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I'm endlessly inspired by my deviant watch, the notes that are sent to me and the feedback that I receive. This is a Journal about my regular experience on DeviantArt.

Reviewing my mentions
  • A post about who has the most llama badges. No, it isn't me. Once you have 10,000 you have a golden llama. But, even if you have 100,000 you still just have a golden llama. I'll find out who has the most and update this journal!
  • sergbel wrote a journal titled, "Learn about the founder of DA!" after finding a video interview that I did for a class at USC in 2012 and another one called 'This Week in Startups'. The first interview was super personal at points, so I never shared it with anyone. But if you want a deep insight into me, I've definitely never given a more personal interview than this one! Eek.
  • There's a slew of mentions where people want to report people and try to 'summon me' to help. We've just updated our Report Deviation system, read the HQ article about it! 

Reviewing 100 deviations

I'm a bit behind, so I'm going through deviations 100 at a time as not to get overwhelmed. Out of these 100, I wanted to share thoughts about a few.
  • At Burning Man I'm a creative director for a camp called Galactic Jungle, so everything is jungle themed and also galactic. This piece made me think of a post-apocalyptic jungle, which would also probably be a good camp theme. This would be an awesome mutant vehicle.Re-animated Elephant mount by sandara
     
  • I like the work of Robert-Alan so I watched him a while ago. He uses his DA account to publish original works, but then he puts them on a bunch of redbubble products and publishes each one as a deviation. I thought about removing him from my watch because of this, I found it a bit annoying. Then I thought, maybe I should just buy some? So I left the decision for another day.Reverse Nature / Wall Clock by Robert-Alan

  • makepictures often publishes very thoughtful descriptions with his photographs. Sometimes the descriptions are more the deviation than the photo. This one was a nice history lesson. Washington Square Philadelphia by makepictures
  • We're so awesome that deviants like PhotoshopIsMyKung-Fu share their progress with us. He recently made a series of posters for Spiderman Homecoming. Mark XLVII by PhotoshopIsMyKung-Fu
  • Speaking of Galactic Jungle, ekud posted one of the pieces he was inspired to make while on the playa. I love it! ELEFANTASIA by ekud
  • Damn, Artgerm's at New York Comic-Con and I couldn't make it this year. :(  Next year, for sure! NYCC 2017 by Artgerm
I hope you're finding your inspiration for today here at DeviantArt. When all else fails, ask someone to collaborate with you.  As ekud said in our quick interview, collaborating helps you to grow creatively! 

-- Angelo 

Everybody has an imagination. Some of us have learned to use ours better than others. People say they aren't creative, but everybody is creative, because everybody has an imagination.

Imagination needs to be fed, but not necessarily in the form your medium. Because that is akin to cannibalism to me.

Do you know what fires your imagination? 

-- Justin Maller ekud 


spyed: Why do creative people need a community?

ekud: Everybody needs a community, it's a deviation from the norm to have creativity be a defining characteristic of your person. A central tenant of your life. However you want to say it. So to find a group of people that share that, and have that affinity, is a basic human need. To have affinity with others. 

spyed: Does having access to a community of like-minded people help the creative process in your view? 

ekud: Sharing your affinity with others is what's going to feed that basic need that you're not necessarily going to be able to find within arms reach. You will for sure find that on DeviantArt if you're creative. As soon as you have your community reinforced, and you can go down a path together, that's what fostering is. You foster within each other to desire to push further, to stand on other shoulders as they stand on yours to go on a journey together. It sounds contrarian to what I was saying about cannibalism, but being together sets your expectation and to raise your expectations for yourself. You're exploring it together, like unlocking a map, or going farther into the forest without dying. Then you aren't afraid to cross the glacier, that's what community is. To have people to report back to, that's really important. And it creates collaboration, and it's amazing what you can do when you collaborate. 

spyed: What happens when you collaborate?

ekud: My goal when I collaborate with someone else... there's two ways you can do it. One person has to start. You're going to make something and it's an offer that you're making to them. You either make it to someone who you trust (which is where your community comes in) and then seeing what they come back with. Because, they're taking your map, or guide, and they're going to go on a journey and see what they do. When someone makes that offer to me, someone I trust, I set out to enhance what they gave me. I want to see what they've given me, and accept their offering, and then bring myself to that. I would usually end up with something really different than what I would make myself.  It's very exciting because you retain that difference in the future, it broadens your perspective. That's how you grow as a person and as an artist. 

Mark Twain said, "travel is the cure of ignorance and hatred" - This is like that. This broadens your perspective by seeing the beginning of a creative process through someone else's eyes. That's what's really great about collaboration.

TOTEM by ekud ONE DAY, IN THE BIG CITY... by ekud A CONQUEST OF COLOR by ekud INDUSTRIAL OCTANE by ekud
TO RIDE A MARE AT NIGHT by ekud AGENT J by ekud PROWL by ekudMY BLACK PONY by ekud
RAJA by ekud IN MOTION by ekud MUSICA VIVA by ekud





Do you know what fires your imagination?

A conversation with the community about DeviantArt and the road ahead has to start somewhere. In the coming weeks and months, Heidi and her team will begin an elaborate conversation while maintaining a constant feedback loop with myself, our product & engineering teams, and our whole organization.

Those who peruse my journal tend to be deep insiders who want real insights and a candid perspective. At least that's how I see it. So this is a post for you.

I run our core products with our product and ux teams. A lot of names and faces have changed on those teams throughout the years, but I've been your lead contributor to these designs for over 17 years now. I say this with your interests at heart; there's a beat that makes this place tick. It's subtle and obvious and subtle again. Knowing the ropes around this sacred place is no small feat. Having the longest perspective on it, I passionately fight for the balance that makes DeviantArt, DeviantArt. Your Profile pages, the Groups eco-system, the Notifications center, Browse, and so on. There's incredible detail at DeviantArt, ruled often by counter-intuition. 

These products mean a great deal to many millions of people. We've tended to take a very platform-esque approach to them all, where each individual has the flexibility to use the products in wide varieties of ways. You might not be surprised to learn that your friends on DeviantArt use the site in all kinds of ways, often with a lot of difference from one another. Groups is a great example of a platform that has insanely complex use. ie. You certainly know how many different uses Groups have. 

But the questions go so deep.
  • Is the comment signature feature important? (super important!)
  • Should the deviation description contract so the design is prettier, with only a "show more" to see it? (descriptions provide artists with a method to control their traffic, it must be enhanced, not contracted.)
  • What aspects of Categories are important and why? (defining what DeviantArt is as a corpus is crucial to everyone's understanding of the brand.)
  • Can't we just remove the Profile customization and have one approach? (We should enhance customization to its grandest limits!)
  • Let's kill chat, it's so out of the way. (We should make chat central to the experience.)
  • Can't the Notifications center just be a feed like everywhere else and not have those pesky "X's?" (We can make the X's more positive by making them "Checks" but the kindred nature of DeviantArt wants perfect symmetry. Notifications at DA aren't a feed, they're closer to a gmail inbox, where care for everything that our members publish.)
There are thousands of questions like these surrounding every detail of DeviantArt. 

When rebuilding products, respecting the authenticity of their use is key, and central to the process. Doing right by our members means mastering these complexities and wide varieties of use.

