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Posted August 7th, 2012 by $Ayame-Kenoshi

Today, August 7th, 2012, marks 12 years since deviantART's creation - aka, it's our 12th birthday! In the last 12 years, we, as a community, have grown by leaps and bounds, fostered creative thought and dialogue, and submitted a lot of artwork - over 220 million deviations. It's with great honor and pleasure that we invite you to party with us as we toast to another devious year of art!

Introducing the First Ever Creative Grants Recipients!

On May 1, 2012, deviantART introduced the Creative Grants program - a source of funding allowing artists to make creative dreams a reality. We're pleased to announce the first cycle of funding has ended, and from the over 500 applications submitted, the Creative Grants Board has chosen the recipients! These were the projects that the Board found exciting and innovative, and will benefit particularly from a Grant. Check out these amazing projects!

Life-Size Skeleton Etch-A-Sketch Installation by pikajane

Creative Art Classes For Lower-Income Families by EverIris

RecycleArt: A Make-and-Take Event by SineMetuDesigns

Free Premium Membership Day!

Yes, the day is finally here where you can use Premium Member features completely free!

For the next 24 hours, you will have access to these features


Browse through the Installable Journal Skins category to pick your favorite JournalSKINS. Any journal published today that includes a JournalSKIN will keep its fancy design long after Free Premium Membership Day is over, unless it is edited. Might we suggest using our 12th Birthday Skin?

No Ads!

Browse deviantART to your heart's content with no advertisements.

Browse 120 Thumbnails!

Cruise through 400% more deviations by turning up your browse setting to 120 thumbnails per page.

Enable Critiques!

Enable Critiques on your work to encourage enhanced feedback, and help your fellow artists by giving Critiques freely. All Critiques approved by a deviant with an active Premium Membership will remain, even after the clock strikes midnight.

Exclusive 10% Discount!

All Premium Members receive 10% off of Prints or deviantART T-Shirts & Gear purchases.

And more!

See a full list of benefits here.

Get creative with our 12th birthday contest! The objective is simple - complete a story by filling in the blanks. There's just one catch: you don't actually know anything about the story... yet! Your goal is to provide answers to the following prompts in order to make the story as hilarious as possible.

Here's how it works:

Choose your story.

Complete the form with whatever words you want that fit the criteria. Be creative!

When you're finished, hit the "Next" button. The words you chose will automatically be placed into the story.

After you've had a good laugh at what you've created, you may submit your work as a deviation to your Gallery and our contest category.

Contest Rules

  • Must be a member of deviantART to enter. Membership is free;
  • No purchase is necessary to enter the contest;
  • Entries will be judged by the deviantART staff on the basis of the silliest,  stupidest, most fun, and most ridiculous;
  • All entries must be made using the contest tool or downloadable template and submitted to:  
    Contests > 2012 > Create a Story
  • All entries must comply with the deviantART Etiquette and Submission Policies;
  • Winners will be notified via Note and email and will receive a dA PRO Bag;
  • The submission deadline is Tuesday, August 21, 2012 at 11:59:59 PM, Los Angeles, CA, time;
  • You can enter multiple times but you can only win once;
  • Void where prohibited by law.



Stop by deviantART's Official General Chatroom for fun and laughs all day! Ongoing throughout the day will be a Rock, Paper, Scissors Game.


Stock-Photomanipulation Challenge hosted by ^SanguineVamp, ^Elandria, and ^Dan-Heffer (Check here for local time)

deviantART muro Contests hosted by ^dekorAdum and ^Kovowolf (Check here for local time)

Trivia events hosted by ^Kaz-D (Check here for local time)

Meet and Greet with the Community Relations Team (Check here for local time)


Meet and Greet with the Community Operations Team (Check here for local time)


Be sure to check out all the Forums on the 7th for a variety of games and events, including a special Treasure Hunt!

Thumbshare Forum

Check the Thumbshare Forum throughout the day for a special game! Find thumbnails of deviations containing the number 2, or 12 similar things.

Deviants Forum

Plan a birthday party for the mascots of deviantART using only 12 things in the Deviants Forum.

Complaints Forum

If you need to let out some steam, stop by the Complaints Forum and complain about the worst present or cake you ever received.

Contests and Events

Birthday Hat Contest

Last day to enter! Get out your crafty scissors and gear up your imagination to make your own birthday hat to wear for deviantART's 12th birthday! Read on for all the details.

12th Birthday Card Contest

Thousands of Points are up for grabs in the 12th Birthday Card Contest! Using any medium, make a birthday card celebrating our 12th birthday. This contest ends August 10th.

