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Popular Higher Skilled Artists vs Lesser Skilled Artist ~ Need opinions/experiences!

Ratchetjak

Ratchetjak
So I'm in the middle of making a video on my YouTube channel where I'm basically giving some advice to beginner level artist some tips on how to keep their morale to continue drawing and well, I'm at the point at talking about popular or higher skilled artists vs the lesser skilled artists and the topic of befriending and socialization.

  • Personally, I feel that it's kind of pointless for a lesser skilled artist to try and befriend a higher skilled artist because most of the time, the higher skilled artist is not open or interested in being friends with a lesser skilled artist. Mainly because they feel that the lesser skilled artist is just trying to leech free art from them which obviously isn't always true but well, the damage has been done as the higher skilled artist may have had that happen to them in the past where it was enough to make them not want to associate with a lesser skilled artist unless they're paying for a commission from them.

  • Also that they're not open to being friends with lower skilled artists because they already have their own clique/group/etc of other similar skilled artists, loyal returning commissioners, and friends from IRL. In short, they don't want newer friends, let alone lesser skilled artist friends.

  • Because of this, the way I see it is that beginner to in the middle artists shouldn't bother trying to associate with these higher level artist because more often than not, they'll just be rejected. Instead, I suggest that they should continue being inspired by these artists using their work as an influence while mingling and befriending other similar-skilled artists and growing together with them. This isn't to say that I'm not saying they shouldn't ask a higher skilled artist a question if they have any, ask away! But just to not push it any further than that because you'll only be disappointed.
And I find this to be even more true in the furry art fandom (FurAffinity, Furry Twitter, etc.) But anyway, this is just all my opinion. I'm in the middle of writing the script for my video but I wanted to get other opinions or experiences on this matter. What do you guys think?
 

Summer

Member
Personally I can't really related to being a beginner artist anymore. It's too far back for me and I started early.
 

Ratchetjak

Ratchetjak
Befriend the dead artists yes, because while they rarely answer they're the best friend a young artist can get and are also the most skilled and talented. I have an old photo of one hanging by my right shoulder.

But in trying to engage with some of the living picturemakers, if we only take pictures into consideration, it doesn't matter the gap in skill all that much, it matters whether the lesser artist's pictures are interesting at all, whether he is unlike anyone else. And that - without considering the character of the person, how interesting, smart and a generous person he is on his own, his many other qualities whether they are there, and whether the two are compatible at all. Most of the time the friendship is mere chance, it's pointless to shoehorn it disregardless of whom with.

We live, as we dream—alone. . . .

But really, what you have written about lesser and bigger artists and all that jazz strikes me as most psychopathic, I don't believe this is good to teach people at all.

"Psychopathic" huh? That's a pretty bold accusation. Care to explain what's so psychopathic about what I said?

Personally I can't really related to being a beginner artist anymore. It's too far back for me and I started early.

So in short, because you can't relate to it, is it accurate to say that you'd prefer to talk to artists more on your level skill-wise?
 

Oblique Lynx

The nationalist conservative lynx
Banned
So I'm in the middle of making a video on my YouTube channel where I'm basically giving some advice to beginner level artist some tips on how to keep their morale to continue drawing and well, I'm at the point at talking about popular or higher skilled artists vs the lesser skilled artists and the topic of befriending and socialization.

  • Personally, I feel that it's kind of pointless for a lesser skilled artist to try and befriend a higher skilled artist because most of the time, the higher skilled artist is not open or interested in being friends with a lesser skilled artist. Mainly because they feel that the lesser skilled artist is just trying to leech free art from them which obviously isn't always true but well, the damage has been done as the higher skilled artist may have had that happen to them in the past where it was enough to make them not want to associate with a lesser skilled artist unless they're paying for a commission from them.

  • Also that they're not open to being friends with lower skilled artists because they already have their own clique/group/etc of other similar skilled artists, loyal returning commissioners, and friends from IRL. In short, they don't want newer friends, let alone lesser skilled artist friends.

