Thursday, January 30, 2014

Friday's Faves..."My Bonnie Lies Over The Ocean" a story of a faux pas and forgiveness

I love everything about the blog, Sunday Brocantes.
The author is Cat, writer, photographer, foodie, vintage seller, wife to "the French Guy" and mama of three, who lives on a farm called Rabbit Hill in Normandy, France.

Cat has managed to roll everything I love up into one beautiful blog bundle...
  • France - I've never been there, but my dream trip would be to go on one of Cat's tours of the French Brocantes.
  • French Farmhouse - Cat's home, Rabbit Hill, is just about perfect in my book, just the right mix of rustic and elegant.
  • Family -  She has a handsome French husband, two sons and a sweet baby girlie and she clearly adores them all.
  • Faith - I love Cat's story on God's provision of getting to move to Rabbit Hill.
  • Food - My can she cook!  And the photos she takes of the food are mouth watering.  Seriously, the woman needs to write a cookbook.
  • Fabulous vintage/antique finds - She sells her beautiful brocante finds in her online shop.  I wish I could buy one of everything!
So, one day I was reading a blog post that Cat wrote about the cows that lived in the pasture next to Rabbit Hill.
One photo, (the twelfth one down on the link above if you want to click over to her post),
captured my heart.
The cow, the fence, the was a perfect cow photo if there ever was one.
So, I showed Cat's blog photo to my friend who paints and asked her to paint me a cow.

At the time, it never occurred to me that I was, in essence, stealing Cat's image.
You see, when I watercolor something, like a tulip, for instance,
if I don't have a tulip to look at I sometimes have to look up an image of a tulip,
so in my mind it was sort of like that.
EXCEPT, my painting skills are lacking enough that it never looks like the original.
When my uber talented friend showed me the painting of the cow when it was about half way done,
it hit me what I had done, for this wasn't sort of like Cat's photo,
this was exactly like Cat's photo!

That night I emailed Cat and attached a photo of the painting,
confessing what I had done.
I truly felt heartsick.
I loved my painting.
But, I knew what I had done was wrong, even if I hadn't started out with that intention.
I had stolen her photo image and not only that, 
I had involved my sweet artist friend as a blissfully ignorant accomplice!

Cat so graciously emailed me back
asking that I simply give her credit for the original image when I showed you my painting.
(Of course, I am more than happy to do that!)
She also told me that this cow, "Bonnie", was her favorite.
I feel so privileged to have "Bonnie" hanging in my home.

 So that is my story of Bonnie, who lies over the ocean in France,
of my embarrassing faux pas,
and of a most gracious lady, named Cat, who forgave me.

The moral of this story is,
it is NOT better to ask forgiveness than permission.
If you want to use someone else's image in any way,
ask permission first!

Well, it's almost Friday, friends.
Have a HAPPY, HAPPY Friday
a BLESSED weekend!


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  1. That picture is adorable and full of personality. I love your confession too. We often don't realize the lines we cross and it is good to check and double check before finishing a project. When I first began to blog I googled images to connect with my story. Now I know you can't do that. SO we learn lessons and move on.
    good blog post.

    1. I knew never to use other people's images on my blog, but somehow didn't think through painting someone's image. Now I can truly enjoy my painting thanks to Cat's graciousness!

  2. Elizabeth, what a sweet post about making mistakes and finding forgiveness. Girl, I could write a whole lot on that subject, although no cows would be mentioned.

    Speaking of the cow, Bonnie is simply adorable!

    1. I'm so thankful to Cat's graciousness toward me. Now I can truly enjoy "Bonnie"!

  3. Elizabeth,
    I agree with Dayle...this is a sweet post on mistakes and forgiveness. Love that you shared with us as. And yes it is good to check first but love that you reached out and asked for forgiveness. I was truly touched by this. A delightful painting too.

    1. Beth, I couldn't have enjoyed my painting without Cat's generous blessing to use her image.

  4. Thanks for pointing us in the direction of Cat's blog. I'm looking forward to following her. There is a picture of her daughter stooping over an open window (in the cow post) that I would love to paint--BUT............ha ha

    I love the Bonnie painting. Her white face and pink nose are so charming--

    Thanks for sharing this story with us--

    1. Dianne, I think you'll really enjoy Cat's blog.

  5. Your friend did a FABULOUS job on your painting!! She really captured Cat's wonderful photo of the cow.
    Mary Alice

  6. What a sweet post..and response from Cat. I love that you were honest (even though you didn't intentionally copy) and look how you were blessed because of it? Love your little Bonnie. I have a sweet painting of a cow that my husband's grandmother painted when she was very young. I just love it...just as you do yours :-)

    1. Caryn, now I can truly enjoy my cow painting without feeling guilty thanks to Cat's grace to me.

  7. I love that painting. I was so hoping to see the cows at their home when I went last September, but one of the cows had a baby and they took them all away. I hope you get to go over there some day and can meet Cat and French Guy. You will love Cat more after you meet her and oh, don't get me started on Rabbit Hill and Cat's cooking.

    1. I love my painting too, Kim. I enjoyed following your trip to France and seeing all of your fabulous French finds!

  8. Bonnie looks so sweet in your home. The spirit that you showed when you asked permission certainly must have endeared Cat to you. I'm heading over to visit her blog.

  9. The picture you picked is so "you" (and I like it, too)! I probably wouldn't have thought it "wrong" to ask a friend to paint one using it as a pattern. Your tender heart and Cat's gracious spirit are lovely things ♥

    1. Rebecca, I didn't think it was wrong at first, but when I saw "Bonnie" and she looked just like Cat's image I knew I had taken something without the proper permission. I do love the painting!

  10. Your painting is gorgeous, Elizabeth! Your friend did a wonderful job. I'm so glad you shared this story with us. xo


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