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Sometimes, all it takes is one comment from the wrong person to poo on your day, right after you've gotten up in the morning.  Very often, this is the case when someone with less-than-honorable intentions decides to comment on some little aspect of a *finished* piece.  "OH, that vein on the bicep would do *this*, not *that*" or "your cloth looks like it's made of X material, when in reality it would be Y".  *SIGH*  facepalm.

While people are free to make such comments, they most certainly are not welcome. Nitpicking is a bad habit, and not becoming of the professional artist.  I have found that many folks who do this do *not* work professionally; and, to the contrary, have problems finding jobs.  I'm FAR from the best sculptor out there...and I mean FAR...FAR FAR....FAR! However, I've been blessed with being able to find the right job when I need it, and stay gainfully employed.  Why is that?  I believe it's due to being under the tutelage of those greater than myself, and asking why they had and kept jobs.  They never nit picked others' work, they always gave constructive criticism on the big things and never on the small  things unless prompted, and they never had much of an ego.  

When I first got out of college, I had a hell of a time finding work.  After my first job, that got a lot easier, and hopefully it remains that way and increasingly so! However, back then, when I was jobless, I started looking for excuses and came to one conclusion....it was *my* fault. I could easily point the finger at crony-ism, racism, and other forms of bias. True or not, it didn't matter.  I had to look at those who were successful in finding work and say "I need to learn that."  You can be an excellent sculptor in ZBrush, but do you know Maya, Max, Magics, Meshlab, Paraform, 3d printing software, traditional keying techniques, print tolerances, or basic math?  See where I'm heading? If you don't have work, you are *not* the best undiscovered talent! As an artist, and *especially* a digital one, you must have a broad knowledge base.  Why would anyone hire a great digital sculptor if you're always having to go and repair their meshes for a week or more afterwards, before even going to print prep?  Furthermore, why would I hire the same person with a chip on their shoulder and an over-inflated view of their own work?  If you're getting hot under the collar at reading this, or have some feelings of resentment and desire to argue with me about it, chances are *you* are one of these people....GET OVER IT.

Two things I'll leave you with, the first is a two-fer.

1) The first great professor I ever had, Tan Tascioglu, found me in the labs at midnight my first year/first computer course at SCAD after I had his first class earlier that day.  He came up to me and said one thing and walked off "This is why you will kick others' asses."  The man was always professional, but his bluntness was refreshing.  Believe it or not, it only takes marginal talent with massive investment to be successful...and a good attitude.

The second great professor I had was Joe Pasquale.  He was an old school guy who worked on Tron in addition to being there for the foundations of 3d in film.  One day in class he threw this gem out there:  "I'd rather work with a guy with average talent, an ability to learn, and is the type of guy/gal I'd like to have a drink with after work than work with the greatest artist who is an a**hole."  Indeed.

2)  In order to be true to "stealing" something referred to in my title, I present a commentary from my close friend, master sculptor (does circles around me, easy peazy), and general good guy, Tim Miller. He explains why he does not welcome critiques on his work any longer....I'll clue you in...it's not because *he* is the one being a jerk.


"I frequently get asked why I discourage critiques of my work.

All of my work represented here on dA is commercial. For each piece, I work closely with design teams, art directors, and licensors, and each piece I do is run through a gauntlet of critiques. I sculpt things the way my clients want them sculpted. The last thing I really need to hear when I post something to a site like dA is 'It would be better if only you would...' It's not my decision to make it better. Also, and I don't mean to insult most of you, the critiques and recommendations given here usually aren't coming from working artists. Working artists already understand all of this, and they know that the piece has already been through the aforementioned gauntlet.

I frequently read comments which protest that I could still learn something from blah blah blah. At the risk of sounding rude or arrogant, save it. I've been sculpting professionally for the past 14 years. That's sculpting for the special effects industry, film set production, and collectibles. I currently work with the top art directors in the collectibles industry. If they've not caught a 'mistake' in my work, don't think you have. Sorry, go feel validated somewhere else.

Perhaps its the wine that makes me sound harsh, but it's probably not. It's probably that I'm just tired of some inexperienced, puffed up 'artist' telling me that the legs I sculpt are too long. Well, the guy that signed the check wanted them that way, and I might think they look cool that way too.

In short, remember what your mama taught you, 'If you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all'."


Thanks, Tim.  I stole this without your knowledge this morning....I'll tell you later.  Always better to ask for forgiveness than permission, no? lol!



Have a great day, ya'll! :)
  • Listening to: Pandora
  • Reading: PA
  • Watching: tax forms
  • Playing: catch up...Always catch up
  • Eating: my tongue
  • Drinking: sweet tea
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:iconmorganagod:
morganagod Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
Very cool indeed. Nitpickers are the worst. I'm no professional, certainly the portfolio reviews I've had say as much. So I never feel like I'm coming from anyplace of authority when I ignore or rebuke nitpicks. As a fledgling artist, I find that those nitpickers have begun to, in a way, direct my work. I make things a certain way, do things a certain way, even my subject matter is chosen all so I "don't have to hear it." That doesn't seem like the best way to grow. So journals like yours and Tim's really help me move forward.

"1) The first great professor I ever had, Tan Tascioglu, found me in the labs at midnight my first year/first computer course at SCAD after I had his first class earlier that day. He came up to me and said one thing and walked off "This is why you will kick others' asses." The man was always professional, but his bluntness was refreshing. Believe it or not, it only takes marginal talent with massive investment to be successful...and a good attitude."

I hope this is true. I really hope this is true. I'm in college right now (nothing so prestigious as SCAD, mostly because I can't afford it... that's my excuse at least), and just starting to really learn digital sculpting. Unfortunately, our computer lab has hours, so I can't be there till midnight, but they keep having to kick me out at the end of the day.

