I've had a increasing number of messages about art theft on DeviantArt recently. I think it's great that this community is concerned that artist's work is being used appropriately, and that individuals have the time and energy to draw attention to potentially contentious posts. I'd like to express my gratitude to those who have contacted me and hope that you will continue to do so if you feel it necessary.
However, I think it's important to get this stuff into perspective. Copying my work for practice isn't theft. It's extremely flattering for me and an entirely legitimate way to study. I copied other artist's work when I was starting out and I learned a great deal from those exercises. I'd suggest that there are many more accomplished artists than me whose work could be studied, but I have no problem with my work being used in this way.
My book, 'The Fantasy Artist's Figure Drawing Bible', specifically encourages this in fact. Anyone wanting to work from the line art provided in that book or to follow the exercises within is absolutely free to do so, and to share the results online. It's an instructional book and that's precisely how it's supposed to be used.
So let's chill just a bit on the theft thing. A bit of borrowing around DA really isn't anything to get too worked up about. Just to get the perspective I mentioned before, art theft is when your painting of Shub-Niggurath turns up in an episode of South Park - [link]
Peace, love and heavy metal.