noodle and lou

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my heart on my sleeve

i am so hesitant to even say what i'm about to say and i don't really know why. probably because i'm very non confrontational. when it comes right down to it...i'm a people pleaser and i like to make people happy...so i have a hard time sticking up for myself. i love to share. i like to help people out...answer their questions...share a tip, a technique, a product. i mean that's why i'm part of the blogging community. to share! i love to inspire people. but there is a difference between inspiration and blatant copying. it's upsetting and i don't like when i come across it. and i do see it...i'm not oblivious. it's one crummy thing to copy my design....but then to literally copy my words!? to literally use my sentences, my script to sell copies of my work. this makes me really, really sad.

i know this is not my usual upbeat happy post. and i'm sorry to be a downer. besides myself, i've seen it happen to a couple friends over the weekend too and i just didn't feel like taking the "high road" this time and saying nothing. because this is important. it is important to be yourself!! so, this may open up some big ugly can of worms. i don't know. that is certainly not my intention and i hope you understand where i am coming from. this is about honesty and integrity and finding your own voice. not using someone else's.

thanks for listening
xoxoxo...jenn

33 comments:

The Creative JAR said...

I know the feeling and have had it happen to myself in the internet world and also locally. It is very hurtful and some stuff I have stopped creating because of it. when someone says oh that looks like so and so's - when really so and so's looks like yours! I think your stuff is great and I have been told the copying the best sign that what you are doing is good.... but that does not make it easier to swallow. But we must keep putting ourselves out there and we will prevail in the end - don't know if you believe in karma but is can be a ....

jessica's mom said...

Hi Jenn, Your pieces are so unique and cheerful, whimsical and lovely- much like you. The adage that says imitation is the most sincere form of flattery has always rung untrue to me. It is just another person being lazy and unimaginative. Is there no recourse? Fondly, Barbara

~dani~ said...

Sorry love...it is very upsetting when it happens. It is what WE work soo hard on and then for someone to blatantly copy/steal is sad. You know how hard I have worked on STJ and when I see others copying it, it is like a knife in the back.
I would be way too proud and embarrassed to copy. Inspiration is healthy but stealing is not!
hugs sweetie~

Diane Duda said...

I know! It's the worst. It makes you feel so helpless and it's frustrating.
I happened upon some blatant copying of another blog friends work last week. I hated ruining her day, but felt I had to make her aware.
Sorry it's happened to you, but we all know that you are an original! :)
xo
Di

LuLu said...

Ah! Jenn! You will not believe this but I have a note beside my laptop, written a few days ago, about whether or not I should talk about other artists literally copying my art, or not... I almost had a fit the other night, someone had copied one of my mermaids and simply redone it in crayons. And she was selling it as an original painting on eBay !!! I have had problems with another artist, someone who keeps on sending sweet comments about my art on my blog ... She is constantly strongly influenced by my current paintings, so strongly that usually a week later, a strongly similar painting is offered in her Etsy shop and on eBay. I guess this is the down side of showing your art on the net ... There will always be someone copying someone's work... Someone once said (can't remember who) that art copying art is decadence... It bothers me too and I am right here beside you. Let's scream it outloud! BE YOURSELF, BE AN ARTIST, NOT A COPY MACHINE !!! And if you really want to copy my work, give ME the proper credits !!! I also have mixed feelings about artist-wanna-be taking workshops from artists they admire. They learn the techniques to MAKE art that looks like the art of the teacher... What they really need is a workshop to learn how to let their creativity flow, how to learn how to draw, how to find their own particular style ... OK, I will stop here because I could talk about it for hours... I AM SO GLAD YOU ARE TALKING about it! I have actually viewed a few other artists's art lately that made me thought it was yours!!! Especially your little Lulettes sculptures ... I HATE THIS! THIS IS CALLED STEALING !!! LET'S UNITE AND TALK ABOUT IT ! Ok, I have done my mouth aerobics for the day!!! Hugs, LuLu xxxx

elma said...

