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Thread: Giving good criticism

  1. #27
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    I don't think the introduction of TAD actually had that much effect, certainly not as much as some behind the scenes politics...
    I understood there was a causal relationship between the two. Hadn't thought about the role facebook and twitter played. I'm assuming you mean in terms of pros' self-advertising, rather than the way in which young art students could get professional advice gratis online.
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  3. #28
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    I'll be honest. I critique many hours a day 4 days a week in class and it's hard to get in the critique mode when I get on the computer. I only have spurts here and there in cyberspace and I look to promote and find some kind of professional comradery. Donating time with critique has almost become like donating time illustrating for me. To do it thoroughly really takes time and thoughtful consideration. Maybe that's why there is a lot of just get busy and draw and fewer crits from busy pros. Time really is money and I guess I applaud those who are willing to give it away so freely. But think of what you are asking when you ask for a detailed critique of your work. Is it the same as asking for a free illustration for you band's cd cover or a free painting for your wall?

    Just questions.
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  5. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by bcarman View Post
    I'll be honest. I critique many hours a day 4 days a week in class and it's hard to get in the critique mode when I get on the computer. I only have spurts here and there in cyberspace and I look to promote and find some kind of professional comradery. Donating time with critique has almost become like donating time illustrating for me. To do it thoroughly really takes time and thoughtful consideration. Maybe that's why there is a lot of just get busy and draw and fewer crits from busy pros. Time really is money and I guess I applaud those who are willing to give it away so freely. But think of what you are asking when you ask for a detailed critique of your work. Is it the same as asking for a free illustration for you band's cd cover or a free painting for your wall?

    Just questions.
    Yes, this plays a part of it, but I think the larger factor is that detailed, specific critique is not really possible in most cases here because 1) it won't really be understood and 2) it is almost always a simple lack of awareness and understanding of basic fundamentals. Thus the advice to focus on "just drawing" and "work on fundamentals" along with maybe a book recommendation or two in the appropriate area is really about the best one can do.
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  6. #30
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    I've tried to give critiques as much as possible but it does take up a lot of my time to be doing so. I even try to do paint-overs if I think it can help but most of the time it falls on deaf ears; there are a few exceptions. The ones that I see make an attempt to correct their work gives me an incentive to comment again the next time they post. A lot of the time someone will come on after and say how perfect the image is at that point I just go away. I find I probably can reach more people defending a point of view on how to study or become a pro in the art discussions than doing individual critiques.
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  7. #31
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    The best critiques come from someone who's not only knowledgeable in the craft, but who understands you and your intents.
    Any other critique is only superficial.

    This is why internet forums will never trump an actual teacher.
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  9. #32
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    A good teacher, maybe. I had a lot of bad teachers. I'd have given a lot for a forum like this when I was a kid.
    I was once on the receiving end of a critique so savagely nasty, I marched straight out of class to the office and changed my major (sketchbook).
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  11. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by HunterKiller_ View Post
    The best critiques come from someone who's not only knowledgeable in the craft, but who understands you and your intents.
    Any other critique is only superficial.

    This is why internet forums will never trump an actual teacher.
    At your level or above I agree with you but most people don't have a grasp on basics and at those levels understanding intent and the artist is unnecessary.
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  13. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by HunterKiller_ View Post
    The best critiques come from someone who's not only knowledgeable in the craft, but who understands you and your intents.
    Any other critique is only superficial.
    yeh that would be the best case scenario. hard to come by though. the second best alternative to me, would be someone just beeing knowledgeable in the craft.
    saying that any other critique is superficial seems to be quite exaggerated to me.
    first its on the artist to arcticulate his intent. then it can be evaluated, if this works on a personal level, and where the shortcomings are when it comes to design.

    Quote Originally Posted by HunterKiller_ View Post
    This is why internet forums will never trump an actual teacher.
    forums have trumped any teacher ive had in almost any possible way. im pretty sure that there are teachers out there that would have me thinking differently, but i didnt come up with the expenses yet (e.g. nathan fowkes to name one).
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  14. #35
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    Depends. One thing a teacher is good for is giving you feedback while you work. Having someone look over your shoulder and point out bad habits as you perpetrate them is probably the fastest way to discover and combat those habits. You really can't get that in a virtual setting.

    Also a teacher can give you specific assignments - with specific goals in mind - and can gauge what you've understood by seeing how you do on the assignments, and adjust their instruction accordingly. That's something you could do virtually, but you'd need a one-on-one mentor relationship to get the most out of it.

    Of course, all of this assumes the teacher is a good one. Forums don't trump a good teacher, but I'll agree they trump a bad one any day.
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  15. #36
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    Truly spoken replies.

    I was going under the assumption that the teacher would be a good one, but of course these are rare and often expensive.

    I did not mean to undermine the value of communities such as these, I myself owe much my learning to this place and the internet.

    most people don't have a grasp on basics and at those levels understanding intent and the artist is unnecessary.
    This is true, but on the other hand, there's a hidden danger in that the unique vision of the sapling artist may be tread upon, or utterly crushed in this kind environment (not to say that this won't ever happen in a school/mentorship). The internet concept art community has spawned a grotesque pack mentality where artistic incest is the norm and often welcomed, but this is getting into whole other nasty topic.
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  16. #37
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    Forums are great for those who can spend time and learn. I guess my point was if we value our knowledge as artists so much that we yell at those who give their illustration skills or artwork away for free why are we so non-chalant about giving and taking valuable critiquing knowledge gained over years of study and practice?
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  17. #38
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    I agree it is valuable information and hard earned experience over years of study and practice Bill. Like I said earlier, for me it is a relatively easy way to share my experience which I am glad to do in most cases. But I find most of the critique and advice boils down to those fundamentals (obviously since that is mainly what I say), so that is an easy comment and book recommendation. The reality is, imho, the answers are not to be found here on CA, or any forum for that matter. We can recommend books and resources however that will take the student much farther...if they are motivated enough.

    In those special cases where someone is farther along, and working hard at it I sometimes offer more specific critique - but that is rare. Plus those cases are often already sorted out or plenty of people have offered valid critique before I see the post. Then there are the people that don't bother hitting thanks, saying thanks or responding in any way...and I don't waste time on them again.
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  18. #39
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    I have not really taken a hard line either way Jeff. I just find it interesting what we put a $ value on and what we don't. If a whole bunch of people started asking for 5 minute, average time to answer crit questions maybe, sketches for free would we gladly give them? Is it the act? Making a 5 minute sketch is no harder than typing for five minutes in my case. I think this could actually make an interesting discussion.
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