The process to revamp the product now spans the longest any of us have ever spent on any one process. About 5 years and counting. We've redesigned the watch and notifications environments multiple times without a release. The profile pages as well. Browse and search have had builds that didn't launch. 

The struggle is best represented by maintaining a balance of what is right for DeviantArt. Testing products that should be better than their predecessors, by performing better than their predecessors. Tests we ran fell short, and we weren't foolish in pressuring them forward.

I took incredible heat for this. I'd rather fail pursuing the right thing, than temporarily succeed with the wrong thing. And I know our core team agrees with this, when outsiders and newcomers really struggle with it. I am so thankful that our board maintained control of the process, and that Wix is so trusting of our instincts. When outsiders and newcomers effect major changes on networks like DeviantArt, the outcome is Digg.com, and MySpace, and LiveJournal. The death of astoundingly beautiful creations and the loss of a disproportionately high value to people.

This is simply a note from me to you, so that you know we've found our stride again. You know that you have the path when it gets easy after great struggle. The path feels easy. And this was most certainly hard-earned.

Your use of the Notifications environment, with all of its wild use cases, is on its way to an iteration we are deeply proud of. The Profile environment, and how you use it, is beautifully understood. Progressing it forward, and empowering you more completely is full of innovation, and great respect.

The Groups platform is my baby, and I love her, and she needs very specific help. I've heard so much throughout the years of the fears people have that we will change the platforms fundamental complexity, and neuter it's power out of misunderstanding. Especially its Apps and privilege system, along with its Notifications integration. Many businesses, and hyper successful organizations of people use the very edge of these features and are concerned that we'll kill their worlds with revisions. I'm keenly aware of these dynamics and I've looked into them with great interest. By the time we're touching Groups, I'm well prepared to lead.

I remember the days laying on the lawn of a farm we rented on Vancouver Island, dreaming of the possibilities with Pachunka, and starvingartist and the gang in 2009 and then watching its incredible launch success. We were so open minded about the potential then, and what has happened with Groups is even wider in scope than we anticipated. 

It's so exciting to think about these challenges all of the time once again. The past few years held me hostage away from the problems, and it has been hard not to succeed in uplifting some of our products.

We have paid, and continue to pay a large technical debt on the platform. We ruled with so much innovation in our history that untangling some of the natural messes that get made in innovation storms sometimes takes an ungodly effort. This, too, has taken great strides. 

At some points, parts of me felt that we might never have the chance to push the products to the limits again, that we'd have to compromise our innovations.

I'm so grateful to Wix. You hear such horror stories of platforms being acquired and damaged or whatever. Finding the right partner for DeviantArt was difficult for this reason. But, sometimes, the right partner finds you. The intention has been rooted in love and appreciation for DeviantArt itself. They listen so carefully, and are so thoughtful. It's a great blessing, and a giant support system.

For those wondering, our minds are here, our spirit is here, we're 200% committed, and we're focused on the community, the products, growing our staff, and on making great and appropriate progress forward.

From my heart,
-- Angelo 

First days working on our future together. Absolutely magic.

I am so excited for our progress making DeviantArt become what it needs to become. #wix #ourstory Magic is happening by spyed

Og-preview by marioluevanosEarlier today, Wix.com announced its acquisition of DeviantArt, and I want you to know how incredibly positive this development is for our community, for the platform, and for all artists who haven’t yet become deviants!

Earlier today, Wix.com—a leading cloud-based web development platform—announced its acquisition of DeviantArt, and I want you to know how incredibly positive this development is for our community, for the platform, and for all artists who haven’t yet become deviants!

We need to talk about the elephant in the room. You know, the one that’s been sitting on us for the past couple years. Since we’re all about the art, maybe the elephant was made out of origami and it was nice and colorful, but it was huge and tough to work around. For these few years, we've lacked the resources to tackle the issues that mattered most on DeviantArt, to launch the features we really wanted to bring to the community, and to deliver the full power of online presence and branding to artists in the way only DeviantArt has succeeded in doing.

I am excited to say the elephant has left the room.

This is where art starts and where art grows. With the addition of the resources, skill, innovation, and energy of Wix, our community can and will explode even faster than it has in the past, and we will become more inspired, magnetic, and audacious than ever before.

The collective, universal understanding of what DeviantArt is and how it operates won’t be lost. We'll just be able to do it a lot more efficiently, with the resources, staff, and data-driven know-how to best serve each and every member of our community like never before. All of the DeviantArt staff will stay, plus more will join us.  Very soon, you’ll begin to see the kinds of changes we have all talked about and exciting ones you never expected.

The first time we met with Wix, months and months ago, it was just to talk about an advertising deal. I was surprised that the top management of Wix were there, and within a few minutes, they started talking about what a huge influence DeviantArt had been on them and on what they do, how deeply they love and respect our community, and how excited they were to geek about DeviantArt. It became obvious that we had found a real partner—real friends for the mission ahead.

Later this year, DeviantArt will celebrate 17 years on the Internet.

17 years of creation, kindred spirits, and inspiration brought to life by our rich community of art and artists. 17 years skating along the bleeding edge of feature innovation and all the controversy it brings. And whether you're a longtime member or you've found us via search engines or links in artist bios all across the web, there's a magnetic pull that keeps our community vibrant with life.

UPDATE: There's been some confusion around wording used in TechCrunch's reporting of the DeviantArt and Wix story.

Their article includes: "...Wix will open up DeviantArt’s repository of art and creative community to the Wix platform, giving Wix’s users access to that work to use in their own site building."

Please know that the DeviantArt Submission Policy, Terms of Service and Copyright Policy all remain the same.  Deviants continue to own their own works.  In the future, there's a possibility Wix might provide opportunities for you to license your work -- only if you want to -- to more people around the world.  And, there will be opportunities for Wix users to join DeviantArt and make the community stronger.




As we strive together towards a more creative life, sharing our creations with one another for discussion, we inevitably contribute to breaking down barriers of the mind that plague others from beginning their own creative journey. This is a great positivity that we collectively contribute to society together, for 16 effing years as of today!!!!!!!!! If you can believe it.

I wanted to raise a quick toast to unicorns, ponies and bloodlines of drawn horses. Big ups to llamas, hodor and pikachu. A special celebration for art that some find exciting and others find strange, because those artworks truly push the boundaries. And of course to the best of the best gems from our community, that everyone would agree are great contributions of art in pop culture.

Thank you for making DeviantArt great for 16 years!

I especially want to thank our extended family of team members past and present. Sometimes it is rock and roll around here, sometimes it is the highest of highs and other times its just not fun. But at the heart of it all is a great cause we all deeply share a lifelong passion for.

Cheers to many more years of being DeviantArt, a force of inspiration and good people, here to nurture our world creatively.

Happy 16th Birthday DeviantArt! You already got an official DeviantArt Lexus 3 years ago, now Fella can finally drive it!

LExus 2 by psas

Lots of high-gloss materials are headed your way to help you understand our recent history and to demonstrate what our future will look like. I wanted to get ahead of it all and just say a few things because the silence is killing me, too.