Quirky Horoscope Contest

The Western Horoscope is comprised of 12 signs. In this contest, using any visual media, draw a representation of at least one of the Western Zodiac signs and create a daily horoscope for that sign set for the date of August 7th. This contest ends August 18th.

Chinese Horoscope Contest

In the Chinese Horoscope Contest, you are challenged to contribute art or poetry to the gallery which coincides with your own Chinese Astrology Animal. Details here. This contest ends August 30th.

Celebrate in Style

With the new 12th Birthday T-Shirt!

Keep this day forever in your heart and wardrobe with this delightful new tee, only and appropriately $12.00.

Congratulations to our first-ever Creative Grants recipients!

We're proud to announce that this round's Creative Grants recipients have been chosen! Our Creative Grants Board, comprised of Mollinda, RockstarVanity, and vayabobo, diligently reviewed the applications, and from their top choices, we have determined this round's recipients.  What better day to announce these projects than on deviantART's big 12th birthday celebration?

These talented artists are passionate about their projects, and they've already accomplished so much in their communities without outside funding. We can't wait to see how they flourish after receiving their Creative Grants!

Full Moon Art Appreciation

By dogsofeternity from Dallas, TX

Austin Craver, aka dogsofeternity, has been running an art gallery space in Texas for the past year -- completely out of the goodness of his heart. His motivation is his tremendous love of art and music.

With the help of a deviantART Creative Grant, Austin will be hosting a one-night Full Moon Art Appreciation show, featuring 10 wonderfully talented individuals, as well as 10 up-and-coming artists who have yet to formally break into the art world. This dynamic event will also celebrate arts in the music realm by inviting local bands to play sets.

Lightning Over Texas by dogsofeternity Trading In My Hours by dogsofeternity JustMe by dogsofeternity

Life-Size Skeleton Etch-A-Sketch Installation

By pikajane from Muskegon, MI

Jane Labowitch (pikajane) is a talented artist skilled in a very unique median -- Etch-A-Sketch. She plans to create two installations to be displayed in galleries. The first installation will be a life-size rendition of a skeleton, using multiple Etch-A-Sketches mounted to a wall. The second installation will be a 3-dimensional piece using a skeleton as a base for several mounted Etch-A-Sketches, which will act as a sort of "reverse x-ray."

Through her project, Jane hopes to impact people of all ages -- from children who may just be discovering the Etch-A-Sketch to adults who look back on them with nostalgia. She also thinks this is a great opportunity to bridge the gap between what many people consider to be a large separation between science and art.

Anterior Torso Etch A Sketch by pikajane Anterior Torso Etch A Sketch by pikajane Skull etch a sketch by pikajane

Creative Art Classes For Lower-Income Families

By EverIris from Jackson, NJ

Sandra Gale (EverIris) has been fostering creativity within the children of her community by offering affordable art classes. She does the best with the supplies she has, but as everyone can agree, art supplies aren't cheap. Sandra doesn't plan to make money from this venture, but wants to give kids the opportunity to express themselves through art -- an opportunity that may not have been possible without her efforts.

Not only will the children be inspired to create with greater tools than ever before, but the inspiration will spread throughout the community, from the kids, to their families, friends, and beyond. Sandra aims to increase her students' artistic abilities and imaginations by working with new media, new techniques, and new colors provided by a variety of art supplies purchased with a Creative Grant.

Coming Home by EverIris Angelina Jolie by EverIris

RecycleArt: A Make-and-Take Event

By SineMetuDesigns from Columbus, OH

Casey McCarty's studio, SineMetuDesigns, has had success with her recycled-art make-and-take demonstrations at various fairs and festivals. Here, participants learn how to use recycled materials in a variety of creative and artistic ways, which they can then take home. However, Casey has always been limited by space at these events, and she's looking to host her own recycle event where more people than ever will have the opportunity to participate.

Local artists who specialize in recycled art, who use eco-friendly business practices, or who incorporate recycled material into their work will be invited to show and sell their pieces in ways that were never before possible. Casey's goal is that the community who attends will walk away with inspiration and a new appreciation for recycled art and its artists.

 Ravens in Time Statement Collar by SineMetuDesigns 

Urban Art/Art Therapy

By Seraphylia from Jersey City, NJ

Urban art and art therapy programs are an important part of the school Jazmyne Casillas, aka Seraphylia, attends. These programs aim to beautify the community, however, it is vastly lacking in funding. Her school has plans to drop the program, but Jazmyne wants to host one more big project to show the administration how important it is to keep art in school.

