If you like my art and would like to support it here on DeviantArt, I would appreciate your help in getting a Core membership!
Hey man, hope all is well! It always feels a bit awkward to use your DA as a way to reply to Twitter topics you bring up (4th of April), but that's part of the issue maybe- I find Twitter an awful place to engage with creators, and I'm sure there's many other who feel the same. It doesn't promote discussion very well and I find it very hard to subscribe to multiple artists I like, since the feed is so rubbish at giving me the info I'm after.
That is highly likely a reason why you feel engagement might've dropped off- Twitter is simply a shit platform for discussion. Great for talking heads to shout into the world their opinion, and for people to react to it, but it doesn't exactly foster dialogue.
Not that I'll pretend DA is amazing for it either, but it's nicer for the user, at least. Wish I had a good and easy solution for you- perhaps a personalized Discord? That seems to be a popular thing as of late for cultivating a bit more community, but it also seems very exhaustive to manage!
Hey! Thanks for taking the time to chip in, I really appreciate it
You're right in your assessment of twitter but I think we're meaning two slightly different things too. I noticed a drop off in engagements not only in terms of spoken feedback (since it's always unreliable there), but also in terms of likes, retweets, overall exposure. My works simply don't seem to circulate as well as they used to - and for sheer circulation, twitter is usually perfect.
It led me to questioning whether it's the platform that's hiding my stuff in favour of others (and that might change later on), or if it's in fact that the quality and themes of my artwork no longer are as well liked as previously. Either can be the correct answer and I have no way of telling. It simply contributed to a deep feeling that I'm going nowhere, and I've chosen to go on a hiatus to regenerate and rethink what I want to achieve with my art.
That being said, comments I've been getting on deviantart haven't been stellar lately, either. I'll freely admit that I rarely feel compelled to reply these days, because general praise doesn't really inform me of the qualities of each pic and I can't respond beyond "thanks".
I have a private discord but I won't be opening it up unless absolutely sure. It's a quiet place for friends and clients for now.
Thanks again for dropping by.
I hope you don't mind if I drop in for a second round, because there's things I'd like to write in reply!
You're wondering whether the drop-off in popularity is a sign of diminished quality, and to that I'll say; don't be absurd! Popularity only has very little to do with quality of art, and it's not a linear axle. I'll use your own art against you and I hope you don't take offense!
From 2018 in your own gallery, "Atom Bomb Baby" has 540 favs, 63 comments and 11k views.
From 2021 in your own gallery, "In the Pits of Commorragh" has 246 favs, 15 comments and 5k views.
There's nothing wrong with "Atom Bomb Baby", but I will tell you "In the Pits of Commoragh" is easily the better quality of art between the two- meaning the use of colours, the understanding of anatomy (note, I don't say realism), the scene composition and the presentation overall. Heck, you've even drawn the feet of the Gladiatrix, while you've not-so-subtly decided to hide the feet of the Atom chick behind a sudden piece of rock.
In my own gallery, I can't hope to predict what'll become popular or not. One piece I made in a hurry for a friend hit the (relative) jackpot, there's nothing special about it- a later piece I consider a milestone in my art was passed over. It's all random, mate. Upload time, current mood of the visitors, other uploaders, hidden algorithms, people hornier on fridays than tuesdays, who knows?
I think a better question to ask yourself might be... what are you drawing for anyway? For yourself? For approval? It's fine to draw for attention and for likes, it's the most human thing there is! But I think it might also give you a lot of grief, since basing your worth and skill as an artist on how many thumbs-up leaves you at the mercy of an ultimately random thing.
True, there's no linear correlation between quality and popularity. However, I am judging by the relative amounts of interactions within a smaller time period (usually 3 months). Also comparing a recent pic with one that had multiple years to accrue the numbers isn't the most fair. Again, it's all about the trend within a set time frame.
Thanks for the kind words nonetheless.