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3d Categories Reconsidered

Journal Entry: Thu Mar 15, 2012, 6:43 AM
Following the vigorous debate, the moderator of the 3d group has proposed revising the gallery structure.  To read more you can go here:…

I find that I am a lot less interested now that I have found out that since my work is fan art it is not supposed to go in the 3d category at all.

Vote Now on Splitting the 3D Category

Journal Entry: Thu Mar 8, 2012, 7:37 AM
To those of you who followed the comments on my previous journal on the Poser/DAZ Studio vs. 3d modellers conflict, there seems to be a move afoot to subdivide DA's 3d modelling category.

I support this move.  On the basis of my discussions with 3d modellers, I feel that creating a new category that would separate art created with the two different types of programs would do a lot to ease tensions.  After heated back and forths in blogs, many posts that I've seen from the modellers wind up saying that their real problem with Poser/Daz Studio art is that they don't want to wade through mountains of it in order to see modellers doing work similar to their own.

Concerned parties have contacted :iconcymae: the moderator for the 3d group and she's collecting feedback.

My only problem is that the new division name that's under consideration for us is "3d Manipulations."  I think this would link us to photomanipulatons -- which are already considered questionable by many and explicitly banned from many DA groups.  I think a nice, plain, simple "3d Art" heading would be a better choice.

To make your own opinions on the matter known, comment here:…

and/or vote in this poll:…

Spreading the Love

Journal Entry: Wed Feb 8, 2012, 9:06 AM
While browsing through the fun stuff the people at :icontot-legacy: are doing, I stumbled onto this trend that seemed appropriate for Valentine's Day season...  

I'm featuring the first 10 people who comment on this journal.  And I encourage all of you to post a similar journal.

1. :iconarchangel72367: with the first comment!
July 4th, 2276 July 4th, 2276 by archangel72367 It Happened on Risa It Happened On Risa by archangel72367 Exodus EXODUS by archangel72367
2. :iconriseofdarkfire: Klingons Klingons by RiseofDarkFire Saoirse Ronan Saoirse Ronan - Prosper Reese - Request by RiseofDarkFire Arenn Brenok Arenn Brenok - Request .updated. by RiseofDarkFire
3. :iconcounselorcat: (who got me started on this) Goodbyes :thumb251428615:  Ileena Vekal :thumb276032141: Who's the Deadliest One of All? :thumb267693844:
4.:iconpon-farr:  Star Trek TMP + 50 :thumb197088452: Relaxing in the Center Seat :thumb196737876:  Charvarnek and Spock :thumb194806351:
5.:iconkeljoy: Bromance BROMANCE by keljoy
Team Kirk Team Kirk by keljoy Andrew Kingsley Legacy ref - Andrew Kingsley by keljoy
6.:iconguljarol: Cardassian Valentine Cardassian Valentine by GulJarol Gul Atira Jarol Gul Atira Jarol v.2 by GulJarol Tolkar Saratt :thumb279697811:

Art by Mylochka
Skin created using a base from TrueBlueDoctor

Can We Stop Feeding the Poser-Haters?

Mon Jan 9, 2012, 11:01 AM
To those of you who are reading this, but don't really like reading too much before you start commenting, let me get two things out there first:

    1.  I'm no prude, but
    2.  I think all the Poser Porn is kinda ruining things for us acceptance-wise as Deviant Artists (which, considering the name of the place, is a bit ironic, admittedly...)

This whole line of thought started last summer when a Poser-Hater thread bubbled up to the top of the Journal Portal list. "Oh, no" I thought. "The traditional artists are breaking out the torches and pitchforks to go after the New-Media-On-the-Block." Pretty inevitable. Tends to happen every time someone builds a better mouse-trap. The second reaction after "Wow!" is almost always "What? You too good to buy a cat?" Part of the job description of Old Media is to smack New Media around enough to keep it from getting too stuck on itself. You'll remember the tongue-lashing old Socrates gave his star-pupil Plato for wasting all his time on that new-fangled "writing stuff down" fad.

However, watching a good "What is Art?" debate seemed like fun that morning, so I clicked the link. I was surprised to find, however, that the role of "Old Media Taking New Media to Task for Not Putting Enough Originality and Effort into their Art" in this case was not being played by fiber artists taking a break from looming wool they'd lovingly sheared from the sheep they'd raised from little lambs and then hand-dyed with blackberries from their backyard. The role of skeptical curmudgeon steeped in tradition, sweat, and lore in this case was being filled by people who use a different 3d graphics program.

