Did Jake Parker plagiarise Alphonso Dunn's book?

Update Oct 2022: The legal case has ended and Dunn wasn't able to prove that Parker violated his copyright. More info here

I was alerted by a follower on Instagram that Alphonso Dunn has put out a video (below) alleging that Jake Parker's new book Inktober All Year Long has plagiarised his Pen and Ink Drawing book published in 2015.

Jake Parker's new book will be out in September 2020, and he has posted some preview pages and video in an Instagram post.

I've watched the flip through video from Jake Parker and it looks good. It was only after I watched Alphonso Dunn's comparison video that I could see the similarities. It's not an exact copy obviously but there are similarities in layout and examples. Right at the end of Alphonso's video you can see all the notes and drafts he has made for the books.

Some in the comments section of Alphonso's video said that pen and ink techniques and concepts have been around since the Renaissance. True. Value scales in boxes have been around for decades, centuries.

So the differentiating factor will come down to the artist's unique style and interpretation. I've featured numerous books on Pen and Ink and while some may feature similar techniques, they are no where similar to Alphonso Dunn's book. I've featured even more watercolour instructional books and even when books have similar structure, chapters and techniques, ultimately what differentiates the books come down to the explanation of the concepts, more specifically the artist's personal take on the techniques.

The problem I see here with Jake Parker's book is his take on the techniques is quite similar to Alphonso Dunn's. My guess is Jake Parker probably hired a ghost writer for the book. And if he wrote the book himself, I would love to see the notes and drafts he made for the book.

Anyway, from what I can tell from the limited number of pages, the flip through video and Alphonso Dunn’s video, there may be some instances of possible plagiarism, but certainly not to the extent that Alphonso Dunn has claimed. Areas where it’s really questionable to me are the part where the light source shining on the blocks, and the list of unconventional tools is definitely heavily inspired.

I'll need to get Jake Parker's book myself to make the comparison myself. So far what I've said comes from what I've gather from videos and photos posted.

In reply to by nada (not verified)

Actually SVS started in 2012, 8 years ago. The same year Dunn posted his first video on inking. 9 years ago Parker posted a flip through of one if his published sketchbooks full of his pen and ink artwork 4 years before Dunn published his. In Parkers earlier book it shows all the techniques he talks about.

In reply to by Vonedward jordan (not verified)

Inktober was created by Parker 11 years ago. He made the logo, the font, and name. It is his intellectual property and at the moment of its creation given copyright protection. He had to officially register it because others were using his logo and the inktober name on merchandise they were selling.

Parker didn't plagiarize anything from Dunn.
The comparison in Dunn's video visually shows nothing is actually the same if you have any actual knowledge of art. Dunn continually tells the viewer that it's different or Parker changed it to not be to be obvious that it was copied. The work in Dunn's book is the basic fundamentals of drawing, of course both books will have some similar flow, terminology, and illustration examples, teaching the material cannot work without it. Here is a link that has over 600 examples of fundamentals. Many are very similar or the same to Dunn's if you scroll through them.

https://www.pinterest.co.uk/penwiz404/alphonso-dunn-is-full-of-it/

Dunn cannot claim ownership or creation of any techniques or terminology, which he is trying to do. The layout and sequence of the books don't match up either. Molochs video shows how different the layouts are side by side
https://youtu.be/GDNsHVDHfnk

Here is another artist that shows that the layout, illustrations, order are not the same at all.

https://astralmouseart.tumblr.com/tagged/inktober-drama

Dunn himself has to go forward and backwards in his book to find something he thinks is similar. So things are not both following the same sequences.

The themes of the books are different as well. Dunn's is a more academic how for drawing with ink. Parkers is based around the theme of doing Inktober with some lessons on inking and conceptualization.