We've obviously been lagging on releasing the bigger projects we've been working on. We struggled to find the right ... footing? way? balance? However you want to say it, we struggled. We learned how to use the new brand beautifully, and we gained many insights into the current vantage of the DeviantArt community but we didn't find an approach that we could fully release for all. We've been working day and night for 2 years to do this, to update and upgrade DeviantArt with a version that would allow us to reach our mission together faster. Needless to say, it has been very painful for our team and for the community that we've struggled in this way, but fortunately there is good news. 

We figured our $#!% out......... since January, and certainly by February we've been hard at work building a concrete next edition of DeviantArt. One that gradually transforms the platform step by step in a very open, and accessible way. This approach will update our web site, our mobile web experience, our mobile apps and unite them into one overall design approach. The approach embraces the desktop web in a way we didn't think was possible before, which is a key component for our core community members who use the desktop web in above-average quantities relative to other places.

That's a geeky way of saying, DeviantArt has found its way forward. We're conducting tests and experiments and they seem to be working orders of magnitude better than anything we tried the past few years. You'll see changes to your Notification center first. Subtle, helpful changes that are intended to demonstrate to you that you will like the direction we are headed. Once announcements of these changes are made, and once you use the changes we'll continue the updates through the Profile environment, the Browse environment, and so on. That's what we mean by "gradually transforms the platform." This is key! The community loves the legacy of DeviantArt and our way of doing things, but we all want things to improve especially to make our lives a bit easier. But DeviantArt wants to continue to feel very much like itself moving forward, and we now have a very clear method that makes this true while also bringing the new brand fully to life, and extending DeviantArt into platforms beyond just mobile. x`

For those who want hints, you'll get quite a bit of clarity in the weeks to come with screenshots, videos and maybe even functional comps before you get to see these changes in the DeviantArt Beta Tester program and beyond. But if you have an imaginative capacity for design, take a closer look at your Profile. Deviations and Activity, or Posts. The DNA of simplicity & familiarity for DeviantArt has always been right there on your Profile, so we've adopted the Profile approach and applied it to different areas of DA like search results, browse environments, even a new, searchable Watch environment. We call it CommGrid.

CommGrid for Web embraces a larger size screen, CommGrid for Mobile extends the concept of CommGrid into a mobile friendly design.

You've been seeing some Notifications testing (with the new Polls being easier to vote on) and you'll start seeing even more transformative tests with Deviation Stacks, Journals and Commissions in the coming weeks. We'll likely announce the test results to demonstrate how much more feedback we're able to drive to deviants with these new approaches. Poll voting for example are already up over 100% in the past few weeks.

Thank you for your continued patience, it's exciting to be on the right track and it's also about time that various much needed improvements reach a DeviantArt experience near you.. We're continuing to work our butts off to get these things out! Stay tuned! 

-- A 
  • Listening to: robot heart mixes
  • Reading: comments
  • Watching: Star Wars VII
  • Playing: rocket league
  • Eating: Sushi
  • Drinking: coffee

In my last journal, What's going on with DeviantArt, there was a lot of great conversation back and forth and over 400 comments. I read every single one, and my responses started to become repetitive so I stopped.

One of my favorite questions was, "Why do you even want to move Watch out of Notifications? I don't understand why this is so important." So I wanted to address that head on:


Answer: Moar Power. Easier to Use.

The real project here is that we're switching to a Watch that is powered by the same/similar systems Browse is powered by, making it possible to see your Watch as Newest, Undiscovered, Popular, filter by Category, search by keyword, filter by Shop items, Commission items, etc. MUCH MOAR POWERFUL. 

Here's the disconnect:

1. The experience of Browse needs improvement, too.

Browse needs functionality that reinforces why we're all here; To engage with the DeviantArt community, grow in our standing, and otherwise facilitate our creative needs together. The Browse environment is capable of much more and we need to invest resources in improving it so that we can do all kinds of powerful stuff, like:

- See First Deviation Posts easily in any Category.
- Help drive each of you towards Deviants that need Feedback, attention, etc. 
- Help identify deviants who recently posted a deviation and aren't getting attention.
- Help identify deviants who are posting their First Deviation to DeviantArt, which is a big deal. 
- Allow Deviants who post in a category they have never posted in, to connect with other deviants who can welcome them to that category and help them get going.

Once browse is doing these things, imagine how powerful those functions would be for your Watch!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 


2. The Watch beta didn't take advantage of the Browse back-end before we went to beta. 

There's more work here to demonstrate the power of Watch when powered by Browse/Search instead of Notifications. Literally, we didn't expose those features on the interface of New Watch Beta. We exposed basic functionality for this environment.

What DeviantArt needs to do is shut the heck up, go back and produce a Watch that seriously takes advantage of the Search backend, and then relaunch the Beta so you guys see why we're doing all this stuff. After that, we'll talk again.


Please support us by reading updates like this one, and giving us your feedback and letting us know if you think we're getting it.

Cheers,
-- Spyed

p.s. My spyed account still has value in discussing issues like this. My angelo account continues to be where I put all of my real attention, my art, my points of view on life. But I think keeping spyed for official company stuff is still the right way. I'm definitely having some sort of DeviantArt identity crisis.. LOL
  • Listening to: top 50 on itunes, lol at me plz
  • Reading: comments
  • Watching: Fresh Off the Boat
  • Playing: Battlefront
  • Eating: Sushi
  • Drinking: Alagash White

There's a lot of changes going on with DeviantArt, and we recognize that this is irritating. We don't want it to be irritating, but unfortunately we don't have a choice.

DeviantArt must transform. The live product is failing to interest as many new members as it used to. We've identified many of the reasons for this, and we're making transformative changes to help new users adopt DeviantArt. We especially want new users to come in and Watch Deviants, and begin conversing about Art. Ultimately we want new Deviants to post Deviations and contribute to the community. DeviantArt is meant as the place to support people in the world as they become more creative in their lives. As a community, we represent the journey of being a more creative person. 

The current state of DeviantArt isn't adequately communicating our value to new members. And the products they are using confuse them. We've interviewed new members on the phone, in surveys, via email. We know what the issues are.

To fix these issues DeviantArt is transforming. These transformations are often annoying to existing members. Please don't think we're doing these things to annoy you, we're actually doing these things to improve the community and the ease with which new members can join in on the community. DeviantArt is 15 years old, the world out there has changed a lot over the past 15 years. There are expectations that new members have that older members have become comfortable with.

So. Let's get specific.

We want to remove Watch from inside of Notifications and give it a proper home where it can breathe, and truly allow your Watch to shine. Notifications (where your Feedback and Notices live) will continue on with a similar approach, but will be updated visually to be more attractive. Don't panic, we understand how sensitive such an uplift is. Consider this: We (the team of DA) love the way Feedback works in your Notifications. Everything about it. So the essence of this will not change, but certainly some design tweaks wouldn't hurt it. We also think we can provide a better "All" state that will help you get through your Notifications faster. 

To achieve the extraction of Watch, we run into some dependencies. Things we have to do to get there, especially in light of your feedback to us on the Watch Beta, and the older Watch Beta that's currently live on the homepage.