  • Because of this, the way I see it is that beginner to in the middle artists shouldn't bother trying to associate with these higher level artist because more often than not, they'll just be rejected. Instead, I suggest that they should continue being inspired by these artists using their work as an influence while mingling and befriending other similar-skilled artists and growing together with them. This isn't to say that I'm not saying they shouldn't ask a higher skilled artist a question if they have any, ask away! But just to not push it any further than that because you'll only be disappointed.
And I find this to be even more true in the furry art fandom (FurAffinity, Furry Twitter, etc.) But anyway, this is just all my opinion. I'm in the middle of writing the script for my video but I wanted to get other opinions or experiences on this matter. What do you guys think?
If you're trying to befriend someone for their skill then yeah, it's not gonna work and you're just gonna annoy the people. If you're genuinely interested in a friendship with someone then there's no real problem with befriending those are way above or way below your skill level. Worst you'll run into are the uptight people that will scream for the smallest reason, who reside at most any level.

That, uh, subdivision of people into stratas and acting on them solely relying on that, the way one would choose and throw away gloves or purchase and sell stock shares.
It's sociopathic. I don't believe I need to explain what sociopathy is.

You agree with the rest of what I have written?
Psychopathy and sociopathy are fairly far apart in terms of behaviour patterns.
 

quoting_mungo

Well-Known Member
If you care about someone's popularity when you go to befriend them, you're doing it wrong. I'm super intimidated by people whom I perceive to be "real" members of a community I perceive myself to be relatively new to, in pretty much all areas. It's a pain in the ass. But I still ended up befriending some reasonably successful/"big" people in the Tumblrpon circuit, because I'd still interact with those people when I had something to say. I never set out with the aim to "make friends", but in the end that's what happened.

I think the more important thing to do when it comes to befriending other artists is to sit back and ask yourself why you want to make friends with this specific person. Do they seem to have a lot in common with you? That's a pretty good reason. Just talk to them about those things. When it comes to making connections with other artists over art, specifically, it's often a good idea to participate in artist communities, rather than focusing your efforts on attracting the attention of specific artists.
 

Summer

Member
"Psychopathic" huh? That's a pretty bold accusation. Care to explain what's so psychopathic about what I said?



So in short, because you can't relate to it, is it accurate to say that you'd prefer to talk to artists more on your level skill-wise?

I wouldn't out right refuse to interact with beginner artists. I just couldn't really help them with learning as a beginner as much. Another issue is being a beginner artist changed with the internet. Thus even if I could relate more, these beginner artists have a different experience then I had. I'm rather envious because I think beginner artists who started later on with internet access had an advantage. I assume some beginner artists might go right into digital art as well.
 

Summer

Member
I've had people tell me that my art is so bad that I might as well consider myself a beginner and relearn all over as a beginner artist using the internet as a resource. While I realize these people might mean well, I cannot comprehend how that would work.
It would be like people telling me to relearn being able to write because I have bad grammar skills. I can always improve my grammar, however it's never going to be the same as someone learning to write. I cannot ever work on my writing skills in the same way as someone who is illiterate does when learning how to write does. The fact is I already learned how to write, even if it does not match some people expectations and the same can be said of how I learned to be an artist. I cannot unlearn how I learned art so I can start learning art again with a blank slate.
 

Ratchetjak

Ratchetjak
If you're trying to befriend someone for their skill then yeah, it's not gonna work and you're just gonna annoy the people. If you're genuinely interested in a friendship with someone then there's no real problem with befriending those are way above or way below your skill level. Worst you'll run into are the uptight people that will scream for the smallest reason, who reside at most any level.

Well see, I think that with these higher skilled artists, after they've been around the block for a good long while, they start to become desensitized from lower skilled artists thinking that if they (the lesser skilled artist) try to reach out to them, they automatically assume they just want free art because their art is better after having experiences like that (and they add up). So even if the lesser skilled artist is trying to get to know them genuinely, it doesn't matter because the mind is already made up.

And plus, from what I've noticed is that the interaction will always be more one-sided where the lesser skilled artist is the one who would always try to engage and try to converse while the higher skilled artist won't really engage. So I mean, there's that too.

If you care about someone's popularity when you go to befriend them, you're doing it wrong. I'm super intimidated by people whom I perceive to be "real" members of a community I perceive myself to be relatively new to, in pretty much all areas. It's a pain in the ass. But I still ended up befriending some reasonably successful/"big" people in the Tumblrpon circuit, because I'd still interact with those people when I had something to say. I never set out with the aim to "make friends", but in the end that's what happened.

I think the more important thing to do when it comes to befriending other artists is to sit back and ask yourself why you want to make friends with this specific person. Do they seem to have a lot in common with you? That's a pretty good reason. Just talk to them about those things. When it comes to making connections with other artists over art, specifically, it's often a good idea to participate in artist communities, rather than focusing your efforts on attracting the attention of specific artists.

