Integrity is the adherence to moral and ethical principles; the soundness of moral character and honesty. It’s a trait that is highly regarded in my household. I’m sure that stems from my husband’s military service. It’s definitely a trait that my husband and I expect our children to possess. Today I was faced with a situation that left me angry and a bit saddened at the same time. I’d like to share my experience because I think it’s a very important issue.
As quilters and crafters we naturally see inspiration in lots of different places. I personally love to look at wall paper, art, rugs, flooring, TV, magazines…you get the idea. Inspiration is all around us. We draw from our life experiences and create wonderful works of art.
One of my original designs inspired someone. It’s flattering, right? Kind of, but it’s also disheartening when the person posts pictures and doesn’t give credit to me for the design. And it was clearly created based on my artwork. This particular design was one that I drew, with the help of my husband, and spent hours getting just right. I then used the drawing to create a whole cloth quilt. I worked very hard and even entered the quilt in last year’s MQX show in Springfield. I was shocked that someone would basically copy what I had done and not give credit to me for the design.
The truth is, her quilt was awesome. I actually really love it. But at the same time I’m also quite mad because I spent hours drawing it and quilting it. I feel completely violated. In the end, I did say something to other person. That was very hard for me but I felt it was necessary. An apology was offered and I’m moving on.
I’m not writing this post so that you all leave negative comments toward the other individual. Please refrain from doing so. On the contrary, I’m asking that we all do better in giving credit when credit is due. It’s our duty to have integrity, especially in this industry. There’s a fine line between being inspired and completely copying a design. If you want to copy a design, ask the original artist if they mind. I maintain that I love her version of my quilt and I would have been much happier had she given me credit for the design. I worked very hard to create it. It’s not really fair for someone else to claim the glory of my hard work.
One final thought, I love sharing my quilting adventures. I’m so happy I get to do what I love everyday and share it with like-minded people. I love inspiring others. I just ask that if you plan on copying something that I personally drew and quilted (for example, Me and My Shadow or Owlene), please ask me. Those quilts are original designs that take me a very long time to design and draw.
Integrity….let’s all have some!