We understand that it is very important to you to visit your Watch, and see what is New there. The Watch Beta, the other Watch Beta, they both failed at this. They just feed you what's newest, but they don't specifically call out what's changed and what's new in your Watch. And this is a key feature. We would like to do this, but we are having some trouble producing a system that achieves a more powerful method of consuming your watch, while also making it possible to see exactly what is new. This type of thing should be easy. But it isn't. We will solve this, and at that time and with some testing we will roll it out. We will not move Watch out of Notifications until we have proper levels of adoption from long time members so that we know for certain you like the new approach. We aren't there yet. So don't panic. Your Notifications Watch will not change until it is clear in our usage patterns that active, long time members of DeviantArt really like it. We are not there yet.

We are going to put a huge amount of resources on to this problem until we can safely make this transition. We must make this transition. We aim to achieve this over the next 3-4 months. Stating things like, "Don't move the Watch out of Notifications" is not an option. Providing feedback to the staff about how to make the Watch function better than the Notifications Watch is the only option, and it is where we need your feedback. Ultimately, Watch must come out of Notifications. It must. Without this change, the platform of DeviantArt is too difficult for new members to use. All of the data, all of our interviews, all of our traffic models demonstrate that this is the problem.

Don't shoot the messenger. :)

We need your support to do this. So I wanted to explain why we're doing it in hopes that it will bring you to understand the need.

If you have any questions I'm happy to talk to you about it. Some of your questions might be too complicated to answer but I will try my best.

-- Angelo 

tldr; I'm spyed but I'm angelo now. 

Not as big a transition as Caitlyn Jenner, but boy do we both feel better about life. 

I've grown past the stage where I need a pseudonym; I really want to be myself. I'm sure you understand.

I created my online name and persona a long time ago. So long ago, that I no longer identify with it completely. I was Spyed for five years before DeviantArt came to exist, 15 years ago, so you can only imagine how much I've changed in 19 years.

I have been building communities for that long. Imagine that.

Video game boards, ANSI/ASCII boards, WAREZ boards, programming boards, MP3 boards and ultimately the ultimate Art board. Being Spyed was awesome. I will still be spyed here, I'll update with official things from time to time. But if you want to see my more regular activity you'll find it on angelo

It just feels right to do this. I've finally had a chance to really admit that to myself and it feels great. 

I've been facing this issue where I want to be on here as me. I have a lot to say, but it's become harder and harder to say it as spyed. I have to be me, and I have to be comfortable on here. And I'm not..

Every time I reach to DeviantArt to express myself, I encounter this very dichotomy. And it makes me stop and pause and second guess and I've come to realize it's because of Spyed. I'm not spyed. I'm not a ninja. I'm not 20 years old. I'm all growns up people! 

+Watch me, as angelo

:peace:
-- Angelo 




TLDR; The entirety of DA was physically moved from one place to another over the past 3 weeks. WHA??! Insanity. Here's a video of us shutting down the old colocation facility and feeling pretty good about it.

LONG VERSION; On August 26, 2015, Chris Bolt (chris)  and I went to downtown LA where DeviantArt was hosted to dismantle the last of the colocation facility we inhabited for 13 years. DeviantArt has completed its transition to AWS after a long, long process that has taken chris and his team probably the better part of this year to complete. THANKS PAUL! banks, and JESSICA! petralfireIt's amazing to me how insanely complicated such a transition is, and how little the site was affected by it. We did have a glitch or two, here or there, especially the past 3 weeks, so if you experienced such a thing it was due to this wide scale transition. But on the whole? So smooth. 

This is of course due to the brilliance of my brother from another mother, chris Bolt, Co-Founder of DA, our Chief Architect, and the name sake of The Bolt Award (highest honor given to a team member at DA!). He's perhaps the most important single piece in the proverbial puzzle. Truly the backbone of DA. And so quiet about it, too. You've probably never seen a video of him, this might be the first time. Every single person on Team DeviantArt feels the same about chris Bolt, he's the most lovable person there is. Perhaps on Earth, even. He's just that amazing. 

In the spirit of how things got started, we decided to dismantle the colocation facility together (yesterday) like the old days when we were first building DeviantArt and he and I worked tirelessly on this part of DA for many, many long days and nights. This video probably illustrates the bittersweet vibe about it. I went to the conference room there yesterday and drew my last giant smiley face on the whiteboard, it was a ritual I'd always perform as a way of coping. Ironically the whiteboard markers were pretty much spent! Fitting. I could tell you war stories about this place all day, but I don't want to depress anyone. Ask anyone I've told war stories about this to and they'll tell ya, you don't wanna hear it. LOL 

Here are some photos from wayyyyy back dealing with this ghastly place:

DA Hosting Facility - 4 by spyedDA Hosting Facility - 8 by spyedThe REAL deviantART by Heidi


And a couple from yesterday with Chris:

Untitled by spyedUntitled by spyedUntitled by spyed

Anyway, DeviantArt is now fully transitioned to AWS and ... we have no regrets about it. Check out the video for one more day in the history books!

-- A


For those who are upset about CORE, you're right. We should have made a more formal announcement when we released to express the new CORE brand and what it means to us and you, and if nothing else in the interest of transparency. More information about CORE to follow this week. But even more importantly, you will see the release of many new Timeline elements that will give you much greater transparency into DeviantArt's direction as a whole. 

Let's talk about coffee for a minute. Cuz it's Saturday, and I woke up and thought about coffee a lot this morning.

I bought a Nespresso machine a few months back. Boy do I like it. I also like my french press. The thing is, Nespresso capsules cost $1.10 and make 1 cup, and I tend to drink two cups in the morning. When I wake up, and on the drive to DA HQ. I've had this theory that I should drink Nespresso on mornings that I work, and I should use the french press in the evenings and on weekends when I have more time. Because the nespresso saves me time during the week since it only takes 1 minute to make 1 cup. The french press takes 10 minutes to boil water/wait 4 minutes to brew, and all this. But each cup costs $0.28. Uhh, except you never make 1 cup with a french press, you tend to make 3 at a time or $0.84. Which is great! Because otherwise you'd spend $2.20 a morning with the nespresso!

Clearly you should use a french press. But wait a minute, what about time?

If you make $25 an hour at work, Nespresso costs you $8.34 a month of your time (1 minute, times 5 days, times 4.3 weeks in a month). If you use a french press you'll spend 215 minutes of your month making it, and it'll cost you $89.58 of your time. But that's not entirely fair because you can do other things during that 10 minutes, like brush your hair or teeth. So let's bring that down to half price, or $44.79 in cost for your time. Which is a kind gesture towards french press coffee I'll tell ya, since I hate brushing my teeth before drinking coffee cuz it makes the coffee taste like crap. I save that crappy flavor for the drive. LOL and.... yuck. Err, anyway! 

All together now!

Nespresso costs you $47.30 a month in workday coffee, and $8.34 in time. $55.64
French press costs you $44.70 a month in time, and $18.06 in coffee. $62.76

If you make $12.50 an hour at work, there's no way you should drink Nespresso. But if you make $25 an hour or above, it's probably not a bad determination to drink Nespresso. Either way you're spending $2.70+ a day on coffee if you value your time.

The most important thing you can do is not think about drip coffee, since you can set a timer on the machine and have it make you coffee every day at 7am for the price of french press but the convenience of Nespresso. Because, that would be too smart, and we want to be snobby and pretend that drip coffee doesn't taste just as good. 

Enjoy your Saturday! Drink some coffee and make some art! 

