LOS ANGELES, Aug. 26, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Renowned international photographer and music video director Estevan Oriol, famed chronicler of Los Angeles' urban and hip hop communities, has filed Federal copyright infringement lawsuits against clothing industry giants H&M and Brandy Melville for the improper use and misappropriation of his copyrighted photograph known as "LA Hands."
The picture in question came from a now-famous 1995 photo session that depicted a female model's long, ring-clad fingers forming the letters "LA" for Los Angeles. The unmistakable image instantly became a ubiquitous and iconic symbol of Los Angeles' cutting-edge street culture and has since been legally published worldwide in various magazines. In 2006, Oriol created his own clothing line and produced T-shirts bearing his then well-known image.
Oriol's lawsuits contend that both H&M and Brandy Melville grossly infringed on his protected artistic work by using his "LA Hands" photograph to create a derivative and substantially similar image that is used on one or more of H&M and Brandy Melville's T-Shirts – items that have been sold and continue to be sold in their respective retail stores worldwide. "If you put my photograph side-by-side with their re-creation of my image, anyone would tell you they are one in the same…they clearly copied my image," Oriol said.
Representing Oriol are Bradley and Daniel Yourist of the Yourist Law Corporation. The Yourists claim these legal actions should serve as a wake-up call to other retailers that routinely infringe upon, profit from and trample on artists' protected intellectual property. "On behalf of artists and creators everywhere, we will vigorously seek out and aggressively pursue legal action against anyone who improperly uses an image at the expense of an artist," explained Bradley J. Yourist.
Oriol, whose ability to capture the raw essence of Los Angeles street life through his unique style of photography, is now among the world's most sought after photographers of the urban and hip hop lifestyle. His work has been featured in dozens of U.S. and International magazines, including Complex, FHM, GQ, Vibe, Rolling Stone and The Source, among many others. He has also directed numerous TV commercials and music videos and has photographed hundreds of celebrities, from Robert De Niro to Eminem.
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SOURCE Estevan Oriol