What to do about copycat photographersBy
“Got Milk?” How many copycat versions of this clever slogan have you seen? You are not alone in feeling copied. It happens in the big time too.
I think in every town there is a studio that is a leader, many that follow, and some that flat out copy.
It may help you to think about why do others copy you? As I found with a Google search, copying is everywhere. There were quite a few forums where this was a popular subject.
Every creative person experiences are being copied. I am sure you have heard that copying is the highest form of a compliment. But that is hardly comforting I know.
One blogger’s advice was “simmer quietly and rage internally.” The Country Baker on Etsy says: “I have often had others ride my coat tails. I figure when they do that, they are ‘eating my dust’!”
We all have seen and heard many horror stories. You will hear of everything from a “photographer” using other photographer’s images on their website and claiming them as their own (which is against federal law) to basically copying someone’s style by using the same props, poses, and locations.
You might also experience professional jealousy. When I won Master Photographer of the Year in the state of Iowa, of course someone questioned if I broke a rule. Competitive people hate to be beat.
Honestly, what can you do? All you can do is work on changing your own perspective of the problem and move on.
Is what you are creating truly novel? Or are you emulating others as well?
The sad truth is that some people just can’t be happy for one another. Competition or other people’s success brings out the worst in the worst of them.
Concentrate on your business as well as your creativity. A savvy business person will long out perform an insecure copycat.