Smogon is always in need of artists who are willing to lend a hand and volunteer artwork. The art badge recognizes site contributors who have volunteered their time and effort in creating quality artwork for the site. For ages, this badge has been shrouded in mystery and spoken of only in lore. Never before has there been a definitive guide or public set of parameters towards achieving this legendary postbit bling, but that ends today. I present: A Guide to Self-Masochism A Guide to Contributing Art to Smogon. Part I: If you are a new artist Maybe you are new to art, new to the site, or new to the internet. Maybe you're unsure if your artistic skills are up to par. Or maybe you just want to share artwork you've made elsewhere. Here's some things you can do to participate in the forum and get a feel for things. You cannot get a badge for doing these, but they will allow you to get acquainted with the forum. 1. Read the rules. Right now, you can't. We switched forum software and "announcements" no longer exist. I will write a synopsis of the forum rules shortly and edit them into this post. A link to them will appear right here. 2. Consider Posting an Art Thread As long as you've got a minimum of three original pieces of artwork, you can post an art thread. From there on, as long as you post meaningful updates, you can pretty much post in your own thread as much as you want, whenever you want. Art threads are a good way to get feedback from other artists, especially if you ask for serious critique. You can also get feedback from artists by asking in #smeargle, Smogon's art channel on IRC. Read this guide (with links on the left) for details about smogon's IRC community. 3. Consider Reading Some Tutorials Smeargle's studio has a tutorial thread that contains tutorials made by our own artists. These can be useful resources if you're looking for advice to improve, or just want to see how some of our artists have done stuff. Part II: If you have artistic experience Ok. You've got artistic chops, and you're ready to contribute to the site and earn a badge. Here's how you do that! 1) The Smog The Smog is smogon's very own e-zine that publishes out competitive pokemon articles on a monthly/bimonthly interval. The Smog is always looking for art help. Knowledge of competitive pokemon is helpful, but not necessary. The Smog is not, however, a free-for-all. You need to audition a small portfolio in the smog's article approval sub-forum before you'll get the greenlight to illustrate for the magazine. Read about how to make an application here. When you are ready, post your application in this forum. For questions regarding art for the Smog, please post in this thread, or contact @Bummer or @Birkal Contribute a sufficient quantity (and quality) of artwork to the smog, and you'll be rewarded with an art badge! 2) Artwork for Tournaments Create artwork for Smogon's tournaments in This thread. Assignments and details about this project are listed in the thread. Knowledge of competitive pokemon is helpful, but not necessary. For questions regarding Artwork for tournaments, please contact me. My name is @Zracknel. Contribute a sufficient quantity (and quality) of artwork for smogon's tournaments, and you'll be rewarded with an art badge! 3) Art for Articles Smogon has a number of competitive pokemon articles displayed on-site. You can read them here. To contribute artwork for articles, please check this thread out. It's a pretty lax thread, and usually artists post finished pieces or works-in-progress in the thread. For questions regarding Art for Articles, please post in the thread (linked above) or contact @macle. Contribute a sufficient quantity (and quality) of artwork for smogon's articles, and you'll be rewarded with an art badge! 4) Choose your destiny Smogon's metagame forums have a ton of discussion threads. Some of them--especially ongoing or important discussions-- can greatly benefit from having artwork. If you read a thread for a project or important, ongoing discussion that you think is awesome and you want to do artwork for it, contact the thread owner for approval. If you've done several quality pieces for ongoing or important discussions that have been approved, please contact me and let me know. My name is @Zracknel. Perusing the forums in a more general sense, you might come across something that you think could benefit from some artwork. I say: do it. When you've done it, let me know. Lastly, you might want to start a community-wide awesome art project. You might figure out a new way Smogon can benefit from artwork. Do it. Sometimes it's good to operate through the proper channels and ask the right people for permission for things. Other times, it's better to seize initiative and make Smogon a better place without asking. Part III: Cool stuff that is cool that you cannot get an art badge from (but is cool) 1) The CAP project Smogon has a community-wide Create-A-Pokemon project in which competitive pokemon are made through a large-scale, community effort. Artwork is a part of that process. If you'd like to participate, read The CAP Mission Statement, then visit the CAP forum and read the stickied threads there. 2) The Monthly Art Contest Smeargle's studio's very own monthly art contest. Check it out here. 3) Other community projects You might see these around! Browse smeargle's studio and keep an eye peeled for community projects. These are usually great fun to participate in :) Part IV: The Questioning Questions about art badges? Comments? Concerns? Post 'em in this here thread! Or ask any of our studio moderation staff: @RitterCat @elcheeso @Zracknel Thanks for reading!