After taking the requisite break time required for the mandatory rolling of the eyes and uttering of sufficient repetitions of phrases like "oh, please," "as if" and "spare me," I read on. Upon visiting the home pages of some of the most vocal Poser-haters and groups that refused to sully themselves by displaying Poser-generated art, I found I could understand and even agree with a few parts of their argument.

The easiest part to understand was the stance of some of the administrators of 3d modeling groups. In their mission statements, these groups defined themselves as being dedicated to displaying the work of 3d modellers. I can see why 99.9% of Poser Art would not be appropriate for such groups. I mean, there's a reason why the program is called "Poser" not "Modeller." It's a crappy tool for modelling. I know this because I have tried. God knows, I have tried. Very, very, very, very, very, very few of us do anything that could be called "modelling" in Poser even using the loosest definition of that term you could imagine. So, yes, if I was the moderator for a 3d modelling group, I would probably just blanket-ban Poser artists to make life simpler for us all.

[So here's our first way to stem the tide of vitriol, fellow Poser artists. Don't submit to 3d modelling groups when you have not actually 3d modeled anything. That's just annoying. Stop that.]

Less understandable were the accusations that Poser-generated images inherently do not constitute original artwork because Poser artists do not create all, most, or even any of the models they render. Now had the Haters sculpted the gnomes, robots, and '67 Chevys in the renders they proudly displayed in their galleries from clay they dug up in their backyards, I might have been tempted to hang my head in shame at this point. However, let me put it this way -- Look, kewl dude, we're both using programs to make little pixel pictures that can be destroyed by a mis-aimed bulk magnet. Unless you knitted your computer and power it with a team of gerbils you trained, don't get artier-than-thou on me.

If you use a computer program to create your art... no, let me back that up even further, if you're using a computer to create your art, you're borrowing on the talents of others. A valid point to meditate on is how much credit are you obliged to give to those many, many people who made your art possible. If you use a Mac, do you need to give a shout out to Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak? If you use a PC, do you have to list Bill Gates and all the employees of the start-up Microsoft bullied out of business after they created the app that runs your desktop clock?

Was Van Gogh a plagiarist because he didn't scrawl the names of the companies who made his brushes or constructed his easel under his signature?

For computer artists, a knife to cut through this Gordian Knot is held in the hands of good old Eula -- the End User's Licensing Agreement that comes with every piece of software. According to the EULAs for Poser and all the models, textures, hair, set pieces, lights, cameras, and poses that I have purchased for my digital Barbies and their virtual Dream Houses, I have also bought the rights to compose, render, and publish pictures using that program and all those things. If I say that I created DAZ's Victoria 4, then that is false. If I try to sell the program code that makes her appear on my computer screen (or even give it away) then I am breaking the EULA that I agreed to when I installed the model on my computer and DAZ will come after my butt with a butcher knife. However, I have purchased the right to claim any picture I render of her as my very, unambiguously own.

So, did you get that, haters? The reason that I and all other Poser artists are not just a bunch of plagiarists that you need to be very upset that Deviant Art does not hunt down with the ban-hammer is because we have paid to license the virtual people, clothes, textures, poses, hair, gnomes, airplanes, and '67 Chevys that we use in our pictures. If we are using those resources in accordance with their respective EULAs, then we're good. Just like you.

And for those of you who think that Poser users need to conform to the same rules for crediting that digital artists do when they use stock footage -- no, not exactly. Standard licensing agreements for Poser and Poser accessories don't require crediting as a condition of usage. Some freebies do... sometimes.. but usually not.

I credit items when I want to give a shout out and some free publicity to my favorite content creators. I also credit when I think other Poser artists are going to be asking, "What outfit is that?" or "Where did you get that ship?"

[So we reach our second recommendation for Hater-non-baiting -- Credit stuff. I know I just explained why we don't have to, but it makes everybody happier when we do... especially Steve Wozniak's grandma.]

And another thing that really stuck in my craw was the notion that creating works in Poser was no more original than tracing. Tracing is copying someone else's work and passing it off as your own (or at least that was the way it was being using in this particular context). Exactly duplicating work another Poser artist has done is actually fairly difficult because we're manipulating so many different variables.  This is true for the same reason that even though you can copy her recipe exactly, your peanut butter cookies never taste as good as the ones Grammy makes.  There's just too many variables to account for.  Things that she'd never think to write down (like fact that she lets her little poodle lick her bowls clean (sorry, but you know it's probably true..)) can give the final product a nuance your taste buds may register but your brain can never figure out.

To prove this, I've prepared the following demonstration.  

