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Tracing is not OK.

Journal Entry: Fri Nov 23, 2012, 2:37 PM
I've been following this hilarious blog for a while now laughable-lion-king-art.tumblr…

And while it pretty much makes me laugh with every post, I'm also getting more and more frustrated with the "Base" and "Vector" "communities". And I feel a need to vent my frustrations somewhat. Folks, posting traced artwork is not okay. I don't understand why deviantArt doesn't do anything about this.

Bases can be fun as a pastime, I'll give you that. And if you actually do something with them, I might even go as far as calling it "art". I mean, this is technically a coloured "base" but, dang, look at it: mistytang.deviantart.com/art/B… And I can also let slip posting a coloured-in base from time to time for fun, but when people base (hah) their entire galleries around these fill-bucket linearts, I start wondering "What are you even doing on an art site?" Recolouring clip-arts and other people's artwork into my own characters was something I did too when I was 12 and just had discovered the internet. Yes, I did. But I kept it to myself. (Also, I have nothing at all against linearts/"bases" that you actually drew. Those are your creation. Huzzah!)

I don't mind bases half as much as I mind so-called vectors though. First of all, a "vector" is object-based. A trace posted as a huge pixel image does not automatically make it a vector. And no offence, but just because ponies are traced and posted to the left and right every other minute doesn't mean you can do it to anything and post it anywhere (in my opinion you shouldn't do it to ponies either). And, what is the point? You traced a screenshot/clip-art line by line and coloured it. Okay? What are you expecting now? Praise for work you didn't create?

The main thing that really gets me about these "vectors" and bases is that some people somehow think they deserve credit for their trace. The nerve. I mean seriously. It wasn't yours to take in the first place, so what sort of ludicrous claim do you think you have over it? Just because The Lion King is a famous film, does that suddenly make it public property? Erm. I don't think Disney agrees. Technically, I believe making fan art is a breach of copyright too, but in fan art there is at least something you've made by yourself.

If you use tracing as a means of practise I am perfectly fine with it - it's even a pretty decent way to learn - as long as it is kept offline. Posting it online is pure plagiarism and has no place on a site like dA.

Someone needs to start deviantBASE (alternatively deviantTRACE) I think. Then maybe we'd be able to keep it away from the art over here :P

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:iconleorgathar:
Leorgathar Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012
Couldn't agree more. I once met a guy in a Mexican TLK forum who did exactly this. I told him about it while chatting on MSN, I think that offended him because he started calling me names and whinning about how he can never be a good artist, etc. I lost contact with him a couple of years ago, I wonder if he still does it, hehe.

I actually traced a clip art of Scar in vectors as a homework for my Corel Draw class recently. Right now it's only in both my laptop and my professor's. I can't see it having a place here :XD:
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Yeah... Some people really need to be taught that posting traced art is never okay, and that they can teach themselves to draw with practise and patience. There are no shortcuts in art.

And no, it wouldn't have a place here =P But, again, tracing for private practise purposes is fine by me :3
Reply
:icontheleadingoutcast:
TheLeadingOutcast Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Funny is when a person who floods their galleries with colored-in bases yells and whines that no one comments on their art or if someone does then those are negative comments.:/
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Indeed... I mean, what are they expecting? :hmm: I find it kinda frustrating; there are so shortcuts in art. Sure, they can fill their galleries with bases, but they're never gonna gain any respect from those who actually are artists by doing so o.-
Reply
:iconjo-san:
Jo-san Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I agree to the fullest. If I ever decide to open up or commissions, I'm not doing fan art. :(
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:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Glad you do! And yeah, that's probably a good idea. I can't really say anything in terms of drawing style *coughTLKeverywherecough* xP But I think if I was asked to do a commission of a copyrighted character I would decline; it doesn't sit well with me :hmm:
Reply
:iconkoudoawaiavortex:
KoudoawaiaVortex Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Hearty amen to all of this. You expressed my frustrations with tracings and traced vectors to a T. I outright asked once why the pony community widely accepted the traced vectors and got told about all the hours of hard work that go into them. Whatever. If it takes you a year and you're tracing, it's still not yours and you wasted your time.
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Absolutely. Glad you agree!
Reply
:iconlyrak:
Lyrak Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Vector is not only object-based, what makes a true vector (or so my graphic design prof told us) is that the image is stored as an equation that allows the whole thing to be resized as much as you want, larger or smaller, without losing quality. Which is why it's such a good choice for graphic design.

Mind you, I suck at vector. Like, really really suck. But then, I suck at graphic design in general. LOL You want graphic design, talk to my sister.
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Ah, yes, that's the one - I just wasn't sure how to word that correctly in English :XD:

Vectors aren't my best friends either; me and Illustrator are trying to get along, but it's not going that well... xD
Reply
:icondj88:
DJ88 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I think you know where I personally stand on tracing and bases..... I have had my art stolen/traced/copied/altered/manipped one too many times. It frustrates/saddens me that some people, who want to make an artist of themselves, only leach off the talents of other people. Instead of working on sharpening their skills on their own through hard work and practice.
They want to cut strait to the end product, instead of wanting to work on it and build it up. Not to say they're bad people. They're just, going about art the "wrong way" in the eyes of so many other artists. And often times don't even think they're doing anything wrong.
Reply
:iconcontradictingcats:
ContradictingCats Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012  Student Artist
Indeed! I personally cannot stand people saying "But I'm only X age" when trying to make an excuse. It gives a bad reputation to younger artists.