Jazmyne plans to create a mural, and she has been busy sketching out how it could look. With a Creative Grant, Jazmyne will be able to purchase the supplies she needs to make this happen -- paint, airbrushes, palettes, and so much more. The success of this Creative Grant could show the school how vital it is to keep arts as a part of education.

Amazing Projects!

We couldn't be more thrilled to see how each of these brave and ambitious deviants will make their communities, their little slice of the world, a better place to live. After Creative Grants are distributed, we encourage our recipients to post a Journal with photos from their events, so everyone can see the results of these amazing projects! 

If you applied for a Creative Grant this round and didn't receive it, our rules stipulate that, should any of these recipients decline receiving a Creative Grant, decide they no longer need the Grant, or be unable to receive it, the Grant will be passed on to the next-highest-rated applicants. The Creative Grants Board has decided not to indicate the amount of funding given, however, recipients are free to disclose the amount they received. 

Apply now!

Do you have a creative project that could use a little financial kickstart? Our next round of funding is now open! Check out this article to learn how you can apply!

Charity: Water Starts the Process for the Well!

Journal Entry: Sat Aug 4, 2012, 10:44 AM

I wanted to take a moment to thank everyone who participated in the charity: water project I wrote about in February of this year. Whether you were able to actively donate to, read up on, or help spread the word about this honorable cause, I genuinely felt touched by the actions of every person who took the time to participate.

I got so many inspiring and heart-warming Notes from deviants far and wide -- from those who had just donated to those who had no means to donate monetarily but who happily spread the word to others. Many even selflessly pledged their own birthdays, asking for donations to this great cause in lieu of gifts. In a world where a lot of the news headlines are depressing and bleak, my faith in the power of good and caring was restored by the deviantART community.

Some say that one should participate in charity for charity's sake, and I fully believe this. I donated because it was a great cause whose results were so tangible and so needed by those who would receive it. Hardly a day has gone by in the past 5 months that I haven't imagined what steps in the well-building process the charity was currently undergoing. But I know the charity is busy spreading the word to others, tackling paperwork, and funneling all the generous donations to make this well and many(!) others a reality.

So I wasn't really expecting to hear back from charity: water, especially so early in the process. I figured maybe I would log in to my page on their website a while down the line, find out where the well was built, and daydream about maybe visiting it someday. When I got an email today spelling out how the money would be implemented, the timeline, the part of the world, and the promise of detailed metrics as soon as the well is finished, I was reminded of why I wanted to donate in the first place.

Screen Shot 2012-07-26 at 5.08.31 PM by LaurenKitsune

Today, charity: water reached out to me to let us know where our well would be built, how long it would take, and some other really interesting statistics about how the future deviantART well is going to help out a small town.

Screen Shot 2012-07-26 at 4.23.43 PM by LaurenKitsune

These sorts of statistics are so shocking, I'm doing everything I can to raise awareness of something so many of us take for granted. If you're reading this Journal on a computer, it means you have access to an Internet connection, and more than likely can access water at the turn of a knob. We bathe in it every day, we freeze it to make drinks cold and heat it to cook our food and keep our homes warm. The thought of someone experiencing thirst and not being able to safely satisfy that feeling elicits such a strong emotion when I sit down to think about it. How often in our daily lives do we take for granted having such amenities often just a room away?

Screen Shot 2012-07-26 at 4.23.25 PM by LaurenKitsune

This email -- perhaps one of a few more -- pinpointed where this upcoming well was on its path to being completed. As I'm sure you can appreciate, the paperwork, training, architecture, and everything in between is time consuming, and it really brings to light the unsung heroes behind charity doors who do all the heavy-lifting to bring something like fresh water to a community in need.

At the bottom of the email was a linked example of the sorts of statistics we could read about in the future as soon as the well finished completion, and you can read all about how this real well in Ethopia helped a small town here!

Giving to any reputable charity brings a feeling that's not really matched by anything else in the world. It's hard to describe, but it's a feeling of almost secret bliss. These people will probably never know any of the deviants who gave a small part of themselves to bring such a needed commodity to their lives. But I can picture a village, and the people living in it, and the difference this is going to make very soon.

I wanted to thank you all for making this possible, we did something really good here and I'm very happy. I also want to thank Charity: Water, you guys are fantastic! 

I'll link to charity: water one last time, in case you want to feel the same rush of giving you've felt before when donating. And it's true what they say -- every dollar counts, every penny counts, and spreading your awareness to others truly does leave a positive impact on the world we live in.

-- :spyed: 

spyed sense:

i really need to change my signature.
it's been simmering in lame for way too long.