-- A








 

Due to the nature of DeviantArt it is quite easy to perceive that there's "a lot of people" who are upset with any given thing, enough so that you could even believe that "everyone" believes the same thing.

I felt that perhaps the community would like me to explain how DeviantArt views these types of things.

First of all, DeviantArt, Inc. is extremely deliberate. We don't do anything accidentally. Everything that hits the community is the result of a team collaboration that usually take weeks or months to complete. And so when we make mistakes they are felt by a group here or by our whole team. 

Things you should know:

  1. First of all you must believe that our team is 100% motivated to ensure that DA is healthy, and that decisions we make turn out to be better than how things were before. 
  2. Each decision is likely to affect different pockets of people, and so you will always see the group that's unhappy pool together. 
  3. The happy group is happy, so they don't tend to band together, they just continue on being happy (typically) sight unseen. 
  4. It is our job at DA to know when a decision we've made is a good one or a bad one. We don't just sort of haphazardly release things and hope for the best. We are actually quite addicted to the outcome of our projects. Woah, what a concept. We do this by monitoring feature usage, adoption, conversion, or whatever metrics are important to the project. We do this by looking at membership segments, so we know when something is working for "spectators" or for "active members" or "hyper active members" and so on. 
  5. Throughout our history we've released hundreds of features, and we've reverted dozens of those. We don't have an ego, we just want what is right for DA. 
  6. When a feature or site change proves to not to work, we have a long history of reverting it back. So please, don't believe the hype, look at the past.... (I bet it would fun and valuable to produce an article that chronicles all the features we've reverted. We listen very carefully, and that's a fact.)
  7. If we aren't reverting something, chances are it is working. Sometimes features are working, but continue to be controversial. In those instances there is often a pool of unhappy people who are not (in commenting terms) balanced by the people who are happy. This means that the happy people don't actually step up and say things like, "I LIKE IT" "I'M HAPPY" on the threads posted by angry people who don't like the feature. You probably wouldn't, either. Makes sense.
  8. At DA, each project has a goal. As the years have gone by our goals for success or failure have become clearer and better balanced gracefully between the needs of a business and the needs of an open community. The nature of DA's open platform sometimes makes it seem otherwise, but the right way forward is for you to believe in our team and our track record that when things don't work, we do change it back. When things do work, sometimes it's upsetting that features remain. That's life. But on the whole we are listening to comments, to data, and to results. And that's the only way to lead DeviantArt effectively. 
  9. Never forget that, "Every time we launch a feature, people yell at us."

Anyone who's been here a minute has experience the wrath of an angry mob in response to one of our site features. In fact every day on my personal social media feeds I see a quote that's constantly referenced all over the place. Just look at how many images there are for it. DA and I had nothing to do with these being in existence... other than I guess a quote I gave somewhere a number of years back... 

tumblr l7jbadJawn1qz6pqio1 500 by spyed45-inspiring-quotes-for-startups-30-638 by spyedTumblr Nkc0cxt0ld1rhf0i3o1 1280 by spyed5608f7a8-65a3-4815-88eb-edc7f20d48e9 by spyedQuote-every-time-we-launch-a-feature-people-yell-a by spyed

For years and years just about every day this pops up in my notifications as a quote that's being referenced somewhere in social media.

And it's true. Every time we launch a feature, people yell at us.

It's OK to yell at us, it helps us understand! And sometimes it leads us to revert changes. The community speaks literally, but it also speaks through data. So when you see us acting in ways you don't understand, perhaps you aren't actually on the winning side and there's no way for you to tell. And that's OK, too. Don't take it too personally, we're all here for the overall mission of DA; To Entertain, Inspire & Empower the Artist in All of Us. That's the central cause that must move forward.

     

Cheers folks, we love you more than you'll ever know. Through the good and the bad, our love for the community never waivers. We work tirelessly to improve DA for you, and so long as you're with us we'll never stop caring deeply. I appreciate all of the comments from members who encourage others to keep a civil tone, sharing our art work and our emotions can only happen in a caring place. That's what DA is meant to be all about.


This is the calm before the storm, by the way. Many big changes are on the horizon and we'll need your support. I'll be referencing this article, and you should, too. Especially when you're happy and agree, in a storm of people who don't.

-- A

In April I wrote a post reflecting on my 15 years at DeviantArt, since the project began in April of 2000 and was launched to the public on August 7th. I went back and re-read what I wrote, and wow, speaking of audacious I'm pretty hardcore in this post. I write from my heart sometimes and then I hit post and that's that. So for our official 15th Birthday I wanted to re-share a link to that post:

All Roads Lead to DeviationIn a week it will be April 15th, 2015. Which in my memory is the day fifteen (15) years ago that we embarked on a new project we'd come to call DeviantArt. jark and I agreed for him to wind down projects on the DMusic Network and instead focus his energy on a similar platform for an emerging group of digital artists we were watching closely as fans. Soon after, he found matteo who was working on an education resource for digital artists known as WastedYouth.org and asked him for some perspective on the project. As a high functioning digital artist and photoshop master (I believe he had co-authored a book on photoshop by this time at age 18!) matteo (Matthew Stephens) made many contributions to what became DeviantArt at this critical moment, not the least of which was the NAME 'DeviantArt'! But perhaps more importantly the idea to include all artists on the platform, not just wallpapers and art made for customizing your computer. jark created the ability for us to easily create new

And then today, I wrote this reflection for you as a toast & thanks for all the llamas:  


Happy 15th Birthday DeviantArt! We are evolving, and soon we will be able to share exactly how you can be a part of our transformation, ensuring that the DeviantArt we all love grows stronger in supporting the visual & written arts for 15 more years to come! You will soon see us release many years of effort, repositioning DeviantArt from all we have learned over our 15 years of managing the worlds largest creator community.

Thank you for all of your support over the past 15 years as one of our 36 million members, or as one of our 65 million monthly unique visitors who regularly peruse our galleries.

I was 19 when we began and it is the greatest privilege of my life to serve this great community, alongside the DA Team, (both past and present) that have worked with great passion and care for our mission:

To Entertain, Inspire & Empower the Artist in all of us.

Cheers to the DeviantArt Community of kindred people, who express themselves audaciously, producing magnetic deviations that inspire. Grand parents & teenagers, adults of all ages congregate on DeviantArt to enjoy a universal exchange of culture.

The personal experience of managing DA for 15 years is deeply fulfilling, I could not be more grateful.

With love, admiration and great respect,

-- A



Update: 

I enjoyed this conversation with you guys a whole lot. It gave me an opportunity to say a lot of stuff I've been meaning to. If you stumble into this post from July 2015, it contains a nice snapshot of where the communities politics were at, and what insights I had to provide for members. 

Thank you guys for being civil, and feel free to link people to these answers:

DA and Mobile Traffic - A Direct Response About the DA Website
DA and Mobile Traffic - A Detailed Dive
The Profile Widgets - What can you tell me about their future?
DDs - Updates to come
DDs - What happened to the footer?
Profile Page - When will it be updated?
DeviantArt Shoes - What happened to them?
Tags - What is the priority?
Community Moderation - What is the future?
Questions from a Senior Member
Community Services - What's the deal with the Help Desk?
What is DA's biggest challenge?
Will you marry me? And Hey, what's going on with the mobile app?
Desktop - Changes to come
Literature - Exciting changes!


