Ask Share Respect Grow


There has been quite a bit of discussion recently in the polymer community about copying/stealing. Many strong and valid emotions. As artists, what we create is a part of ourselves (as well as a means of support for many of us), so it is understandable that this discussion arrises often and with intensity. Without belaboring the issue, here are a few thoughts I had today – perhaps they will be useful:

1. ASK
(whenever possible, ask an artist what they’re preference is when using/copying/being inspired by their work)
(always share the name of the artist and any of their website/store/social media information so others can find the original source of your information/image)
(always respect artists – all artists – for their contributions to your own creative journey, and for the betterment of the experience of being a human)
(we all go through the process of finding our own voice; that process involves other artists; this is a good thing – share your art as much as you personally are able and move on from copying to innovation and originality).

To live is to create. To create is to live.


About christifriesen

I am an artist because I must be. My mind wanders and my fingers follow. Just feed me a little more chocolate and I'll be fine.
This entry was posted in copyright, creativity, inspiration and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Ask Share Respect Grow

  1. Sherilyn says:

    Christi, you have always had the sanest approach to copyright of any artist I have ever encountered. As one who benefits daily from your teaching and sharing, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your sanity! I also think people who think their copyright has been violated need to stop responding with knee-jerk “I’ve been ripped off! My livelihood has been taken away!” Particularly in a community like ours and with the internet being what it is, copyright infringement may occur accidentally. Don’t get me wrong; there are scumbags who will steal other people’s work out there and Jeffrey Deaver, among others, has certainly suffered from this. I would like people to consider that most humans, though, are not ill-intentioned and do make mistakes.


    • We live in a time of instant and extensive access to EVERYthing! and that has changed this whole issue. It’s not a bad thing, just a different thing and all artistic communities are dealing with the results of this worldwide exposure. Having public discussions will help us all become more aware of each other and look out for one another.
      I appreciate your kind words, Sherilyn, and I am delighted to be able to add to the worldwide conversation.


  2. Patricia (Trish) Jones says:

    One can admire anothers art, learn from them, then make the step in to being your own master, your own designer, a true artist. Go forth and remember that it a learning experience and one is always learning.


  3. Lora says:

    Hi Christi, I’m new to this kind of art. Barely 1 week in! I started making a piece of jewelry I’ve only seen once. It’s a piece my Grandma had when I was a little kid. I made 4 of them. Then I took them to a gallery to sell on consignment. The manager told me “steampunk” sells, and to “punk” them up. So I did some research, bought some clay and your book “Steampunkery”. I have started looking at everything as a possible part! I’m even getting ideas in my sleep!!! (more shopping)!
    I havent started making your designs yet. (waiting on my order)! I love several of your “animals”. The shark, flying rodent & lounge lizard are my favorites. And the pig on pg 2!
    I’ve always been aware of stepping on toes when I copy something. Its hard to see the other side when you dont personally have anything anyone wants to copy. That said, when an artist publishes a book of designs with instructions, it is like saying “Here, copy them, run with them”.
    If all you require is recognition of your talent, I can do that. That’s not to claim any of your thunder, of course. But, I understand the concept.
    If it’s ok with you I may be using some of your “creatures” in my art.
    Thank you for the inspiration, L.C.


  4. Thanks for the comments, L.C. Personally, I do feel that when I create a book, tutorial or class that specifically shows others how to create something, it would be silly of me to not expect that they would be copied! That’s kind of the point of teaching. By copying we learn more about the medium, about creativity, about the process of innovation. The hope is that many people will find their own voice, and add their own unique creations to the world, but coming up with something unique is not easy, and many people just so want to create something. Thus, those of us who offer our imaginations and innovations to the rest of the world are to be valued and appreciated, I think. The best way to do that is for ALL of us (and I include myself and all other teachers) to be aware of our inspirations, our influences and our interconnection to the whole process of creativity! So when folks like you give a nod to “inspired by Christi Friesen” (or whichever artist has directly influenced a piece you create), that respect and appreciation has a wonderful ripple effect to all who come across it. They will love what you made, and they may be inspired to look behind the curtain to the other artists in your process, and enjoy their work too. Win, win.


do you have any thoughts on this? blab about them with us!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s