Rant Alert - *woowoo woowoo* !!!
Phewee! It's been a bit of a crappy past week here in Panda cottage and I'm very much looking forward to a night off tonight - okay, well, a few hours anyway.
As well as copyright issues (have I broken them - no, I haven't! Why not? This is why... *and repeat 326543 times hee hee) I've also spotted that someone copied my work and was selling each piece for about a tenner. The excuse was that she had no idea who I was and that she found the stuff on Google images (oh, well, that's okay then!) but with a stern legal letter it's been resolved and she's stopped selling them now, thank chuff. I just won't take it laying down, folks, so please don't copy my stuff. I am here to help you to learn this craft yourself, always here for advice and tips and I think I do a pretty good job so please do your own thing and stay away from my ideas and designs as a common courtesy as well as it being just plain copyright and I will sue the pants off you.
There have been a few people in the past week that think it's not at all rude to say that they think my stuff is too expensive. It's their right to an opinion, they say. Why do they think it's okay to say this? How on earth do they know what goes into each piece? I consider myself to be at the top of the game with perfect cutting skills, a nice range of original designs and I'm a little bit popular so why should I give stuff away? Everything sells within the first minute and to be honest I could put my prices UP but don't want to take the piss.
Just as a wee breakdown for the rude ones amongst you, this is what goes into PP...
It is the sole income for me and Mr P. It pays the rent, bills - everything.
I employ three mums who work from home, with flexible hours and above the minimum wage plus bonuses.
I pay my National Insurance and taxes to the government.
I pay for all my fonts to be used commercially.
I pay for business insurance.
Only the absolute best top quality ingredients are used and are sourced from small family businesses in the UK. If something isn't up to scratch I don't stock it anymore and I look for something better. You will only ever buy the best from Paper Panda - not a £2 frame from Wilko's in sight.
The amount of things that go missing in the post add up to hundreds of pounds per month and this comes out of our pockets. No, we don't claim through Royal Mail as we simply don't have the time.
I support several charities as well as giving away hundreds of pounds per month to friends in need. I am a generous person. I do not sleep on a bed of cash.
I appreciate that this rant and breakdown of costings isn't something that every artist or shop does as a rule, but I have gotten to the point where I feel that I have to justify myself. Disgusting isn't it?
I awoke this morning to a staggering amount of likes, comments and shares on my latest 'The Stag' papercut. I lay in bed reading all the comments and grinning like the Cheshire Cat. I love it, I do. I take every comment on board and it proper warms my heart. Until I come across some guy who wrote:
'Hard work, very clever, but wouldn't getting a life be more satisfying?'
This horrible comment ruined my day. It made me cry. I suffer from terrible anxiety and haven't left the cottage since last Monday (8 days ago) and this really hit home. WHY do people feel the need to be so utterly vile? Can you please remember that behind every page there is a person with feelings? There are 4500 'likes' on that piece of work so far and that one stupid comment ruined it all for me. I know it shouldn't, but there it is.
Thankfully I have a merry little band of followers that loyaly stick by
me and know that my work is worth every penny, and I love them for it.
My heart and soul goes into every single piece and if you own a Paper
Panda then you'll know this. I also know that I should concentrate on the positives, but as any artist knows this is almost impossible to do. We are sensitive souls y'know!
The ultimate aim of this piece is to please think before you type and always be kind, it doesn't cost anything. My Mum always said 'If you haven't got anything nice to say then don't say anything at all'.
Also, stop bloody copying me, yer' buggers!