It is the final day of projecteducate's Resources Week. I am a gallery moderator for deviantART's gallery of Resources & Stock Images, and this article is intended to be a guide to finding and learning from tutorials offered at deviantART.
During my time as a gallery moderator, this community has made one thing abundantly clear to me...
ARTISTS LOVE TUTORIALS!
The large majority of the suggestions I get for resources Daily Deviation features are for tutorials. I've come to understand that most artists are infected with some kind of savage hunger for knowledge. (And I like it!)
The curious desire to know more, to improve, to push the limit of one's skills are parts of what it means to be creative.
It's worth noting that before the Internet, visual artists often had to send letters and examples of their work to humbly ask their favorite artists for critiques, for which they'd wait periods of weeks or months to see if they'd ever get answers.
Wanna know the first time I heard that? StevenSanchez mentioned it in one of his video tutorials.
Having the ability to search for information, ask questions in real time, share files, and manage messages in a community of other artistic people is a huge benefit to the modern artists of our time.
One of the best things about being part of an art community like deviantART is the chance to learn from other artists. Not just from other artists' books and anatomy studies, but through deviantART's message system. Not only do we get the opportunity to share our knowledge; we get the added benefit of asking questions, receiving critiques and getting the kind of feedback artist's need to grow.
It's good, too, to write tutorials. You learn a lot about any activity when you force yourself to slow down and identify/study each step and describe it in a way that isn't just your own gibberish. It starts to make more sense. You get to know your own style better by doing this.
Tutorials - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials are step by step guides that teach you different skills and techniques." These guides, walkthroughs, and tutorials can be found in deviantART's Resources gallery. Here are all the main categories of tutorials with some examples of the kinds of things you will find in each:
- Application Reference - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials which explain different application functions i.e. Adobe Photoshop brush tutorials, also included are 'How To' guides."
- Artisan Crafts - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials explaining different craft techniques. A few examples include textiles, origami, jewelery making and woodworking."
- Digital Art - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials explaining different techniques in creating digital art."
- Flash - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials explaining different Flash techniques."
- Miscellaneous - dA's gallery description states, "Miscellaneous Tutorials."
- Non-Art - dA's gallery description states, "Non-art related tutorials. A few examples are cooking tutorials, beauty tutorials, etc."
- Photography - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials explaining different photography techniques, both film and digital."
- Traditional Art - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials explaining different techniques and mediums used in traditional art like pencil sketches, watercolour painting, etc."
- Typography - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials explaining different typography techniques. This includes, but is not limited to, graffiti, calligraphy, typeface design, etc."
- Web Design - dA's gallery description states, "The Web design tutorials cover design advice, to advanced scripting techniques, and start to finish guides on designing websites."
- Writing - dA's gallery description states, "Tutorials explaining different writing techniques and skills including tutorials on how to publish your writing."
Beta Reading Tutorial
What is a Beta Reader?
Apart from being a writer's best friend, beta readers provide a cross between edits and a critique. A beta reader does not edit a manuscript, but will note the errors for the author to fix. Advice and critiques are other services a beta may perform.
Establishing a Relationship
You've just partnered with an author; what do you do first? Establish with your author what each of you expects from the relationship. A solid understanding of expectations starts the partnership on a productive path and avoids misunderstandings.Time Expectations
Is the author expecting a 24 hour turn around, while you're thinking a week? If not discussed prior to an exchange, turn around time can cause tension. Be honest with your availability and then add some padding, in case of emergency. Do not agree to time constraints you cannot meet.
Length of Partnership
Is the manuscript a novel or a short story? Ask what the author is seeking a beta
Everyone's heard that characters should have goals, something they want and must strive for, overcoming obstacles and antagonists in order to obtain. Because, well, a story is the record of your character's journey toward achieving a goal.
While all of this is true, I think a lot of writers lose sight of an even more important aspect of character. That is, motivation. Sure, you know what your character wants.
That's the gist of motivation. What is the psychology and reasoning behind your character's goal? If your character is driven to make money, is his motivation greed? To pay off a debt? To support his family?
Motivation is your character's emotional connection with the reader. When the reader comes to understand why your character has set out to achieve his goal, they will understand your character in human terms, relate to him, and become invested in what happens to your character throughout the story.