Ninja image created by AndyFairhurst

In our continuous effort to improve the deviantART experience, we're publishing weekly Site Updates to keep members informed and to gather feedback. Below is a list of recent changes to the site, bug fixes, and feedback that was brought up by members in the last Site Update.

What's New

New Premium Member Feature: Gallery Subfolders

New Gallery Folders for Premium Members by danlev

One of the most requested features we've gotten on Site Updates in the past is the ability to add subfolders within your gallery. As of today, the wait is over! Subfolder capability has been added to the member gallery for Premium Members. This allows users to create folders within a folder, for more specific organization and overall tidiness.

Try the new subfolders feature by upgrading to a Premium Membership.

Comment Signatures Uplift

New Comment Signatures by danlev

Comments on deviantART are an amazing way to interact with your fellow deviants. However, in the past, it was sometimes difficult to distinguish between the comment itself, and the comment signature. Deviants enjoy having a piece of their profile travel with them on deviantART, but the two bodies of text were too similar to easily distinguish. In one of our prior Site Updates, we asked what you thought of signatures. The primary requests were to make signatures a bit less prominent, and also to better distinguish them from the comment itself. We listened to your concerns, adjusting the signature size and color, and adding a clear separation between the comment and the signature.

Remember: If you prefer to view comments without signatures, you can disable them in your Browsing Settings.

Update to Critiques

In the past, any Critique left on a deviation would disappear from the deviation page if a user disabled Critique, or if their Premium Membership expired. As of today, rather than removing the Critique from the deviation, a message is displayed stating "The Artist is no longer requesting Critique on this Artwork", and any Critique you've already received remains visible on the deviation, regardless of the cause for the change. This means that you'll be able to easily access feedback left for you, even if your Premium Membership runs out or you decide you don't want to receive Critique on that work anymore.

Upgrades to Quarterly Check Payments

After receiving a great deal of feedback, we're excited to announce an upgrade to the My Earnings quarterly check payment system! Instead of waiting until the end of a quarter for deviantART to process your check, you can now request a check whenever you'd like! For example, if you made some big sales after submitting a new Print, you can request a check to be mailed to you right away instead waiting until the quarter ends.

Change Log

  • Favorites could not be dragged from the collection bar and dropped into journal entry drafts. Fixed by $muteor
  • The Google PDF viewer that was used to display PDF deviations was unreliable, and would occasionally require a user to log into their Google account. It has since been replaced with a different implementation that will allow most browsers to display the PDF using their own PDF reader. Fixed by $muteor
  • Misclicks or double-clicks on a deviation submission could result in duplicates. Fixed by $muteor
  • Submissions to the Visualizations Gallery misidentified the .pimp filetype as .7z. Fixed by $ZombieCoder
  • The "Show Collections" button in the Deviation Thumbshare forum threads was not operational. Fixed by $muteor
  • A very small number of deviation deletions resulted in notifications concerning unaddressed required release documents. Fixed by $muteor
  • Many people use deviantART logged out -- whether they were just linked to a page from another website or they haven't signed up yet. Since these users are less familiar with deviantART, we've decided to hide signatures for them, making the comments section cleaner and less confusing.

  • When logged out, the "Edit with Writer" button on deviantART wouldn't redirect to the right place after logging in. Fixed by $samshull
  • When viewing someone else's stack, it wasn't possible to open items in new tabs. Fixed by $kouiskas
  • Going in and out of edit mode on a item using the browser history would break Fixed by $kouiskas
  • Merging items has been reworded. Fixed by $aMoniker
  • On the Submit page, the Submit Now button on the bottom of the page wouldn't get the same active state as the top one when submitting. Fixed by $samshull
  • Visiting one's own stack directly and uploading would add new items in the root instead of in the stack. Fixed by $samshull
  • The upload display was broken in legacy browsers. Fixed by $samshull
  • Dragging items to merge them into a stack was broken. Fixed by $aMoniker Writer

  • Writer developed some padding issues, which made for inaccurate previews. Fixed by $kemayo
  • In raw HTML mode (command+e or ctrl+e when in Writer), autosave was not functional and the toolbars were disabled. Fixed by $kemayo and $Alisey
  • Importing multiple thumbs from at once wasn't working. Fixed by $inazar

Your Feedback

Thanks so much for the feedback in last week's Site Update!
  • Many users were excited about our upcoming new browsing experience: More Like This. Some members were confused and assumed it would take the place of Browse — for clarification, it's not! More Like This will be a new way to browse artwork, artists, and collection related to a single deviation. 
  • Members liked the suggestions about being able to pull files from for Premium Content, being able to move their deviations to scraps using the pencil tool in the gallery, and using a deviation as an avatar.
  • rioIu suggested adding filters to Discover, such as the amount of watchers or pageviews artists have.
  • Eclipse--Designs suggested the ability to "+Watch" a Journal entry to get notifications when new people comment on it.
  • Nichrysalis suggested that members should be able to browse a Group gallery by category the way you can for an individual's gallery.


