On the 22nd November 2002, I joined a website called DeviantART.com, the moment I discovered it. I told a friend that I joined, and asked to sprad the word about through the then small Rayman community. I was welcomed and watched shortly after.
I thought it was the best art submission site there could be, because you could upload an unlimited amount of work on there without having to wait days. I had originally intended to submit my art on Side 7, but I was having a lot of trouble getting an account on there for some reason. This wasn't a great time because I had the feeling that whatever I drew had gone to waste, until I found DeviantART. My gallery filled up with all sorts of Rayman and James Pond crap, and I got better at drawing as I went along, got new software and made new friends.
However, it's not always been sunshine and lollipops. I've had all kinds of shit given to me, from copyright violation notes to just plain ignorance. One time, some arsehole posted an extremely immature message on my page because he saw a message I made on a SpongeBob SquarePants fan's page. At another, a young deviant left a nasty comment on one of my old Rayman comics that reduced me to tears. I wasn't one to take such harsh comments, and I'm not one now.
Also, I have the feeling that everything I've done was all in vain. Every moment I spent drawing lineart, colouring in Photoshop, looking for the right materials to work with, every penny I spent on them, all gone to failure. My most successful piece on deviantART was a drawing of Patrick Star in a thong, which received over 100 comments and favourites. However I placed the deviation in storage for the reason that it was only yielding favourites by people who don't give comments, and comments that were nothing more than floods of emoticons and the phrases 'this is so wrong!' and 'I find it disturbing yet funny at the same time'.
Things like this don't help me at all in terms of improving my art. So, I savour any meaningful comment I receive.
In turn I believe, I haven't been making as many comments myself as I used to do. Art that I'm interested in - fanart of my favourite cartoons in other words - isn't as easy to find as it used to be because the browsing part of the site is flooded with either Sonic the Hedgehog (which consists of Sonic X screenshots and sprites that have been manipulated to look like new characters), Invader Zim and any anime fanart. I only add artworks to my favourites at will, as opposed to a few individuals who add absolutely anything that comes through to their inbox. In my case, the same few people add my stuff on a regular basis. They do this to everyone in their watch just to get attention.
But that would be hypocritical of me to say. I'm an attention whore too, because I don't get enough of it. I constantly look at how many pageviews I've got because I know that what I get in a month is what certain deviants get in a day. Some of these lack in the artistic skills that have taken me years to develop, and they're more popular than me. One deviant in particular received 500 favourites for a simple flash animation of Gir from Invader Zim just blinking and rolling his eyes. I spent 9 months on a flash movie, and I only got 7, and 31 comments . Things like that make me fucking sick!
The next bone to pick is how DeviantART doesn't allow the closure of unwanted accounts at one's request. There are thousands of accounts that are left unused, either because one has joined and has since left, or they've been banned. The only way you could ever have your account removed is if you've actually murdered someone or caught up in a legal investigation. All you can delete at your will is your deviations and journals, but nothing more. There are hundreds of things I've said on deviantART that make me wish that I could just wipe out all traces of my existance, but I can't do that.
A certain user, and fellow student of the college I used to go to, has been constantly attacked by a spammer who's laid disgusting messages on her page and those of a few others. And deviantART's moderators are doing nothing but banning the several accounts this person has made just to attack these people. DeviantART set up NINE accounts names 'deviantARTModerator1', '2' etc, and all they say is 'This comment is a violation of the Policy equitette, please be more mindful or we will set administrative action' blah blah fucking blah. Have nine of these is just as wasteful as what this spammer has done all over deviantART. And to not let a user remove their page at their will is a crying shame.
The problems don't end here.
From the day I've joined, I've been a slave to it. I've visited almost every day since the 22nd November 2002, the only times I'd been off it for more than 7 days would be when I'm on a week long holiday. It became a way of life for me. Such a way of life in fact that it was costly. I blame deviantART for the fact that it has taken more than three years of my life in which I'll never get it back. I've been so consumed by how many pageviews and comments I'd get that I could have used the time to do something productive. No fucking wonder I couldn't get a college assignment done. No wonder I got school grades that I was dissatisfied with.
I need to move on. Three years is a time too long for me to be a slave to a website.
I'll still keep my deviations up on my page. It would be incredibly selfish of me to deny the wonderful people of the world of my work, no matter how much of a waste it's been.
Kroc, TRP86, Raygirl, Psyke, Splapp, Melonhead118, Error 404 and the many others I've come to contact with, thank you all so much for the great times I've had. I can never forget any of it.
Soon will come the end of Seismic Saffya. It won't be the end of me, just Seismic Saffya.
I need to go to bed now, it's awfully late.