Hello everyone! Before you read, please keep in mind that my intentions are not to blame, insult, criticize, or say anything harmful about anyone! The intentions of this feature if anything, is to motivate us all in improving the group system and dA as a whole! ALSO this is focused more largely on photography, digital art, and a few other mediums, but I don't claim to speak for the cases of other mediums and types of groups that I am not familiar with.EDIT: To make things clear, I don't believe dA or Groups will ever be "dead" in the sense of them not existing anymore, or members in both factions not existing either, I'm using "Death" more metaphorically perhaps, in saying that the way the group system is intended to be working, has been failing, and needs improving in order to not fail its purpose, and that dA needs to do something to strengthen the community sense and interactions between members both in groups and in the dA community overall, and also render it more important to focus on unknown artists and give them a better chance by avoiding being or becoming a sort of elitist art community.
This feature is about addressing the issue of dA Groups slowly but surely becoming dead, I think we've all noticed that the Groups that were our favorites and go-to art collectors in 2011 have almost all vanished into thin air, or pretend to be alive only to let your work expire without a word
. So is the Group system doomed? Is dA doomed? It sometimes seems that there's a lack of variety, that everything we see on dA is almost a copy of something else, over and over again. Are we lacking new talented artists? All we see are the popular famous ones on the front page, gaining popularity as always (not that this is necessarily bad), but what about the underdogs, the unknown artists who are often just as talented if not more, than those in the spotlight? Well...that was the point of groups in my opinion. With groups everyone had a chance to be "seen", however less and less groups are focusing on showcasing unknown artists, groups don't interact with each other, contests and competitions are becoming less common, therefore in a lot of cases groups are just submitting a bunch of work which leaves us all alienated and distanced from each other because nobody seems to be communicating whether it be in groups or on dA in general.
Groups can serve all sorts of different purposes, from creating a platform to share general interests and ideas, to collecting artwork, to creating an outlet, or aiming at giving feedback and critiques to members, or showcasing solely elite photography or accepting all works and discriminating no one. Now all Groups may intend to serve a purpose, but lately it seems that it's just become a fuster-cluck of randomness, and if your prior favorite Group isn't dead, it seems to be either slowly sinking or accepting way too many deviations (this excludes more "dA community" centered groups I think and is guided more towards photography or art collection groups).
Groups have become increasingly important and popular on dA, however the way they run seems to have changed. There is a lack of interactivity, of "solidarity" or camaraderie, of friendship perhaps. Everyone seems disconnected, which renders Groups fairly week
. Now I'm not saying that all dA groups have died out, that would be ridiculous, there are still hundreds of groups accepting artwork and running smoothly, however, I think nobody can deny that some of the best groups we used to have on dA have died, which is leading to people constantly commenting on these groups pages saying "is this group dead?" "submissions expired...." "is anyone here"
So, once again what's the point of this feature?
To let everyone know which groups are still out there, alive and well, and promote the work that they have been submitting!
I don't want to call out other groups by listing which ones are now dead, that would just be rude, but maybe the founders of those groups will see this and want to get cracking again! I hope that nobody will take this personally, also I will probably forget or miss several groups simply because I'm more geared towards photography.Young Photo ClubRecently revived by myself, a group for young photographers up to age 25 and their work. Trying to promote a platform where you can learn and improve your skills, while however remaining selective in what is accepted into the group. Similar groups that are still active:
CreationariumA group for all types of art, still fully alive and active, accepting in some great works and promoting many unknown artists! A great group when it comes to variety, and promoting both professional and amateur artists. Similar groups that are still active: Captured BeautiesAnother group accepting most medias that you can count on to fill your inbox with some cool artwork! The group even does Daily Favorite journals to further promote their artists. I'd recommend joining this group if you'd like to see artwork that you'd probably miss by browsing the front page or most other groups. I'd say they also accept a wide range of works from very amateur to very professional. Similar groups that are still active: Death ChicksDeath-Chicks is one of the few "old" dA groups that you can still count on, I still receive many deviations in my message center from them, and enjoy submitting to them from time to time. They are more specific to alternative, pin-up, glamour, nude, fetish type shots or simply portraits of women in general that should usually have a kick of originality and uniqueness to them. As their subtitle says, the group is for "Alternative Photography" and is run by the talented and amazing DistortedSmile. They regularly post art features and promote dA groups along with the Daily Deviation system and overall involvement from members in regards to Art and the dA community, so check them out. Deviant DollsAnother "surviving" group that has been one of my favorites for a long time, and in which I've been an admin. DeviantDolls is similar to Death-Chicks but a bit less picky when it comes to their submissions, therefore accepting a wider variety of female centered art often from more amateur-type artists. A great group that I was glad to see hasn't become dead. Most medias are accepted, therefore showcasing a wide range of art. Clash of the TitansClash of the Titans is fully alive in regards to submissions coming in and being accepted quickly, it serves its purpose of showcasing all sorts of artwork from dA. It claims as its goal to only accept quality work, and therefore be a bit more elitist than other groups. It's a group you should follow if you enjoy receiving hundreds of deviations per day in your message center, because they definitely have something new for you every day. I'd say that the standards are correct, not too high, not too low. Similar groups that are still active: Majestic MasterpiecesThis is a bit of self promotion. I just created this group about two days ago, I created it to try and fill the void that many abandoned groups have left. Majestic Masterpieces is intended to be a fairly elitist group to showcase the best photography of dA, however the "best" can also be from unknown or new artists, so I'm going to try and showcase them as much as possible. As you can see since we just started we don't have a lot of Deviations, so feel encouraged to join and submit!
Groups I didn't include that I would still consider active:
and many others! (The list could go on for a while
Groups that I think are great, and need more attention so that we can avoid seeing them become dead like many others:
As I said, I won't list the groups deemed "dead" out of politeness.So guys, let's try to revive the Group community, do more than just click through deviations, interact and try to really make a difference for our community here! I've been trying to contact some of the "dead" groups to revive them, just today we were able to do that with we-are-innocents and hopefully other groups will want the same thing!