Copyright law and policy is intended to foster the progress of science, the creation of culture, and the dissemination of ideas. The use of existing cultural and scientific material can be an important aspect to generating new ideas, concepts, and intellectual exchange. Copyrights also protect the rights of the creators in order to encourage the creation of new material.
Read the Copyright Basics page for more information about fair use, educational exemptions, public domain, getting permission, how to copyright your art, and links to law, other guidelines and opinions. For information on the use of existing copyrighted items in one's art-making, see: Copyright and Art-making.