Original Post: 

Happy Saturday! I'm hanging out at home, so I thought I'd have an open conversation. Post anything, I'll reply. It's about 11:30am, I'll be in front of this thing for two hours before I go to my god daughters 7th birthday party! Yay! 

If you're wondering what we're up to, check out the DeviantArt Timeline ( www.deviantart.com/timeline/ ) -- It might compel you to ask some questions. Or, if there's anything you've been wondering about, ask! 

Here's some food for thought to get you started about the overall state of DeviantArt: 


Our team focuses on two things that matter most to us, the first is our mission to Entertain, Inspire & Empower the Artist in All of Us. We have tackled this notion to the ground, the root sentiment that's marketable, part of our product, and a direct driving force for our team: We are here to nurture your creative nature.

We take this notion and we use it as a lens to drive forward our goals. Our goals are all based off of growth for core active members. This means people like you, if you're here responding. We have millions and millions of "Spectators" on DeviantArt who lurk and check stuff out, they aren't our focus. Our focus is you. The more members, the healthier DeviantArt is.

This is what fuels the projects that go into the timeline. Each timeline post invites a conversation from the community, we absorb the feedback and we directly function against it. Occasionally we get an incredibly confusing mixed bag of feedback, in those cases we refer to data, and sometimes our own intuition to resolve.

This is DeviantArt, Inc. That's what we do.


We're facing some challenges! Most notably, the world is moving to mobile, yet some of you hate mobile. :) At the same time, it's not a joke. DeviantArt two years ago was 12% mobile, it is now 40% mobile. You could do some rough math and learn that we'll be more than 50% mobile in January of 2016, right around the corner. This means our team is investing heavily in building our android and iOS apps, and soon repositioning our mobile web experiences.

Our rebrand last year allowed us to arrive to Our Story - We did this to help us articulate DeviantArt on smaller screens, bigger screens, new platforms, and beyond. We also did this to help absorb more talent into DeviantArt that may or may not be from the community, but to still allow their unique talents to be applied to DA by understanding who we are more easily. This has been very effective, our User Experience and Product teams have permitted us to function the way that I describe above: Completely transparently on all product builds. It's allowed us to institutionalize listening.

We hope you are feeling these constructive effects, but at the same time we're aware that you're facing issues with the platform (Groups, mobile web, message center, and so on) and we're working on each of those. Feel free to ask about specific stuff.

Anyway, ask any questions I'm here to answer for a few hours today!

:spyed: 

update: I'm heading to that event, but I have absolutely loved sharing feedback directly to you all, so please keep the questions coming. I'll get to them another time just don't be upset if it isn't as immediate as it has been the past few hours. :heart: 

In a week it will be April 15th, 2015. Which in my memory is the day fifteen (15) years ago that we embarked on a new project we'd come to call DeviantArt. jark and I agreed for him to wind down projects on the DMusic Network and instead focus his energy on a similar platform for an emerging group of digital artists we were watching closely as fans. Soon after, he found matteo who was working on an education resource for digital artists known as WastedYouth.org and asked him for some perspective on the project. As a high functioning digital artist and photoshop master (I believe he had co-authored a book on photoshop by this time at age 18!) matteo (Matthew Stephens) made many contributions to what became DeviantArt at this critical moment, not the least of which was the NAME 'DeviantArt'! But perhaps more importantly the idea to include all artists on the platform, not just wallpapers and art made for customizing your computer. jark created the ability for us to easily create new categories to facilitate whatever the community wanted us to support. And off we went.

Three months later on July 15th we had our final database build, the one we stuck with. Which is why many O.G.'s at DA joined on "July 15th, 2000". And we launched to the public on August 7th, 2000 so that anybody could sign up and become a "deviant" for free. The rest is history.

In August we will have served our beloved DeviantArt community for fifteen (15) outstanding years. I was 19 years old when we began, and I am 34 years old now. matteo was 18. jark was 29. chris was 17, Heidi was 16. mccann was 24. spot was 20 and joined us at 21 and so on. Incredible to be so young, and to have brought forward a platform that has achieved so much already for millions of artists and art appreciators world wide. Many from that same original group have lived our entire productive lives through the lens of overseeing this great global art community. We're all humbled by this idea, it is a deep honor and a great priviledge. How could we not be humbled? That free sign-up form has been used 35 million times and we've seen well over 300 million 'deviations' posted to our collective community with over 100,000 more each day. Nearly 4 billion comments. But this is nothing compared to the real human stories of the effect of the network, the lives it has impacted, the positivity that it has brought and perhaps even a wholistic change for artists as a unit, bringing forward new opportunties previously unavailable. And that's what it's really all about! 

When I reflect emotionally on the reality of what has happened, it can feel a little sci-fi. I then feel proud, specifically because I believe the world is a little bit better because of DeviantArt. Especially when I reflect on how inaccessable art felt to me as a young person, and how accessible the arts are for young people now. And the last impression I'm left with is an unsettling anxiety, and I know that doesn't seem like where I'd end up but it is true. I'm anxious because the job isn't done, yet the pieces lay before us to be assembled and there's so much more to do. At this point in my emotional reflection I pretty much shut down, squint my eyes, and feel an intensity and I cease to want to think about anything but what will move the needle even more.

The creative class is rising, but the creative class has not risen. When I look toward the future, our collective future ... It's all I want to see before I can give myself permission to rest. Even with a clear picture of how the world should be for creative people, it's remarkable how much inefficiency there is to contend with in bringing about big change. That's the fight, that's the struggle. I read books by people like Tim Ferriss and I think about how to compress 10 years in to 6 months. I'm struggling with that a bit but I enjoy these exercises. ;) 

Heidi, chris, mccann, spot, matteo, jark and all of our founding team members, long time team members and a whole generation of people around our age were fortunate in that we lived in a world that was initially connected through telephone lines, and as we were already teenagers or older we became connected digitally through bare-bones Internet services. We felt excitement and ultimately we felt possession of the Internet each time we'd use it as we felt its potential. And from this formed a responsibility to help craft systems to enable what we felt we wanted to see happen. DeviantArt is just one of those many results that came from a truly loving, optimistic place about people and society and (in our case) Art and Artists.

Every day I work for DeviantArt I have the distinct pleasure of being surrounded and supported by a team of genuinely wonderful people, who happen to have extraordinary skill in their respective fields. People like 4thofficial, makepictures, raincoastchris, randomduck, robinlstrauss, SGonzaleztechgnotic, UltraDad ZevGordoni who lead us, (along with Heidi, chris, mccann whom I've mentioned) and our various directors and managers and team mates who execute dozens of annual projects and perform an outstanding quantity of tasks to bring forward the platform and products that enable DeviantArt to be. Meet Our Whole Team. 

We stand in awe of all of you, and the audacious steps you take in putting yourselves out there in the world to be seen and recognized creatively. In doing so, you are sharpening your perceptions of both reality and your imagination simulteanously. You are training your minds to communicate with people. It all starts small, but as you grow your +Watch lists and your pageviews in this endless game we've all come to play together, you are inspiring others with your ideas and therefore contrubting to the spinning of a wheel of creativity that is spinning faster, and faster, and faster because of you, and this wheel produces the most important intangible element in the human experience: Inspiration. 

