I just want to take a break from site building to welcome any visitors to the site.As of now there is an open board for original art and the forums are also about 80% done.My goals right now are a lot of opinion gathering and promotion more than anything.A lot of things like the paintchat and any contests probably won’t start until late December or January because I want to focus on the forums and setting the boards up until there are enough people to do other events.There are also a lot of staff openings and ways to support the site right now so if you like the site and the ideas behind it please consider supporting the project.
As far as how this whole process has been setting up the site to this point it’s been very different for me.It’s been frustrating because of server issues and using a lot of web design techniques and services I’ve never used but it’s been really rewarding seeing the oekaki board I’ve always wanted to set up actually done.When I was initially turned down for a board at Oekaki Art I had started the idea of setting up a board but then I really just joined a bunch of other boards to fill the void.When Oekaki Art shut down I think I just really decided it was as good a time as any to really go through with setting the board up.Initially it was going to be a simple board but then I thought about all the things that annoyed me when I was on OA.I feel like oekaki should be fun but I also see it from an artist’s point of view so I knew I wanted this site to be more ideal for digital artists and not just casual oekaki users.
Most of my frustrations centered around the fact that very few boards I joined or viewed pushed constructive criticism.To me being able to properly analyze a picture when I look at it is very important.It helps me as an artist to think critically and pick apart what’s in front of me whether it’s my work or someone else’s.I feel that it’s essential for all artists to be able to critique and be critiqued whether your palette is digital or on paper.
It also greatly bothered me that a lot of oekaki boards have testing.You have to basically be filed to a certain board based on skill and classified as advanced,beginner,or whatever the owners deem as good art.To me art is something that should be an issue of seriousness.You’re either serious about your art and doing something with it or not.Quality is a very subjective issue in art but I’d like to think if someone took time and put in sufficient effort that their best is good enough and they shouldn’t be classified as a certain skill level.
Finally it bothered me how much spam was being allowed onto boards.There were people posting doodles and scribbles that were pushing off beautiful pieces of real art.While there are two boards that are at a less serious level here I don’t believe it’s okay to spam boards or waste people’s time posting a squiggle or stick figure.A discerning eye can easily see when someone put little to no effort into a piece of art.This is why the main claims of this site are more feedback,less spam,and no testing.
Once I combined my original issues with typical oekaki boards and added some other ideas HaevenArts was born.The ideal finished product will be multilevel oekaki boards where people can learn and grow as artists and be surrounded by art in the same category as theirs to get the most helpful feedback.HaevenArts will not only provide an oekaki service but forums that educate and provide a true sense of community between artists and conditions that can help them aspire to their artistic goals.Currently planned is a general board for all styles of original art,a fanart board,a mature board for all styles of general art,and for users who are less interested in the full experience a lite board for fanart and original art and a color-in board. In the future if bandwidth permits I would like to add some specialty boards as well for specific art types.
At this point I’m so thankful for the people who have hopped along for the ride.Thank you to anyone who has given me feedback thus far and also to my founding staffers who agreed to help out.If you haven’t please take a look around the site.Bookmark it and come back again hopefully as there will be more boards added as well as some other things like a paintchat,newsletter,e-card service,and webring.My hope is that I’ll get people coming in soon that have the same desire to get more out of their art.
Please tell a friend or promote the site if you can.Any support for this project is welcome and appreciated.I’ll be building the site as fast as possible.I have a long way to go as far as how I really want the site to be service and member wise but I’m hoping I can draw in people really interested in a serious artists’ community and the site will take off.