Tracing Aint Easy by mylochka

I promise I'm giving the notion that you can use Poser to "trace" someone else's work as fair a shot as I can.  I chose a circumstance where I would have far more access to the creative choices made by an outstanding Poser artist than is usually ever possible.  Still what I came up with is discernibly different than the original I'm copying.  Good Poser art is just too rich and complex to copy.

[Now we come to my third antidote to Poser-Hate, dear Poser Pals -- Create rich, detailed images that are too nuanced and complex to copy.  We have the technology.  We can do it.  Also, while it's fine to be inspired by another artist's work, don't try to reproduce specific images -- even when you own all the props, morphs, and costumes to be able to try.  It makes us all look like freaking "tracers."]

This thought finally (and perhaps a little surprisingly) brings us around to the issue I promised I was going to be talking about -- the porn.  It is my considered opinion that Poser-Haters do not look at the work of digital artists like :iconrainfeatherpearl: :iconbossie-boots: :iconart-by-mel-da: or :iconaeon--soul: and think, "Oh, I could sit down in front of the computer and pump out something better than that in the first five minutes."  However, when confronted with the teaming oceans of sorry-ass, low budget porn-crap that wash up on the beaches of Deviant Art each day like the stinking overflow of a leaking technicolor waste disposal plant, it's easy to see where the thought might occur (Right after thoughts like, "Sweet Jesus, what's that octopus doing to that lady?" or "Is that supposed to be boobs or two blimps colliding on her chest?" of course.)

As I said, I'm no prude.  I don't mind a well-executed bit of erotica every once in a while, but, Poser-pal, you and I both know that's not what we're talking about here.  I realize that inside every male of the species who opens Poser for the first time, there seems to be a naughty thirteen-year-old boy who rises up and proclaims in Scarlett O'Hara-like fashion, "As God is my witness, I will never go without porn again!" But that doesn't mean you need to share every masterpiece of gynecological wonder you produce with the world. Develop some discretion -- That's all I'm asking.  For practice, look at examples of photography on this very site.  You can see a difference between the shots that creatively celebrate the human body and those that celebrate the owner of a camera's ability to slap his junk on the kitchen counter and snap an all-too-candid documentation of the event, can't you?  One is art and one is best left in that special folder you've got hidden away inside the data folders for your copy of Quicken... especially if you're planning to run for public office.

Speaking of folders, let's create clearly labeled folders in which to store our bargain basement porn if we do decide to upload or favorite it so that casual visitors don't need brain and eyeball scrubbing after they drop in.  I've visited many homepages of lonely fellows whose blogs bemoan the lack of female interest in their gentle, loving, Christian selves.  Here's a thought, sport -- Maybe all the otherwise likely lasses have visited your gallery and are too busy wondering about your interest in seeing the favorite female comic book heroines of your youth sodomized by robots that vaguely recall '67 Chevys to go out with you.

Speaking of labeled folders, stop submitting poorly rendered pictures of the favorite female comic book heroines of your youth with their bosoms enlarged to proportions that are no longer recognizably human tied up and being violated by the glorified kitchen appliance of your choice to groups unless that group has a folder that unambiguously calls for works of that description.  Despite the fact that there's a lot of similar stuff out there, what you have produced is not run-of-the-mill digital art that is of general interest to the viewing public.  It has appeal to only a specific, select, niche market.  Seek out like-minded individuals and spare group moderators the embarrassment of having to explain that we are declining your image because it makes us want to hit ourselves in our faces with clubs and despair for the future of the human race.

Speaking of labeled folders in groups (and this was the incident that inspired this entire lecture), I ran across an innocently titled group for 3d science fiction renders the other day.  Its gallery consisted of three -- and only three -- folders labeled: Featured, Violent, and Explicit.  This was an entirely new way of breaking down the genre into sub-categories for me.  I left wondering if Larry Niven and Issac Asimov's works were more violent or explicit.  Maybe "I, Robot" and "Ringworld" are lucky enough to just be featured...

To be clear, let me reiterate, I've got nothing against pictures with nekkid folks in them.  However, featuring nekkid, violent crap in your images that does little more than explore how high you can dial the boob-size controls and how well you can pose kitchen appliances makes the crappiest of your crap even crappier.  This is not the stuff you should share with the world.

In conclusion, as the sage has said, haters gonna hate.  Nothing we can do about that.  No matter how impressive our art gets, there are going to be people out there who are never going to accept it.  Ask American Soccer and Women's Basketball -- some folks are just never going to take us seriously.  However, let's stop going out of our way to stoke the flames of their distaste and disdain.

Live long and Poser!

