For this installment of Artist's Toolbox I'd like to talk about my favourite tool of them all,
my humble and slightly dusty scanner....
Without this vital analogue to digital translator, my own artwork as is would not exist, and of course many thousands of traditional artists would not be able to share their art online as effectively as just relying on photographing their work.
'I feel like because I don't have a tablet or do digital art no one likes my work.'
Digital Art has a huge advantage when it comes to online display because the product was created on a screen ergo looks best on a screen. Art done on paper/canvas or otherwise has the disadvantage for digital display (such as on your deviantART gallery) because you don't have to be a genius to work out that we are not actually looking at the original artwork on our screens, rather a scanned or photographed copy. However it is not impossible to create a beautiful digital product out of your traditional artwork.
A half decent scanner is way cheaper than a quality tablet, so for those worried about exposure, you don't always need to work digitally to get people to pay attention to your art. It just needs to be well scanned and presented. You can also usually find one at your school or local library if you don't have one at home. Even when I was an art student at university and I did not have a scanner of my own I used to draw and draw and then make special trips to the library to use their scanners (10AM, 10PM.. Weekends.... they got pretty used to me and my piles of sketches turning up at random times...)
let's face it....scanners wreak havoc on shades.
Anyone remotely familiar with the process of scanning and uploading traditional art will be well aware that the scanner often can change and bleach colours. While recent scanners have gotten a lot better with this problem it's still an issue, but it's one that can be fixed. A few simple edits using photoshop or another image editing software can really bring your image back to life. GIMP is a 100% free photoshop alternative and should not be overlooked by artists on a budget.
And don't think scanners and traditional techniques are only useful for the 100% traditional artist!
Part of the texture on Davy Jones' Skin from Pirates of the Caribbean was scanned from a Styrofoam coffee cup. Scanning all the cool things can lead to a great personal collection of textures for your 2D and 3D art that will render your art unique instead of always using textures you download from other people. (Go on you know you want to creep out your local librarian by turning up to use their scanner with strange objects and bits of dirty paper!)
Textures play a huge role in all my work. They have an effect on the colors and overall look of all my illustrations.-- loish
Save the cell phone photos of your sketchbook for your blog and instagram. Scan your work properly, wherever you can.
If you really want to successfully make use of deviantART or any online place as a platform for your traditional art, you will have to get super comfortable with either scanning or photographing your work.
Learn to love your Scanner!