Never heard of "Tumblrpon" but I'm assuming it's a group? Anyway, its' true that popularity should never be the driving factor for wanting to befriend people, I agree with that. But I feel that a popular/higher skilled artist who has been on the site for a long time gets so many people asking for free art from that they start to assume that any lesser skilled artist who tries to reach out to them is only doing it for free stuff. And that's the hole of no return which is why sometimes trying to genuinely get to know them when you're not of a similar skill set can be kinda pointless since that thought will always be in the back of their head unlike if they befriend and talk with similarly popular or higher skilled artist because in their mind, there's no way they'd use them for art since they can draw of similar quality or higher.

I've had people tell me that my art is so bad that I might as well consider myself a beginner and relearn all over as a beginner artist using the internet as a resource. While I realize these people might mean well, I cannot comprehend how that would work.
It would be like people telling me to relearn being able to write because I have bad grammar skills. I can always improve my grammar, however it's never going to be the same as someone learning to write. I cannot ever work on my writing skills in the same way as someone who is illiterate does when learning how to write does. The fact is I already learned how to write, even if it does not match some people expectations and the same can be said of how I learned to be an artist. I cannot unlearn how I learned art so I can start learning art again with a blank slate.

Yeah I hear you. Trying to unlearn and relearn when you've already been doing something for so long is hard to almost impossible and it's better to try to apply new techniques and build upon what you know over completely relearning 15-20 years of what you've been doing.
 

Judge Spear

Well-Known Member
Personally, I feel that it's kind of pointless for a lesser skilled artist to try and befriend a higher skilled artist because most of the time, the higher skilled artist is not open or interested in being friends with a lesser skilled artist.


Artists are dicks online, yes but you're pushing the wrong message regardless and Quoting already touched on it. Friendship happens organically based on mutual interests and enjoyment of each others company. You can approach someone about art, but your last worry should be the numbers on their profile.
If furryschmuck2203 with 3 scratchy bad drawings on his brand new DA account approaches Sakimi-Chan and she notices that he or she is a fun person to be around, the statistic or skill differential shouldn't even be a factor.

I have a sizeable following and draw better than some of my closest friends from. Conversely, I am significantly smaller and less skilled than some close friends of mine as well because I, for the most part, actually know how to socialize and conduct myself.
 

quoting_mungo

Well-Known Member
Never heard of "Tumblrpon" but I'm assuming it's a group?
It'd be the Tumblr-based MLP fandom.

But I feel that a popular/higher skilled artist who has been on the site for a long time gets so many people asking for free art from that they start to assume that any lesser skilled artist who tries to reach out to them is only doing it for free stuff. And that's the hole of no return which is why sometimes trying to genuinely get to know them when you're not of a similar skill set can be kinda pointless since that thought will always be in the back of their head unlike if they befriend and talk with similarly popular or higher skilled artist because in their mind, there's no way they'd use them for art since they can draw of similar quality or higher.
It's not quite that black and white, though. The way you interact with or reach out to these artists will influence the way they feel about your attention. Answering questions they pose, making meaningful/contentful comments on their work, and in general interacting on a basis of giving more than receiving will be less likely to inspire feelings that you are trying to use them.
 

Ratchetjak

Ratchetjak
Artists are dicks online, yes but you're pushing the wrong message regardless and Quoting already touched on it. Friendship happens organically based on mutual interests and enjoyment of each others company. You can approach someone about art, but your last worry should be the numbers on their profile.
If furryschmuck2203 with 3 scratchy bad drawings on his brand new DA account approaches Sakimi-Chan and she notices that he or she is a fun person to be around, the statistic or skill differential shouldn't even be a factor.

I have a sizeable following and draw better than some of my closest friends from. Conversely, I am significantly smaller and less skilled than some close friends of mine as well because I, for the most part, actually know how to socialize and conduct myself.

Yes I understood what you mean about friendship based on mutual interests and enjoyment of company. But surely you can agree that when it comes to online interaction, it's not as simple no?




It'd be the Tumblr-based MLP fandom.


It's not quite that black and white, though. The way you interact with or reach out to these artists will influence the way they feel about your attention. Answering questions they pose, making meaningful/contentful comments on their work, and in general interacting on a basis of giving more than receiving will be less likely to inspire feelings that you are trying to use them.

Ah okay, thanks for the clarification. And I can agree that doing all that can help but I dunno, I still feel it doesn't do all that much to them unless you're like a client for commissioning or something along those lines. And with how most don't even reply to comments because they don't have the time, it would feel kinda pointless to keep leaving contentful, elaborate comments after awhile with no response because again, they just don't have the time to engage.
 

