/*-- Begin rant
It feels like something has happened to devinatART. It is no longer the place it used to be. There have been times before when I have not been able to spend as much time participating in the devART community as I wanted to. But eventually I always came back. But at the moment I just don't know if I really want to or not.
When I first came to devART looking for a new wallpaper I found so much more.. There was a wealth of great art of all varieties as well as interesting news items and great people to talk with about their (and eventually our) pieces of art.
But devART seems to have become too popular for it's own good.
I know it sounds bad, but there is a lot of bad "art" on deviantART nowdays. There is a lot of rubbish that - with all due respect - people should have just kept on their computer instead of clogging up the devART galleries (Sometimes I am suprised people click "Save" rather than "Clear" in whatever program they use to make their "art" or scan their drawings)
Sure, I'm being pretty harsh, but once upon a time I came to devART to see amazing art... over time though I have seen deviantART submissions go through ugly phases of: Photos of friends and family, poor quality anime style drawings, poor quality anime and manga fan-art, poor quality furries, wallpapers consisting of cut and pasted (copyright infringing) anime and manga, wallpapers consisting of half-naked or totally naked women superimposed over pathetic backgrounds, pixel art "dolls" which are rehashed over and over with only a few changes to the original artists' work... the list goes on.
Don't get me wrong.. I love great photos. Landscapes, architecture, abstract macro shots, even people (especially people!) as long as some effort has gone into the composition of the shot.
I love good anime and manga pieces, especially if they break away from the norm.. but seeing the same things over and over is bad enough without people submitting dozens of scans of their badly proportioned drawings.. I'm terrible at drawing.. that's why you don't see my gallery flooded with drawings.
I hate furries. But I can respect people who do them well. Check out bara-chan for some examples of quality stuff (although half-animals-half-people will always weird me out ) I remember a time though when devART was flooded with pathetic scans (or even MS paint drawings - oh, the humanity) of stupid pink and purple foxes wearing pants.
I also like good wallpapers, even good anime/manga ones, but I don't like seeing copyrighted characters ripped from a screengrab and placed on top of an arbitary background.
I also understand that people get better at their art by practising and by getting feedback from their peers, that's one of the things I loved so much about deviantART back in it's prime... but seriously you're doing yourself an injustice if you think that some of these people even care about honest critiques.
I guess my point is that once it was hard not to find amazing art the moment you pointed your browser to www.deviantart.com. Nowdays it seems like too much effort to sift through the junk. Sure, there are still some gems out there, but they are just harder to find. I know there are too many submissions to do any kind of quality control, but it's just sad to see the amount of lameness vastly outnumbering the amounts of "Wow, that deserves a and a "
The other thing that sucks about dA these days is that the people in charge have paid out. No matter how many times the admin types tell us they are still "stickin' it to the man" their words still sound hollow. I never had any problem with ads being on our pages, but nowdays the focus on dA Prints in particular leaves a sour taste in my mouth. Have a look at the "news stories" on the front page and think about how many link to the prints site.
Which leads me to my next whinging point: News. It used to be that there wasn't so much "news" clogging up the front page. And when there was a new article it was probably interesting. Nowdays the news section is updated so fast that I never keep track, and it's mostly just telling me about the new prints that are available or the latest update to the site.
I remember when the news was just about the latest UI modifying program or the newest skinnable app. Looking at the news items just now I can see that there are some about the various art groups on dA as well, because it's harder to find good art ourselves these days.
There used to be fewer people in the deviantART community... and it was easier to find great art.. to find the artists behind the art and the art groups they were part of. It was easier to find people who enjoyed the same art that I did and to network with them and comment on each others pieces of art. It was more close-knit. Nowdays I just can't find those close-knit groups anymore. They have been swallowed up by the monster that is deviantART.
It makes me sad.
Sometimes it seems like the once great devART has simply become a blogging service with image hosting... one overrun by little teens who are able to chat and blog and post pictures to their hearts content - while the admins try to make a living by spamming adds for deviantPrints and whatever other money making schemes they can think up. I know there are some people out there who are trying to make deviantART better. People who want to try to bring back the magic.. But it feels like it is already too late.
I no longer recognise any of the names who post news articles, and I no longer see the names of the people I knew submitting art or commenting on anyone elses. I no longer feel like opening deviantART up everyday to see if my friends have posted new works or left me comments because no-one that I used to know ever does. I no longer have the sense of community that used to be so prevalent in the deviantART world.
deviantART has grown too big for me, and it makes me sad.
I will still keep checking out the deviantART scene in case things start to change, but the deviantART that I first discovered so many years ago... the deviantART that I knew and loved is gone.
end rant --*/