New Year, New Project

Journal Entry: Sun Jan 1, 2012, 11:08 AM
Inspired by the excellent work of talented CGI Trek artists suchs as
:iconwolfkroger74: and :iconmdbruffy:
I've decided that I'd like to experiment a bit in the creation of some sequential narrative art. To make things a little more exciting for me (and hopefully for you, dear reader), I've decided to follow the example of [I swear I'm going to properly credit this guy as soon as I can remember his name] and make this a collaborative comic.  This means that at the end of each sequence, you will be offered a chance to vote on some aspect of where the story goes next.

So here goes.  Hope we write a great story!

Art by Mylochka
Skin created using a base from TrueBlueDoctor
  • Listening to: sounds
  • Reading: the screen
  • Watching: the computer
  • Playing: dumb
  • Eating: air
  • Drinking: in your words

This is a Journal Entry

Journal Entry: Mon Dec 26, 2011, 4:47 PM
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Art by Mylochka
Skin created using a base from TrueBlueDoctor
  • Listening to: sounds
  • Reading: the screen
  • Watching: the computer
  • Playing: dumb
  • Eating: air
  • Drinking: in your words

Back from the Dead... Sorta

Journal Entry: Fri Nov 25, 2011, 11:16 AM
Sorry for the long absence DA pals, but I've been down with "teh health issues" ... like every other DA artist who disappears for an extended amount of time... and who isn't in high school.  When I was well, I used to wonder who had the time to put in all the hours I figured it took to keep lots of things I enjoyed on the web going.  After my accident when I suddenly found myself with loads of time in between doctor's appointments, I discovered that it was people like me who found themselves well enough to sit in front of a computer for a few hours a day at home, but not well enough to sit in front of a computer for many, many hours a day at work.

So on this day after Thanksgiving, I want to send out a special message of gratitude to fellow health issue folks who make the Internet such an entertaining place to be when you have to be at home.  Love you! Now, go take your medicine.

Speaking of medication, I'm taking a new pill now that's doing a pretty good job of keeping the migraines down to a dull roar.  Hope to be back on my Internet not-job job full steam again soon!

Ship of the Month Club Winner!

Journal Entry: Sun Jun 12, 2011, 11:33 AM
The winner of this month's :iconstartrekartistsunite: Ship of the Month Club Challenge is :iconptrope: for this render of the Klingon K'tinga.

Ghost Flight by Ptrope

It is, therefore, with great pleasure I will be featuring his work this month in my journal.

Ah, the great and glorious Ptrope!  Mere mention of his alias sends shivers of delight down my greedy little spine -- for not only is he a superlative artist, but he is the creator of some of the most deliciously exquisite Poser/Daz Studio Trek models in existence. Even if you are not a 3D artist or a Trek fan, I think the meticulous ingenuity of creations like his Crossbow ship design, his Steampunk bridge or his Feinberger Collection will still delight any gadget-loving soul.

A Quiet Moment on the Bridge by Ptrope The Feinberg Collection - 1 by Ptrope TriComm 1.2 - Now Available by Ptrope Place of Honor 1.2 by Ptrope MARS Viewer from 'The Cage' by Ptrope Televox by Ptrope

As undeniably gifted as Ptrope is as a model-maker, his skill as a craftsman does not overshadow his talent as artist. I think he has a particular brilliance for the sparing use of color to create images with bold, graphic appeal.

Mirror, Mirror by Ptrope   Patterns of Force by Ptrope   Your Last Battlefield - 002 by Ptrope The Majicks of Megas-Tu by Ptrope Wolf in the Fold by Ptrope

Ptrope's spectacular posters and book covers can make even a bad episode look good. And speaking of the spectacular – feast your eyes on some of these beauties…

Freedom by Ptrope Bad Decision by Ptrope Wake of Shadows by Ptrope Emergence by Ptrope

..or, for that matter, these beauties as well…

Arcturus ... for her by Ptrope An Ounce of Prevention by Ptrope Romulan Reflection ... by Ptrope Gerry's Angels - Wallpaper by Ptrope

One criticism that we Poser/Daz Studio artists hear all too often is that these programs produce work that lacks creativity and individuality since we are just "posing someone else's 3d dolls."  The cleverness and creativity of Ptrope's work serves as a most effective counter to this "cookie-cutter artwork" charge.

Grid Warp by Ptrope While Supplies Last by Ptrope Enterprise as B-movie by Ptrope No Redshirt Dies Today by Ptrope Infinite Playthings by Ptrope

Equal parts master craftsman and genius madman, :iconptrope: , it is my honor to salute you!

Ship of the Month Club Winner!

