Don't get too excited over this journal, I'm still done with dA as an artist. I'm not coming back; I'm only here to protect my work from potential art thieves, to answer questions about things people may have, and to follow other artists who are still ok with using dA.
So I mentioned in my last journal that I'm never going to post anything art-wise on my account ever again but I only kind of half explained why I took down literally 99% of my gallery after 7 years, which I'll explain in an FAQ style to make things super clear for people.
Important questions first: why did you leave dA? Was it really that bad?
To put it bluntly, yes. dA is that bad. Well, years ago when I joined the site it was just starting to get popular and was renowned as a fantastic artsy fartsy place to be, where all the hip artists would post their fantastical pieces and show them off to the world. Now, dA is like a rotting cesspool to me, for several reasons.
You have to understand that before groups were introduced years before, my art would actually get views, comments, and favs; more than AFTER groups were implemented, actually. Over the past year or so I would have to submit my work to literally 40+ groups to get the kind of acknowledgement I received years ago. What gives? My general understanding of anatomy, colour theory, and many other artistic elements are so much better now than they were years ago, yet I still struggled to get views, comments, or favs unless it was something "popular" like fanart. My theory is that everyone just joins groups to submit their work, but hardly anyone actually looks at those submissions unless they were absolutely CRAZY about looking at the hundreds of deviations submitted to every group they watched. It's really difficult to have your work noticed unless you're an amazing or well-known artist, exclusively draw fanart, submit your work to hundreds upon hundred of groups, or have a huge fanbase (even if your work is mediocre; I've seen this many times). I'm sure there's a few more reasons, but those really stick out to me.
Another reason I left is because of the community, or lack thereof. I just don't feel connected to anyone here anymore; most of my good friends have abandoned dA in pursuit of other sites like Tumblr because of the toxic nature of users on this site. Do you know how many spam comments I used to receive every week? Too many. Do you know how many nasty comments I received every week for no reason at all? Too many. Do you know how many notes I received from people begging for free art from me because they felt entitled to it, and then when I say "no I don't take requests or draw free art, if you want art from me you have to commission me" people get super butthurt about it and call me incredibly degrading names? Too many.
You get the idea.
HOWEVER, the biggest reason for leaving was just the amount of assholery and art theft there is on this site. It's ugly, and the only thing that legitimately works to combat art theft is to file a DMCA notice. dA's "reporting system" doesn't work the way it's supposed to. You know that little "report this deviation" link on every deviation page? Yeah, it doesn't work at all. Same goes for contacting the help desk to make a formal report or complaint. Believe me, I've tried doing both of those MANY times to get my stolen work taken down, but no response until I filed a DMCA notice. I was skeptical about the DMCA notice at first due to the fact that you CAN lose your dA account or be accused for making false reports (and this gets especially iffy when it comes to fanart) but it's worked for me so far and I will continue to do so. I never upload full resolution works on the internet so I can always prove that it was my work that was stolen.
I'm pretty disgusted with how this site is run in regards to art theft. Regular reports don't do shit, only DMCA reports do; that means the report has to be made by the original artist
for the stolen work to even be considered taken down. So if you ever see anyone stealing another artist's work, PLEASE notify the original artist and tell them that their art was stolen or being used without their permission!
If dA is as bad as you say it is, why don't you just delete your account and get over it? Why even bother staying?
I'm only staying to support the artists who continue to use dA. It's their own choice whether or not to use the site as much as it's my choice to not upload anything art-related.
The other reason why I still have an account is to have an archive of my art and to protect my work from the likes of art thieves. People do note me from time to time to notify me that my work was used without my permission or stolen, and I need a dA account to be able to file DMCA reports.
But didn't you say in your previous journal and again in this journal that one of the reasons why you left dA is because of the rampant art theft, and because dA did nothing to help you even when you filed multiple reports of art theft?
Truth be told, I actually managed to get every single piece of stolen work taken down since my "leaving dA" announcement back in July. It took a lot of time, but dA eventually did take them down! Of course, the damn thieves only got a warning but if they do it again... they're in deep shit.
Regardless, I'll never return as an artist to this site. No more uploads from me.
Why did you feel it was necessary to take almost your whole gallery down and put it into storage? You should have left everything up so others could enjoy your old works!
I took everything down because I was sick of having my work on dA stolen. Sure, people could steal my work on other sites too but on dA art theft is very rampant, especially when new users think it's ok to reupload everything they see on here because they don't understand that a "gallery" is for their own art, not other peoples'. Usually a few [sadly] nasty comments about their [perhaps unintentional] thievery fixes that, but a lot of new users either ignore the comments or block everyone who tells them that it's wrong. They simply don't care.
Not a lot has been done to deal with art theft on this site efficiently. The only way to have stolen art taken down is for the original artist to file a DMCA report. Thus, I felt it was best to just remove everything as a final way of stating that my tenure as an artist here on dA is done for good and that I'm not going to put up with this bullshit anymore. Of course, there are instances where people will upload my work from other sites I do post my art on, but that tends to be less common than stealing art directly from dA and then reuploading/reposting it to dA. Oh well, I can still file a DMCA report if I need to.
I only left a few works up so people could use them as a resource, really. People found my tutorials and resources helpful and I felt it was fine for me to leave it up; I do enjoy helping people, but those tutorials are pretty much the extent of what I'm willing to help people with.
Do you still upload your art onto other sites since you're not going to post anything else on dA?
Yep, I've fully moved over to Tumblr, actually! Here's where you can find me:
Would you ever consider coming back to dA in the future?
Nope. I'm done. Of course, I'll still be around to support other artists and to protect my work as needed, but I will never upload another piece of art to this site again.
However, I do want to say thank you again to all of my past and present watchers! I learned a lot about myself and how I want to approach being an artist from my time here on dA; that is, fame is not everything
. I draw because I enjoy drawing and showing people what I've drawn, and because of that I'm now pursuing a degree in Interactive Arts and Technology (Graphic Design and Programming).
And with that, I say farewell dA! Onto greener pastures!