"I'd rather work with a guy with average talent, an ability to learn, and is the type of guy/gal I'd like to have a drink with after work than work with the greatest artist who is an a**hole."

This one I worry about... ha ha.
Reply
:iconhellspawn77:
Hellspawn77 Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2011
TOTTALY AGREE!

You and Tim are both incredible artists to say the least!

You guys rock!

Cheers!
Reply
:icontkmillersculpt:
TKMillerSculpt Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2011  Professional Artist
Steal away! I may talk a lot, but few things I say are actually noteworthy.
Reply
:icontimtownsend:
TimTownsend Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2011  Professional General Artist
Ok, so it WAS you. :)
Reply
:icontimtownsend:
TimTownsend Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2011  Professional General Artist
Im not sure if the Tim youre thanking is me or TK Miller but Im going to assume its me since this is a lot like a journal I wrote many moons ago. And, if not, I agree with everything youre saying here, to the letter. :)
Reply
:icondarkeye-1:
darkeye-1 Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011
great article ! i always respond positively to everything i see. i would never crit a Pro cos thats just dumb. like Tony said, you can please some people sometimes but not everyone all the time......
i have you on watch and faves like tim Miller too. you got nought to answer. Silence in the face of ignorance is the greatest Dignity.

atb --- tim :)
Reply
:icontoolkitten:
ToolKitten Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011  Professional General Artist
OH Tim, I think I love you lol

but yeah, I loved reading this journal. sometimes it feels great to get validation that you're not the only one who has such opinions. Thanks for posting it :)
Reply
:icontkmillersculpt:
TKMillerSculpt Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2011  Professional Artist
Thanks Nei! ;)
Reply
:icontoolkitten:
ToolKitten Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2011  Professional General Artist
haha np
Reply
:icontaraakian:
Taraakian Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Don't feed the trolls. They will just come back for some more. Ignore them and they will turn to stone though.

That said, Im not sure how anyone other than the utmost proffesional would feel like they have the authority to critisize your work. I suppose you could say that arrogance is not in short supply. If I really wanted to I could probably look around and find something to critique, but I certainly dont have the credentials to do so. Im a digital painter, not a sculptor. I wont even critique others in my own field who clearly have more experience than I do.

By the way, your X-23 vs Lady Deathstrike piece looks great on my desk. It usually draws the most ooos and awes, even over my Ringwraith and X-Force statues.
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:iconjonriggle:
JonRiggle Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011  Professional General Artist
The whole time I was reading this I was expecting to read "And this douchewaffle has stated that I 'stole' this work, or this image, or this detail." LOL You and Tim, albeit I'm not in your profession, but I do look up to you guys for various reasons. Your work is both inspiring and educational for me.

Eventually, I pray, that once my stuff that I want to do comes out, I will trigger some sort of interest in playing with said characters and possibly doing something that will pose a great investment for all parties involved. Many times I sit and wish I could do what you guys do. I can sculpt but it turns into an abstract design *damn my college art professors* lol. Seriously though I look at both yours and Tim's work and see reasons to learn something, not knock it down. Wish more people were like that.

You guys both deserve props for where you are, not insults or the like. Although there's the freedom of speech and people can knock work or people if they want, you'd pray that logic and human decency would prevail and they'd just give props and admire the work and strive to get to that level that both of you have achieved.
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:iconalfredparedes:
AlfredParedes Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011  Professional Traditional Artist
I guess it's because I haven't reached the level of success that you and Tim and so many others have, but I've been lucky not to have comments like this thrown my way. I'm also lucky in the fact that when they do start coming my way (which I know will only increase as more of my work reaches the main stream audiences), I've developed quite the thick skin from many years of critique and criticism through my fine art sculpture. My ability to be offended has been diminished to an almost non-existant particle. I say almost because there's always something that can eventually find it's way into my brain and I end up letting myself get offended. It sucks that people can't see the positive in what we do, and that there are so many out there who only want to tear others down. But ultimately, the fact that you continue to find success in your career means that there are a greater number of people out there buying the things that you make and keeping you busy with new work. Don't get discouraged by the haters. Remember it's always our choice whether to be offended by a comment or not. Save yourself the aggravation and choose happiness.

Keep on creating,

Alfred
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:iconpoboyross:
poboyross Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
Alfred, you're a far better artist than I am, honestly. Start sculpting some of the more realistically designed superheroes, and you'll get work in no time!

That out of the way, the thing that got me about his fellah wasn't what he said, it was who he IS coupled with what he said. The guy got caught red-handed fibbing about his renders being actual 3d outputs. Those of us who do this all the time knew it right off the bat, though. I found the comment ironic to the point of redonkulousness.
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:iconalfredparedes:
AlfredParedes Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2011  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks man. Well there's really no excuse for lying about your work. Especially not if you're just gonna turn around and talk shit about others. Oh well... Some people are just Douche-nozzles!!
Reply
:iconmasocha:
masocha Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011
Amen! exactly what I needed to read. thank you much, glad I have you on my watch
Reply
:iconspanglerart:
Spanglerart Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Doesn't matter what you do, how you do it or how many times you redo it. there will always be some troll ready and more than willing to slam your work.
Some people are not happy unless they are bringing others down.
Reply
:iconpoboyross:
poboyross Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
True indeed! It grows out of a number of places, the foremost two that come to mind are jealousy of success (you have a job and they do not) and a need from their "id" to feel superior in some sense. They don't have the ability to overcome their own humanity, through free will, to not be a butthole! lol :)
Reply
:iconspanglerart:
Spanglerart Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Their limited to what they can learn about social interaction while living in their Moms basement at 35 years of age.
And no...I dont mean that in jest....
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