Comment Support #5B - Finding Confidence

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Many thanks to the below for joining our fifth session (part one and part two) on Finding Confidence!

:iconjakirajurosawa: :icon02aya: :iconnicolasbahamondes: :iconaw-sam-1: :iconpawcanada: :icontripletrip: :icontigraidoxxx: :iconlittlefawns: :iconkilljennifer: :iconomnivault: :iconvirus-tormentor: :iconangelica343: :iconvka3: :iconsuperevilgenius:

What happened last week?

Keys: :bulletred: issues you may experience ; :bulletgreen: solutions and tips to resolve them

What if I can’t comment about technical aspects because of my lack of knowledge?

:bulletred: Sometimes, you may not feel a lot of confidence, because you think you lack expertise in a medium.

:bulletgreen: If you can’t help in any way regarding technique, it is still possible to help by giving your own impressions on a piece.
As TripleTrip mentions it, “I do understand that [one] gets focused on the technical properties. That is a valuable trait because it can help give artwork a final polished look. However, when artwork is stylized, some of the technical properties are lost.
If it helps at all, there are two ways at looking at art.
There is the technical aspect such examining the anatomy, shading, composition, perspective and coloring. The other part is intuitive aspect.”
:bulletgreen: You can develop this “intuitive aspect” even if you don’t know anything about the medium. You can develop your point of view as a spectator and let the artist know whether the piece conveys the intended message or emotion.
:bulletgreen: If you want to read more about lack of artistic experience, please read this article.

I’m intimidated by the artist, what should I do?

:bulletred: The artist is “way better” than you (think you) are.

:bulletgreen: The art you make doesn’t define who you are. Even if you haven’t overcome all the difficulties you’re facing, you can still point them out. Maybe you even know the solution to these difficulties.
TripleTrip, "Just because I made something crappy doesn't mean I am a crappy person."

:bulletgreen: The quality of your feedback shouldn’t be judged by looking at your art. Both are different things, and can’t be compared. So, even if you still need to improve your art a lot, it doesn’t make you less of a commenter. On the other hand, it allows you to be fully aware of the difficulties and drawbacks of the medium, and thus point them out more easily.
As Nocturnaliss said it, “As long as you feel you have something to say that can help the artist, you should always speak your mind.”

:bulletred: You are “way better” than the artist, and afraid to look arrogant or intimidating (as TigRaidoXXX pointed it out).

:bulletgreen: Make this an advantage : you are able to help them, because you used to experience the same difficulties they are currently facing.
:bulletgreen: Use your experience as a supportive tool. While more advanced artists sometimes look down on beginners, show the beginner that you care, that you want to see them improve, that they can do it!
Nocturnaliss develops this point, “So to respond to you as to what you should tell an artist: exactly what you just said. "you sincerely want him not to give up" and "something in their pictures attracts you" - that is what a beginning/aspiring artist needs to hear, first and foremost.”

What if my comment incites a negative reaction from the artist?

:bulletred: Even if you take great care and you’re careful of writing a comment that “won’t hurt anybody”, you can still incite a negative and/or violent reactions.

:bulletgreen: Sometimes, you’re just the trigger of something else that is happening, something you have no control over. In these cases, it’s better to move on and leave the artist to their world.
Nocturnaliss, “That's another reality of social situations: try as you might, you'll likely encounter people who are bent on taking everything you say the wrong way. That only means there's pain in their life that you can't solve. Being a trigger doesn't equate being the actual cause.”
:bulletgreen: It’s unlikely that you can write a comment that won’t hurt anyone at all, for the simple reason that not all artists seek the same kind of feedback. Some people may only want support, while others only want suggestions, in order to improve. This is why you should always consider, “what will help this artist? What kind of feedback?”.

:note: It may not always be possible to answer this question. Sometimes, when you don’t know anything about the artist (there isn’t any indication on how you can help), try to explain in a way that makes the comment complete. Don’t hesitate to ask questions, make hypotheses, and such.
As TigRaidoXXX points out, “I know that harsh ways can sometimes speed up improvement, but only if a person is willing to go through it. And we are (mostly) creating art out of love for it, not because we feel obliged and pressured…”
:bulletgreen: If you want to read more about “how not to sound rude” and about artists’ reactions, read this article.

How do I write good comments when I’m convinced I can’t?

:bulletred: If you are convinced you are not a good commenter, or that you can’t write a comment at all, it will be quite hard to improve.

:bulletgreen: Ask yourself why you think so. Has anybody told you that your comments were rubbish? Have you received negative reactions? Isolated events shouldn’t define what you can achieve.
:bulletgreen: Ask for others’ opinions. Maybe you have a friend that could review your comments. If you don’t, no worries. You can contact us via the Ultimate Comment Support  project.

More things to think about…

kikoeart - ”I think you should always remember that people have submitted to this group to get feedback so they are asking you to comment!
Then just comment on what you are sure about and if they don't agree - it doesn't really matter, the point is for them to get someone else's perspective, a new set of eyes. So there is no "right" or "wrong" comment, it's not good to be mean obviously, but just tell them what you see. Even if they don't see it your way, they have been made aware that people COULD see it in that way also, this will keep them informed about how the work is expressing itself. Art has to communicating to others, not just to the artist (unless that's what you want!) therefore, most any comment will be helpful. If you remember that, there is nothing to be afraid of while commenting.”

Metanaito-kyou - ”For finding confidence, it's vital to remember that Project Comment members submitted their stuff to the group to receive criticism are are usually more than happy to get some feedback. Always try to be at positive and polite ^^ That will most likely insure a kind response.”

Riemea - ”Finding confidence can be hard, no matter with what, and commenting is no exception. Giving constructive feedback can be really scary sometimes. I think it gets better with time - the more experience you gain in writing comments the more confident you will become.”

Please take as much time as you need to think about everything we have said here, and feel free to ask questions! Nocturnaliss and Tuntalm are always up for a chat! :dummy:
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VexusArzxis's avatar
Sometimes constructive feedback can make them uncomfortable because it feels like they're being graded for what they're doing. I realized that when I was following a certain artist and she didn't like me doing a constructive comment on her works but we were able to talk it out nicely in the end. Frankly, constructive comments are fun to do because, in my experience, their reactions were mostly "squee" or "I never realized that" or even "Thanks for the tip!". Even though I needed help on my end as well ;w;

Fun, funny and mellow constructive comments is what I do and it literally boosts the confidence of most artist I follow.

PS: terminologies (ex. creases, back arch etc.) are my weak points so please spare me =w=