Inspiration is the key to the entire notion of progress. And progress is the currency that fuels so much of the good in our lives. 

Your meaning as a community, fellow deviants, is yet to be fully understood by sociology and by history. But fifteen years from now as a full generation has felt your effect it will all be undeniable. Stories like the story of Star Trek have inspired the communicators we each have in our pockets. We were promised hover boards in Back to the Future and we even have those now. We've imagined traveling to Mars in many films and concept pieces, and now we're headed there, too.  The examples are endless. But the root of Inspiration is present in each one. 

You see, your deviations have been inspiring ideas all of these 15 years at a scale that is incomprehensible. Sometimes you know about it, most of the time you probably don't. But as we meet the people behind world famous film studios, tv shows, video game companies, tech companies, and all manner of key contributors to modern society I learn of your impact, over and over, and over again. Deviants of all kinds and in great numbers are inspiring people in ways that only a few designers, artists and mainly writers could do in generations past. The conceptual illustrations that were (sometimes) acceptable enough to society to be published by few names of stature occasionally through book or broadcast, are now vibrantly making their way into our lives at a scale that cannot be compared to any other point in all of human history. 

--
UPDATE: Just after publishing this, I learned that Elon Musk of Tesla Motors, Hyperloop, Paypal, etc. added deviantart to the short list of now 47 accounts he follows on Twitter even though he has nearly 2 million followers after Faving this article about Future Tech that we published featuring DA works. Did he pick up an idea for how a Hyperloop station might look in the process? Hehe he should. ;) 
--

Meanwhile, all of the other platforms that have emerged to interconnect us are helping artists and pretty much all forms of function in the world at the same time. As a result, all of the wheels of society are spinning faster, and faster toward all kinds of progress both good and bad. Sometimes I think to myself, it's a good thing DeviantArt was first! If we jump started an inspiration wheel, perhaps as the future happens and history is told we will have widened the right receptors in society just in time. And I also ponder that perhaps for the first time in history, artists were first to be served by a major advance in technology; the networked world! This single idea facinates me, because it represents the turning of a new leaf. A new chapter in history where perhaps creatives can rise in society to an appropriately respected level, previously inhibited by the impracticality of distributing art and ideas. We've lost too many brilliant deviants at the age of 17 to angry parents who want their children to be doctors and lawyers. This breaks my heart each time I see it happen. Yet I know in my heart how shortsighted those parents are, and how a coming generation might grow up without this stigma around being an artist. 

That's the day we live for here at DeviantArt.

Fifteen years later, I see You every single day as I refresh the NEWEST FEED, which represents to me the purest, rawest, unedited, unfiltered, uncensored (if even for a moment) vantage of the current of creativity that exists in the world, I see the beauty of humanity across all age groups. To have lived nearly most of my life through this lens, and to know that this same lens is available to everybody in the connected world is truly the most meaningful feeling in my entire human experience to date. I just don't know how else to say that.

We're going to see to it that for many years to come, DeviantArt grows, thrives, and persists in being like no other place you've ever seen. Accepting all artists, from anywhere in the Universe, to have a free and open place to be together.

From here, all roads lead to deviation. To differences in the norms that have been accepted, yet remain unacceptable. To DeviantArt itself which is seeing and will continue to see many pending, highly constructive changes. To new platforms we'd like to assist artists in transitioning to, as digital art screens are soon to rise providing the potential for financial and distribution opportuntiies that could sustain artists in ways never seen in 35,000 years. 

For creative people everywhere, this is by far the best time to be alive. The future is bright. The potential is limitless. So if you're wondering what you can do yourself to help move things along, I have a prescription for you that I think will help a great deal. Don't worry, it'll be easy for this lot. But we need your help spreading the message ;) 


A Prescription for Deviousness:


Create. Every. Day. And sincerely encourage those around you to do the same. 

Practice is the finest art. And when your creativity blocks it can be very frustrating. But you don't have to resume what you created yesterday if you can't; Instead, create something new today.  And don't bother over-estimating what creating something is. To view art is creative. To listen to music is creative, too. To stand on a porch and perceive all that is around you can, in itself, improve your ability to perceieve. How closely are you looking? What are you really absorbing with your eyes, your ears, your senses? What is really happening? Is it the same as what you think is happening? Perception is what it is all about in the end for all humans, and art happens to be a perfect practice towards improving your own perceptions and those of others. All art and all creation is about perceiving. This ability lends a path, and when you follow that path to deviousness it leads to the greatest wealth in life.

Don't ever let yourself take that from you by saying things like, "I'm not an artist." Don't let anyone else take that from you by discouraging your art.  

When you reflect on it all the day that you pass... it's the reflect part!

“A mind, once expanded by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions” 
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

We have these new temporary tattoos of the DeviantArt logo :rabbithole: floating about the office, and I either put one on my arm or I draw one on my arm or I draw one somewhere... we even made stamps! And it's a mark that's starting to become a bit of a religion for me. It reminds me to create every day, and I do. Viewing myself as an artist is a newer idea to me, perhaps only 5 years old. Before that, I would say things like, "I'm not much of an artist." or "Nah, our members are too good! I can't compete with them it would be embarrasing!" 

Today I'm embarrased I said stuff like that. I wasn't perceiving things well. I'm actually sorry about it. I hadn't given myself the space I needed to grow creatively, and so I took on daily practice and what's happened to me since is endlessly fulfilling.  The study of light has come in to my life more recently and I'm endlessly passionate about it. With whatever time I have to dedicate. I want to meet you all, and hand you a pen, and say "Draw me a masterpiece" as draweverywhere always asks me to do. The effect is inspiring! 

A toast.

To fifteen more years of Creating Every Day, my friends!

To fifteen more years! 

-- Angelo 

:spyed: 


Questions I have:

1. Why do you create every day?

2. How does DeviantArt help you to create every day?

3. Is there anything you'd like to see me do at DA that would help you? 

I hope you all had a fantastic holiday, and that you've got 2015 off on the right foot. This is pretty important, because in many cases we all have lots to do for school, work, or life, and for many of us this takes us away from our Creative Goals! Unless ART is your profession, chances are you have to find ways to incorporate a more creative lifestyle just like you would a workout routine! We're all trying our best.

Have you made plans to incorporate more creativity into your life in 2015? 

I have. I'm taking more photos and posting them regularly using the new DeviantArt Mobile App, and I'm placing my Wacom Cintiq Companion Hybrid next to the TV so that I can draw while watching mindless television. I will continue (like last year) to sketch and draw whenever I'm traveling on airplanes, or whenever I need to prepare for a logically oriented task. I recommend drawing for 15 minutes before you do your math homework! It really seems to help me before I look at spreadsheets and stuff.

What do you plan to do to lead an even more creative life in 2015?