OH Jenn I am sorry that it is happening to you!! But we all know your art is the best and really no one can do you art justice if they are copying it and we know your are MUCH better!!!. You are the best and I know you bend over backwards for us all. Keep your chin up dear as you know every time you have an update your art flys out of the shop. You are the BEST!!! Try to have a nice day!! Love Elma

lori vliegen said...

dittos, dittos, lulu!! there is a huge difference between being inspired and in-your-face copying! we all have those copyright reminders on our blogs, but people are going to do what they want to do. i wonder if they realize that they're literally breaking the law when they lift text right from your etsy shop...to sell items that are a carbon copy of your designs?! i'm sorry that this has happened to you...you are the real deal, sweet jenn, and i admire you for speaking out about this! :)

Anonymous said...

I made my self anonymous because this is a controversial topic and hate mail usually follows suit. But we exist within a tight knit blogging community of women and unfortunately and fortunately everyone knows everyone. What I see happening is that one or two people encourage viewers to copy their designs and it makes individuals believe that it is okay to copy anything and everything on the internet. Just because we share glimpses at our work does not mean it is a free for all. All these online classes that keep popping up are great teach aids, but I think unfortunately that it has led to a backlash of thefts as of late...particularly in the mixed media world. You are definitely not alone. Every blog I have gone to over the last couple of weeks is either freaking out about this, yanking all their work or watermarking the hell out of their work. It is unfortunate that people can't respect other artists work. People are not being inspired by us anymore, they are trying to get a piece of the pie we all worked real hard to get.

Sorry I have to remain anonymous. Maybe it is cowardly, but I don't want to be hunted down or be the target of further thefts myself.

Vickie said...

Jenn I feel bad that you've had people copying you. You are an original and only you have that special noodle and lou touch. I've come across some trying to immitate your style and they just don't have the same finesse. I haven't seen any outright dittos of your compostitions though. I had a bad feeling about some hits on my blog a while back and took steps to reduce the image size and add a copyright watermark with Photoshop to the images I post on my blog. I know it won't prevent all copying but I can at least put a few stumbling blocks in the way.
Vickie

Lenn C said...

Jenn,

I must admit I am a lurker and great admirer of your blog and I have a file that has links to all the blogs I love and it includes yours but you are absolutely right...I have come across other blogs that are eirily close to your work and I save those sites as "like noodle and lou" and I often wondered who came first! But what I know from your blog is that you have 'new' ideas and fresh ideas and I love it! So keep creating and know that your work resonates with 'authenticity'.

Jennifer Williams aka Blueskysunburn said...

I'm so sorry to hear this is happening to you. It's happened to me once before so I understand the frustration it causes.

I have taken a few of the mixed media classes online and while during the class I was not outright copying I was certainly heavily using the drawing techniques she was teaching. I felt like a fraud when I went to sell this artwork. I took another class with the same issue and I refused to finish the class (or artwork) other than to absorb the techniques.

Now I see artist's copying these original artists saying they've found they're style and this bothers me!!! YOu see Kelly Rae Roberts, Suzi Blu and other artist blatantly being copied. I partially feel though that by doing the books and teaching the classes they are giving inexperienced people the sense that this is okay.

I'm glad you brought this up. More people need to do so.

Mimi-n-Moe's Mom said...

Does Etsy have a policy against this or not? You could always contact the person and tell them what you think.

I bet the knock offs are just that...knock offs! I am sure they don't compare at all to the originals. No matter how hard someone tries to copy...something is always lost in translation....

Hang in there! You have a loyal group of followers that love your art. ~kAREN

Chrissie Grace said...

Hi Jenn
I'm so sorry that you are experiencing that.
But you are the "real deal"!
I love your work and I'm sorry for those copy-catters...boo hiss!:(
xo
Chrissie Grace

Artfulife said...

Jenn I have seen a few sites that seem to try and reproduce your beautiful and unique style, and the style of other talented artists. It makes me want to barf big barfy chunks. Please email me later if you can, I have found a girl that is copying your lulettes, birds and hearts and selling them in her etsy store. I don't want to put her blog in this post, would that be mean? I thought you would want to know. So sorry for all this frustration.

Jackie said...

Hi Girl....you know I have been there too. Stay strong and keep forging ahead. Your art inspires so many and brings all of us smiles. You are a great person, try not to let it get into your creative spirit! Sending lots of love your way :) xoxo jackie

P.S....right on for all the above comments!!

aliceinparis said...