Without a clear motivation, your character's goals don't mean much. So wha
Every genre has core elements that make that genre that genre. In order to Cross Genres properly, you need to know each of your genre's distinctive elements and make them Equally Important in the story.
Simple, no? However...
One of the most common mistakes I've seen in every genre of fiction: IGNORANCE.
"Most of the common mistakes come with any writing that isn't so goodbad characters, bad plots, bad writing. The ones which are peculiar to alternate histories (fantasy and sci-fi) are bad research and bad extrapolation."
-- An Interview with Harry Turtledove --
How do you expect to cross genres properly if you don't even know the genres you're working with? Contrary to popular belief, even if you're writing pure Heroic Fantasy, just making it up as you go is NOT good enough!
On writing Heroic Fantasy
"The consequence of making that assumption is, inevita
I'm not going to delve into dA's Video Resources & Tutorials Gallery at length here because it is its own unique area of deviantART, and it gets just a little complicated. You can learn more about it in this article. However, I felt it would be stupid to write an article about tutorials and leave this part of dA completely unmentioned. Here are a few examples of the kinds of video tuts you can find at deviantART:
deviantART Tutorials are defined as, "Tutorials on how to use the deviantART website, and other deviantART related tutorials." They aren't found in the Resources & Stock Images gallery; instead, they are located in deviantART Related gallery. Examples:
deviantART's Groups is one of the best ways to socialize in this community especially when hunting for tutorials. These are also great places for tutorial producers to be aware of because they often allow you to submit your tutorials, which will in turn end up in the message centers of everyone that watches the group's gallery, thus increasing your potential audience.
Groups also allow other tutorial producers to give you feedback about your lessons, which can help inspire all sorts of ideas and new ways to teach.
Before I get to the list of groups that are specialized in tutorials, I want to put the word out about the Global Tutorials Project...
GlobalTutorials is a group that works with interpreters to translate tutorials into multiple languages. It's one of those projects that unquestionably exemplifies all that stuff I said earlier about artists using the Internet to learn. GT is currently owned by SaTaNiA, a fabulous deviant that no longer has time to put the attention into this group project that it needs. Please contact SaTaNiA if you would like to help keep this project going. This is an outstanding group with a good reputation in the community. It would be really nice to see it active again.
The Tutorial Groups that follow appear to have reasonabe amounts of activity within the past 2 months at the time this article was published. If you know of any tutorial groups that aren't listed here, please feel free to add them to the comment section of this article.
3D-Step-by-Step-Help: helping 3D artists from beginners to experts.
3ds-max-tutorials: 3ds tutorials, also needs more tutorial contributors.
AI-Resources: nice selection of good Adobe Illustrator tuts.
Animal-Anatomy: collection of anatomy tutorials, humans and beasts.
ArtistsHospital: tutorials, reference materials, and one-on-one help.
CosplayTutorial: find/share Otaku cosplay tutorials.
DACipher: great big selection of great tutorials.
DigitalArtTutorial: tutorials for all kinds of digital art.
Divine-Tutorials: tutorial group with a twist: they take requests!
eCSSited: walkthroughs and other deviant CSS & HTML resources.
Emotication: tutorials & info about emotes & smilies.
Gakkou-Houjin: "incorporated school" for digital coloring.
HowToDrawManga: created by moderators of Manga University forums.
Improvement-Center: to find the tutorials you need.
MangaAcademy: interactive lessons, linarts and tutorials.
MasterPhotoshop: all of your Photoshop resource needs.
photoshop-tutorials: tutorials with quality techniques & presentation.
PhotoshopTutorials: learn Photoshop on dA.
Publish-Write: offers advice to writers about getting published.
TipsAndTricks: tutorials, resources and information on art topics.
Tutorial-Central: a one place stop for learning.
Tutorial-City: focused on finding the best tutorials.
Tutorial-Heaven: a place to learn and post tutorials.
Tutorial-Island: tutorials for either Mac or PC.
TutorialCafe: one-to-one help, advice, tutorials, and masterclasses.
TutorialHouse: all sorts of tutorials in Portuguese.
Tutorialised: tutorials of all kinds!
Tutorials-Etc: collecting tutorials, how-to's and other misc help.
TutorialsClub: find all the tutorials you need.
TutorialsForYou: a group for all tutorial lovers.
Walkthrough-Rookie: share tutorials, hints & tips with fellow artists.