Meanwhile, a quick photoblog from the break. Viktoria, Bentley, Royce and I Airstreaming through Arizona from California for a couple of weeks beginning December 20th through January 3rd. We planned to drive much farther, but Arizona was so nice we just hung around! We stopped in Sedona, Lake Roosevelt, Apache Lake, Canyon Lake, Lake Havasu, the Salton Sea, Joshua Tree, Phoenix, and even a crazy Hot Springs RV Resort full of nude people. :woah: 

Untitled by spyed
This photo is real, taken at night, no filters, straight from the camera. Joshua Tree, and our Airstream for the week! 
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The pups gettin' some chow in the morning after arriving to Roosevelt Lake. 
Untitled by spyed
Viktoria and I having some fun in Sedona. We'd never been, really pretty place! 
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We fell in love with the Airstream that we rented. Home away from home! And we came back super relaxed..Untitled by spyed
Campfire after campfire, we substituted ghost stories for funny stories and laughed our asses off! This was Xmas Eve.Untitled by spyed
Off-roading in Sedona.
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Hangin' in the Airstream on a day Viktoria had to report to work remotely. :) 
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Bentley (foreground) & Royce rest after running wild through Joshua Tree National Park! 
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I kept the shutter open for a few seconds on this one, so you can see the stars we were seeing! Untitled by spyed
Toying around with a green laser, Bentley, & the 5D MII with an open shutter. Untitled by spyed
Untitled by spyedUntitled by spyed
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I like this the best... where'd it go? Oop, there it is! 
Untitled by spyed
The dam between Roosevelt and Apache lakes in Arizona. 
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Nighttime.
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Daytime.
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And from a distance. Heavenly! 
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Breakfast / Roosevelt Lake.
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Found a junk yard and photo bombed it! Dork! Untitled by spyed
Anyone play Catan? We love it. Bentley does too, which is why he's yawning.....Untitled by spyed
Crossing the real London Bridge in Lake Havasu. It fell down! ... And ended up in Arizona?? This is a job for Wikipedia to explain... 
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"Um, if you want me to get in this car you're gonna have to lift me." - Princess Royce
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Royce wants to play... this could get seriously fun! 
Untitled by spyed
Pontoon boat fishing! We caught friggin' NUTHIN'! haha It was fun tho! 
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Our xmas tree was this chair hammock with solar xmas lights we wrapped it in! :) 
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http---makeagif.com--media-1-12-2015-tdSZ3A (1) by spyed
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Cheers everyone!!
-- Angelo 

Click:  :rabbithole:

 
Share:  :rabbithole: 

Do you guys think we should just use emoji in mobile?

Should we translate emojis to DA equivalent emotes?

Or should we let you do both, even if it means emojis might take over on DA?

Hard questions...

-- A

The Shape of Things to Come

Thu Sep 25, 2014, 6:26 PM


You want change on DeviantArt.  Everyone here has something they would change.  We do listen and, yes, we can’t get everything done. Still, as a community, with any change we change together because we are all here together.  

We found major talent to join the DeviantArt team this year to help us assume responsibility for major change and deliver on it.  In return, we will be calling on the whole community to exercise its responsibility of continuing to shape DeviantArt into the place where the global undercurrent of creativity feeds the future of popular culture.

DeviantArt is as binary as it is digital in its platform.  We serve equally those who produce art as those who need to see art and engage with it.  Creating the undercurrent is a function of tools as much as it is a function of community activity.  Getting these two to work in unison has always been the secret sauce of DeviantArt  and every recipe for the sauce begins with the community.

This is the shape of things to come.

New Mobile App!


They wanted me to say “new” Mobile App but really it’s not new, it’s the “amazing” Mobile App! As you all know it will be our very, very first official DeviantArt Mobile App. You’ll be able to access the entire community from your mobile devices. You’ll be able to submit art as you see it. You’ll be able to connect and browse endlessly. It’s a whole new way to experience DeviantArt.  It will turn the undercurrent towards a massive flood of creativity. When?  You won’t have to wait long.

New Site Features


There are several new site features that are all designed to liberate creative expression and advance this community:

Collections:
Art curators are the unsung heroes of DeviantArt. Collections display breathtaking, thought-provoking, emotional and brilliant galleries gathered from, and then dedicated to, the community.  You’ll get to watch Collections as they happen! Collections will be given a bigger role on the site with increased visibility, new discovery tools, and a showcase to highlight the best of the best.

The Today Page:
This is where you will want to have your morning coffee. Every day, the Today page editorial team will draw from and reflect back to the community a vibrant combination of news, features, curations and conversations about this community and its impact, pulsing into the undercurrent as the heartbeat of DeviantArt. When DeviantArt first launched and for years later it had a news section.  The Today page brings that back to an audience that has grown immeasurably in size influence and interests.  The scope is immense.

Activity Feeds:
As we designed for Mobile we understood we needed something more streamlined and direct to carry the flow of what you want to watch. The Activity Feed, already with our beta testers, is a real-time sequential delivery of every Journal, deviation, Collection, Status Update, Poll, Forum thread and Critique posted by your watchlist. From the Activity Feed you can comment or you can post new Status Updates. Keep in mind, we love the robust tools in the Message Center and it's not going away.  

Status Updates:
We’ve now added the ability to post short Status Updates to your profile or to the Activity Feed as an alternative to using Journals. It’s another push from our designs for Mobile. The simple and direct format of a Status Update lets you create informal conversations with your watchers; something Deviants have needed and requested for a long time.  Use these to share how you’re feeling, what you think about, what you’re working on, or to link your watchers to the work of an artist you love. On the Mobile App you’ll be able to use them on the go. Our new Tags will also work in Status Updates.

New Site Navigation:
New navigation will make it easier to jump in and explore the full range of DeviantArt. Everything related to Your Account will be grouped together on the right side of the page. Undiscovered, What’s Hot, Activity Feed and Today will be separated from Browse and Search to highlight and more clearly reflect their functions. The Browse bar will scroll down the page with you  a kind of obvious convenience we will try to focus on across the board as we introduce fresh design. This is the kind of change that does require time to get used to. My bet is in seven days you’ll be fine.

Tags:
We’ve already launched the beginnings of Tags on DeviantArt.  Tags let you group deviations, Journals, Status Updates, and comments by subject instead of category and will let you add them to other subject groupings. All content with the same Tags are grouped onto Tag pages that let you follow the full activity of the community on a given subject.  We’ve missed a way to connect the DeviantArt community with trending events. When you dip into the undercurrent, Tags are a way to do it with passengers.  

Daily Deviations:
We are giving new prominence to Daily Deviations lifting them up off of the footer. It’s amazing work from every corner of the community and it belongs up-front and center! In the Mobile App they will be available as a separate browse category and the same change will be made on the website in the new Header as a part of the new site navigation.  

A Fresher Look and Feel


All of these changes, particularly Mobile, made us re-examine the way the site looks and feels. As we design these new features and functions, the look on the site will be cleaner and simplified.

In early feedback we have heard concerns that DeviantArt will look like Facebook or Twitter or Tumblr. That’s not our shape to come.  Mobile is here, and we have to be ready to function within that platform and its conventions. We will start pushing Mobile to do things just like we pushed the Web. On our way, it may look like we are conforming to others; but, DeviantArt will always be devious.

We went through a deep process of re-examination and definition over the past months.  Some of that came out in the Celebrate DeviantArt's 14th Birthday Journal. Now you will actually begin to see a re-imagined us.

It’s time for change, both actual and symbolic.  We intend to seize this time together. We will in fact: