Question: A Buddhist temple has fund-raising, calling for sponsorship for many small Buddha images in its Buddha hall. Is offering of these Buddha images (供佛像) by donations classified as creating of Buddha images (塑佛像)?
Answer: As 塑佛像 is to make Buddha images, it is different from just paying to support making them. However, since most are not skilled enough to directly make Buddha images, offering sponsorship for pre-made Buddha images is the closest equivalent. Of course, it would be even more meritorious if one can create Buddha images while sponsoring one’s efforts!