If a jury or judge were to decide whether your design fairly uses a copyrighted element, they would consider several factors such as:
- The purpose of your work
If you sell your design for commercial gain than other purposes like criticism, feedback or commentary, this factor could weigh against your design being taken as fair use.
- Would your artwork sales affect the original rights holder’s income?
Maybe the t-shirts you put up for sales on Designhill appear just like the official merchandise sold through the website of the rights holder. It could be observed that your t-shirts give competition to theirs. This factor may go against your artwork being taken as fair use.
- What amount of original content have you used in your design?
Suppose you took a screenshot of a cartoon character and sold it on a phone cover. The image is not different than the original cartoon character. Even if you modified its appearance while using it in your own design, your version might still look like the original. This falls under the category of infringement.