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'Stealing Designs?'

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  • 'Stealing Designs?'

    So what do you all think about this?
    We all look at other peoples work for inspiration.
    The reason i ask is i've been really narked off by a friend who started making jewellery after i showed her some of my designs.
    It's not that she makes jewellery that annoys me... it's that every time i see her she wants to look at my designs, then goes home and copys them (or trys to)!!
    Some people have said to me that there's nothing i can do, as everyone does it, even if it's copying from a magazine article.
    But a few people agree thats it's the principle of the thing, she had no inclination to make anything untill i showed her my stuff then she just does exactly the same as me!!!!!
    What do you all think? am i being a miserable cow??

  • #2
    I sometimes get inspiration from others work, but never copy - not even from mags. I agree with you, i would hate it if someong was blatently trying to copy my work. After all your the one thats done all the hard work designing it.
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    • #3
      Don't they say 'imitation is the sincerest form of flattery'? Mind you - I have no idea who 'they' are! If she's copying you for her own pleasure and not selling her work or anything I think I'd try to rise above it. Not everyone has the talent for design and the friendship is more important.
      Try a new way every day and work becomes play!


      • #4
        All the images on my site are credited to whoever originally did the design - it's courtesy, but it's not law. I've had this discussion ever since I started selling paintings - if it wasn't for 'inspiration' we would have no art at all! Everything needs inspiration, whether it's from nature or another artist's work, the considerate thing to do though is acknowledge where that inspiration comes from, it doesn't cost anything. If she is directly copying - I have a lady at class who wants every beading pattern I have - then just make sure she knows the difference between 'copy' and 'in the style of'. Ask her to use different colours, findings, etc., or even say you are a little puzzled that someone with her creative talent is having to copy you!


        • #5
          I just had to reply to this as copying makes me so mad

          I hate the attitude that everyone does it so thats ok.

          I worked in textiles where copying is rife, and as the designer of a major soft furnishing company I was under pressure to copy from time to time, but I always made sure that my design was in a style, or inspired by, but never a copy. Trend have to be followed.

          As a creative person, I know the difference between inspiration and a copy. Your friend should look at herself as a creative person and question herself. If she needs to copy a design then should she really be doing that craft.

          As for the law, I'm no expert, but I do know of a case in textiles, where a high end textile company took a middle end textile manufacturer to court for a knock-off and won. So it is illegal to copy and it doesn't always have to be a direct copy. Obviously your not going to take you friend to court, I just thought this relevant.

          I'm climbing off my soapbox now..

          Sorry for the rant.


          • #6
            Found this and scanned it - it isn't copyrighted!
            Last edited by Peter; 03-02-2008, 12:19 PM.


            • #7
              excellent advise.....maybe we shouldn't be too harsh.... the bit about 'inexperience leads to confusion' (oops can I use that quote)


              • #8
                I too look at other people's work for inspiration. I've never intentionally copied something however. I think people always put a different spin on their work anyway so to carbon copy something is practically impossible.
                That being said...I do have several styles that people are recreating. This wouldn't be a problem but they're also giving them the same titles now which is just rude!
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                • #9
                  I get inspired by other peoples work, but then use different techniques to get a similar result sometimes... so I tend not to copy direct. As I only craft as a hobby it's probably not so important as I am not profitting from any of it except just from the pleasure it gives me to do it.
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                  • #10
                    Hmmm that got you all going then!!
                    Yes she does try to sell her work, although she isn't as 'into' the craft as i am.
                    To be honest i try not to think about it too much as i get annoyed!!
                    She also lives about 100 miles away - if she was doing it in the same town then we may have fallen out!! I have taken to not divulging where i get my stuff from as i think why should i do all the leg work for her!!!!
                    And yes she is directly copying my designs - although like you say it is hard to copy something exactly, especially if you are not 'artistic'
                    (Oh ok i am being a cow!!)
                    I'll stop now!!!!


                    • #11
                      I do look at other peoples work and at magazines and tv shows for inspiration some times, but i never copy any one elses work. Sometimes i will look in a magazine and set out to make a paticular project but usually within a couple of minutes into it i have changed it completley as my inspirational thoughts start working overtime, sometimes you just need a nudge to get your thoughts flowing.
                      I dont mind anyone copying my work as long as they dont try to pass off the idea as their own!!! I do have customers that want to copy everything we make exactly as they see it, and will call in the shop several times over just so they can have another look at the card to make sure theirs is an exact copy!!!!
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                      • #12
                        I did beading workshops for a while, and had to think up designs and colourways for the ladies to do every fortnight. Took me ages to not only think up the designs, but then to type them up with decent diagrams etc. Then I went to a different beading group, and a lady I didn't know was asking for help on this pattern she had been given......yes, that's right, one of mine!!!
                        I think there will always be a difference between people who do the craft for a love of creating, and those who just want to 'make the same as you've got'. I do believe though that those who just copy don't get very far because their work has no 'soul' (for want of a better word) as they try to copy without really understanding the reasons behind why things were put/introduced in that particular place or in that particular way.
                        Hope that's making sense - rather late now and well into the bottle of red....