Wednesday, 5 August 2009


I'm away in London and on a bit of a timed internet connection BUT i had to post about this.


and then HERE before you read the rest of my post.

I'm feeling pretty hurt by this. The fact that someone believed they could trace my work is pretty awful but that she then went on to enter it into a competition which she won is devastating. As most of you know I graduated at the start of the month. I am likely the same age as Samantha Beeson and with a similar amount of professional experience, to start my career with this is pretty disheartening. My heart goes out to Lauren Nassef who is an incredibly talented illustrator and absolutely doesn't deserve to have to had this happen (who does i guess?)
I will post on this properly when I get back. Copyright is a difficult issue and I need to have time to process all of this and then try and sort something out.
Thanks to everyone who has contacted me about this. It is good to know that there are so many people looking out for each other on this here internet.

On a lesser note she also stole my handwriting. Who doesn't have even enough creativity to write the word 'hello'? Urgh.


Kate said...

I didn't think this story could get any worse, this is so so awful! I'm sorry you have to go through this.

Scribbler said...

this is disgusting. on the upside, now we all have discovered you, and how marvelous.

nothing but good will come of this. keep your head high.

janis said...

What a sad individual she is. This is very upsetting. So sorry you have to deal with this Lizzy ... though it looks like you have a lot of good people looking out for you now. Good luck to you, and all of us for that matter.

Birds on the Wire said...

That is unbelievable. At least it's been uncovered, but still what kind of person does that?
Wish you all the best with it & I hope it all gets sorted.

anabela / fieldguided said...

I thought her winning design looked familiar. Ugh, how heartbreaking for you.

Cassiemarie said...

That is so disturbing! I hope you don't stop sharing your beautiful artwork online as a result, that would be too sad.
On the flipside, your artwork won a prestigious award! I know it is weird to think of it that way, but hopefully more good than bad will come of it in the long run.

Lotte Beatrix Crawford said...

Im shocked! what a sad individual

Kathleen said...

I can't believe she stole your "hello"! I mean I find all of it staggeringly atrocious, but the hello is the nail in the coffin. I'm so sorry this is happening to you. I hope it is resolved quickly and fruitfully for you.

Glueandglitter said...

I also am bewildered at this happening after reading about Lauren's work yesterday it just gets worst.

Personally I am not sure how I would deal with such a thing. I suppose it must feel like she has stolen your identity, part of you and all your work.

I hope that it gets resolved and I will be on the look out for the outcome and how to deal with it myself.

What I am impressed with those is how tight knit this art & design community is and how although we are more naive to having a work stolen, but probably much more likely to find out about it and have it sorted. It's great that everyone is pulling together.

Kristy said...

Not that I'm condoning it but if I could I would steal your handwriting too!

Mon Petit Fantome said...

This is horrible Lizzy! I feel so heartbroken for you and the other artists this plagiarist has stole from. Your work is fantastic and you deserve all the great things coming to ya. Hopefully karma will have its way with this! I'll keep my eyes peeled for any other fowl works, and I think, in this day and age, all of us artists really need to look out for each other.

amy said...

its devestating, i hope you're ok! i've had minor things like this happen to me in the past and you feel liked you've been kicked in the guts. you're a wonderful illustrator, it will work itself out i'm sure. x

fiona said...

argh it's obscene!! i don't know how people can do that. so bloody obviously too! hope you are okay, you've got plenty of biff support behind you!

Lizzy Stewart said...

THANKYOU EVERYONE. Its really nice to know that there are so many people looking out for you when stuff like this happens. Hopefully this can getting sorted out quickly and everyone can move on relatively unscathed!

Lindsay Grime said...

It;s crazy she thought she could get away with that! totally unbelievable.

art4friends said...

my thoughts are with you during this terrible experience.

And thank you for your following post expressing your thoughts and encouraging people to do the right thing.

It makes me sick too, but as you say, you are lucky someone found it!

Keep up the AMAZING work, the REAL Lizzy.

Kate Slater said...

This is horrible, there must be something you can do, especially as she entered a competition with YOUR work. Maybe try contacting the AOI, they're always really helpful. The copyright thing is really definite, even if she'd just taken a tiny part of one image it would still be identified as yours copyright-wise, although I don't know how you'd deal with it legally.

I hope you manage to sort it out!

Kate x

Grace said...

Hello there.

I wrote to the award that she entered (and won) and I thought you would like to know that I received a reply from them. This is the email that I sent and their reply: (I am sorry that I only refered to Lauren and not you as well...)

Sent: Thu, Aug 6, 2009 11:27 am
Subject: Joanna Bowring

Dear Joanna,

You may be aware of this already, so I am sorry if I am already adding to the pile. I wanted to make sure that you had seen the link below about one of your
winners of the 2009 texprint award. Samantha Beeston has stolen the work of a very talented illustrator in a completely blatant way.

I am a photographer, and have had my own work copied before, so I feel very passionate about this. I just wanted to make sure that you knew the £750 prize money should have gone to the illustrator Lauren Nassif instead. I have enclosed her email address below.

Lauren is a freelance illustrator living in Chicago. She graduated from the
Rhode Island School of Design in 2001.

You can contact her here.

Many thanks

The reply:

Re: Joanna Bowring
Thursday, 6 August, 2009 3:03 PM
Add sender to Contacts

We are looking into this matter and will endeavour to reply to everyone who has contacted us. We do take breaches of copyright very seriously.

ithinkitsnice said...

"Copyright is a difficult issue"

Actually, it's very clear cut, although I'm sure the situation's difficult. At least it's got to the point where it's all coming out in the wash.

Good luck.

Victoria Whincup said...

How ridiculous! How on earth does someone think it's okay to do something like that? I hope you get it all sorted out. Chin up.

Anonymous said...

I'm a long time reader and big time fan of your work. I've never commented until now. I"m so sorry to hear about this. As a fellow illustrator I feel just sick about it.

Stephanie said...

I am shocked! I saw that girl's work at New Designers exhibition in London last month, and I'm so annoyed because I liked it! Brilliant drawings, such a shame some people are such wannabes, hope you aren't too upset, it makes me feel a bit ill.

Emily said...

I can't imagine the sea of feelings this has caused, and I'm sorry you have to go through it. As another commenter put it, it was through this fandango that I have discovered your wonderful work (and as an extra rah rah for you, I love Woodpigeon's music — you did a lovely job on Songbook!).

Really though, there can't be much of a silver lining when you have been robbed, so any kind words are only small consolations, I'm sure. I wish you all the best and hope this all blows over very soon.


Ilana Kohn said...

wow, unbelievable! certainly glad you found out about it though. yeesh!!