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Creativity coach, writing and creative process instructor, speaker, author of Around the Writer's Block: Using Brain Science to Write the Way You Want (Penguin/Tarcher 2012) and Dancing in the Dragon's Den (Red Wheel Weiser), Teaching Artist at the Loft Literary Center.

Mea Culpa and Credit Where Credit Is Due

Big Moon Hug used here with permission from the artist Jerry Lee Kirk

Mea Culpa! I violated an artist’s copyright on the image I included in my last post. I certainly didn’t intend to do that, but I wasn’t as careful as I should have been and want to be. If I had looked a little more, I would have seen the artist’s copyright information. I promise I’ll be more vigilant in the future.

Jerry Lee Kirk, the artist of Big Moon Hug, is not only talented – check out his work on his website  – he’s generously allowing me to keep a copy of his painting on the post. I’m truly grateful because it is such a marvelous companion to the Victor Hugo poem. Thank you Jerry!

Silver Lining

The upside of this situation is that I discovered that Big Moon Hug and other paintings Jerry has created will soon be available as 11 x 14” prints for the very reasonable price of $20 plus shipping.

Based on the comments I’ve gotten from readers, I suspect I won’t be the only person ordering a copy for my office. If you want one, you’ll find Big Moon Hug at the Narrative 1 tab on Jerry’s website and can contact Jerry via his website.

Silver Lining #2

This is also an opportunity to acknowledge my imperfection. Frankly, I’m mortified that I did this, especially since I’m such a stickler about acknowledging sources with my MBA students. I truly hate making mistakes, but I’ve learned that integrity isn’t about being perfect, it’s about admitting my faults and failings humbly and honestly and doing what I can to correct problems.

I’d rather get it right the first time, but I’ve finally realized that it is far better to take action and make a mistake (followed by sincere effort to correct the mistake) than to do nothing because I’m afraid of making a mistake. The expectation of perfection is a common source of writing resistance; it’s also impossible to achieve and makes us miserable.

Karma is on our side. I think the fact that I didn’t intend harm had a little something to do with the fact that Jerry was so polite in his email letting me know he was the artist of the image I used. Jerry’s direct, but calm, reminder that all artists need to protect our copyrights and my prompt apology and effort to not only rectify the omission but to promote Jerry’s art, mark the beginning of what I hope will be a mutually beneficial collaboration with a fellow creative.

Making a new friend is always worth the embarrassment of making a mistake.

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4 Comments on “Mea Culpa and Credit Where Credit Is Due”

  1. rosannebane March 21, 2011 at 2:08 pm #

    Thanks Eden!
    And ditto on the Be Well and Thrive!


  2. Eden Cross March 19, 2011 at 11:19 pm #

    Sometimes, we all make mistakes and forget about the other person…it’s alright when we do, and are caught and shown where we went off the track. THIS is how we learn. Clearly, you did it accidentally — and while that doesn’t obsolve one of having trespassed, it’s quite different than if one had set out to intentionally use while realizing full well that this was not appropriate. I’m glad to hear about it, as it serves as a reminder to me to be conscious of as much as possible, as consistently as I can! Thank you for sharing your lesson with us.
    Be Well and Thrive,
    Eden 🙂


  3. rosannebane March 17, 2011 at 4:56 pm #

    Thanks Michael!


  4. Michael Kelberer March 17, 2011 at 4:52 pm #

    I forgive you!
    And welcome back!


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