Copyright is a complex and often misunderstood legal concept to protect the works of individuals, organizations, and corporations. But what is protected and why? The main component is potential monetary value. Copyright exists to make sure that those individuals, organizations, and corporations can obtain any monetary value that might exist, now or in the future, as a result of the sale and use of their works.
So how are you going to use images you find or quotes from scholarly articles to write your papers or create your sculptures if they're protected by copyright? You don't want to be sued, right?
There is something called fair use, which does allow copyrighted material to be used without fear of penalty is some specific situations. Because artwork, design, and images have their own specific issues, the College Art Association has developed a Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts. The code breaks down all of the situations in which fair use can be applied to the visual arts.
As a student of art, these are the two fair use principles from the Code of Best Practices that you will need to be aware of.
2. From page 11 (Making Art) - "Principle: Artists may invoke fair use to incorporate copyrighted material into new artworks in any medium, subject to certain limitations: