Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Mom's Birthday, and Copyright, and Styles

Today is Mom's 83rd birthday. She has a special date with her weaving students, first lunching at their haunt in Kamakura, (don't know the place; they never took me,) then probably a lovely stroll in that old city, ending up at the house of one of the students who moved in July. It's within walking distance from her old place, so within walking distance from the rest of the group, but it sounds exciting!

Now get ready to laugh out loud. 

I was so tired on Sunday I didn't do anything except to vegetate in front of the telly and play computer games. Sunday night I was so cross with myself for being electively-unproductive I couldn't sleep. So on Monday I was exercising by 8AM, did two stints on the loom, baked ciabatta and finally got the hang of many small holes rather than few big ones with that wet dough, and even cleaned the stove top at around 10PM. Came yesterday morning, and I was so sore I couldn't move. LOL, I had to lie down on the floor with a towel under my spine to breathe, even though my exercises aren't that vigorous. At all. And though I did a mild version of my exercise in the morning, I  blahed out until 3PM, when I got really cross with myself and cooked dinner. That was about all I did all day. But dinner was yummy: beef and soy bean patties with seedy mustard on many grain toast.

Let me see. The lesson learned is, aim to be productive but not too much? I can't stop laughing because part of me thinks I just can't win; another part of me think it's OK to go slow; another I'm old and slow is the only way I can go; and alas, another part of me thinks I'm just being lazy as usual. But Saturday's Diabetes workshop got me motivated about undersizing, and ideas for projects keep coming and I just want to work. The thing is, while I was weaving on Monday, I wasn't tired for the most part. Well, to be honest, I was thinking I was starting to get a little impatient, but I kept going because the weaving was going well.

I've read before I go to sleep as long as I can remember. And because of this, I have this strange notion that reading for pleasure is a bedtime thing. Ergo, even when I feel blah, or my body can't move due to excessive physical activities, (you're supposed to LOL here,) except for weekends and sick days, I don't feel right about reading for pleasure during the daytime. I can't explain this further than to say it's a conceptual habit. This is one of the things I'm trying to change; I mean, Sunday and yesterday, had I added up all the blah hours, I might have finished the current van Gogh book and started on the next.

Not that I'm in a rush - I'm enjoying the current one very, very much.

As well I've finally started to grieve for Dad when and how I want to. I've been home over a month and I'm back to being me-as-I-know-myself and the waterworks have been free-flowing. Which is not all sad but rather satisfying and I almost enjoy missing Dad without being told I shouldn't because it leads to as many good thoughts as regrets, if not to closures of sorts. And it's nice to live with a husband who really liked Dad all along. Though I still get confused being called Dad's Girl. People have often been called that since I was 13, never Daddy's Little Girl as it wasn't that easy, but I don't get why people think that.

* * * * *

I've been peripherally following the Congdon vs Foster "debate" about copyrights. If you don't know about it, this and this are good places to start as he and those who comment include relevant links.

In my weaving any inspiration is so diluted/distorted by the time they become cloth I don't seriously worry about copyrights infringements unless I want to post a picture/idea here, or if I want to download, print and put something up on my wall, even if Ben's the only other person likely to see it. Then I ask and nobody has declined my requests so far; nobody has asked for payments/contracts. With photos this is automatic, but I have to be mindful about retelling or regurgitating ideas.

Ben and I get request for pictures for student projects, a wedding program/proceedings (yup!), or other for- and non-profit pursuits and only once did we ask to be paid. (Ben had a photo used for a wine label. Unfortunately it wasn't a great year so they changed the label the following year!) Our standard answer is, "Go for it and best of luck." Oh, but we did ask if we could have a sneak peak of the wedding PDF because we were so very thrilled, and it was used beautifully.

I hate having my photographs stolen and I have asked to have it taken off places. I don't want money for it, I just think it's like folks coming into my house with dirty shoes on, (my house is a no-shoes zone.) I just think it's rude. But then I think, sometimes, I have to come to terms with the fact if I put something on the Internet, it's in the public domain regardless of legality. 

And then there is the issue of drafts. I don't mind sharing and I post a lot, because I am almost a card-carrying member of the "There is nothing new in weaving" school of thought. Still, when I see drafts very similar to something I worked on in many shafts, I can't help my heart skipping a beat.

I think weavers have less to worry about than painters and quilters and textile artists, but it's something we must be aware of in this day and age. Then there is the schism between the American perception of what's "legal" and the somewhat fuzzier understanding in New Zealand, though the latter may be moving closer to the former, and the myriad of values and hues in-between. And then there is that ridiculous notion of an image/idea being 30% (or whatever number) similar or different.  

I've been reading a lot about how van Gogh "copied" other artists' works, except his way of copying is very much in his own style, worked and reworked. In fact, he's copied and reworked his own sketches and paintings as well. With my Cubism thing, (I am going to post about it because it was utterly interesting even though I got absolutely nowhere,) and even my figure drawing going back a few years, I did find copying works I admire useful in my learning. I've been thinking how much of copying and reworking "in the style of (insert-artist-name)" is allowed if I were to, for example, take part in a drawing exhibition.

* * * * *

Doni and I've been discussing one's signature/style, which has coaxed me to think of a lot of things I haven't thought of in a while. Or ever. My thoughts are so fragmented I need time before posting on the topic but it's been wonderful reflecting.

I am less hung up on my perception of "my style" largely due to circumstances relating to selling and availability of things and opportunities where I live. I'm less worried about not being able to tell you what "my style" is. I don't know if this is a bad thing or a good thing, but more than ever I now see myself as a developing weaver, because at least I can see the changes from project to project or from series to series. Even if it includes regressing with techniques. More on this later.

But what is your style? What do you hold dear in your weaving? What says, "this is your/my work?" and nobody else's? Do tell.

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