I have had the same thing happen to me too:) I think that most artists who have been around for a while encounter this. I do think though that it starts as copying and then eventually(hopefully)the copier evolves their own style and moves on. It is still upsetting to have it happen. I am not sure it is something that is ever going to go away. Artists have been doing it for centuries.
I don't watermark anything, I figure most people don't steal and those that do could get around a watermark.
Your work is distinctive and easily to recognize. Don't let them get you down, keep on keeping on:))

CourtneyP said...

Oh no..... so sorry this has happend. It is so hard because the internet has made it possible for our art to reach every corner of the earth, however the downside is that our stuff is out there and sometimes not in the best of hands. I truly believe in Karma ... maybe others should too!

michelle said...

Oh, Jenn I am so sorry! Although I hope you are now glad you brought it up, after reading some of the comments you can see we are all behind you! I wonder about the justification that someone goes through to make it okay in their mind to pirate someone's work and sell it as their own. It is the only ugly thing I have found about blogging.

Micki said...

Aww hun i'm sorry this has happened to you, I know, as an artist just starting out it is all to easy to create things in the style of artists you admire and also seeing so many images from artists via the internet sometimes you can even convince yourself that you thought it up yourself, but to blatantly copy is entirely different especially if they are using your words to sell the items as well.

It might just be an idea to have a quiet word(email) to them and see if they've even realized what they are doing is wrong.
If they are just starting out then they might be innocent in realizing what is right and wrong in the arty world we live in!

Chin up sweetie x

Beth Quinn said...

ohh jenn !! you are right to voice your opinions freely - sorry this is happening to you ! that really stinks- hang in there and know that your work comes from your heart and you truly are an original !!
xoxo,
beth

Billy and Button said...

Ive just started art blogging, so I havent expereinced what you are going through, but I have had people copy my artwork before and it honestly made me so mad, though I didnt say anything at the time. Art is personal expression!For someone to copy what you have created is hurtful. I think that you could approach this person and have an honest talk, frank and open. I once read that when an artist publishes their work - either on the web or any other form of media, it is then copyrighted. I hope things work out, let us know any developments! Kaili xx

denversavage said...

I'm arriving late here, to this situation. But Jenn knows how I feel about this, because I have alerted her to certain artists copying her "INSPIRATIONS". This is a huge step for her, to say what she really feels. Jenn, ROCK ON Girl! I'm so proud of you! SO PROUD! Yes it's hard, but it needed to be said. The glory of Noodle and Lou is that it is unique and OOAK art. Meant to be enjoyed and collected.

I love you Jenn! xo

Garden Painter Art said...

Jenn:

This just seems to be happening all over the internet right now! It isn't flattery, it is blatant copyright infringement.

I am a collage artist. I create my own backgrounds with watercolor and use only non-copyrighted personal vintage photos and my own photos. I am so careful not to infringe on any copyright. Yet, we see it happening everyday with artists selling on the internet.

For me, it's very important that my work is my own. I guess some folks have no integrity or self-respect.

Hang in there.
Kim
Garden Painter Art

Anonymous said...

I just saw your newest post and am glad you got some resolution over the situation. I have been disturbed too by this trend of blatantly copying another artist and selling it as your own. I really think these people do not know they are doing anything wrong. For instance, I have taken a Suzi blu class and she has come right out and told people to go ahead and sell the direct copy of her work. I know she is a generous girl, but unfortunately people think they can do this with other artist's work. Many times I have been on Etsy or Ebay and thought something was Suzi's only to find it was one of her students. There is nothing wrong with learning new techniques from other artists we admire, but at some point we need to find our own spin on it, make it our own. Hopefully the word gets out that blatant copying is illegal, and just wrong.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jen

I feel for you. Can I please be the word of experience though, as someone who has been copied for the past 5 years - you have to NOT LOOK. You can spend alot of time getting worked up over it and fighting it but it does not change ever. Because it gets to the heart of human nature and that is impossible to change. And this type of thing has been going on for years. Ask all of the famous cloth designers and artists.

So trust me when I say you need to almost become a little ignorant to it. Do what you do best, grow as an artist and everyone else will always be one step behind you anyway.