Group Gallery vs. Group Favourites
Within Groups, there are two similar ways to collect and promote artwork, that being the Group Gallery and Group Favourites. For those of you who manage or contribute in Groups, how do you use the Group Favourites compared to the Group Gallery? Do you find that you put both to use the same way, or do you find different uses for each? Do Groups you take part in generally use one over another?

 Lightbulb Have a suggestion, idea, or feedback? Leave a comment on this article!
:bug: Find a bug? Report it to the Help Desk(Be as detailed as possible!)

The Age of Discernment

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 12:22 AM by techgnotic:icontechgnotic:

With great access comes the great responsibility of discernment.

→ This article was inspired by the conversation in the comments generated from last week’s Suggestivism article.

As we traverse the final phases of maximum raw information accumulation, potentially equipping us for jacking in to the promise of the Singularity, the contents of many lifetimes’ worth of knowledge, art, education, and history are now at our fingertips. More and more Universities, libraries and arts institutions have swung open their digital doors and granted access to their lectures, courses and curricula free of charge to anyone in the world with a connection to the web. Access to education is fundamentally shifting our society towards an unmappable future.

Comments: 60
Favourites: 696
Views: 16,289

Here at deviantART there seems to be a new age dawning as well. deviantART has always provided an artist to artist education for new and developing artists. But more and more artists, both amateurs and professionals of all levels, are using deviantART as a real resource and platform in the creation and exhibition of their personal art gallery rather than just a place to exhibit their own works. And the arts conversation on deviantART runs across all race, religion, social classes, age, gender and education levels. Participants in this grand conversation often include the elites in their chosen medium as well as artists just creating their first sketches. The sheer amount of art categories on dA is breath-taking, the scope of beauty and imagination within each of those categories unparalleled.

Comments: 387
Favourites: 2,387
Views: 297,771

But is there a danger to all information – and all art – being right at the fingertips? Will we lose sense of what is bad, good, better and best art? Will art become just one process or activity, rather than the occasional expression of the miraculous that it sometimes is? What will become of our powers of discernment in the flood of information? Rather than becoming self-satisfied about all the great art now just a click away, maybe we should start trying to decide what meaning art should have in our lives, as well as what art is meaningful for our future. Important things in how we are beginning to communicate as one worldwide community of peoples are happening just beneath the surface. Now may be the time when more, not less, thoughtfulness should be deployed in discerning which art means the most to you as an artist or art appreciator?

Comments: 174
Favourites: 4,130
Views: 30,200

We seem to have come to a major societal “look before you leap” moment. Shall we just keep technologically cannonballing forward, full steam ahead to wherever our digital momentum takes us? Or is it time to pump the brakes and start a serious conversation about whether or not the fundamental shift in the technology of our society should usher in a new fundamental shift in the values of our society.

So the great question confronts us all, and with each day it becomes less hypothetical and more urgent: With the advent of universal access to all information all of the time how will we decide to personally sort or categorize content or make preferences or align to and thus create global values? Will we be able to take the new responsibility thrust into our hands and really do the right thing? Will we choose the global over the personal? Will we start making choices with an eye toward our digital information-based “footprints” - - the record of our choices - - and the unintentional fallout as they become votes and statistics affecting other choices for the unseen populace of the World Wide Web?

We now have just about all the information we’re ever going to need to make a real change in this world. The ability to discern what in that information is important and which takes priority is the new challenge of our age.

Comments: 12,728
Favourites: 42,226
Views: 1,297,196

Comments: 1558
Favourites: 2,194
Views: 11,811

Comments: 5
Favourites: 15
Views: 141

Comments: 118
Favourites: 2,681
Views: 18,733

QuestionsFor the Reader

  1. Does the sheer amount of art becoming more and more available for your perusal give you a sense of excitement – or a feeling of being overwhelmed and anxious that you’ll never be able to take it all in?
  2. Do you think you personally have enough of a power of discernment to be able to separate important and meaningful from superfluous art?
  3. While being able to discern between what is “important” and what is “fun” art, is it your feeling that frivolous art meant simply for enjoyment is just as important as more substantial meaningful art?
  4. What if anything will be the personal impact on your life of the arrival of the Singularity in regard to your relationship with the arts?

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