Ok. So I have been trying to write this journal for quite some time. I haven't been able to because I wanted to make sure I knew what I wanted to say first. But after having many long discussions with my fiancee about her wanting to leave DA because of her
dissatisfaction with the overall community, I decided I knew exactly what to say; this isn't Facebook.
I started submitting my art here back in 2007. I was young, naive and I would draw anything and everything I thought other people would want to see as long as I thought it meant other people would favorite my art and watch my page. I took art trades, gift arts and Lord knows how many RPs. I would watch people who would watch me out of sense of mutual courtesy and would load up my favorites folder with other artists' work that I thought looked the best. And then, something happened…I got bored.
I suddenly grew tired of always drawing what other people wanted and never feeling happy about it. I wanted to create my own art, my own characters even if no one else wanted to comment on them. And so I decided to draw my own creations. When I favorited another artists' work I left a comment and I would only watch someone if I really felt I needed to. And, to the shock of many, I decided to stop my run of free art and start taking commission requests, even if only a tiny handful of folk would take up the offer.
And as I reached the year 2014 after being involved with this online art community for over 7 years and meeting my fiancee on this site, she told me she wanted to leave DA all together or has come very close to doing so. She told me how she would work very hard on creating wonderful and original characters (and they are indeed original and cool) and that no one would even comment or look at her work. To her it seemed like people were judging her work based on looks alone rather than the work itself.
And so, what does this long, rambling journal have to do with anything. Well Dudes and Dudettes, I suppose I too have noticed that most folks who pass through my gallery are folks who either:
A) Add me to their watch list but do not favorite or comment on my work
B) Add my art to their favorites without ever posting a comment (not even a simple "nice" or "looks good")
C) People who are more concerned with free art and are disinterested when they learn I actually charge for art (even an illustrator needs to eat folks)
D) People who when I critiqued their work were too immature as artists to understand constructive criticism and have nearly had me banned on many occasions
So, to make a long story even longer, I too find myself a bit disappointed with DA as a whole sometimes. It's like people treat this place, a place dedicated to artists from around the world to share their work with others and to communicate and learn from each other, as a extension to their Facebook page, where 10 year old kids bog down the system with screenshots of Sonic and Transformers and photos of their cat Mimsy on a bush. And the majority of these kids can't handle being told they aren't ready to dive into the rather hostile world of an online artist community where they may be critiqued harshly.
So remember, DeviantArt is not Facebook. Their are artists here who are trying to share their visions and work with others.
To clarify, this journal is not about me but more so about other artists here on DA that I have seen feeling down and out.