Shop Forum More Submit  Join Login
This journal is simply my opinion, meant to encourage and hopefully help others.

Comments will be hidden that are abusive, contain mature language, or incite drama.

I won't respond to any debate or long-winded comments.  It's not that I don't care, but I need to use my time working on art instead.

I've only been on dA for a little over a year now, but I've seen so much drama and hurtful comments on closed species.  Here are a few topics that effect me the most.

Closed Species are not Closed Features

This seems to be one of the biggest issues non-closed species owners have.  Let's say you came up with a new species called Muffin Cats.  They're simply muffins with kitty features, but you love them and want to keep them closed so you can make sure they stay to your original vision.  Then someone comes along and berates you for it.  They say, "you can't claim such a basic idea!  Anyone could've made this!"  But you never said no one else could make muffin based cats, you only said they couldn't make "Muffin Cats", your specific closed species.

A closed species isn't made of only features.  It's a combination of features, plus story, behavior, environment, their name, the unique artist's style, and so many other things.  It can be as basic or complex as you like.  That's why I personally have no problem claiming my "simple" species, and fully encourage everyone to be true to themselves!

Free the Species!

Just because something isn't illegal, doesn't mean it's morally right.  You might not be arrested for laughing at someone when they fall and break a leg, but it still makes you look like a jerk and hurts the other person's feelings.  The same thing applies to artistic ideas.  It might not be illegal for you to make species knock-offs, but it's still rude and hurtful.  If you feel this strongly about artist rights and promoting freedom of ideas, why not try more positive methods?

Instead of attacking others, maybe you could create your own awesome species, and make it completely free to use.  Or make a group called "Everyone's Species is Beautiful" and use it to showcase lesser known species.  Hatred only breeds more hatred.  Find a way to encourage and uplift others instead, and you'll find not only are people are more receptive of your message, but you'll feel happier and more peaceful as well.

Closed Species Limit Creativity

This is one of the silliest things I have ever heard!  As a matter of fact, quite the opposite is true.  Let's go back to Muffin Cats.  So you've made and posted the species, you're so proud of them, but uh oh!  You find out someone else created their own Muffin Cats a whole year before yours.  That means you'll have to give up on your species right?  Not at all!

Instead, you could think of new ways to reinvent your idea.  How about Batter Buddies?  They could be any baked good, any animal, which still means you can make your muffin based kittens!  But it's a whole new idea, and now you have something that stands apart from the other person's Muffin Cats, because your species might include Pancake Pups or Doughnut Dragons as well.  You could also take it a step further and invent a unique back story for them.

Maybe instead of being actual food based animals, they're tiny animal spirits who take on the appearance of food to test people.  At first glance they might look like delicious abandoned food, and greedy people will pick them up and try to eat them.  But kind hearted people will try to find out who lost their little cupcake, and when the animal spirit sees this, they reveal themselves to this person, and grant them one wish with their magical powers.  You don't have to stop there though!

How about behaviour?  Since Batter Buddies live their lives in secrecy, maybe they're extremely shy and run away from loud noises.  They could be born from magic flour baked in moonlight.  Maybe they eat raw cooking ingredients instead of regular food, and if you have a kitchen infestation, they leave their little crumbs everywhere.  Leaving kitchen crumbs leads to them making friends with a mouse based species.  Then maybe they are enemies with a large cat based species; there's nothing better than tying your species together and expanding their world.  There are so many ways to further your creations, it's actually a terrific thing that some ideas are already in use!  This challenges people to work past their first ideas that were so easy to come up with, and invent really amazing things!

Check out griffsnuff's design challenge for example.  She gave the theme of "canine + light" and look at how many unique designs there are all from the same idea!:

Awesome challenge time!SO  Iwant to prove that we are all actually able to be creative if we put our mind to it! this is a small experiment and I would absolutely love for you to participate!
HOW many different versions are we able to make? Is this myth about how something can only be one thing true? Lets combine all our artistic skills and minds and find out!
The rules
:bulletgreen:design  a creature inspired by these words Canine + Lights
:bulletgreen: Make a simple refrence sheet explaining its important features (scroll to bottom for example)
:bulletgreen:Name it something
:bulletpink: ENTRIES :
 I will put everyone in a folder and link here, your CHALLENGE is to look at what is added, if you see something to similar to what you were going to do, then do your best to change it add/remove things/features, think outside the box, think endlessly, show everyone

Don't Assume You Know It All

"Closed species owners are just looking for a fast buck!"  This is one of the most untrue and hurtful things I've heard on this site.  For me, it's not that I'm a greedy thug stealing someone's lunch money.  But I really love inventing little creatures and their stories!  How much more awesome is it that I can build my passion into a occupation?  There's been those times that if I didn't have my art funds, the electricity might have been turned off, or I couldn't afford a new comforter to replace my old torn one.  I am so grateful and I thank God I'm blessed with the opportunity to do what I love.

"Closed species are a ripoff and a lie!"  When you make this assumption, it's not only hurting the species creators, but everyone who bought from them.  It's like calling them stupid just because they enjoy spending their money on something different than you.  Suppose you frequently go out to the movies.  Well, when you see a movie it only lasts for a couple hours right?  There's nothing you physically take away from the theater right?  What if someone said movies are a ripoff and a lie?  You might be offended.

"Simple closed species show how lazy you are!"  No one has to make super complicated species if they don't want to.  Some people, like myself, really enjoy simple designs.  I like basic things because they look cuter to me, and they're easier to replicate when I want to draw the new adopt I purchased.  I prefer short back stories rather than reading a novel's worth of info.  I admire the more complex, long legged creatures other artists make as well, but they're simply not my style.  It doesn't make me less of an artist, or mean that I'm lazy, we just have different interests.

Bottom line is, try not to assume things, when you're not that person, and you have no idea how they really think and feel.  Chances are they're just as caring and passionate as you are, they only have a different point of view.

Be Careful with Your Opinions

So you see a new species, and it really looks like another more well-known species.  Or maybe you think they're too simple, or too such and such for someone to claim as their own.  No matter the reason, giving advice where none was asked for is extremely rude, and can hurt others' feelings.

What if you baked a cake for your sibling's birthday, and you were really proud of it, but someone comes along and criticizes it because the icing colours don't go well together, or it looks too much like a cake the bakery down the street has, or they think the quality should be better?  And then they list all the things you need to do to become a "real" baker, when all you wanted to do was give a gift to someone you care about?  It may be your right to exercise your opinion, but when your "rights" hurt others, it's never the right thing to do.

I'm always reminded of what my mom says, "dipping and dapping and don't know what's happening."  Just as you didn't ask for anyone's opinion on your birthday cake, unless another artist actually asks, offering unsolicited advice can be offensive.  If you truly believe you can help the other artist, instead of posting publicly, try writing them a note.  But be sure you're only offering uplifting advice with ideas to improve, remember to mention the good things about their species as well.  If you believe they're infringing on another closed species, privately note the other owner instead, so they can make that assessment for themselves.  But really it's best to just not say anything at all.  If no one asks for your two cents just keep it to yourself, and then you can avoid the hurt feelings and ensuing drama.

Don't Let Yourself be Bullied

So many times I see artists let themselves be pressured into doing something they didn't originally want to do.  If you came up with species "A" and find out during the auction that it slightly resembles someone's species "B", you don't have to credit species "B" just because someone is harassing you.  How can you credit something as an "inspiration" when you never even saw it before?  Instead, if you find the resemblance is too close and causes an issue, develop your species a little more, come up with some awesome differences so they will stand apart from the other person's.  There's nothing wrong with coincidentally creating similar ideas to someone else, it happens to all of us.  There is nothing new, nothing truly original that hasn't been done in some facet before.  As a Christian, I always refer back to Ecclesiastes 1:9, "What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun."

You are never required to change just because of someone else's opinion.  People will pick on you for any reason they can think of, it's inevitable that someone will someday have an issue with you, no matter how kind you are.  So what if your species is too simple, too blue, too cute, too fat, etc.  If it makes you happy, stick with it, and just ignore them.  Just because there's ten million similar ideas out there in the world, none of those artists have the exact same experiences and personality as you, so they will never be able to make their artwork exactly like yours.  You and your art are unique and one of a kind, don't ever let anyone tell you otherwise.

And when you do find yourself under attack, the best approach is to not approach it all.  Ignore them, hide their comments, block them, and if they are abusive, report them to dA staff.  You aren't required to entertain rambling diatribe just to make the other person feel better.  Debating needlessly will not only drain your energy, it usually does nothing to change the other person's mind.  Normally bullies are just looking for a reaction, if you fail to give them that satisfaction, they should get bored and move along.

Learn to Forgive

Just because someone has insulted your artwork, purposely copied your ideas, or done all kinds of hurtful things to you, doesn't mean that they are any less deserving of love than you are.  Remember, just because you may not have done the same things they did, somewhere, somehow in your lifetime you too have done things that are wrong and hurt other people.  Try to have mercy and forgive them.

Now forgiving doesn't mean you have to forget, and become best buddies overnight.  Suppose you have a store, and your employee steals a few dollars.  You might forgive them and let them keep their job, but it would be very foolish to put them back on the register again.  Same concept here.  If you blocked someone for good reasons, don't feel pressured to unblock them and take more abuse because you want to be "forgiving".  Instead, forgiving and loving others simply means to treat them with respect.  You don't need to make call-out journals, or go around spreading mean comments about them, it will only turn you into a bully as well.  Forgiving others isn't for their benefit, but it's for yours.  Forgiveness means you can let things go and live your life peacefully and happily, regardless of what others do.

And if you're someone who may have accidentally hurt someone's feelings and they refuse to forgive you, don't beat yourself up about it.  It's their loss if they decide to hang onto their anger.  One mistake doesn't define your whole future.  Be happy and know that you are still a wonderful, unique person, and God loves you very much, no matter what.

Never Give Up

At the end of the day, it's only art.  Just because someone disliked your ice cream puppy today, doesn't mean the sun isn't rising tomorrow.  Don't let narrow minded comments ruin your happiness.  Everyone starts out unknown, and with nothing.  We all struggle and it takes many people years to finally achieve their success.  Love yourself, love your art, and no one can ever take that away from you.<3
Add a Comment:
funnyman42 Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2018
I used to be okay with this "closed species" nonsense, but after trying for over a year to get a response from someone regarding how to get a primagen, I've come to the conclusion that it's all just a mob mentality.  Someone popular made something and says nobody else is allowed to, the idea grew into "closed species" there is only one example of an actually copyrighted species, and it was a type of dragon from a series of novels.

The idea of a closed species IS CENSORSHIP, and has no legal ground to stand on.  I can and will be creating my own primagen OC's, and I look forward to the day someone tries to call me out on it.
Coralkits Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2018  New Deviant
THANK YOU. everyone says closed species are stupid. they are NOT. 
DesaturatedPurple Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Lore and detail is, in my opinion, the best, most important thing for a species. Your example muffin cats could be saved by lore too. 
Take STRUDELcafe for an example. It's a food based species, but because they have so much detail and have lore, it makes it unique.
XKuonjiX Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2018  Student General Artist
I personally don't give a damn about closed species but I still don't see why they should be a special snowflake case where others aren't allowed to critique them. You posted it publically after all on an art website where criticism is a basic thing to do since it's part of the art world. People are still allowed to voice their honest opinions on them be it a closed species or any art piece. 
AUBEARGINE Featured By Owner Edited Apr 25, 2018  Student Digital Artist
so what you're telling me is you're allowed to critique anything posted in public?
so I could say to an old woman:

"that dress is dreadful, the color is all wrong, and you look hideous in it" simply because she wore it in public?

It doesn't matter HOW you phrase it, that old woman NEVER ASKED for your opinion.
some people just don't want to hear what you have to say, and surprise surprise, they're not obligated to.

It is VERY rude to give your critique when it is unwanted. This isn't just a closed species thing, this is a whole world thing.
There is a time and a place for everything. You shouldn't think so highly of yourself to think your opinion is always wanted or needed by everyone else.

You're allowed to say what you want, that doesn't mean you're not a dick for it, or that people have to like you for it.
say for example, if I HATE babies. whenever I see a baby I don't have to voice my opinion on why babies are gross and annoying, it's rude. no one asked.

they aren't a special snowflake case, not everyone on the face of this earth wants to hear what you have to say, just like how you most likely don't want to hear what I have to say.

I don't want to start an argument or drama simply because I really don't care that much, but you really should put more thought into how you treat other people.
DesaturatedPurple Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Critique is good, mean criticism is not. There's no black or white when it comes to it, so people get so upset when in their opinion it's an insult. That, in my opinion, is why people get mad over it at times.
BlueWolf0907 Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
I can remember seeing an awesome closed species once, and there was a pretty horrible comment on it. I actually found the comment and copied what it said: "You make something cool. Then make it closed so only people who want too give you fucking money can have one. Real nice". I don't think that's fair since the creator spent so long on the species, I think it's there choice whether they sell it for money or not.
AncientWolfSpirit Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
While I dislike simple and boring designs that are overused and how people try to make money off of them, this journal is true. In the end, I don't give a fuck. Nobody does other than yourself.
Tea-doggo Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2018  Student General Artist
I'm sorry
but this journal is so true
SilverGriffinflare Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2018  Student General Artist
Thank you! Most of my species are closed species simply because I don't want other people to make their own ones because I plan on making actual stories about them in the future (Devitites, Sapsys, Dolyshoe, Netherworld Vampires, Krakins, Rhodera, and of course my very first 'closed species' Creeper Dragons). I've made one Netherworld Vampire adopt before and let a friend use my Krakin character in her story, but those are the only times I've let people use them.
vashyrons Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
as someone new to dA (again, sort of?) the whole closed species thing is completely new to me, but i this journal shed a lot of light!! like if you’re a toy company exec and you invent something like this? bam, BIG BUSINESS. so why SHOULDN’T people do the same with their own art?

also now i want to flesh out an idea i had but UGH i’m a writer not an artist

maybe i can doodles. hm.
Demondi-Adopts Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2017
This is really well written, and makes some great points! ^^ Thanks for putting this out there
Sarilain Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2017
MajikkanBeingsUnite Featured By Owner Edited May 5, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
You're getting a llama for this oops, already gave you one...
:happybounce: thank you so much, this is awesome!
gauzhi-adoptables Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
tbh i was jus lookin around dA for closed species for the reason that i didnt want to "copy" anyones species ideas so making sure that no one else had it but this popped up and it rlly helped my confidence in species making q0q

i totally agree and it's rlly unfair that ppl who want to make a species hav to feel some sort of pressure to be 100% original or some bull crap liek that

tysm for writing this up! u honestly rlly helped my confidence in making my species and i hope other ppl can also b inspired by this qwq
Demondi-Adopts Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2017
found you ;)
Sarilain Featured By Owner Jan 6, 2017
Awww thanks, I'm glad I could help you.^^
GamingSaga Featured By Owner Dec 21, 2016
The simple fact is that you cannot close a species to begin with.
The very concept of "closing" something art-related (which you can do in other contexts) requires what you close to be your registered and law-protected property.

Sadly, the "Kitty Muffins" cannot be copyrighted, only the specific ones that you have personally drawn, and thus, your kitty muffins are NOT closed even if you claim they are.

You cannot close a species by it´s very definition.

So yes, "closing" is nothing but a fraud and a lie,  because it does not hold.
Lurhstaap Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2018  Professional General Artist
Not entirely true. It is possible to trademark/protect specific original species/creations. For example, if I were to go make a Wookiee OC and make a bunch of money selling merchandise, I'm pretty sure "But it's my OC, not Chewbacca!" wouldn't protect me in court. 
GamingSaga Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2018
Only and exclusively if you called it a Wookie and as a part of the Star Wars franchise and then tried to sell merchandise out of it.

But if you simply make a hair covered humanoid and call it a Waku instead then you can and no-one can stop you which is there´s so many knock offs and rip offs of well known products in any given toy-store.

Furthermore, for it to be protected in such fashion, it requires for you to legally and economically trademark and register your "closed species" as a commercial product and intellectual property which i can assure you (next to) no closed species on deviantart has gone thru.

And that is what we are talking about.
Lurhstaap Featured By Owner Edited Feb 15, 2018  Professional General Artist
Uh... yes. That would be the scenario I described, one in which the character was, specifically, a WOOKIEE OC and described as such, and merchandise was sold. I was not referring to your knockoff situation. You're essentially re-stating my point as if that somehow refutes my point? You said it isn't possible to "close a species". I pointed out that is not the case because species can be trademarked. You just conceded that point. So... what's your point now? Just because few people (to YOUR knowledge) have trademarked their species does not mean "closed species are a lie" and "species -cannot- be closed", as you stated. It merely means most people have not taken the necessary legal steps to back up their decision to close their species. Those are -very- different situations. I do understand that people tend to think of and behave on dA as if it were an isolated bubble reality, but it is not. The laws of the land do, in fact, apply, and because many dA users are United States citizens, US law applies to them (meaning those users; users who are citizens of other countries, of course, are subject to those countries' laws.) Ergo, your original post was incorrect. 
GamingSaga Featured By Owner Edited Feb 15, 2018
Yours is a non-argument because the Deviantart version of "closing a species" includes the distinct features and  general designs.
Therefore when i claimed you could not close a species i was referring to the design and not to the trademark around your creation.

Most drama related to closed species in this community has NOTHING to do with someone using the name or trademark unlawfully and plenty to do with them making a design that is even remotely similar to a popular closed species, which is where my entire argument comes from.

To make a simple example, when Sushidogs began to become popular, anyone that made food-related dogs, even without the pretense of it being a Sushidog, would get a lot of flak by the community.
This is what i was referring to and this is why this journal talks about limiting creativity.

Obviously since i am "debating" this on deviantart i am referencing the situation in deviantart.
Lurhstaap Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2018  Professional General Artist
I still don't see how that's different from what I said, re:people not taking the necessary action to back up their declaration of a 'closed species'? I wasn't trying to say there wasn't any drama or misunderstanding of the concept, or what's required. I was taking issue with the point-blank statement. (Disclaimer: I am a horrible, horrible pedant. :p
GamingSaga Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2018
The thing is, you are being pedantic for no godforsaken reason.

You have proven that you have understood that i was referring to the design aspects of a closed species because that is the part that tends to rile people up and what people more often than not, try to defend.

Therefore, to basically poke at my statement because it is objectively wrong on a more broader interpretation is incredibly pointless.
RottenVodka Featured By Owner Apr 26, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Omg the truth :o I love you 
ChocolateQuill Featured By Owner Apr 25, 2016
Okay I'm super late to the party but I literally JUST dealt with a person who made really super hurtful species "knockoffs" of my species (with the intent to make fun of me no matter how much they denied it) and it really truly hurt. Finding your journal (which was linked to me by a good friend :iconbluuwynter:) was such a refreshing thing for me. Thank you so much for writing this! 
Rooperoo Featured By Owner May 10, 2016  Student General Artist
actually afrocats are unoriginal they're the poodle cats
ChocolateQuill Featured By Owner May 10, 2016
They aren't poodle cats. Please take the time to get to know what they are before making assumptions ^^ 
Rooperoo Featured By Owner May 10, 2016  Student General Artist
i take time to get what they are
5 fucking seconds o know that they're poodle cats : )
darkeifie Featured By Owner May 10, 2016
please re-read this journal and stop harassing creators, you are hurting the artistic industry with your tired old shtick. not to mention the thinly-veiled racism in comparing afro hairstyles to a poodle rather than an expression of african heritage, which jess has made sure to feature in her wonderful species. please, re-evaluate how you are spending your time, you will honestly find yourself so much better off when you are spreading love and appreciation instead of trying to bring others in your field down.
Rooperoo Featured By Owner May 10, 2016  Student General Artist
I just read 5 letters and i dont care 
darkeifie Featured By Owner May 10, 2016
that's why people like chocoquill are the leaders and youre the follower boo
Rooperoo Featured By Owner May 10, 2016  Student General Artist
wtf sorry i cant understand  D: i have only read ''t''
(2 Replies)
iDisturbed Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Oh my goodness. Honestly, thank you so much for this journal it actually relieved some weight of worry in my back. I've been thinking about making a species in the past and the issues revolving around closed species have been savagly shying me away. If only some took the time to think about it like this.
Ruerie Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
"Don't Assume You Know It All"

Words of wisdom :)
AbyssalRadiance Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2016  Student General Artist
This is so perfect, I have no words for it.

I do ask people questions about their species, similar to the muffin cat thing (like waterdogs and such - people tried to bully anyone who made a canine or any animal with water-ish features, even though anyone can do that as long as it's not 100% a Waterdog, you know? Cause so much drama and hurt people)

I love you so much for this, there's nothing to be added <3
I agree with a lot of your points, (excluding the limit creativity one)... this kind of thinking is why I created the group :iconno-closed-traits:.
//shameless advertising
But I just have a simple question, I don't want to incite any drama, and if anyone replies to this please be civil.
What if the creators and fans of muffin cats relentlessly bully the creator of batter buddies because they too similar, or they have the same traits?
I agree with closed species, but this is not my main account, and this has happened to me. It isn't always a simple sweet note politely asking me to change it.

There are insults, death threats, reporting of false theft. I had to leave DA because of it. I now have a new account, but there have even been cases of someone having been pushed to self harm over it because they were called thieves and they weren't creative.

I don't care if you or anybody else reads this or not, but the bullying is what caused all of this. Thank you if you did read this though.
Pizaru-Chu Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2015
it certainly seems that beneath the constant back and forth between the proCS and ConCS people, the actual issue thats missed a lot seems to be that the community has gotten kind of horrible on a general scale? Certain creators are able to at least decently rein in their own user base, but I think that in the time while they were running amok (and are still running amok), they've managed to ruin the entire CS environment for a lot of people, which is such a sad thing haha... Feels like a lot of problems on both side would be lessened greatly if participants hadn't habitually jump the gun at almost everything. Even if they might be better now a days (like if its just become a vocal minority and such), you'd never guess with the revolt stuff going on anyway haha

I'm super sorry all that happened to you though! I hope you found a better time once you decided to return.
MissTerrarium Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2015
Yes that's very true!

Thank you! I have been doing better with my new account! The break from this site was very helpful.
Zodiaest Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2015  Student General Artist
thanks for this ;3; i really needed someone to say such things about these situations thanks!!!
Lupafel-Adopts Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2015
Does someone actually make Batter Buddies? I want one...
It should be a thing.
Konoei-Kreations Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is bloody inspirational.
Much love is coming your way man. <3
That was amazing. You put some spark back into me, that;s for sure. >w<
zergking3 Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2015
Okay, so does that mean I can make a similar species with similar designs and features, but different stories?

costume-cat Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2015  Student
This is so nice to read only because I am so tired of being criticized for things. I love my species the way that they are, they honestly may not be super original but I enjoy their backstory and like to share them as much as I can. I am really tired of being attacked for making a closed species and trying to make a little something from it. If you don't like it you are not forced to buy it or anything like that. I don't know it just makes me just feel so down. 
Sarilain Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2015
No worries, it happens to all of us.  Can't please everyone, so someone is always going to have an issue.  I try to just shrug it off.xD
costume-cat Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2015  Student
Yes that is very true, its sad though that people get so angry. 
WolfcyrstalXD Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2015  Student General Artist
This explanation is life!
Chocolate-at-heart Featured By Owner Jul 7, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yes and batter buddies should be a thing ^V^
Add a Comment:

:iconsarilain: More from Sarilain

Featured in Collections

Journals by Sound-of-Heaven

journals by GlitchOS

More from DeviantArt


Submitted on
February 1, 2015


10,713 (1 today)
403 (who?)