Let’s face it: most artists are rippers. James Joyce ripped Odysseus by Homer for his novel Ulysses, Dali ripped Da Vinci for his painting The Last Supper, John Williams ripped The Planets by Gustav Holst for the sound tracks of Star Wars… The examples are countless.
I have no problem with people finding inspiration in other people’s work in order to create something new. I only have problems with plagiarism and attention seekers. I know, there is a thin line between plagiarism and ripping, but the essence is that when you come up with an original idea, you can’t prevent people from taking inspiration into it. As long they’re not copying essential parts of your work. It’s a long and difficult discussion, and not one that I want to start here.
What nerves me the most lately are the ripping attention seekers. Those who just jump upon every new idea, twist it in the most unlikely ways for a couple of minutes to avoid the accusation of plagiarism, and then post this monstrosity as fruits of their own creativity. Why? Because they’re obsessed to grow their followership. As such, they are constantly skimming the internet, looking for artists that came up with a fresh angle upon a subject, suck the essence out of it, twist it through some mixers, and then proudly put their face on it.
Why is that making me angry? Because they don’t care about the quality of their work and don’t give credit to the artists whose ideas they rip. The case that made me so angry that I decided to write a post about it was when, after a couple of weeks of work, I posted a painting called obsession that was inspired by Caravaggio’s medusa concept. Barely a couple of hours after posting my work on Instagram, I saw the first of those blogo-clowns showing up with some snake-wicks on their heads. It degrades my own work, because it obscures my contribution among the innuendo they produce.
It made me reconsider how opportune it is to post some of my work on Instagram or Facebook, when you have buffoons like this hanging around there, who are ripping your work on their ever-broadcasting brain-pulp-sites that produce contend for a herd of followers with the attention span of a mosquito.
And this isn’t limited to the field of visual arts. It even affects the book reviewers. The same damn people who’re supposed to be our first defense line against such practices. I’ve seen countless of them who’re shamelessly ripping reviews from other websites. Why? I suppose in an effort to impress the poor minions who can’t read twelve books a week and write three times a week some very insightful review about this reading-marathon. In short, I start to distrust everyone who reads more then four books a week and on top of that, still has time to compose every week four insightful reviews. Or they’re grinding their brains to pulp by doing nothing else than that. Which also makes me doubt such person’s judgement.