I actually used to trace because I though it made me better! Of course this was before I learned of image sharing sites XD Frankly, trancing helps with quite a NADA amount. I can't personally even learn things from tracing VS referencing a photo so it actually fits my own style.

Even as a impatient person who is eager to see what I make, tracing really doesn't help at all P:
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012  Student Digital Artist
I couldn't agree more. It's especially sad when people abuse the art to the point where it drives the artist away :/ I do miss your TLK drawings for example, but I really don't blame you for not posting any any more.

Kids need to learn that just because the image is on the internet *coughGoogleinparticularcough* doesn't mean it's up for grabs to do whatever you want with it. Maybe someone should make a "How to behave on the internet" course for them =P
Reply
:iconheyvikkitime:
HeyVikkiTime Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Digital Artist
:iconbravoplz:
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2012  Student Digital Artist
:salute:
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:icontheprotobabe:
TheProtobabe Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
*slow clap* I totally have the exact same feels, Kanu. I used to trace and try to figure out art by using others', but I never posted it, because even then I knew copying and stealing ideas/art was WRONG. It's basic morality and I frankly hate traced bases etc. People don't understand what real art is and what should/should not be posted.
Reply
:iconcontradictingcats:
ContradictingCats Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012  Student Artist
Exactly.
Frankly I don't think any of the tracing I used to do helped me even o.o
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Indeed. dA is not nearly strict enough on what can and can't be posted here. I understand it's hard to keep up with it due to the sheer amount, but there doesn't seem to be anything being done about trace-bases at all :|
Reply
:icontheprotobabe:
TheProtobabe Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Yeah... I can go with the whole, someone draws an original 'base' and allows others to use it for character-building purposes or something if they can't draw, or whatever, but even then, it's stretching it and shouldn't be posted on an ART site. If you must, just post to scraps and put credit where credit is due, at the very least :/

But that's my opinion. XD
Reply
:iconcrisisastar15:
crisisastar15 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
:iconthisplz:
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Student Digital Artist
:salute:
Reply
:iconitalian-pitbull:
Italian-Pitbull Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Realistically a vector is when you trace out something from a photograph- it can be one solid color, or multiple colors.... I don't think tracing over artwork (unless you drew a sketch intending to be a vector) counts as a "vector" and that people should really get a dictionary for artwork definitions
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Vector graphics don't equal tracing =P If you want to get super correct, a "true" vector image would be built up of only straight lines, because that's how such graphics were made before they were able to do curves. But, yeah, people really do need to read the definitions before they start labelling things "vectors" to the left and right :|
Reply
:iconitalian-pitbull:
Italian-Pitbull Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Haha well in todays world they have curves. pen tool is good for those and purdy lines
Reply
:icontesseri-shira:
Tesseri-Shira Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
:iconclapplz:
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:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Student Digital Artist
:salute:
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:iconkingsimba:
KingSimba Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yes, I agree too. I'm not a fan of seeing traced works at all. Taking ideas from poses, scenes, etc, is fine, so long as it's not identical to the original image. Originality is the key people.

Well said Kanu!
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Indeed *nods*

Glad you agree, KS!
Reply
:iconcajesthetabby:
CajesTheTabby Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Oh god, I cant tell how many levels I agree with you on this. Especially the vectors! So many people, especially in the MLP community like you said, vector almost EVERY pose in the episodes and many times you see the same pose done by 15 different people and they all want you to give credit to THEM when you use it. Why? You didnt make it, you didnt draw it from scratch, you trace a fricking screenshot and deserve no credit whatsoever. If you made a sketch on your own and vectorized that, then yes, I will give you credit if I use it, but I wont credit you on something you traced, that is just stupid and they should know it. Thankfully, there are some that make their vectors from scratch and dont trace, but they look almost identical in style to the show, so they are hard to tell apart. But yeah, only time I accept vectors and bases is when the artist made them from scratch.
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Indeed. As long as it is 100% self-made I have no problems with either one. But these bloody traces... :|

I'm glad there are people around who agree *nods*
Reply
:iconcajesthetabby:
CajesTheTabby Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Agreed! And again in the mlp fandom, I have noticed that those who vector get more praise than the artists who actually draw the ponies in their own style. :I

There always are :)
Reply
:iconghostcub:
Ghostcub Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012  Student Digital Artist
I AGREE 100%. Thanks for posting this!
Reply
:iconkanutgl:
KanuTGL Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Cheers, Yuma :3 I'm glad there are people around who agree =P
Reply
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