Friday, August 29, 2008

To Be Creative... Instead of Destructive

Well, I finally figured out how to get a hold of people at the Chinese web site and get in to politely e-mail each person who had downloaded an illegal version of Santa’s Dragon. I told them how sad I thought it was that they thanked the person who shared it, complimented the design... but stole from the person who created it. Oddly enough, I am now locked out of that portion of the site, so I have sent a second request to the authorities to confirm that they have removed the files as requested.

While it made me sad and grumpy for the rest of that day, I found that the best solution was to do something creative. My dear friend Barb and Stephanie Pearl-McPhee a.k.a. Yarn Harlot have me totally hooked on knitting socks now. Barb sent me some lovely wool to tempt me through my initial fears of learning how to turn a heel. I am now on my second pair of socks ever and loving it!

I also spent more time sketching to keep my drawing hands limber and that made me realize something very important.

While it still makes me sad to think that some people consider it permissible to share patterns electronically and I begrudge the time it takes me to police or defend my work, in the end it is up to each of us how we live our lives with respect to the world around us.

I can honestly say that I have tried to be more creative than destructive. They may have the ability to steal my work... but I had the talent to create it in the first place.

Honest stitchers, crafters, knitters, artists, musicians and other creative souls know how much power there is in creating something of beauty and bringing it to life. When we add beauty to the world, care for our planet or treat each other with respect and love, then we are making the universe a better place one act of creation at a time.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

In case you wonder why....

It has been a busy time. I’ve been labeling school supplies, getting a new URL to add to my collection that will be the page I show to Art Directors for illustration samples, working on class stuff for the CreativFestival in October and sketching or drawing like crazy.

I’ve also applied for a Local Permit so that I can supply teach here in Monition. I can fill in for teachers in either French or English and hopefully this will help me contribute to our family’s bottom line again.

I have been getting e-mails from so many stitchers and hearing feedback from shops who have upset customers. I am sorry that many of you feel hurt that I won’t be designing as much. Lots of you have been VERY supportive as well as regretful.

I just need to feel passionate about what I am creating instead of sad and angry! Lately, so many of the infringers have been moving to chinese and russian sites because Picassa and Multiply are starting to know some of us by name .

This is the type of infringer that made me decide to scale back on designing and move on to other things. For the first time, I am actually going to share the link to a site of illegal patterns, just to show you why I made my decision.

Stealing Santa's Dragon

This person not only chose to steal my design and scan it in illegally, they even took the image from my website to promote it! All of the stitchers who wrote such positive comments about the design are going to stitch my largest and most complicated design for free. They will treasure it, pass it on and probably never think twice about the fact that they helped the designer to give up on something that she loved passionately, because it was just too easy to steal what she spent 14 months creating.

When I have to spend two days jumping through hoops to try to get my stuff removed from this site, knowing that the infringer still has the illegal files to share, I know that I made the right decision to move on...

I just wish it hadn’t hurt so many honest stitchers and loyal shop owners in the process.