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Are highly intelligent or very talented people better able to hide their misery from loved ones, thus making it all the harder to “read” them and help them?

Vote! (56,097 votes) 1,178 comments
73,850 Deviants Online

A Guide to Tutorials

Fri Sep 19, 2014, 1:00 PM by Elandria:iconelandria:

Stock & Resources

So, you want to make an awesome tutorial for your friends, and anybody else who might be interested in your style/techniques/skills/programming/designing ...

There are some essentials you are going to want to keep in mind when you make your tutorial.

:bulletpink:Its not just a bunch of text and some pictures (OK it is, but theres more you could do! )

:bulletpink: Its not just a few quick tips or pointers for a friend who asked you for some more details (OK it is, but its more than that! )

:bulletpink: Its not just some work in progress screenshots/photos of your next big project (OK it is, but its SO MUCH more than that!!)

Don't forget, great design IS ART!


DeviantART is predominantly an English language website.  However, DeviantART is a global community, so not everyone can read English fluently.  Make sure your use of language is going to reach as many people as possible so try to be concise when you are explaining steps or techniques. 

If English isn't something you are particularly fluent in, GET SOMEBODY WHO IS TO CHECK IT!!  They will be able to spot grammatical problems, typos and other readability errors for you which will improve your tutorial 100%.

Interweb speak is fun, but it is useless at conveying complex directions or information - avoid at all costs! There are 26 letters in the English alphabet, and over a quarter of a million distinct English words. Please make use of them!

:bulletgreen: DYK - One of the main reasons tutorials get declined for Daily Deviation features is because of spelling errors, typos and readability problems! :bulletgreen:


If your tutorial suddenly develops a life of its own, grows additional limbs and tries to eat your cat when you are putting it together, consider condensing your steps or breaking your tutorial down into a series of smaller tutorials. 

Don't forget very lengthy tutorials packed full of information can actually be off putting, as much as a wall of text can be or a deal made with Crowley.


Most tutorials will consist in equal parts of images and written text, with the exception of literature tutorials which may still contain images to break up the literature content. 

Your job as the tutorial creator is to present your information in the most engaging, understandable, readable format.  How you do this is up to you, but the important thing is to make an effort.  Don't just slap your unedited phone pictures onto a blank document and scribble around them!

DESIGN ---- Fonts

Font font font. Even if you produce the most incredible fact filled tutorial on the planet, if you choose the wrong font or font size the chances are you will completely put off all but the most patient of readers. 

Choose wisely! Some font types to avoid are things like heavy script/handwriting fonts and fancy fonts. You want your tutorial to be legible! 

Further, whilst choosing to hand write your tutorial steps (rather than using a handwriting font) can be cute and give a tutorial a lot of character, it can be another big offput.   Hand written text is never going to be as neat as you think it is.

:bulletgreen: DYK - Another main reason for tutorials being declined for Daily Deviations is because of font choice, colour and text size!:bulletgreen:

DESIGN ---- Images

A Picture paints a thousand words.  In a tutorial where you are using images as a significant part of explaining and showing how to do something it is VITAL that they are clear, in focus and actually show the thing you are trying to explain.

Crop your images to properly focus on the important aspect.  Edit your images to make sure they are well exposed and sharp.  Take the time to take photos with a camera rather than using your phone - unless you have the knowledge and ability to take good photos using your phone.

CREDIT YOUR SOURCES! ALWAYS credit source stock images if you are using anybody elses work to illustrate your tutorial.  No matter how small.  Not crediting is considered a cardinal sin, and you tutorial won't even be considered for a Daily Deviation without any necessary credits.  Even if all the images are your own. Say so then there is absolutely no confusion!

:bulletgreen: DYK -  Images can seriously let down an otherwise good tutorial and is another big reason why they might be declined for a Daily Deviation. :bulletgreen:


Your actual content, the thing you are creating the tutorial for is above and beyond the most essential element. 

Nobody wants to know how many times a day you check your Facebook account, but they do want to know how many layers you might have in your digital artwork, or how you effectively used that kind of paint on that type of canvas. 

This is an ART website for ARTists - no matter their skill level, and this is your target audience when you post your tutorial to the site.

TL;DR - Your tutorials showcase your art

Just as all of your gallery showcases your artwork, so do your tutorials.  Whenever you use your art as an example of a technique or skill, or display it in a way that scrutinizes an element or the over all effect,  it becomes a reflection of yourself and of your abilities to present yourself in a professional manner - so make some effort! 

