What is DeviantArt.com
DeviantArt is a community website for creative people. It is a place where you can post your art (no matter what form it takes) to share and get feedback on. Think of Facebook meets Instagram only extremely art centric and a place to share. It really is a community.
Like Facebook, it is free to sign up, but there is a paid subscription version as well.
If you just want to post art and not be part of a community then it might not be for you, but if you are growing and are looking for feedback, then give it a try. There are lots of really wonderful people in the community ready to help and share.
In simple words, DeviantArt.com is a site for any kind of art. You will find anything from masterfully done pieces of landscape to stuff that will gross you out. Not sure if that’s what founder had in mind when he named it, but its a good hit at what you can find there too, although such stuff is in minority and you can filter it.
It also allows artists to sell their art as wallpapers and such. So there is that. You can even find comic artists there.
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Is DeviantArt for kids or for all ages?
When I first made my account ten years ago, it was a place where people shared real art. They shared drawings, paintings, photos, literary pieces. They worked hard on their content and it was always great to watch someone get better and better at their chosen medium with each submission.
Now… Most of the new content on dA is My Little Pony fanart, Sonic the Hedgehog and various Sonic-inspired OCs, Five Nights At Freddy’s fanart, badly drawn doodles in Microsoft Paint, badly drawn pictures with horrific shading done by someone with Photoshop and no knowledge on how to really use it, stupid doodles created to interact with their little community and not actual art, ect.
I know beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and I know that we all started somewhere, but seriously. Here’s a screenshot I just took from the homepage, and it has almost everything I’ve just mentioned in this one shot:
The worst part is, pick any of these people’s galleries to browse through, look at some of their earliest deviations and their latest deviations, and you’ll see a trend: the majority of them are not actively working to improve themselves and their art. Some start to use shading, some get a little better at cleaning up their lineart, but overall, they don’t strive to truly get better.
It’s depressing. There’s an instant gratification that now comes with having a day account where you post something in one of the topics I’ve mentioned above, and dozens of kids will come flocking and tell you how amazing your doodles are and how they wish they were artists like you.
There’s no drive to improve. And if you try to give them a serious critique, give them serious advice and tips on how to improve their art, and you’re not gushing with “ZOMG your so amazing SEXY SEXY SEXY SEXY” (that’s a serious critique I saw on someone’s page), they and their little posse verbally assault you.
Over the past ten years, the site has really gone downhill. There are still many serious artists on deviantART, but they’re difficult diamonds to find in the rough. I don’t post anything anymore, and I’ve deleted most of my content.
I still have my account and a CORE membership because I still run a couple DeviantArt groups and I keep forgetting to stop automatic payments on my CORE membership.
I generally don’t admit that I have an account on DeviantArt because what the screenshot above depicts is what DeviantArt has become known for: bad, juvenile ‘art’ and kids with expensive programs and tools that they don’t actually know how to properly use.
So is DeviantArt for kids? No. No, it is not. There are lots of borderline-pornographic content and straight-up pornographic content, and while a verification notice does pop up when you click on something graphic, all you have to do to get around it is to lie about your age and say you’re 18+ in your bio.
Plus, someone is not obligated to tag something they post as pornographic. Nudes and whatnot will appear in someone’s homepage regardless of what age they claim to be in their bio. I just scrolled through for the homepage a minute and found four nudes, none of which were tagged appropriately.
Three got away with it because it doesn’t show much, though everything is not hidden, and the fourth got away with it because it’s actually a furry with human anatomical parts.
Should Kids use DeviantArt?
NO. Aside from the porn, there are active pedophiles on the site. I found a crayon drawing done by an eight-year-old, and I went to that kid’s page and immediately found a comment someone posted on the kid’s page, asking this KID, this CHILD, to send him a picture of her private parts.
There’s no way he could possibly not know she’s a child. The kid posted back “wot” and I’m hoping nothing came of it, but my point is that there are active predators on the site looking for innocent children.
How much is DeviantArt worth?
Says $931 million, with 8mil a Month incoming revenue.
How does DeviantArt make money?
Currently, DA has five main revenue streams, which I happily call the “ABCs”:
- Brand partnerships
- Core Memberships
- DeviantArt prints
- Everything else (points, cake, etc.)
By and large, DeviantArt makes most of its money from advertising, which of course comes in the form of banner and page ads you see on the site (which only go away if you have a Core Membership). That said, the DeviantArt app does not have ads, and ads as a whole won’t last with the transition to DeviantArt Eclipse, as Eclipse will have an ad-free experience for everyone.
So, with Eclipse sunsetting ads on DeviantArt, this brings up the “B” stream: brand partnerships. DA has a sales team (the Brand Partnerships team) which works with major brands, film studios, tech companies and the like, pitching the platform as a perfect outlet for increasing brand awareness.
This often takes the form of branded contests and campaigns, cross-promotion deals, as well as awareness campaigns held on-site. The work they do generates a significant income stream that brings in a significant amount of money.
(On that note, I won’t go to specifics as I did sign an NDA. While I work with people who do that work, my involvement largely deals with community campaigns, which is basically what Brand Partnerships does but is for the community, is organized by DeviantArt, and doesn’t generate any money.)
That said, while DA’s bread and butter comes from income streams A and B, it does make some money off of streams C, D and E. DeviantArt does sell Core Memberships for $5 a month, which throw in additional perks on top of the standard membership (e.g. an ad-free experience, customization options, more storage space for keeping your deviations, etc.).
We also resell prints of deviations, and the artist gets a cut of deviation sales. Finally, we also sell smaller-scale items, like DeviantArt Points (the website’s internal currency), cake badges which you can give on someone’s birthday, and other, more minor things which don’t generate as much money.
That said, just to reiterate, prior to the Wix acquisition DeviantArt kept the lights on with little to no investment. It’s amazing what could be done with little investor money, a marketing effort that relied on word of mouth and a lot of Internet goodwill, and some income streams.
- Having an account won’t help them get better at their art.
- There is pornographic material on the site, and it is both extremely easy to fool the site into letting minors view it and in some cases, it is unavoidable.
- There are active pedophiles and creeps on the site, looking for victims to send them child porn.