To those who think you are doing your friends a favor by telling them - you're not!

My life has become a whole lot better and more positive since I stopped looking. And I tell my friends, don't tell me, I don't want to know.

Anonymous said...

I should say too, that I know my post before sounds defeatist to some and like I am letting the thief get away with it. But it's actually quite liberating to eventually not care :-)

Jennie said...

Jenn,
I'm so sorry that this happened. I am so inspired by your art pieces and those of others as well. I guess I just wanted to say that while it's a shame what that person did, I want you to know that I see you as a bit of a tutor and I'm honored that so many of you share your beautiful work. It's because of blogs that I even attempted to make ATCs or collages - never even knew they existed until last fall. When I lost my job I was so scared and had no reason to get up in the morning but now I go to sleep trying to think of new ideas for my journal or collages. I don't know where I would be mentally without everyone's kindness and sharing through their blogs.

So, while there are those that steal your art, know that others have been healed by it.

High hopes and best wishes,
Jennie

Skelly Addict said...

Hi Jenn!
So sad you're upset...visiting your blog is my daily dose of happiness! Like you said you are always a happy, cheerful, and positive person and I have to say you have inspired me to be a better person! Besides it's soooooo much easier to be happy then it is to be sad. But, there are times when we do need to be upset and this is a pretty darn good reason. Sometimes you can’t take the high road and continue to let people take advantage of your genuine kindness. Trust me, being a HUGE noodle and lou fan...no one and I mean NO ONE will ever compare to the OOAK work you create and most importantly the person you are. I have to say the biggest reason I purchase your work is because of YOU! Your beautiful attitude towards life, your generosity, your too cute family, and last but certainly not least…your amazing creativity that clearly is shown thru your work!
I have some pretty good ideas on who may be creating those knock-offs and that is just what they are (and not good ones either). You are totally right, it is very important to be yourself and to treasure the kindheartedness and helpful advice from others to encourage you to become a better person and not a person who tries to be someone else or someone who just tries to recreate someone’s hard work.
So you take care and don’t let this get you down…I’m sure you’ve already become to do so, but take it as fuel to continue to bring your fun, delightful, and oh so happy art into this big world of ours! Us noodle and lou fans are always rooting for ya!! :o)
Allison

Du Buh Du Designs said...

Wow Jenn...sorry this happened to you! I've had several people who were inspired by my work but I dont think I've had anyone copy me that I know of. I know this has happened to several other Etsy artists I know and it really sucks! Copying exact sentences shows a lack of creativity on their part..boo to them!

Your latest works looks fantastic by the way..I love the heart paintings:)

Candace said...

Oh sweetie. You are OOAK.
It has happened to me too and so many others... fortunately, it always comes back around and we are able to move on.
Gosh, at first, I thought you were shutting down your blog! Don't!

I think I would be really really unhappy if your work and spirit weren't here to love. Blogovia would be a much sadder place without noodle and lou!

Your Friend (who will no longer lurk).
Candace in Athens

carissa... brown eyed fox said...

well that just STINKS!!!!!

all i know... your creations are unique to YOU... for sure... we love YOU & YOUR fun!

and my goodness... i'm glad you shared... that would be way to hard to hold in!

KathrynAntyr said...

"Being authentic" is so important to me. In fact, each time I sit down to create something I am mindful of speaking my own truth. I am inspired by so many people, you included! I am stunned that some people feel so comfortable with stealing words and images. There will always be true artists and those following in their shadows. Know that you are admired and loved by many in blogland. Thank you for sharing!

Penny said...

Hi Jenn.
I'm a few days behind...I agree with everything everyone has said. The reason I beg you to make me so many great pieces of art is because YOU are making them! If I could open the door of each little lulette house, I'd see tons of love and kindness filling the inside!!!

I've had similar experiences with my writing: someone copies an idea they've heard me talk about or a manuscript I've read from. This summer, someone in a writing group tried to "steal" my voice. Know what? It made her writing TERRIBLE. If nothing else, my writing is unique, just like your art. I haven't seen any of these copycats, but I'm sure the artistic plagiarism is a sad comparison to the real thing.
XOXO!
P.