You never know when a well written tutorial might be featured by an external tutorial site and go viral, so make sure they look great! :thumbsup:


Here are some beautifully designed and presented tutorials!

Female to Male Crossplay Makeup Tutorial by Vilya0 Tutorial: Cake Layering by cakecrumbs Polymer Clay Chocolate Chip Cookies Tutorial by Talty
Do's and Don'ts of Stock Photography by Tasastock The Lighting Tutorial - Part 1 by kuschelirmel-stock Photomanipulation Tutorial  on blending by tamaraR
Tutorial #18 : A possible path on the color map by AquaSixio Cloud Tutorial Part 1 by yuumei Can/ Soda Tab Chainmail Vambrace Tutorial by kirilee
Creating a City Tutorial by TylerEdlinArt Painting metal by yigitkoroglu Let me Catch a Walkthrough by Norke
Know your Basics - PerspectivePerspective comes in different forms, the most obvious & basic of which is the use of the word in relation to the appearance of relative orientation in a three dimensional space. At first, it may seem irrelevant to photomanipulators, (because, hey, the photographs already are perspectively sound,) but putting more than one photograph in context requires that you learn to see what makes sense and what doesn't.
The Technical Stuff

Perspective (from Latin perspicere, to see through) in the graphic arts, such as drawing, is an approximate  representation, on a flat surface (such as paper), of an image as it is seen by the eye. The two most characteristic features of  perspective are that objects are drawn:
Smaller as their distance from the observer increasesForeshortened: the size of an object's dimensions along the line of
sight are relatively shorter than dimensions acro
Planning the Evil Plot
A half-guide, half-narrative on writing a story
brought to you by Super Editor

Before I start writing, I like to have some idea of where I'm starting, where I'm going, and how I'm going to end up there. Let's say that I want to write a comedy about an author who suddenly changes places with her Mary Sue. I usually jot down some basic ideas:
Sarah, the author: ~13 years old, average-looking, glasses, rather tall and gangly
Ellemere, the Mary Sue: ~16 years old, long flowing hair, violet eyes, etc.
Forrest (Ellemere's love interest) : ~18, stereotypical pretty boy who is too dark and broody to make a good love interest
Leon: ~17, Ellemere's somewhat dorky friend who falls in love with her but is cast off to side in favor of Forrest
Tangent: For those of you who are confused, the ~ symbol means "about." I think it comes from math.
I like to draw, so I'd probably make doodles of these characters too. Drawing characters is a great way to develop th
Your Character TOO Special?
Is your Special Character

Are you indulging in a few too many "special traits"? Is your story really an excuse to show off your Super Special Character? Are you committing a MARY-SUE/GARY STUE?
--> Dead give-away: Your favorite character is YOU only BETTER!
Who is Mary Sue/Gary Stue?
According to
"Mary Sue / Gary Stue is any original or deeply altered character who represents a slice of their creator's own ego; they are treasured by their creator but only rarely by anyone else. A Mary Sue/Gary Stue is a primadonna (usually, but not always badly-written,) who saps life and realism out of every other character around, taking over the plot and bending canon to serve their selfish purposes."
-- For more details:
The Mary Sue/Gary Stue "Self-Insertion" in Manga Fan-fiction:
According to A

Your tutorials don't have to be boring!
Be creative, but don't forget the design essentials we've talked about above!

Weekly Members Feature

Fri Sep 19, 2014, 11:28 PM by Wesley-Souza:iconwesley-souza:

Weekly Members Feature

Exposure of the Members


The prince of darkness by Altair-E
Dancing Butterflies by Sisterslaughter165Can't Find My Mommy by StarfireArizona
Enchanted twilight by RazielMB
Autumn Fae by TinaLouiseUkmermaid by Lolita-Artz
Met. Ancient epic Scandinavians by MariaSemelevich
I'm An Ocean In Your Bedroom by shadeleyOnce Upon A September by la-voisin
Terror of the Seas by KiyaSama
Compass by Teddy-CubeLingering by TheDreamBelow
Zer0 - Borderlands 2 by SatoshiDNight roses by AufrichtigStimme
Satiri e Ninfe by KangTengri
Magenta Magic by LeenaHillThe Last Butterfly by theheek
Flutter by areemusThe journey of Rattus by NoorBlncyah
Magic Lake - Photomanipulation by AlisonEnchanted

Photomanipulation of the Week

Four Manipulations that are exposed on the front page of the group The-Imaginarium Heart 

Dream Big 2 by Antoshines

Towards Light by Black-B-o-x

ToxiCity II. by shadeley

Shelter by fatal-kitty

Beautiful Works from our Gallery

Some of the Best Submissions


Vinculis by ShortCircuit123
Witch Blade by Gwendolyn1Witch and Crows by Fae-Melie-Melusine
Among the Ruins by Kurtzan
Vapin' by NotvitruvianRain Catcher by NTGreen
Hidden Mystery by ezakytheartist
Down the Rabbit Hole by MafaRiochNature's Gift by Tracy-WilliamsArt
Flora by Antoshines
Reign of Darkness by alkab-artThe Journey by ParadisiacPicture
Elizabeth by a-pretty-white-lie
Desert Dream by YongLIn the Green by Andaelentari
Calm before the storm by Gejda

Winners: Bros. Grimm meet Tim Burton contest!

Winners: Bros. Grimm meet Tim Burton contest!


Winner 1: Best overall

:winner: remake


Rotkaeppchen by kuschelirmel
Dreamwalking by kuschelirmelBehind You by kuschelirmelMoon Goddess by kuschelirmel

Winner 2: Most artistic

:winner: remake

I'll Cut Your Hair by Wesley-Souza
Tell a Story by Wesley-SouzaSagittarius by Wesley-SouzaMy Friend Monster by Wesley-Souza

Winner 3: Most creative story

:winner: remake 

Say Goodbye to Prudence by shoutsandwhispers
Mantis by shoutsandwhispersDesolation by shoutsandwhispersThe Awakening by shoutsandwhispers


Coding by SimplySilent

Humeur Noire - AHOY

Journal Entry: Sat Sep 20, 2014, 6:05 AM

Humeur noire by Sei-ZakoDeep sleep by Sei-Zako

Point sur les nuits by siamesesamHidden Ships by siamesesam


Purpurrr by MarinaCoricSphynx by MarinaCoric



Untranslated by alberichWhat You Alone Can Give ... by alberich

A Global Speed Art Affair by EintoeRn
And please do no hesitate to take a full preview of the book here:

  • Mood: Tired
  • Listening to: lies
  • Reading: sometimes
  • Watching: sometimes
  • Playing: rarely
  • Eating: later
  • Drinking: later

What Makes Stock Rock for You? kuschelirmel

Journal Entry: Fri Sep 19, 2014, 3:00 PM

What Makes Stock Rock for You? With kuschelirmel!

You've been on this account for 9 years. Wow! You do quite a few different forms of art. What got you into photomanipulation?

Before I found dA - must've been around 2002/03 - I was into learning HTML and wanted to try to create my own website to do so. But with a website come graphics (back then, css was not really on the table yet, so you had to do everything with images and mouse over effects in java or something - I can't even remember it's been so long). So my boyfriend suggested I try Photoshop. I soon found out I could do more than make buttons: signatures, banners, wallpapers... When I arrived on dA, the biggest revelation for me was that I did not have to restrict myself to "useful things", but could make art just for the sake of it. It changed a lot(!) for me and I have been hooked on manips ever since. Actually, I bought my first camera to finally be able to take stock photos myself and now photography is one of my hobbies, too :aww:

What sort of stock inspires you? Does the stock gallery on dA provide that inspiration, or do you look to other stock sources?

That's a tough question because I can be inspired by a lot of things, from model stock to objects and from animal stock to plants. I guess it depends on my mood a lot. But I think in general, I can say I am drawn to the more unusual stock (even though I don't always manage to use it): for example, weird costumes, poses, angles in models; exotic locations; series of images that could be put together to form something new and big yet fitting (for example different buildings of the same style, stuff like that)... I have a dislike for model stock where in all poses of a series the model is shot from the front and looks straight at the camera. While these shots can be useful, I find myself looking for stock where I can put something in the model's line of sight.
I usually stick to dA stock for three reasons: one, I don't have so much time to search high and low; two, I mass-download and only a small fraction gets actually used which for pay stock sites would mean a lot of money spent for little outcome; three, I find that dA caters more to manippers than other stock sites do because stockers here want to see what is done with their images and see them used in cool images. While on other stock sites, photographers upload to get some money for their stock and usually don't see what is done with it. They just know who their clients are: professionals who use their stock for advertising, book & cd covers, webdesign, editorials etc. It's a different sort of use they cater to, one where the person using the pic probably wants to have as little work left with it as possible. On dA, we're "more artsy" and looking for that odd pose rather than how little work we will have with the pic.

Unseen by kuschelirmelPeacock Postcard by kuschelirmelDressed for Success by kuschelirmel

You were a PM CV, and you're also the provider of really great stock. This gives you a great insight to multiple parts of deviantArt. What types of stock and resources are photomanipulators looking for, and does dA do a good job of providing those?

I think in principle, dA stockers certainly do a good job at providing stock. As I said above: they want to see their stock used so they try to cater to the needs of the manip community and thankfully also beyond. What I mean is that while often, the same kind of images that are currently en vogue, will pop up all over the stock gallery, there are thankfully always also other images on display that are used seldomly by manippers but are still provided for the odd user who might need something out of the ordinary. If someone asks me if they should stop providing stock because they feel their stock is rarely used, I will always encourage them to keep going: it's the diversity that is great about dA and a unique quality of dA stock. We have people from all over the world contributing to the stock collection - you can get anything from sci-fi stock to temple ruins, from polar bears to tropical fish. You won't find that anywhere else and certainly not so freely given as it is here. I sincerely hope the manip community is aware of this and will remember to abide by the few rules most stockers here have when using their stock to keep it that way.

Over the years you've doubtless seen trends come and go. Do you see trends in stock coming from trends in photomanips, or do trends in photomanip come from those in stock? What is hot right now on the PM scene?

I'm afraid, I don't really know what is hot at this moment - I haven't been online all that much this summer and just got back from a two week vacation ^^; However, from experience I can say that stock will influence the manip community more than the other way around. Most dA manippers don't shoot their own stock, so they will use what is offered, so when a popular model stock hits the gallery and one or two manippers who are visible in the community use it, others see it and use it and it thus goes viral on dA. The more a stock image is used the more it is visible and the more it is used again (often in similar ways, unfortunately). Of course other stockers see what is currently high up on the list for manippers, but jumping on that bandwagon is harder in that you may not have the resources (location, costume, model, etc) to do something similar. Plus, until you can jump the wagon it might have moved on already. So it doesn't make much sense to chase after a certain theme in this way for stockers. What you can see is that the overall quality (on a technical level, like clear pictures, no cut off limbs, usable angles etc) has been constantly going up, because that is what will get used more and that stockers will cater to the seasons and holidays ahead of time so people will be able to use their stock. For example, Halloween stock comes online in late September, early October. If you put it online on Halloween, it is too late to be used in a Halloween manip this year.

What have I done? by kuschelirmelWild Horses by kuschelirmelPleased to meet you by kuschelirmel

What are some of your favorite photomanipulated pieces? For these pieces, did you start with a stock you just HAD to use, or did you have an idea first and then go looking for stock to fit it? Is that how you typically work?

I often see a bunch of stock images that "click" in my head: I can see them together and start from there. It's easier than trying to recreate a specific idea because for a specific idea you need specific stock and that is often hard to find. Not because it doesn't exist, but because the search term you are using may not have been used by the stocker - either because they didn't bother with keywords (bad!!!) or simply because you can't think of that keyword that will bring the right stock. In recent years, with working full time, I have very rarely tried to create something specific because of this. It just takes a lot of time that I don't really have ^^;

For example (my last three faves):
Dreamwalking by kuschelirmel I stumbled over Ruine 2 by Civetta70 and loved the angle
Lost Without You by kuschelirmel I saw the girl stock and just had to use it Never the Bride 2 by rangercookiestock
Beneath the Tulips by kuschelirmel was done because I saw the tulip stock Bug's View of Pink Tulips by MogieG123

As both a photomanipulator and a stocker, do you feel like the stock gallery is continually getting better, or have we hit a sort of creative plateau?  What do you think the stock community can do to improve?

I think it's always getting better :) Every time I catch myself thinking "there's just nothing new" (or something along that line), I stumble upon something to prove me wrong ;)
Just never stop uploading even the strangest of images (or especially those :D) and keep doing what you do in terms of fostering the community and all will be great! There is hardly any other gallery on dA where people are this welcoming and encouraging to newbies as in stock & resources. And hardly anywhere else do you see so many community activities (contests, features, interviews, how-to articles,...) as in stock and resources. So keep it up! :heart:

Thank you so much to Jasmin for doing this interview!  Go show her some love on both of her accounts, kuschelirmel and kuschelirmel-stock!

