an individual basis to “okay” things with them before you distribute anything.

Does flattening a layered PSD template count as modifying/remixing it?

Generally, no: in addition to flattening a layered PSD template you will need to do some coloring, and/or other modifications in order for the resulting item to be considered a “remix.”

May I sell/distribute your layered templates as layered PSD files, as long as I modify them?

Generally, yes, but be cautious: the file you distribute should be significantly different from the original template. Moving the layers slightly is not considered a “remix” (unless you were to flatten the file and distribute it as a jpg): you would need to do things like coloring some layers, moving and flattening some layers, and adding additional layers.

Imagine asking a few random people if they think the file you’ve edited is essentially the same as the original, or a “remix.” If most of them would say “remix,” then you are probably good to go.

May I remix some of your items, and then upload the resulting images to a stock image website?

No. This is our one distribution restriction: nothing you make using our images may be uploaded to any stock image website. Examples of stock image websites include:

If you are not sure if a particular site counts as a stock image website, please contact me.

May I buy a single commercial use license and use it to sub-license your images to other individuals and/or companies?

Not without special permission, but we are happy to consider sub-licensing deals. Please contact me with your inquiry.

I purchased a download subscription, then canceled it: can I still use all the items I downloaded for commercial use?

Yes. The items you download from Little Dreamer are yours to keep and use under the license that you chose, even if your subscription is canceled, or expires.

Do I need to give credit to the original designer?

Giving credit back to the original designer is not required, but always appreciated. Please see my manifesto.

What license can I distribute derivative works (modified items) under?

As long as you have downloaded the item for professional use, and abide by my terms, you are free to distribute your derivative under any license that you choose, as long as doing so does not directly contradict these terms of use. Most common “PU”, “CU”, “S4H”, and “CU for CU” licenses are fine.

Interpretation of these Terms of Use

Clearly the above terms leave some room for interpretation and discussion, partly because our terms are very generous, and partly because we put a lot of emphasis on understanding the “spirit” behind them, rather than worrying too much about a single edge case.

So who gets to decide if your use of our graphics adhere to our terms, or not? Well, we do. The final right of interpretation is always reserved by Little Dreamer, in its sole discretion.

If you are using my designs in a way that is clearly on the edge of what I have in mind with these terms of use I encourage you to contact me, and ask them if what you’re doing is okay with them: send me an example of a kit that you are distributing, and let me make the call on whether it is too similar to my original work. I’m pretty generous (after all, these are  my  terms of use!), and most of the time you’ll find that I am happy for you to use my work, and/or happy to guide you in how you might be able to add a more creative touch of your own (though if you are distributing a lot of graphics with very limited changes, you might find that you need to do a bit more work before you’re given the “okay”).

Contacting me and talking things over before distributing something that is very similar to their original work is a common courtesy, and will make everyone feel a lot better than if I find your work being sold online, and feel I need to contact you about it.

Changes to Terms of Use

Little Dreamer reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to change the Terms/Licensing under which my graphics may be used. The most current version of this licensing document (available at http://littledreamer.co/tou) will supersede all previous versions. We encourage you to periodically review the Terms of Use to stay informed of our updates.

More questions?

If you have read all of the FAQs above, and your question is still not answered, go ahead and contact me. Make sure to explain your question and your use case as clearly, and as thoroughly as possible.

Document last updated Februay 02, 2017.

[These TOU adapted from the Pixel Scrapper TOU available at https://www.pixelscrapper.com/tou under CC BY 4.0″]
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