Stinging rejection

I just have to get this out now and I'll feel better. So my entry in the last shirt.woot derby was rejected a few hours ago. I was in the top nine. In Shirt.woot derbies, after you make it to the top nine, your official place and number of votes is concealed to keep the top three winners a surprise. This is the best I've ever done--when I was in 10th place I had around 345 votes, which completely destroys my previous record of 40 something.

So yeah, I was rejected and the comment made by the rejector, whoever he/she may be, was "Does not appear to be original artwork."

The theme of the derby was classic comic. So I combined Curious George with Dick Tracy. I used this images as a reference pic.

I did not copy, trace, or "Photoshop" this picture. I used it as a reference to create my own pictures. Yes my pic was very similar, but I did that so people would get the reference.

I'm not too upset about getting rejected--to be honest I was kind of nervous that I would get rejected for Curious George being a recognizable character; didn't know if that would break the rules. What I am upset about is that the comment  left by the rejector insinuates that I plagiarized something. As a writer, former journalist, and overall creative individual, that really really bothers me. I take pride in the things that I do, in my originality. To have that questioned, to see a scuff mark on the squeaky clean floors of my creativity just irks me.

So I think I'm done with woot derbies for a little while. I know that's silly and petty to swear off the whole thing just because I got rejected, but I know I'll be back--I like the challenge of a short deadline and only being able to use six colors--I just need some time for my bruised ego to heal.

Thanks to everyone that voted for me, I really appreciate it.