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"Copy Cat" Chapter re: Patterns Curation

By TheShuttersmith

*It would be really ironic if somebody already suggested this as a chapter theme but I swear I didn’t mean to release a duplicate! Also, I’ve left annotations in the text of photographs that I think best represent that particular point if it helps or anything.*

We are copy cats. We imitate, mimic, duplicate and recreate on repeat. Whether it’s imitating products of nature or copying each other, it’s a behavioural pattern that has been recurring for as long as we can remember. We aspire to be like our role models [1]. We follow the crowd to fit in. We always want what someone else has. We observe, and we mimic.

We see birds fly and then invent the aeroplane [2]. We see animals and wear their prints on our bodies. The classic Aztec pattern is a result of the Aztecs reproducing geometric shapes they saw in nature [3]. We attempt to mirror the social standards set up by the media [4]. It is embedded in us; monkey see monkey do.

However, when we start to imitate each other, a strange obsession with originality emerges. We are aware that we are only reproducing what is already there, yet we love to do it anyway. As Oscar Wilde so eloquently phrased it, “talent borrows, genius steals”. Besides, isn’t imitation the best form of flattery [5],[6]?

If there is a pattern of conformity, then breaking the pattern would be non-conformity [7]. Then all the nonconformists become conformists in their nonconformity. And if non-conformity becomes conformity, are we then stuck in an endless cycle of breaking and creating patterns?

Alas, we are unique because we blend in to make up one larger pattern [8],[9]. We are all unique, just like everybody else. We observe, and we mimic [10]. We are copy cats.

EDIT: For some reason this text RECord, and all the images I've curated into an album claim not to be in an album when you open the drawer but they are! Click for curated chapter album.


Created: Feb 12, 2014

Tags: leader, follow, copy cat, curation, blend, pattern, copy, conformity, non-conformity, repeat, duplicate, imitation, reproduce, people, unique, originality, repetition, recreate, mimic, the shuttersmith

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