Old Paper from duesterheit
Brushes and Tutorial from calthyechild
CSS template from TrashyDragon
Iced Text Tutorial from Kozzumel
Editing by PirateLotus-stock


Fri Sep 19, 2014, 7:37 PM

This is Part 3 of Providing Stock+Resources - A Beginners Guide. It is aimed at resource providers new and old - I'm trying to give some tips and pointers based on my experience both as a stocker and a photomanipulator. If you have anything to add, feel free to comment, I still feel like I forgot soooo much Sweating a little... Any other comments are of course welcome as well. I hope this helps at least some Heart

>>What you will find in this guide:

  • Part 01: Introduction incl. Note on Copyright
  • Part 02: What should I put online? incl. Subject Choice | Dealing with Abuse | Technical Basics for Stock Images | Lighting setup | Tips and tricks on getting the most out of your camera | Post-processing images
  • Part 03: Stock Rules incl. Where to keep the Stock Rules? | What to put in your Rules | Refining as you go along [you are reading it]
  • Part 04: Uploading your stock to dA incl. Packs or Singles | Making sure people remember it's your stock | Upload choices | The right category | Keywords | Artist's Comment | Organizing your Gallery [coming soon]
  • Part 05: Premium Content incl. How to sell Stock | What information not to forget to give [coming soon]

Stock Rules

The stocker as a person is the giving type, no question. But there are still some things you may want to prevent people doing with your stock. Just remember: there will always be someone who abuses your images and disregards your rules. Therefore it is very important to think about which images you want to upload in the first place as already mentioned in Part 02.

Where to keep the Stock Rules?

Before we get to the content, some thoughts on the "where":
  • Artist's Comment: Lots of stockers, especially when starting out, put their rules in some shape or form in the artist's comment. The good thing here is that this is a place everyone downloading this particular image will most likely look, but the bad thing is that if your rules should change or need an updated wording, you have to go and fix every single artist's comment. However, you can (and I think should) still put something in there to make sure it is clear that you have rules, where they can be found and you expect them followed, maybe with a hint at what is most important to you.
    • Example from my stock: "By downloading, you agree to abide by my rules - you can read them in my journal. [...] NO REUPLOADING, NO PREMADES, NO BRUSHES ETC CAN BE MADE WITH MY STOCK! only art!!!"
  • Your Journal: My suggestion is to use one journal to keep and update your stock rules. This journal can be linked to from wherever you like (incl. the artist's comment, your userpage, your current journal, in txt files in your packs,...), making it the one and only source for your rules. The journal can be long and I think it's a good idea to include everything that you get asked frequently over the course of your time as a stock provider. Try to keep the language as clear as possible - you will still get questions, but you can use those to refine your language.
  • Userpage: If your normal rules are kinda long (like mine), I think it's a good idea to keep a short version on your userpage covering the most common uses plus a link to the full rules. If your rules journal is more compact, a link only will be enough. You can put it in the deviantID part of the userpage or into a custom module, whichever you prefer.
  • Elsewhere: if you think it will help, add either the link to your rules or even the combination of your short version plus the link to the long version anywhere you like - just keep in mind that the short version may be subject to change as you go along and you don't want to need to go back and update everything.
    • Example: I always add a txt file with the short version and a link to the rules journal in my stock packs.

If English isn't your first language or you feel uncertain if what you have written makes sense for someone on the outside, go on and ask someone. Either a friend on or off dA or someone from the stock and resources community. We are a rather helpful bunch, including (but certainly not limited to) our CVs Elandria, PirateLotus-Stock and CelticStrm-Stock :love:

What to put in your Rules

Well... basically, you are the copyright holder and you can - in theory - decree that your images may only be used during the full moon in blue manips. But, realistically speaking, two things will prevent you from doing this:
  1. For one, users may opt to just not use your stock if your rules feel too constricting, leaving you with lots of stuff uploaded but none used.
  2. Secondly, if someone doesn't adhere to these kinds of rules, how will you know and what will you do if you find out someone broke them?

Thing is that at the point when your rules have been broken, the damage is done (in that you cannot "unsee" an image that you find to be offensive) and the question is now how you will deal with this.

Dealing with Rule Breakers:

If you post child stock and say it is not to be used in scary art (because you want to show your kids the manips) and someone comes along showing you something you deem to be too scary (to show your kids). Now you can get the deviation removed for breaking your rules to get the deviation removed (by asking the person or via admins). BUT because you've already seen the image which feels offensive and violating to you and your child, a stocker who has not put thought into how to deal with abuse might tend to throw a fit and get so upset it may objectively be out of proportion with the offense.

To avoid getting upset, you need to be prepared!

In the example above, this can mean either deciding against uploading child stock at all or uploading it, but being very specific on your rules. "Scary art" is a very hazy expression. It may well be that the offender in this case just had a different view on what is "scary" - maybe you didn't say you wanted to share the images with your 4 year old (which may not be enough to clear up the boundaries, but it might already help tons!).

