What does homage mean

Of course, to varying degrees – sometimes the creation of a genius of past centuries inspires something new, and sometimes long-recognized masterpieces are parodied or simply recreated using new technologies. Is this plagiarism? Not necessarily. The line is sometimes very thin, but in many cases, this way to join someone else's glory is completely approved. We're talking about homage.

In its original form, homage assumed only the emergence of a personal relationship between the overlord and the vassal, which later may lead to the transfer of the land ownership of the subordinate nobleman to the lord. The fact that one recognizes the unconditional superiority of the other while not losing their individuality can be what is mainly considered in common with the modern definition of homage. Approximately the same thing happens in the world of art, but this meaning in the modern context is rather metaphorical.

Pay tribute to master

Homage is something that is created to pay tribute to a recognized master, either still living or already dead. So the artist expresses admiration for the work of their idol, the person who inspires the creation of new works. The new creation should look in the eyes of the general public as such, but in fact, it should be recognized that the motives for creating homages can also be more pragmatic.

How is it different from plagiarism

Homage in the art can often be confused with explicit plagiarism, but the difference between them is huge. The former is done solely to convey respect to the author and their work, while the latter is done solely to take someone's creation and present it as their own.

Vivid and memorable examples of homage are found in various fields of art: painting, cinema, literature, etc. As such, a literary homage will be intentionally written in honor of a respected author but not as an imitation of their style. And in movies or TV series, the director re-enacts a famous scene to pay homage to the work of the original filmmaker.

Work of homage in film

For example, the writers of the series "Stranger Things" decided to pay tribute to several movies at once. In addition to the standard school story with canteen locations, corridors with lockers, and a common courtyard, many places with explicit references to famous movies were added. The series is full of allusions to "The Goonies", "Aliens", "Stand by me", "Explorers", and many others. Also, the famous actress Winona Ryder received not only a role in the series but also a homage to her old roles.

While such references may look too similar to scenes in the original movies, it's not plagiarism – they were all done using different actors, sets, and modern technology. And if someone tries to convict the authors, they would not claim that everything was invented by them from scratch and is not a reference.

When to pay homage and why

Often, directors use homage in their films to show the depth of the idea portrayed on the screen while associating it with another movie. However, this technique can also be used outside of the big cinema in simpler video forms – any blogger can easily create an homage of their own.

If you plan to create a video containing homage, you must also consider its practicality. For example, the identity of the person you want to refer to. Just think about it – how to praise an artist in front of the public if the artist is unknown? For homage, the popularity of the original source is of fundamental importance.

Notice how often Dali's "The Persistence of Memory" is used in the film and art industry. So often, the image of a flowing clock is in front of everyone's eyes, although not everyone will immediately remember its exact name. Thus, it is not the fame of a work of art that becomes important but its thematic or visual significance to the audience.

Pay homage to master

It should be said that the successful use of homage only emphasizes the creator's talent and in no way diminishes their dignity. Inept use of homage, on the other hand, can ruin the entire visual sequence, even if the idea was interesting, so it's worth considering the execution of homage from beginning to end.