disposable diaries: copycats & creativity

We have all been at a place where we are admiring someone’s work so much that you just add a little bit of their ideas to yours, it’s just inspiration right? One of the hardest questions I find to answer is how can you derive inspiration from someone else’s work without stealing it?


Many times I’ve seen someone’s instagram post, or blog, or some form of creative idea and I’ve made slight changes but still used it, I wouldn't call myself a copy cat as I don't necessarily pass it off as my own by giving myself picture credit when I didn't take the picture. It seems there is an understanding that "borrowed" images through social media posting is accepted, for example, especially images on Pinterest. Often I don't have the means to take certain pictures, like a retro kitchen, so I borrow that image when needed.


It was not until recently that I realized how taking from someone’s work is hurting yourself. I’ve always thought "oh they won’t even notice", and they may or they may not, but by taking from someone else in the long run your only hindering yourself.


Why are you hurting (or hindering) yourself? You're cutting your own creativity short. Let’s say I was recording a podcast episode on skincare. If I’m “borrowing” from other peoples podcasts on skincare, using their thoughts not mine, their opinions are what I’m projecting and those opinions might not even be true. Where as if I put in the research, project my opinions and record my thoughts more people will be apt to listen because it comes through the recording that it’s my work and research.


Taking inspiration from other people is good, but its always important to be aware that you don't want to always be cutting and pasting. Even if you don't have access to a retro kitchen, find something in your own home that you love even more because it's you. Strive to be the person people want to copy from, not the person copying from others. But its okay to be inspired while you strive.