So, the first time you encounter a breach of your rules, try to figure out if your rules are concise and update them if necessary. Don't rip out the offender's throat, ask him to remove the image or use somene else's stock instead. If s/he gets nasty with you, file an official report with dA and stop talking to the person (use the ban tool if you need to)! This is very important because getting worked up will lead to nothing but you getting even more worked up as the "argument" progresses. It may kill your joy doing stock!

If you are unsure how to deal with someone, you can always contact a fellow stocker or one of the CVs - we all love to help, otherwise we wouldn't be stockers to begin with ;) But try to always keep calm. You don't have to answer anything on the spot. You can sleep over it, let it settle. And instead of thinking "they broke my rules! Those f***ers! I'll kill them!!!!" maybe you can get to "ok, my rules were broken. Now what do I reasonably do?" This may include accepting that one breach (and in the example above simply not showing the image to the kids) and adjusting your rules for next time plus telling the offender they did something you hadn't anticipated and in the future, they should use different stock.

The Reasoning behind Reasonable Rules

What exactly makes rules "unreasonable"? Well, if you have rules in place that make your users to jump through hoops to use your stock or that stifle creativity, I would call them unreasonable. After all everyone starts somewhere and you simply cannot expect only the masters to use your stock. Practice makes perfect and I do bet that counts for your stock art, too - in fact, I am certain it does.

Some of my favourite examples:
  • "no horses are to be used with my stock" - who are you to dictate subject matter? Is it because you don't want to see all those half-assed tries at first manips on horse rpg sites? Do you feel offended by manips that just aren't that good, technique-wise? I can only reiterate: everyone starts somewhere. You should see my first "manips" - they were signatures and avatars for a forum. They were crude and without much skill, but I LOVED doing them and others loved getting them and using them. I imagine it's much the same for the horse lovers. And besides, I have seen masterpieces with horses in them that I was very glad to have had the chance to see because they used my stock and notified me.
  • "Credit on the picture if used outside dA" - this one is a bit of a grey area, because I know where it comes from. In some forums, because the images are used in signatures etc. you can hardly give credit in written form underneath the image, so to still give credit properly, it is often the norm to put the credits as text on the image. BUT if you look at dA artists, there are a lot of implications to this rule outside of forums. For example, an artist posting their work to other art sites (facebook page, account on behance, etc) where they can easily put in the credit below the image (with a link, too!). It looks unprofessional to have a stock list of 20 sources on your image - no one is going to do that. On top of that, there are sites (like redbubble) where you can only upload one version for preview and print. Unprofessional doesn't even begin to cover that one ^^; If that is really what you want the stock users to do, they will search for different stock instead of using yours.

** if you have some more examples of "unreasonable rules", I would love to hear them in a comment! **

Who are you as a stocker to tell an artist what to create?!
If you don't want your models cut to pieces, that is understandable, but if you were to ask people not to cut up your backyard for a manip, who is going to say "sure thing, I wouldn't want my yard cut up either"? Or if you say you don't want your child stock used for horror works, no one will ask twice, because it makes sense. But if you photograph a spider and ask people the same, they will start to frown.

Sometimes rules are not enough!

Again, I know that it sucks to have to always account for the worst, but I'd rather you stop to think for a second than find your hastily uploaded stock abused in a way you cannot forgive and forget. I'm thinking of model stock and especially of child stock. In those cases, you may even want to restrict access to your stock by only uploading previews and having people who want to use it contact you for the high res files (either for money or points or for free). That way you can control who uses the images in a way you never could with "just rules".

Some examples of what you can often find in stock rules:

Of course, you'll have to decide for yourself what you want or don't want to put in there. There are some rules that seem pretty universal while others may be a question of preference.

