As our Light Painting Art Form grows there are so many good things that are happening, but unfortunately within this growth there will also be people looking to take advantage of our knowledge, our reputations and the community we have built. As a Light Painter and the owner of the Light Painting Brushes Brand I am in a unique position to understand that there is a whole lot more that goes into building a successful Light Painting Tool company than just making something that Lights up. Just a few of the things that I think are important are community, providing excellent customer service, delivering products when you say you are going to, having the ability to understand and answer a customers technical questions not only about the product but also about how to achieve the Light Painting results they are after and most importantly is having INTEGRITY in everything you do. As more Light Painting companies pop up, most just copy cats, I think it’s important for the community to hear what is going on behind the scenes with some of these companies. This is one story.
Light Painter Roy Wang has a valuable lesson to share with the Light Painting Community. Recently Roy was approached by a Chinese lighting manufacturer (I am not going to mention the name) with the idea of creating a Light Painting Tool. Roy was excited about the idea and so he got to work right away designing a tool that he thought would be good for the Light Painting Community. Unfortunately Roy trusted the word of the company and did not get a contract in place before he shared his design.
The short version of this story is that the company took Roy’s design, his years of experience, his knowledge and used it to create a working product that they have now brought to market. This tool is Roy’s design. The company is using Roy’s design, his knowledge, his reputation and even his images to sell this Light Painting tool but has never paid Roy for any of his work.
MOST IMPORTANTLY: Now this company is trying to cut Roy out of the picture completely. This company has stopped communicating with Roy and is approaching other established Light Painters in our community. They are offering Light Painters this Light Painting Tool for free or a small fee in exchange for the online promotion of this tool.
I think this is an excellent opportunity for the Light Painting Community to stand together and show that these actions will not be supported in our community. If you have been approached or are approached by a company offering a tool similar to what Roy shows in his pictures I hope you will shine a bright light and stand for integrity in this situation however you see fit.
I have reached out to the company for their side of the story and have not received a response, when I do I will update this article.
UPDATE: The company responded and admitted that they did work with Roy (and other artists) and used his ideas to created this tool. Unfortunately they do not see anything wrong with these types of practices. Below is a screen shot of the message.