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Thread: Traditional Media in the Digital Era

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
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    Maryland, US
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    239

    Traditional Media in the Digital Era

    Several weeks ago I had a conversation with a friend of mine which I thought was rather interesting and perhaps others here might find it useful as well. We were discussing the value of traditional techniques in the face of digital media, in which a good question came up as to why use traditional techniques if a digital technique is faster. I thought about this for quite some time before replying.

    I spent the last few years learning every technique digital or traditional that I could to try and improve my craft to new heights. Trying everything from 'photobashing' to hatching and everything in between, and as I learned and grew I found certain techniques that were extremely fast and got results that were often well received amongst viewers but left me feeling much less fulfilled. So in part my answers were and are based around my feelings to some degree, but I also noticed that while well received the results a I was getting were beginning to not look like my work at all. This is to say using certain techniques whether digital or traditional will often have an effect of drawing upon the memories people have in regards to a certain technique.

    People often see a specific kind of style associated with a kind of technique, so loose scumbling might get a look one might associate with expressionism, while line work might often be thought of as comic book or graphic stylings. It is in this line of thinking that I suddenly realized some benefit to traditional techniques, the look is one that is familiar and in this familiarity much value can be harnessed. This meant quite a bit to me and has resonated within my mind since as I pick carefully what I am doing and why in various areas.

    So I gave my friend my reasons, that it harkened to the memories of times since past, and felt more satisfying to do as a whole. More than either of those though, I found that by slowing down I was achieving results faster and more accurately, working smarter and not harder, and achieving the results I wanted without sacrificing the things I valued. In this age of digital techniques, fast results, and quick easy tricks, sometimes slowing down can actually improve your work more than anything.

    Now I strive when possible to mix my colors by hand, because my doing so I understand better the relationship between my colors better, more thoroughly than I ever did just by pulling a little dot around on a ready made color scale or picker. I have found the power in being able to load a brush by hand, the uses of bristles spring or lack there of, and a huge variety of things that I can't have in digital, and now I understand what was missing. It wasn't in the medium I was working in or on, but instead in the understanding of why I was doing it.

    With that said, I think traditional techniques are important and valuable beyond compare. But. . .

    What do you think, traditional techniques useful or just an inefficient use of time?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Concord, California
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    6,836
    Hi Delofasht,

    There are a number of threads with wonderful and lively exchanges amongst forum members covering thrusts in your post. You might enjoy some of the exchange in these two threads, for example.

    http://forums.artrage.com/showthread...-art&highlight

    http://forums.artrage.com/showthread...-art&highlight

    I recall there were a couple of others that also explored this a lot, but couldn't find them quickly. It's a terrific topic.
    Last edited by byroncallas; 05-02-2015 at 04:43 AM.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Maryland, US
    Posts
    239
    Thanks for the links, they are indeed chock full of awesome information and opinions. I'm enjoying all the reading quite a bit.

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