As an example, I'm going through my rules and explain why I have them:
  • Always give credit! - you most likely want the stock user to say where they got the stock from, so this line tells them to do that. It does not tell them how exactly, if you want them to always link back to your front page or to the stock they used, you can add that. Personally, I find that the most important thing is that they do credit, preferably with a link and not just text, so people can easily follow and find more stock. I personally don't need them to point to the exact image; most stock users comment under the image they used anyway and this way I know which image/brush they used. You may feel different, if you do, tell them what you expect in a clear manner (example "please credit me using :dev username: or :icon username: without the spaces").
  • Always show me what you've created! - why do we provide stock? To see others use it! So it is only natural to ask for some kind of notification. Again, I am not picky how they do it, just that I get to see what was done, so I leave it up to the user to send me a note or leave a comment on my page or on the image or even rely on the mentions system (even though I think it's not always working).
  • Never redistribute my stock/brushes as it is (no repacks either!) - link people here instead - I want people to not just get a glimpse at one or two of my images through somewhere, I want them to come and browse my gallery for the latest stock and other resources. They may just find something else they like. Plus I don't want anyone else pretending they are the generous providers when all they did was search the internet. Credit where credit is due. Redistribution without consent, even without money involved, to me feels like stealing.
  • Never create stock from my stock (incl. brushes, premade backgrounds) - this one is one you either will be very strict about or not care about so much, I guess. The reason I don't allow stock from my stock is that I want people in the end to be able to find the original pieces and even if I say I want the end user to credit my stuff & the provider of the premade says so, too, most just don't do that and it kinda pisses me off. So this pretty much just comes down to me not wanting to get upset for not being credited where I think it would be only fair to do so. And since I don't feel like running after people to do that kind of thing, I decided to eliminate this possibillity from the start.
  • Never upload your manips of my stock to the photography section - you did not take the picture, I did! - Uploading something to the photography section to dA is pretty much saying "I took the picture", because that is what that gallery is for. So even if you put "stock credits" in the artist's comment, it doesn't change the fact that everyone will just assume the pic is yours and the stock was just some actions/brushes/textures on top.

All of the above are the normal rules for using my stock without commercial gain on dA as well as outside. I just have one rule in addition to the ones above for people who want to use my stock for commercial work, including book covers, prints, commissions, etc:
  • You can use my stock for commercial use, incl. prints, book/cd covers, commissions etc - but excluding stock premades for sale! - as long as you do more than minor adjustments (change colors, use filters, remove phone lines) - i.e. if it's your art you're selling, I'm perfectly fine - if you're trying to sell my photos, I'm not. - Basically, I don't want to see people sell my stuff without doing much to it. It's fine to practice retouching, colour changes, texture use and uploading it to the appropriate category, but for me it is not fine to make money off that kind of practice images. Also, this clause prohibits the use of my stock in retail products as is, such as mugs, posters and other on demand stuff you can see online often. You wouldn't believe what some people think is okay to do just because they "found it on the interwebs"...

The rules above are pretty much what I ask people to adhere to when using my stock and they work well for me. But then, I don't provide model stock or anything else of a sensitive nature.

Other points that you should consider to add or not add depending on the kind of stock you provide can be:

  • Where can people use your stock? - is it okay to use your stock outside of dA? Or do you want the result to be posted here exclusively - or maybe if it's posted on dA first, reposting elsewhere is just fine (as long as your other rules are followed)? If you restrict use to dA, you need to be aware of the fact that virtually everyone is also active elsewhere, be it on facebook, shadowness, their website, a forum, an rpg site,... and they want to cross-post & use what they have created elsewhere.
  • What can your stock be used for? - if you offer child model stock this may be especially touchy. You probably want to show your kids what people have created and on top you don't want to see them used in violent settings and the like. It is well within your rights to set those rules and imo you definitely should set them clearly and also demand any image in violation to be taken down. When uploading such sensitive stock be aware that there will be some idiot breaking your rules at some point and don't freak out when it happens, rather make sure you know in advance how to deal with that (and where to file DMCA complaints to get the "art" taken down).

Whatever you decree, be as specific as you can be. Saying something like "no inappropriate use" is not really helpful. after all, what is inappropriate to you could be normal for me. As an example: in Europe, naked breasts are not thought of as all that offensive, but in the USA, it warrants a mature flag for your art, while in some Arabian countries, women can't show much skin at all. And even if you yourself are American, that doesn't mean you automatically have anything against me using your art in artistic nude work, just like someone from Europe can choose not to want to have their stock included in artworks that need to be flagged mature on dA. So how am I going to decide which kind of inappropriate you mean? The only way to do this is if you tell your stock users straight up which kinds of art you do not want your stock to be in. Use examples and try to use words that mean the same thing to everyone (not easy, but as seen above, some are just way too vague to be used in rules).

  • Commercial Use - this can be a tough one to decide on. On one hand, you may want to give your stock users the possibillity to use their art for their livelyhood or to make a few bucks on the side (and give those great artists out there a reason to choose your stock and not pass it by for being too restricted). On the other hand, especially if you're the model, you may want to restrict commercial use so you don't find your face on an add on the city bus... A compromise can be to say that in principle, you allow commercial use, but if it's for anything aside from dA prints (let's face it, you don't get rich with dA prints unless you have a very famous name -- trust me, it needs to be very very famous, kuschelirmel for instance isn't), you only allow it after you've seen the work and are told what it will be used for (and you could reserve the right to ask for a fee if it's anything big).
    This means two things: for one, you get control over where your stock ends up and on the level of work you want to see people put in before they can sell it. Secondly, it means you have to log into your account and answer those request notes regularly (and I do not mean once a month - even once a week is not frequent enough!).
    This is of course just an example, and as usual, you'll have to think about what you want to allow or not yourself.