Journal Entry: Sun Apr 10, 2011, 11:25 AM
The winner of the :iconstartrekartistsunite: Ship of the Month Club was :iconrichmerk: for his excellent render of Space Station K7 in an image titled "Azure."
Azure by richmerk
It is my great pleasure to feature his work this month on this page. :iconrichmerk: has been one of my favorite creators of Star Trek themed models for several years now.  It is no surprise, therefore, that his images of ships and space are always top class.

Star Trek Log 12 by richmerk Attack on the Quietis by richmerk
Mayday Mayday by richmerk Out of the Sun by richmerk

I have been delighted to find that in his "Banshee Squadron" pictures that his images of people can be as sensitive and intimate as his pictures of spacescapes are large and grand.

Burden of Command by richmerk I'd Like You To Meet My Wife by richmerk

Above all, I have always enjoyed the sense of humor he brings to his art…
Fish Trek by richmerk Obelisk on oo-oo-Ah by richmerk

… as much as I admire his sense of beauty.
: Life by richmerk Water World by richmerk
Congratulations  :iconrichmerk:!  I look forward to seeing what you will create next!

Let's go to the Movies!

Journal Entry: Tue Jan 18, 2011, 4:11 PM
Currently :iconstartrekartistsunite: is sponsoring a poster challenge.  Our assignment is to take any episode from any Trek TV series (including TAS) and do a movie poster treatment for it as if it were a cinema release. You can see my entries in this gallery.  I'd like to use this journal entry to feature some of the excellent work being done by my compatriots in that group as well as a few of the images that inspired the challenge.

Beyond the Farthest Star by RobCaswell Tomorrow is Yesterday by AbaKon The Enterprise Incident by RobCaswell Space Seed promotional poster by JeremyVilmur
THE COUNTER CLOCK INCIDENT by archangel72367 Madness Poster 1 by archangel72367 Your Last Battlefield - 002 by Ptrope Arena by Ptrope
Catspaw by Drell-7 mondo: journey to babel by strongstuff TOSART: Tribble Trouble by moiramurphy TOSART: City on the Edge by moiramurphy I, Mudd - Coming Soon by Ptrope Corbomite Maneuver by Hummakavuula

Mmmm! Trek-o-licious, n'est ce pas?  Isn't it amazing how a good poster can make you want to see even what you already know is a bad episode?

Art by Mylochka
  • Listening to: Frida

Ho, ho ho!

Journal Entry: Sat Dec 11, 2010, 9:31 AM

I'm participating in the :iconstar-trekking: Secret Santa art exchange.  We were asked to give a list of things we'd like to see. Hmm... well, I'd love something featuring an Andorian character or a Vulcan character that could be posted at my groups :iconprideofandoria: or :iconvulcanophilia: (plug, plug, plug).  If you're brave, a render of some of the characters from the Valjiir fanfic universe would be fun

Skin by Shinji-bpm

Trying a little Capitalism...

Journal Entry: Sat Nov 6, 2010, 10:51 AM

Hearing that Cafe Press has an agreement with CBS to allow the sale of Trek related items (at least for the moment), I've opened up a storefront.…

if there's a good response, (and I can figure out something that won't violate the restrictions) I'll post some more images.

Mylochka Recommends

Journal Entry: Sun Jul 18, 2010, 11:04 AM
If you haven't seen it already, run, do not walk your little fingers over to check out Tim Vining's CGI animated series "Star Trek: Aurora."  Even if you don't know enough about computer animation to be blown away by how beautifully this series is put together using the very limited capabilities of the programs he's using, the charm of this story will grab you by your fannish heart and not let go!…

Hello Again, Star Trek Fandom

Sat Jun 19, 2010, 9:18 AM
Dearest Fandom,

So this is where you've been hiding!

I've been out of "mainstream" for several years now -- Things came up. Career. Life.  You know.  We lost track of each other.   Maybe you assumed, like I did, that we were just both out there on the web, waiting to find each other again.  

When I came looking, though.  You were gone.  

I take that back.  You're never completely gone.  Of course the corporate crap was still there.  It didn't take long after that to find the nitpickers, the K/Sers, the boys who like to draw ships, and the boys who like to draw girls with big boobs (who are often the same boys).  But I couldn't find what I'd always thought of as the "real" you -- the rank and file fans, the fun, goofy folks who might make or buy a Mr. Spock Head decanter.

I was beginning to think you might have died.

But here you are -- as vibrant, obsessive, playful, and vivacious as ever!

I feel like it's 1979 and I've just discovered the strange thing they call "fanzines"...

Let's fall in love again.