I have to wonder why people find it acceptable to claim credit for another creatives’ work.
Recently, I had come across a photographer friend’s work on another “photographer’s” Facebook page. Although it was slightly altered, it was definitely this friend’s award winning piece with the FB page owner’s copyright and signature. Sadly, the FB Page photographer has claimed to have travelled the world, been the recipient of numerous photography awards, held prestigious positions as a photographer, yet they are taking claim for another photographer’s work. I guess for me I have to wonder what they hope to gain from this. If they get an assignment from the piece what happens when they fail to produce an equal or better piece for their client? Alternatively, perhaps they are doing it for personal praise and accolades, which is sad that they so badly desire recognition that they are willing to get it by stealing from another. This Facebook “photographer” has even attempted to pass off a world-famous painting as a photograph they have graphically enhanced. What is really disappointing is that so many of my friends work hard to create great works of art and struggle, yet others commit fraud and get work. Using stock photography and clip art (where the photographer/artist has given permission) to dress up a website is one thing however, stealing a photograph that has been created and copyrighted to the real photographer with the intentions of claiming it as your own is pathetic. I have been blessed not to have anyone claim my work as their own (that I am aware of…lol). I have had people send requests to use excerpts of my writing in their books or graphics on their websites and I have never had an issue with saying yes, in fact, I was honoured.
When I mentioned to my friend about his photos being stolen he says “it happens all the time and not to get upset by it”. He told me if anything to feel sorry for these people, they will never feel the true rush of creative inspiration, they will never nurture their own creative skills and they will forever be living a lie. I know he is right, at least I have the joy of creating and watching my skills develop, each piece better than the last and finding inspiration in everything I see…not stealing it. I love creating and although many of my pieces aren’t perfect, at least they are mine. I would rather fail on my own merit than succeed off the work of someone else, but hey, maybe that’s just me. 😉