Art is weird...

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Nate5700

Hello all. Last time I started a topic on this board I went out of my way to state that I wasn't here to complain. And again, I really don't want to come off that way but maybe there is some desire to vent that is motivating me.

Setting aside the Rainbow Dash humanized image that started poorly (and maybe didn't finish all that much better), I'm just looking at the totality of what I've done so far, keeping in mind that I'm new to being an artist, if you can even call me by that term at this stage. I am probably getting too hung up on upvotes and downvotes, but I want to at least feel like I'm improving at what I'm doing. And so far my numbers are trending in the wrong direction.

That is to say, the more effort I put into something, and the better that it looks to me, the less others seem to appreciate it. A Scootaloo doodle that took two hours did far better in the popularity contest than a Pinkie Pie that took me a day and a half. And I thought that the Pinkie drawing was a step forward in my improvement.

There just doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to what people like. This is why I'm an engineer, things are objective and measurable in that world. But when it comes to art (and not just pony art) it seems like a crapshoot. How is it that Jackson Pollack can randomly splatter paint on a canvas and have it sell for millions of dollars? At least what I'm making actually looks like something.

I don't know if I'm looking for advice here, like I said I may just be venting more than anything else. It's just so strange to me, maybe because I have such an analytical mindset.

I realize this isn't the same for everyone, but what makes a work of art "good" in your mind? And should I even worry about it and just make stuff that makes me happy?

Any thoughts?
d1ckbitch
Hard Work - Merited Perfect Pony Plot Provider badge with only their own art
Perfect Pony Plot Provider - Uploader of 10+ images with 350 upvotes or more (Questionable/Explicit)
Birthday Cake - Celebrated MLP's 7th birthday
Artist -

@Nate5700
"keeping in mind that I'm new to being an artist"

May be the thing here. You're still in an early experimentation phase. I, too, started from scratch, and even had a MS Paint phase, but didn't posted anything for the first months because I felt it didn't meet the minimum required aesthetic criterias. You need to judge your work with the highest severity you're capable of, because others people will be picky, too — it's almost instinctive.

Also maybe Jackson Pollack isn't an artist, maybe it's a businessman — maybe contemporary art is nothing but a vast money-laundering machine. Stop comparing yourself to actual mediocre """artists""", it's bad reference. What work with them may- no, will- not work with you.

Good art can be hard to define, but I guess art that got lots of upvotes on DB gets close to the definition ; making yours looks alike will probably be a path of pain and sweat and many tears, but hey, nothing makes one feels better than when taking up some challenge. You'll become stronger because of this.
deactivated103f39d

@Nate5700
Hello all. Last time I started a topic on this board I went out of my way to state that I wasn't here to complain. And again, I really don't want to come off that way but maybe there is some desire to vent that is motivating me.

Setting aside the Rainbow Dash humanized image that started poorly (and maybe didn't finish all that much better), I'm just looking at the totality of what I've done so far, keeping in mind that I'm new to being an artist, if you can even call me by that term at this stage. I am probably getting too hung up on upvotes and downvotes, but I want to at least feel like I'm improving at what I'm doing. And so far my numbers are trending in the wrong direction.

That is to say, the more effort I put into something, and the better that it looks to me, the less others seem to appreciate it. A Scootaloo doodle that took two hours did far better in the popularity contest than a Pinkie Pie that took me a day and a half. And I thought that the Pinkie drawing was a step forward in my improvement.

There just doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to what people like. This is why I'm an engineer, things are objective and measurable in that world. But when it comes to art (and not just pony art) it seems like a crapshoot. How is it that Jackson Pollack can randomly splatter paint on a canvas and have it sell for millions of dollars? At least what I'm making actually looks like something.

I don't know if I'm looking for advice here, like I said I may just be venting more than anything else. It's just so strange to me, maybe because I have such an analytical mindset.

I realize this isn't the same for everyone, but what makes a work of art "good" in your mind? And should I even worry about it and just make stuff that makes me happy?

Any thoughts?

I know how you feel.
Nate5700

@d1ckbitch
Thanks for your reply.

I don't know if I'll ever get out of the MS Paint phase, just because as I said in another thread, I don't have the steady hand to actually "draw", whether it is on paper, on a tablet, whatever. But you make a good point when you say "judge your work with the highest severity". I don't want to post anything I'm not happy with, but at the same time if I don't show what I'm doing to others I don't get much feedback as to what I'm doing right and doing wrong. The problem is that most of the feedback is binary upvotes or downvotes, otherwise I have to post in the forum and ask for it, and it takes me a minute to come out of my shell with a new group.


@Gameplay The Pony
Glad to hear that someone else feels the same way.
d1ckbitch
Hard Work - Merited Perfect Pony Plot Provider badge with only their own art
Perfect Pony Plot Provider - Uploader of 10+ images with 350 upvotes or more (Questionable/Explicit)
Birthday Cake - Celebrated MLP's 7th birthday
Artist -

@Nate5700
MS Paint may still be hindering your progress, though. It's a very simple software for drawing very simple things, and in some rare occasions drawing complex and interesting pieces, but only when very experienced artists want to challenge themselves.

If the unsteady hand is an issue that can't be solved by practicing, you may be interested by using vectors, it can be done using only a mouse, and you would get all the benefits of any decently-featured software, such as layers, infinite ctrl+z history, etc

https://imgur.com/a/Ehuu2Lc

On an added note, do you browse Derpibooru often? Reviewing a few hundred pieces of the collection may help you find what people are passionnate about. Usually, sentimental stuff between characters works quite well, but not only that. Need to capture the heart of your audience.
Nate5700

@d1ckbitch
Using vectors could be fun. I guess I haven't tried yet for a couple of reasons, one being that I just don't know a lot about how it works, what software to use, etc. The other is that a lot of the vector images I see look like they could have been ripped straight out of the show, which is great in some ways but at the same time using Paint forces you to have a style that is slightly different, even if you're drawing from an example image from TV.

I will probably look into it and give it a shot. I'm working on one more Paint image right now and would like to finish that. But it could be fun to play with.
Soobel
Ten years of changes - Celebrated the 10th anniversary of MLP:FiM!
Artist -

more amore best amore
Just draw more, just doodle on paper and melt your hands up, then you can make pictures more alive. Your lines are benumbed and straight, that is most remarkable imperfection on your pics. Im something like engineer too and have drawn lot of technical drawings and that was very hard to left some of measurable dimensions and make drawings alive. People talks that some people cant learn to draw but im not believe it. All people will learn to draw with enough practice.
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