Filter

ɹǝʇlᴉℲ
Hobby artist here. Artistic skill isn't among my criteria for friendship.

That being said, it seems like most popular furry artists these days are in it for the money. If you try to befriend somebody like that, who first and foremost sees you as a potential source of income, there will be a disconnect. After all, you aren't a paying customer and they may think you're looking for free art. If a gallery is full of commissions, with very little personal artwork, trying to strike up a friendship with the artist on the basis of shared interest in furry art may be a lost cause. I personally wouldn't bother unless it's obvious that they're in it because they love the genre. Or maybe they mention a mutual interest in their journal, and you have something else to build a friendship around. At that point, just treat them like you would anybody else.
 

Ratchetjak

Ratchetjak
Hobby artist here. Artistic skill isn't among my criteria for friendship.

That being said, it seems like most popular furry artists these days are in it for the money. If you try to befriend somebody like that, who first and foremost sees you as a potential source of income, there will be a disconnect. After all, you aren't a paying customer and they may think you're looking for free art. If a gallery is full of commissions, with very little personal artwork, trying to strike up a friendship with the artist on the basis of shared interest in furry art may be a lost cause. I personally wouldn't bother unless it's obvious that they're in it because they love the genre. Or maybe they mention a mutual interest in their journal, and you have something else to build a friendship around. At that point, just treat them like you would anybody else.

You know, that is a very good point as I too have noticed this shift in the last... I wanna say... Maybe 3-4 years? It seems like once sites like Patreon really took off, a lot of the popular furry artists sailed ship and just think of anyone who reaches out to them who's not a skilled artist are potential dollar signs and if they're not, they want nothing to do with them. Which sure, fair enough, they are entitled to feel that way but it is kind of a shame.

So perhaps the better way to go about trying to associate with higher skilled artists when you're lower skilled is take a gander at what kind of art they post, they're comment feed on pictures and journals (if they reply to any comments that aren't related to commission work), if they favorite art, or have talked about any interest besides their next commission/YCH queue.
 

KitKatChunKiss

2D/3D Artist
I disagree... but I haven't read the whole thread.
I did manage to get acquaintance with a popular skilled artist without ever talking about commissions or transactions. It's about sharing common interests really and not talk about business. Like if you're part of the same fandom, or like a certain couple, or like any games in common.
I am also very open to talking with anyone whom consider themselves below my level. Because levels are extremely subjective and in the end it really depend on each person's point of view.
Not because my gallery is filled with commission work does it mean I am not open to discussions of any kind without any sort of monetary goal.
PS; sorry english isn't my native language so sometimes I have a hard time really expressing myself.
 

LuxerHusku

The Unlucky Husky
Here is what I learn. If you wanna be friends with a popular, just engage in a regular conversation. That's it. Keep it up, and that artist might accept you as a friend.

I use to be intimidated with popular artists because I feared that they'll either ignore me or jump the gun by saying I just want free art. Boy was I wrong. I had a nice chat to four popular artists, and one who is semi popular. And out of those five, two of them, I have became friends with before I knew they're popular.

I have chatted with:
  • FurryRatchet
  • RedRusker
  • Roy Arashi
  • Zaush
  • And Zilch
Not everyday, just time to time, which is another thing: Don't risk talking to popular artists everyday and assuming them not replying means that they're ignoring you. That's not true. Just like most people in the world, we have our own business to take care of first, so please be paitent for a reply. If they don't talk to ya in days, just send a little "hello" and come back later.

As what have I been told from RedRusker himself:

"If you approach people casually, it's usually a bit more akin to having an organic dialogue, which I think is what all people want, regardless of popularity."

And from Roy:

"I'm just a guy."

So no, not every popular artist will think you're just some fan who is willing to do anything just to get art. They're regular people, like us. Immediately putting down on others because you they they're in it for free art without giving a chance to interact with them is pretty jerky unless some peoole really pushed that person hard.
 

Ratchetjak

Ratchetjak
I disagree... but I haven't read the whole thread.
I did manage to get acquaintance with a popular skilled artist without ever talking about commissions or transactions. It's about sharing common interests really and not talk about business. Like if you're part of the same fandom, or like a certain couple, or like any games in common.
I am also very open to talking with anyone whom consider themselves below my level. Because levels are extremely subjective and in the end it really depend on each person's point of view.
Not because my gallery is filled with commission work does it mean I am not open to discussions of any kind without any sort of monetary goal.
PS; sorry english isn't my native language so sometimes I have a hard time really expressing myself.

