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15 Roger Dean Paintings That Totally Didn’t Inspire “Avatar”

Roger Dean Breakaway

Breakaway (used as album cover for new Yes compilation “Progeny”) by Roger Dean

Roger Dean has a new album cover out—a whole bunch of them, actually, included in a couple collections of Yes live recordings that have just been released. (There are many more details to the recordings than we care to go into here, but you can read about them at Yes’s official site.) It’s good to see that Dean, 70, is still cranking away at his unmistakable art. But Dean suffered a disappointing setback in September of 2014, when a judge dismissed his two-year-old lawsuit alleging that Avatar (2009) ripped off the imagery he’s been creating since the late ’60s. Yesterday, Dean posted a link on his Facebook page to an article by an expert in copyright law who says the judge made the wrong call. The author, Stephen Carlisle, an admitted Yes fan, does not say whether Dean would have won the case, only that the case should have been allowed to proceed: “All in all, there is far too much smoke to totally discount the existence of a fire, especially at the Motion to Dismiss stage of the case.”

Roger Dean has a huge gallery of work at his website, where you can also inquire about buying prints. Here are a few notable examples:

YessongsAwakening

Album cover: Yes, “Yessongs: Awakening” by Roger Dean

YesCloseToTheEdge

Album cover: Yes, “Close to the Edge” by Roger Dean

Yellow_City

“Yellow City” by Roger Dean

SpaceNeedle

Album cover: Space Needle, “The Moray Eels Eat the Space Needle” by Roger Dean

FLY-FROM-HERE-

Album Cover: Yes, “Fly From Here” by Roger Dean

FloatingIslands-B

“Floating Islands” by Roger Dean

ELECTRIC-SHEEP-II-2nd-Version-

“Electric Sheep II” by Roger Dean

Elbow-Rock-

“Elbow Rock” by Roger Dean

EDGAR-FOREST-VILLAGE

“Edgar Forest Village” by Roger Dean

Coral-Castle-

“Coral Castle” by Roger Dean

Breakaway

Breakaway (used as album cover for new Yes compilation “Progeny”) by Roger Dean

Blue Demon

“Blue Demon” by Roger Dean

Album cover: Birdsongs of the Mesozoic, "The Iridium Controversy" by Roger Dean

Album cover: Birdsongs of the Mesozoic, “The Iridium Controversy” by Roger Dean

Arches Morning

Album cover: Yes, “Keys to Ascension” by Roger Dean

April 1st" by Roger Dean

April 1st” by Roger Dean

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Published on: May 28, 2015

Filled Under: Artwork, News

Views: 16202

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5 Responses to 15 Roger Dean Paintings That Totally Didn’t Inspire “Avatar”

  1. Well I dont see them too Avatarish …. but since when is a crime to have inspirations? It isnt like James steal from him (And I dont like the Avatar movie , but this seems like the classic American "bullshit suing over nonsense" to me)

  2. Alex Benitez says:

    I agree. Inspiration is a hard thing to pin if It's infringement or not because every story is inspired by something, only when it's a blatant copy can you sue people. Floating islands is not an original idea so I would have ruled in the same way.

  3. Dave Webster says:

    No H.R. Giger, no Alien. No Roger Dean, no Avatar.

    one got credit and paid. The other didn’t.

    • Jerry says:

      Well said Dave…
      I feel Roger was robbed of the obligatory credit he deserved for that “inspiration.”
      If Cameron would have only recognized the source I would have been happy.
      Also, for Wikipedia to have an Avatar picture on Roger Deans page is criminal!

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