Give yourself and your stock users time to adjust

You start out with a specific set of rules that you think is clear and sufficient, and yet you will get a lot of questions back showing you that in fact, not everything is 100% clear at all. You can (and should!) use this as feedback to tweak your wording and put more examples in.

You will also find people using your stock for things you did not think of and find you don't agree at all. Maybe it'll even cause you grief when you try to get the person to remove it ("you didn't say so in your rules blah blah" -- it is your right to have things removed if they make you uncomfortable, especially if you're the model; I guess with landscapes and the like it's easier to just say "shit happens" and move on, keeping it in mind for next time), but - if you want my advice - don't let it get to you. File it under "shit, didn't see that coming" and try to be polite when asking the stock user to remove your stock from the piece. Explain to them that you're new and you didn't think you needed to spell it out, but here we are and would you just swap the image? If nothing helps you can still log an official complaint and get it taken down. It is your right, even if you didn't say so. Just try to be civil about it, please.

No matter what happens, keep cool! Be polite! Don't let anyone drag you into a pissing match!

Always remember: You are providing stock because you like to see what people make with it, no single idiot (or even a bunch of them) should be able to change that.

Stay tuned for Part 04: Uploading Stock to dA

Encouraging journal - feature

Sat Sep 20, 2014, 1:46 AM

Sometimes we have those worse days. Sometimes we are going though the hard times. Everyone has them.

At Least I Have Balloons by maxlake2 after parade by SimonSawSunlight a bad day by quemas Life running by Daby1907

And everyone is looking for solutions to their situation, for strength, for a motivation to go though them. For a way to escape from pain.

Many of people are searching for this in other people. It's easy and effective - even one hug, one talk or just staying with someone and doing anything together can help. It's nice to go thought life with someone around you.
Lia and Jemmy II by adlforlife Comfort by cheslah Backyard by cheslah

It's great to love and be loved. Love it's an incredible source of strength.
Blackmail by tanikel 2009-09-13 - R and A by rubixcu8e eye contact by TimelessImages

But there will be times when you won't have anyone around you. Everyone someday will go.
Sometimes because they want to..
Shut Up by Fehree The Break-Up by FightTheAssimilation Break up by Suuki162006

...and sometimes because they have to.
What have I done... by Tindome Dead Bird by rimhoff Cementary by Zuza182
Quiet Search by cheslah
Ashura 7 by arslanalp Ed by Totes-Mcgoats

The thing is to find the strength when there is no one around.

The primary source of strength that you have to find is in yourself.

It's not easy, and it requires a lot of work and time to get to it. You have to love yourself. You have to value yourself. You have to know, that the World is for you. Never wait for anything, no on will give you anything for free, even though there is so many great people around. You have to go and take it by yourself. You have to believe in yourself. If you don't do that, no one will.

Swan Song by BobRock99 girl and wolf by Dosshaus Blythe Spirit by clippercarrillo

The strength that you are looking for is closer that you might think.

It is in you.

62. :Frailty in a Smile: by bittersweetvenom smile by redreddaisy
Life is Good by Eibo-Jeddah Susi's Smile by gestiefeltekatze Talya - smile portrait 1 by wildplaces
Zulu The Color Run Copenhagen - #YOLO by RasmusWAndersen Basso 6 by jennystokes  Pourqoui? by Anti-BiotiQue birthday party by butterfly-weird Sadhu by JohnBerryPhotos

This feature is for Windklang's feature contest. :iconwindklang: (Yes I know that it should be one deviation per artist but there is over 20 deviations so I hope you'll be forgiving ^^;)
I just wanted to share with you some of my own hmm.. experiences and thoughts. I hope it didn't sound too pathetic xD Feel free to comment and start a conversation but don't expect any serious exchange of views :P I'm just not too good in them ^^;

I decided to use this simple and lovely skin of mondscheinsonate. :iconmondscheinsonate: Thank you!
Her other artworks:
Fog. by mondscheinsonate Lucy. by mondscheinsonate Forgotten Treasure. by mondscheinsonate

Do you want more encouraging journals / features?

Conceptual Spotlight Vol. 105

Sat Sep 20, 2014, 12:48 AM by BokehLight:iconbokehlight: