How can I help?You don't have to be a Community Volunteer or have a fancy symbol next to your name to promote and support artists within your favourite gallery. The suggestions listed below are for everyone, and if you want something a little more useful than just my ideas, don't forget to pay a visit to the Help & FAQ section of DA.
Featuring artTo avoid repeating myself, I'd like to point you in the direction of a tutorial called Promoting Other People's Art On DA which contains information about...
- Featuring art on your profile page and in your journals
- Suggesting Daily Deviations
- Sharing deviations
Be a groupieDA groups are set up and maintained by Admins, from the Founder (the person who 'owns' the group) to Moderators and Contributors. These roles are different within each group, and each group has it's own set of rules for joining and submitting.
Many of the DA galleries have official groups run by the Community Volunteers who look after those galleries, for example CRPhotography. The Community Volunteer who looks after your favourite gallery will also be able to point you in the direction of active groups, or at least point you in the direction of an community member who you can ask about where to find groups to join.
Of course, you can also set up your own group if you like. One major frustration with running a group is that lots of people are keen to be an admin but don't really have enough time to dedicate to the 'job'. If you're going to offer to help out with a group, please give it a decent amount of thought before you apply and be completely honest about how much time you can devote to it.
There's an entire section in the ever-useful Help & FAQ area.
Contests and collaborationsWhile DA almost always has a few official contests on the go, hosted by the Community Relations team or run in conjunction with an outside sponsor, anyone is welcome to run their own contest. Running a contest can be great fun and is a wonderful way to inspire your fellow deviants and encourage participation in a community-wide event. Please bear in mind though, if you want to run a contest with prizes you can't rely on other people to provide these prizes.
Individual Community Volunteers do not have a contest prize budget, so while some may volunteer to offer prizes for unofficial contests relating to the galleries they moderate it is unfair to expect this. CVs are here to help though, so they may be able to help you promote your contest through news articles journals and news articles.
Running a contest with big prizes isn't the only way to hold an inspirational and exciting event for your fellow artists. Sure, you can give Points and Core Memberships as prizes if you like, but you can offer features in your journal, on your page or at a group you run, gift art or personalised resources.
Be a teacher or a mentorIf you have a brain packed full of useful information, share it! Anyone can submit a tutorial to the Resources gallery or as a journal and whatever you write about, someone will appreciate you sharing your knowledge. If you enjoy writing tutorials, make a folder for them in your gallery and display it on your userpage so that other people can easily find all the useful things you've made. If you enjoy collecting other people's tutorials, you can feature the collection on your userpage.
If you'd like to share your knowledge in a more personal and involved way, you can offer critique on other people's art (keep it polite and constructive, please!) or volunteer your time as a mentor. I can guarantee that you'll have people jumping at the chance to receive helpful comments on their work from someone who knows what they're talking about!
Set an exampleWho inspires you more - the person who submits three drama-filled journal entries a day, bitches about other people all the time and publicly insults everything that isn't to their taste? Or the person who writes tutorials and helpful news articles, features art in their journal and helps out with promoting other deviants' projects?
I'm not saying that everyone should censor their opinions or silently tolerate unpleasantness, but when the majority of your journal entries are based around complaining about things you hate without offering suggestions, you aren't doing anyone any good. If you've got a problem with something, try and deal with it maturely.
You get out what you put in, so if your interactions are based in positivity you'll have a much more positive experience. It sounds obvious, but it never hurts to have a reminder...do unto others, and all that.