Is it OK to Describe an Artist’s Jewelry Design, with Intent to Have Another Jeweler Create a Replica?

by Seaoats.

Is it OK to Describe an Artist's Jewelry Design, with Intent to Have Another  Jeweler Create a Replica?  - Discussion on Jewelry Making Journal

I found a jewelry piece online that I admire.  I contacted the designer but did not get a response.  Would it be OK to describe the design to another artist who I know is responsive?


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  • Joanie says:

    May I ask why you wouldn’t just buy the piece from the original maker?

  • DCinDC says:

    She did say she tried to contact the designer and got no response.

  • Possibly. If this is something you can describe then it’s probably not going to step on toes. “I need large square hoops in gold fill.” Or, “I’d like a peridot necklace with an owl pendant.” Whereas showing someone a beadwoven original and asking them to copy it, not so kosher.

  • AlisonB says:

    I agree. It would very much depend on the piece. That said I’m not sure the original designer could do much about a piece being copied. Plus what is the chance of them finding out? Personally I have copied designs in the past, but these were pretty generic pieces with no designer’s signatory elements.

  • Dianne says:

    I agree with thebeadedlily. Personally, I would never agree to copy someone else’s work for a client unless, as stated above it was a rather generic request. For me, it’s not really a question of the legality or the other artist “finding out”. It’s more of an ethical and moral question.

  • Diana M Pucci says:

    Under the current situation with the Pandemic, I would wait, the original designer may be sick or taking care of someone who is. If after a reasonable time, maybe 6 months, then try thebeadedlily’s idea. Don’t expect a replica of what you saw, just something inspired by the idea. You may even like it better as your input will be part of the new design.

  • Debra Lowe says:

    Totally agree with thebeadedlily, not kosher. I’d try again to contact the artist and explain you want to buy it, if not available, maybe she’ll make something for you.

  • Teresa R says:

    Since you did not get a response to your inquiry, then I think it’s perfectly fine. It’s not as if the artist you are planning to talk to is copying the piece and selling it as her/his own design.

  • Lynn says:

    Asking someone to duplicate another artist’s design is a violation of that artist’s copyright. Her design can serve as the inspiration for another, substantially different design created by your friend, but copying another’s work is, under the law, considered theft of their intellectual property.

  • Monica says:

    No! The artist owns the original design they have created. I would not replicate a piece for a client. I would ask the client to try to contact the original artist again. If for some reason they can not replicate their piece, I would consider making a similar style, but not the exact piece for the client.

  • RMax Breaux says:

    As a Designer/Maker, I would be filing in court. If you go to ANYONE else to have my copyrighted design replicated, I would be filing against both of you for violation of copyright.
    Being inspired by another design is one thing, “copying the piece”, whether or not you claim the design as yours or not is unethical.

  • Sally says:

    No, without the copy write and the original artist’s release you are asking another artist to plagiarize. And that is very illegal. Even if the original creation is not copy written it is very disrespectful to ask another artist to replicate it. One cannot always have everything one wants. Art is a piece of that Artist. And any artist replicating another Artist work is no different than robbing a fellow artist.

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