It's alright, I understood you perfectly. :)
And well, you were able to get into acquaintance with him/her because they most likely showed that they were interested in something so it was easier to get a conversation rolling as in those situations, you have to take a gamble and see if they will engage with you because some artists don't engage even when met with an engaging comment on a game they're interested in whatnot.

And I was just going with the gallery route because more often than not, that's how a lot of those artists are from what I've experienced lol But I mean cool if you actually do want to talk about things despite the gallery full of nothing but commission work with no interaction in the comments.

Here is what I learn. If you wanna be friends with a popular, just engage in a regular conversation. That's it. Keep it up, and that artist might accept you as a friend.

I use to be intimidated with popular artists because I feared that they'll either ignore me or jump the gun by saying I just want free art. Boy was I wrong. I had a nice chat to four popular artists, and one who is semi popular. And out of those five, two of them, I have became friends with before I knew they're popular.

I have chatted with:
  • FurryRatchet
  • RedRusker
  • Roy Arashi
  • Zaush
  • And Zilch
Not everyday, just time to time, which is another thing: Don't risk talking to popular artists everyday and assuming them not replying means that they're ignoring you. That's not true. Just like most people in the world, we have our own business to take care of first, so please be paitent for a reply. If they don't talk to ya in days, just send a little "hello" and come back later.

As what have I been told from RedRusker himself:

"If you approach people casually, it's usually a bit more akin to having an organic dialogue, which I think is what all people want, regardless of popularity."

And from Roy:

"I'm just a guy."

So no, not every popular artist will think you're just some fan who is willing to do anything just to get art. They're regular people, like us. Immediately putting down on others because you they they're in it for free art without giving a chance to interact with them is pretty jerky unless some peoole really pushed that person hard.


It's that last part that I find is what makes some of these artists get on edge though. That they've been burned by people only getting into them so they can bum free art in the past and they internalize it to where they just don't think it's worth the time to bother with lower skilled artists for fear of being used and I can understand that for sure.

But I do appreciate hearing your perspective and I do think there's truth in that but if I may ask, have you ever commissioned these people before you started talking to them?
 

zenmaldita

always hungry
Friendship happens for people regardless of skill level. As long as they enjoy each other's company, their differences wouldn't really matter. In person and Online.

Artists are people. If a "pro" ignores/avoids a "beginner" there's a good chance that they saw something they dislike about that person -as a person- not as an artist.
 
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Ratchetjak

Ratchetjak
Friendship happens for people regardless of skill level. As long as they enjoy each other's company, their differences wouldn't really matter. In person and Online.

Artists are people. If a "pro" ignores/avoids a "beginner" there's a good chance that they saw something they dislike about that person -as a person- not as an artist.

Sure, that's true. But you have to admit it's a bit more difficult online no?
 
D

Deleted member 111470

Guest
Eh idk, I get kinda freaked out if when I want to talk to a highly skilled artist I admire. I go all like "omg I love your at so much =D" but then I delete it, and just favorite or like it instead, whichever option the platform has.

I'm a photography hobbyist and I have managed to strike up some casual conversation with pros whose work I love. But it never went beyond that.
 

Ratchetjak

Ratchetjak
Eh idk, I get kinda freaked out if when I want to talk to a highly skilled artist I admire. I go all like "omg I love your at so much =D" but then I delete it, and just favorite or like it instead, whichever option the platform has.

I'm a photography hobbyist and I have managed to strike up some casual conversation with pros whose work I love. But it never went beyond that.

I can understand though if I do want to comment on an artist whom I look up to, I just try to formulate what it is I like about their piece and go from there. I think that's the best way to showing your appreciation if you do want to say something.
 
D

Deleted member 111470

Guest
I can understand though if I do want to comment on an artist whom I look up to, I just try to formulate what it is I like about their piece and go from there. I think that's the best way to showing your appreciation if you do want to say something.

Yes, however that also poses the risk of my message coming across as stupid and the artist thinking I'm some sort of a yob.
 
D

Deleted member 111470

Guest
Why would you think that? I think saying something like "I just love the way you shaded -insert object-, it really makes it pop off the page" is better than "Cool art!" But that's just me lol

Dunno, I feel like it'd just get lost in the sea of praise the popular high skill artist gets.
 
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