Michael O’Connor Clarke suspects Pickleshane has been ripping off my work. Though I’ve seen people “borrow” from me many times before [and usually find it quite flattering], Pickleshane seems to be doing it A LOT, without any due attribution to me whatsoever.
Heh. I’m not pissed off about it, I just find it maybe a little odd. Like I said in “How To Be Creative”:
What gives the work its edge is the simple fact that I’ve spent years drawing them. I’ve drawn thousands. Tens of thousands of man hours.
So if somebody wants to rip my idea off, go ahead. If somebody wants to overtake me in the business card doodle wars, go ahead. You’ve got many long years in front of you
I’m just guessing some kid came across my work randomly one day, thought it looked like fun, and decided to have a go himself. I did the same with my favorite cartoonists, when I was young. Whatever.
Homage – Hugh.
Immitation is still the highest form of flattery -but hey he’s no “comic strip blogger” 🙂
Wow. It’s a bit scary how blatant he is.
You’re a big man to openly take this ‘form’ of ‘flattery’ so well. Only someone with a truly kind disposition can do this. Kudos to you.
Personally I’d be ranting and raving and ready to split open the copier’s head. But then, I am the lovechild of Lucifer!
It’s a tough call. Part of me wants to say give him time to find his own voice, that we all cop somebody else’s style when we’re starting out, and that your work just happen to be his training wheels right. But then again, he may not have the inner drive to be truly original and face the unknown. Is he being aggressive about promoting those look-alike comics, or is he just putting them up on Flickr for the heck of it?
But does he have a “Gaping Void hates cats’ Tshirt? I wore mine just yesterday as matter a fact. Rock on Hugh!
This is an interesting one – if you put work of any kind of quality online then you’re pretty much definitely going to get copied. I must admit, Hugh, that when I’m doodling I sometimes start squiggling in a very ‘Void-esque style.
The fact is though that your cartoon is better. You should only start worrying when it isn’t.
I remembered the first time someone ripped off one of my posts (copied it completely).
First thought was…
Someone READS my posts?
Second thought was…
well, there wasn’t really any,
I was still amazed about the first.
Seriously, what I did do was reach out to the blogger and help the person find their own voice.
I took it as a cry for mentoring.
That blogger now has one of my fave sites (besides Gaping Void, of course – being one of the Hughettes) and we’re link buddies.
A thief once told me that he never stole from people he liked (‘course he did break into their houses, take photos of him sitting on their favorite chairs butt naked, and then send them to them…but that’s a whole other story).
I went through a bunch of his stuff and I don’t have issues with him duplicating your style… but there are a TON of comics which are COMPLETE rip offs of comics you’ve previously done.
That’s not cool and he’s definitely crossed a line.
no-one will ever be you and everyone who knows you, knows that to be true… “remarkable” comes to mind – don’t even phase about someone who can’t think for himself huh…x
However, this is a great homage:
Have to say, I’m genuinely impressed by your dry, confident response to this Hugh.
In truth, you clearly have nothing to fear. Still, it shows considerable strength of character to be able to respond to apparent plagiarism with such cool reserve.
Still no response from the other chap, alas. Would be nice to hear his side of the story.
“…be his training wheels right.”
That was supposed to say “right now”. 🙂
Many artists have learned by creating reproductions of the masters. Hugh, think of yourself as a “master”.
The first cartoon drawing I ever made was a naked man pushing a lawn mower…. I hope there isn’t a subliminal message I am surpressing. 😉
(All men who just shrinked up a bit reading that, “relax”!)
Anyway, if this “pickle person” needs ideas…
Ever since I met you at a drunken dinner party and basically did nothing but read your business card cartoon portfolio and break the couch, I’ve wanted to copy the card thing. I never could get it right though, neither could that guy. It’s just not the same.
I remember trying to doodle in the manner of Don Hertzfeldt once, but no matter how hard I tried, it was always trying too hard — too much detail, too much going on, etc. I couldn’t get the minimalism right.
The same thing happens in pickleshane’s. Regular comic art on business cards: not so hot. The mouth, the tongue, the sweat drops, the complexity of the scribble, all say “point missed”. Maybe not intentionally, but it misses something that you’d expect copies to miss, because they don’t know how minimal is “too minimal” and overcompensate.
Don’t blame the kid. We all do this. I agree with the people saying that it honors the master to be copied by the student. Naguib Mahfouz, the best Egyptian Novelist ever (Nobel Prize of Litterature in 1988) confessed that when he was young, he would copy entire pages of the French Novelists Balzac and Flaubert, just modify a word here and there and claim that this was his own production. At the end, he found his own voice.
Love the cards. I can see why someone would want to copy you. Think of it as a compliment. I’ve had a couple blogs stolen by copyblogger and that pissed me off at first, but really it just means I had a good idea, right?
I just wish they would give credit where credit is due!
Hugh you are indeed a big man to not take it as anything other than homage (or even parody, why not?). We can be imitated but not wholly copied. Like you said, getting to where one is takes a lot of work! A confident writer/artist knows this.
Consider yourself really, really, really flattered.
At the very least, the little bugger might suggest a rather nice South African wine to drink.
i found the depth and the extent of the appropriation of your style oddly fascinating. it’s almost like you could outsource to him, if necessary.
Most of pickleshane’s drawings seem to be original, though clearly inspired by your work (which isn’t a bad thing). Ripping off like that is stupid, though.
But your cartoon made me realize one thing: twisted + bitter = twitter!
Markes me think of all those junk e-mails I get for replica watches. Looks sorta like the real thing at first glance, but the quality is way sub-par.
I discovered this pickleshane person this morning going through this post.
Going through his stuff, I noticed a lot of influences (the abstract, the pie charts, the signature, the toons and the list goes on…).
From my personal standpoint, I’m drawn to Hugh’s work of course because of the nice delivery, but mostly because I find a way to relate to the message.
If this Pickleshane person has something interesting to say, I’m all eyes and ears. But don’t bite. That ain’t right.
Rich Lafferty: so you’re the guy who did the Pop Tarts commercials? 😉
He’s clearly “borrowing” from your style.
If he’s working on figuring out his own voice and style, he should at least credit you. We should all thank our teachers.
“No man is an island unto himself…” etc., etc. I think this newbie would benefit from learning that we’re all connected, we influence each other, and we should be thankful for that.
The philosophical argument of where flattery and coping in artistic pursuits begin and ends has been echoing through the centuries. The legal one doesn’t seem ending anytime soon either. I think many artists start out by copying others then when that gets boring find their own style, maybe this fella will do the same thing…if not people will always come to the source.
The danger is think anything we create is truly original. All art comes from somewhere, something or someone else…I’d suggest Hugh’s satirical eye goes all the way back to Hogarth, the untold thousands of political cartoonists via Calvin and Hobbes.
I have to say thought when I first saw it I thought it was an ‘early Hugh’.
I think Hugh should sue this dude for attempting to usurp his position as cheap blogging hack. There’s only room enough for one lackluster doodler around here.
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