Miles apart?

18 August 2022

After tattooing an iconic photograph of jazz legend Miles Davis, celebrity tattoo artist “Kat Von D” (Katherine Von Drachenberg) is finding herself tangled up in a legal battle.

The tattoo was made in 2017. Although Von D did not get paid for the tattoo, she did post her work on social media. Four years later, Jeffrey Sedlik, the photographer of the iconic image, filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against the tattoo artist.

Von D insisted that her version of the photograph is different from the original image and is merely a personal interpretation. Von D notes that although she used the photograph as a reference photograph, she ultimately put her own spin on it. A Californian jury must now decide if the tattoo artist changed the original image enough.

The outcome of the case will possibly affect all other tattoo artists who are asked to ink third-party imagery on their clients.



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