The trees are changing colours almost every day these days. Windy, wet, but warm sun. An incredibly beautiful morning like this is worth to spend near the huge living room window. I’m drinking hot coffee, looking outside and thinking what would be the first project I will look at after the breakfast. The team is coming to the studio in an hour, so there is plenty of time. There are 7 bigger ongoing projects and few small ones, mostly for my good friends. It’s always fun to do, because they trust me, so our discussion is not about colour or chosen typeface, but about the core ideas hidden and carefully shown in the design. What does the project say to you? And to them?
Finishing my coffee, sitting still and being absorbed by nature outside. Checking one of the green parrots that lives on the big oak in the garden. A hint of a memory, super sudden: I see the trial from above, marble floor, then a big zoom into the papers from the court. Red stamps on it. Bunch of lawyers in the huge hall planning their trip to The Alps, joking… Just remember that day I finally won the trial for my copyright. I just blurry remember the “creative agency” apparently trying to steal and monetize on my ideas..but I don’t care, I’m fine. Let’s shake this memo down. Feel relieved again and starting a new day. Beautiful day.
Obviously, the © “coin” has two sides. The first one protects creator’s intellectual property, where the other side reveals the issue of using the work of others. We live in a world of Big Data, where “posting”, “sharing”, “forking” and “uploading” generates 3.1 quintillion bytes of data a day (quintillion has 18 zeros). People became machines for sharing their lives through the cameras of their phones, libraries scan all the books, clients are bombing us with loads of emails asking for mood boards (=steal something nice please), programmes upload millions of lines of code a day and social networks are exploding with billions of “likes” a minute. In all that visual and textual mess the designer might see his inspiration, same inspiration the artists used to see outside in the plain-air hundred years ago. And whatever inspiration is free.. or should be. But where is the boundary between being inspired or creating a healthy appropriational mix and the zone of stealing?
Seems to me as a right thing, to protect my work and know how the law works. One day I might be happier thanks to taking care of my projects and knowing what is/isn’t possible with works of others. As a designer that connects graphic design with technology, video art with advertising and performance with immaterial work I have to be in constant alert mode. Knowing the art history, checking what’s new in the design scene, reading hacker news, thinking what open-source typeface and code might be helpful for my solutions, etc. Basically, I encounter the field of creative ownership on an hourly basis. Therefore I find being asked to work for a first time with “Creative Commons Licence” incredibly refreshing. And that’s why “Select Your Memories” project I’m currently developing for Beeld and Geluid Archive is one big adventure.
The trees are changing colours almost every day these days. Windy, wet, but warm sun. Of course, I have no time to admire this autumn, it’s same mash of the daily routines as every autumn. I’m almost running to grab my extremely patterned socks. Put on whatever shoes are near the door and leave the apartment. Have to hurry and speed up this bike ride a bit. I have to be on time this morning. My boss will be waiting… and I have to smile again, showing the shittiest design ever to sell it to some idiots who will ask me 10 times about what if we try to do it “serif underlined”.
Trying to lock my bike but again, with a wrong key… takes twice as long as I imagined. A hint of a memory, super sudden: I see the trial from above, marble floor, then a big zoom into the papers from the court. Red stamps on it. A bunch of lawyers in the huge hall planning their trip to The Alps, joking.. me, super angry and humbled. Just remember that day I lost the trial against that fu*king “creative agency” that stole and monetised on my ideas. They did well, just took it from me. Let’s shake this memo down otherwise, I feel even less comfortable than before and make another expensive appointment with my therapist. I have to start this new day right now. Let’s put on some random smile a go!