Polymer shrinks the world

The ladies of the Samunnat Nepal project graciously wrote me to ask if they could make more of what they call “Petal Mala” polymer necklaces to raise money for their studio and I happily agreed.

They were very sensitive about copying my design for profit. On one of the panel discussions at the RAM weekend, Pier Voulkos reminded us that she only taught a technique when she was finished with it, had moved on, and could let it go out into the universe without resentment.

My pinched petal lei was “released” when the step-by-step instructions were published in our Color Inspirations book. How gratifying it is to have shared this pattern and watch it travel around the globe to help others.

My Hawaiian-inspired design arrived in Nepal via Australia’s Wendy Moore. Cynthia Tinapple, PCD publisher, will continue this story about our “shrinking” polymer world when she returns in December.

guest post by Lindly Haunani

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  • reply Julie Picarello ,

    What an inspiring post, Lindly! The Samunnat project as a whole is amazing, and the ladies look lovely graced by their versions of your work (loved reading their blog!). Most especially, I appreciate reading Pier’s comment…and I could not agree more. Thank you for the wonderful start to the morning!

    • reply Alice Stroppel ,

      I can only imagine how wonderful you must feel to be able to contribute to the future success of these women. The Samunnat project is such and inspiring story from beginning to end. Thanks for sharing.

      • reply Randee M Ketzel ,

        Well, if you believe in Karma, (as I do) then surely an ocean of the good stuff is coming your way–these are beuatiful and perfect for such a wonderful project. Bravo, Lindley!

        • reply Anita Brandon ,

          It must be so gratifying to see one’s designs incorporated into something like the Samunnat project. They chose their project well! I love Pier Voulkos’ sentiments on the sharing of techniques.

          • reply Laura Timmins ,

            What a wonderful place to share your design, Lindley! I also agree with what Pier said in the panel discussion during the RAM weekend. However a distinction needs to be made: there is a difference between a technique and a design for the purpose of copyright.

            A technique is the process used to make the work and is not protected under copyright law in the US. Techniques are what teachers usually teach (although they often have the student copy a design in order to teach the technique). If you want to keep a technique to yourself you should not share it. Once it’s shared, as Pier said, it has been let go.

            A design is the finished concept, the finished work of art, and the work of art is automatically protected by copyright. Quoting from http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ40.pdf

            “The owner of copyright in a work has the exclusive right to make copies, pre-
            pare derivative works, sell or distribute copies, and display the work publicly. Anyone else wishing to use the work in these ways must have the permission of the author or someone who has derived rights through the author.”

            • reply Sharon Plummer ,

              Thank you for sharing your experience with us and for providing the PayPal link so that we can contribute to the Samunnat project. I hope that my small donation will help these talented and brave women to become self sufficient and break the chain of domestic violence.

              • reply Lindly Haunani ,

                The education and economic empowerment of women- worldwide, is a crucial issue. I admire Wendy Moore’s manifestation of her creative vision. Coupled with the courage and determination of the Ladies of the Samunnat Nepal Project – this is a wonderful positive example of changing the world we all live in for the better. The smiles on their faces = priceless.

                Even if you can only afford to donate $5 at this time= one Starbuck’s Mocha Frappacino – you are helping fellow polymer artists halfway across the world.

                Aloha (Namaste in Hawaiian) Lindly

                • reply Sabine Spiesser ,

                  Lindly, what an absolutely fabulous way to contribute to the well-being of the women and the wonderful project. What a way of “licensing” your design.
                  There is more to copyright than the legal side in my view. There is a moral and ethical side of not doing to peers what you don’t want someone to do to you. Some people have this moral fibre and others don’t with all shades of grey in-between.

                  • reply Wendy Moore ,

                    What an amazing, generous community the ‘polymer community’ is. We have been so, so encouraged. Both by Cynthia’s visit which has been truly incredible (and this would come as no surprise to the thousands who ‘know here via PCD’), and by the great generosity and support and love that the community has shown to us. Lindly is a gem and Cynthia has photos of how we display our Lindly malas. I would say we are lost for words but now Cynthia nows that is not our style! We are very interested in the discussion about copyright as in the Nepali culture, there is much copying and not so much recognition of indvidual artists. Especially in artisan classes where you work to specific and traditional designs. We are learning so much. I hope people feel how grateful we are and that joy comes to you from knowing you are making such a difference to us. Maybe we are a little bit lost for words….THANK YOU. DHANYABAD.

                    • reply Sandra ,

                      Hi Lindly! Yes, polymer shrinks the world and it is wonderful that a little piece of clay can united the world.

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                      • I'm Cynthia Tinapple, an artist, curator, and leader in the polymer clay community for over 20 years.

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