In reply to by John (not verified)

The concepts in both books are not original to either artist. Both are showing the basic fundamentals of drawing. Which have been taught for centuries. Dunn's video of ,so called evidence, is nothing but emotional rantings of him trying to lay claim to the basic techniques of drawing. Dunn showing the examples of the numbered value scale, shaded boxes, and the hand holding the pen as plagiarized material is laughable. Those examples have been used for decades and longer. The cover of The Ultimate Book of Drawing: Essential Skills, Techniques & Inspiration for Artists by Barrington Barber first published in 2012, 3 years before Dunn shows 3 sets of cubes using the shading example on the cover. The Art of Drawing
by Vivienne Coleman has the value scale on the cover. Anatomy For Artists: A Complete Guide To Drawing The Human Body
by Barrington Barber on its cover shows a drawn hand holding a pencil. All three of these have the same examples as Dunn and Parker. Even the materials and textures lessons. Why is that? Because they are fundamental building blocks of drawing. The only one trying to claim ownership of them is Dunn. That's only 3 art books. There are hundreds if not thousands more. All Dunn's video did was show his lack of art knowledge and the gullibility of people who just took his word for gospel.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

The techniques in both books are not new to either artist. They are the fundamentals building blocks of art. The issue is Dunn trying to claim ownership of these techniques that have been around for centuries.
Dunn's video of ,so called evidence, is nothing but emotional rantings of him trying to lay claim to the basic techniques of drawing. Dunn showing the examples of the numbered value scale, shaded boxes, and the hand holding the pen as plagiarized material is laughable. Those examples have been used for hundreds of years. The cover of The Ultimate Book of Drawing: Essential Skills, Techniques & Inspiration for Artists by Barrington Barber first published in 2012, 3 years before Dunn shows 3 sets of cubes using the shading example on the cover. The Art of Drawing
by Vivienne Coleman has the value scale on the cover. Anatomy For Artists: A Complete Guide To Drawing The Human Body
by Barrington Barber on its cover shows a drawn hand holding a pencil. All three of these have the same examples as Dunn and Parker. Even the materials and textures lessons. Why is that? Because they are fundamental building blocks of drawing. The only one trying to claim ownership of them is Dunn. That's only 3 art books. There are hundreds if not thousands more. All Dunn's video did was show his lack of art knowledge and the gullibility of people who just took his word for gospel.

In reply to by Vonedward jordan (not verified)

Parker's book is not copied cover to cover, not even close.  You do know Dunn's first YT video, from November 12 2011, are of him doing cartoony flash animation tutorials?  Dunn's first YT video on inking is posted December 12 2011 and its of rough sketching in ink.  On November 7th 2009, 6 years before Dunn's book was published and 2 years before Dunn is even on YT, Parker posted a video showing a book he published that uses all the techniques shown in Inktober all year long.  

Chronicle books has set a release date of March 09, so the book has been cleared.  Nothing has been changed, they've just been sitting in warehouses ready to be shipped.  A few copies have slipped through by accident.  Some reviews have been posted and all say the plagiarizim accusations are false.

 Here are links that show multiple pages from Parkers book.  They look nothing like Dunns.

Google books page preview

https://books.google.com/books/about/Inktober_All_Year_Long.html?id=lgn…

Instagram page shot

https://www.instagram.com/p/CIZNJdOBzkd/?igshid=1mzwkce2htedt

Amazon shopping preview

https://www.amazon.ca/Inktober-All-Year-Long-Indispensable/dp/145217041…

In reply to by Peter Beck (not verified)

If there are professional reputations, money and careers at stake, why not have a full on court case/trial complete with notes, working drafts of both books, etc. and (most importantly) art historians and textual and art analysts to look at all the evidence?

I don’t think your update text is necessarily correct. You say Dunn was unable to prove plagiarism. This is incorrect. The legal document you link to says the case was dismissed because the New Jersey court did not have jurisdiction. It was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction, rather than on the merits of the case. Furthermore the case was dismissed without prejudice which means Dunn and his legal team is still able to file a claim of plagiarism in the correct jurisdiction. Given that neither party has provided an update it suggests there is still a legal case ongoing.

The funny thing to me is that a user on Reddit and Youtube and even here has been so adamant by leaving a lot of replies defending Parker and sharing a link with comparisons and "evidence". Dude, if you are not Jake Parker, you are someone working for him, you are not even being discrete. We get it dude chill, damn hahaha

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

There is not a single concept or example in Dunn's book that is original to him. It's all the basic fundamentals of drawing.
The explanations and words used are standard words used in teaching and creating art.

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