Re: Next Designer Contest: September 2012
I have a question about the use of CU items in creating the minikits for the weekly challenges. The contest rules for both week 1 and week 2 state the following: "You may use commercial use/designer resource products in the creation of your kit." Now the last thing I want to do is to stir up a hornet's nest, but I am wondering how consumers (i.e., the people who purchase these products) feel about the use of CU items.
When I see a new kit for sale, it is sometimes difficult for me to determine just how much of it is original and how much is CU materials purchased from other designers and then recolored or tweaked slightly (or whatever it is that people do with CU items). I ask because I have noticed a sameness that has been creeping into the digital scrapbooking industry. As a good example, recently a number of designers used the exact same CU items for a blog train. Whether they were bows or flowers or other items doesn't really matter; what did matter was that everything looked the same in that blog train!
In fact, using CU items has gotten to be so pervasive that I rarely purchase or download anything any more because I have so many kits that all look the same. What I would really like to see is designers ... no, artists ... who are actually doing their own sketches, drawings, doodles, etc. I want to see their take on how the world looks, not what other people have designed because maybe they are lucky enough to own a Wacom or whatever it is one needs to design.
That's why I'm relying on you as artists to create your own visions that will move me enough to purchase your products. Believe me, I know how hard it is to design. I can't do it; I've tried. I just plain don't have a "painterly eye." I can't sing worth a toot, and I can't draw either, but I sure can dance and I also love to build pretty layouts with the lovely things YOU CREATE. Not someone else. Heck, since you've provided the credits, I'll just go to that person's site and purchase the CU items for myself.
So please don't put a kit together using a bunch of CU items that you purchased and then call yourself a designer. And please don't be angry at me for stating the obvious about a problem that is rampant in the digital scrapbooking industry. I don't want to make anyone feel bad or guilty. What I do want to do is encourage everyone who wants to be a digital scrapbook designer to develop her own talents. Take classes in art and design. Learn how colors work together. Doodle and sketch a lot. Practice, practice, practice! And above all, develop your own true vision.
Thank you very much for reading my little rant. This has been bothering me for a long, long time. So tonight when I saw a nice enough minikit in Round 1but then read all the credits for CU items, I was astounded. The person really hadn't done much of anything that was her own. The Studio is seeking a new designer, but I hope that whomever is chosen is actually a designer, an artist, someone with design skills who knows how to create new art using a design program, not just another colorist.