Me: This started off much, much earlier this week and I'm glad I've had some time to cool and calm down a little. I am torn between trying to feel somewhat flattered and thinking that every line that will ever be drawn has already been drawn, every brush stroke that will ever be made has already been made. We are inspired by other people's art all the time. At least I am. And I am sometimes inspired to incorporate a little of it here and there. Like a colour or a shape or a theme.
Recently, working with a group of other artists, I shared one of my paintings. It wasn't a great painting but it was a deeply personal one. It spoke of an event that has had a part in making me who I am right now. A few days after sharing this painting, a group member shared one of her own which, as I saw it, was pretty much a duplicate of mine. The composition, the colours, most of the details. It was missing two small details and she qualified it with her own story behind it (very different from my story). At first I couldn't believe my eyes. It looked like my painting, re-painted by someone else. With some time to digest it, I realized what I really felt was violated. That someone took my story, and turned it into her story. Of course all of this went on in my head and not in reality. And naturally this other artist is not benefitting monetarily from the image. Still, deep in my heart, it feels like a robbery. It's childish, and I'm trying to not beat myself up for not being a better person about it. I have been working hard on non-attachment, who knew I would be so challenged to work on non-attachment to what is inside me at the same time? So, is it "stolen art" as I earlier wrote, or "stolen me"?