1. Welcome to Smeargle's Studio! Please be sure to review the studio rules. Feel also free to check out our hub to learn more about this place!
  2. Want real-time art feedback? Come chat with us in the studio's IRC channel! Log onto #smeargle on SynIRC, or click this link to visit us via mibbit! You can also check out the Art Room on Pokemon Showdown, or our channel on Discord!
  3. The moderators of this forum are Bummer, RitterCat, and Tikitik.
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Sticky Smeargle's Studio Directory and General Info

Discussion in 'Smeargle's Studio' started by Alchemator, Aug 7, 2012.

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  1. Alchemator

    Alchemator my god if you don't have an iced tea for me when i
    is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

    Feb 7, 2009
    Welcome to the directory of Smeargle's Studio! If you're new to this part of Smogon and wants to learn what this forum has to offer, then check out the links below! If you have any questions, feel free to ask elcheeso, RitterCat, Layell or Bummer who moderate this forum. Moreover, if you'd like to chat with members of this community, there's always our IRC channel #smeargle (here's a direct link) or the Art Room on Pokemon Showdown!

    General Info
    These threads and posts were created to provide information about the studio and what possibilities are open for both new and seasoned artists, as well as some threads dedicated to various activities.

    Smeargle's Studio Rules - Everyone who's planning on participating in this forum would do well to read these rules, can save you a lot of early trouble.

    A Guide to Smogon for Artists - Smogon can feel intimidating for any artist arriving at its shores, so this post provides some advice and tips on how to get started. Questions on how and where to contribute are also answered in this thread, along with a quick rundown about what the Artist Badge stands for!

    Info about Approved Artists - There are various areas on Smogon where everyone involved are required to have proven themselves to create quality work, and that includes artists. What does this title entail? Follow the link and find out!

    Wanna get to know the community? Maybe try your hands at contributing art? Then this section is for you!

    Monthly Art Contest (MAC) - An art contest held each month (give or take one month), where anyone is free to participate. Think you've got what it takes to rise above the other submissions and put your own spin on the current theme? Then go on right ahead!

    Battle, Free For All! - Draw a Pokemon of your choice 'defeating' the former entry in any manner you see fit. No artistic talent or superb wit required, just have fun and be creative!

    Smeargle's Studio General Thread - Are you an aspiring pixel artist? Can you make the coolest banners around? This is the place for you! It's also the place where you can request sprite fusions and banners, and talk about pretty much anything art-related. Note that threads containing sprites and banners will be locked: post them here!

    Smeargle's Studio Writing Thread - A legacy left behind by user: Alchemator, the Studio's writing thread is suitable for all forms of fiction, nonfiction, prose, and poetry. Share your written works and give feedback to others!

    Artwork for Tournaments - People hosting various tournaments around the forum come here to ask the community for banners. They describe what the tournament is about and what they'd like to see in the banner or logo, and it's up to anyone else to realise their ideas.

    The Studio Workshop - A thread dedicated to creating images and banners for various discussion threads across the Smogon forums or similar locations. Much like the above thread, Artwork for Tournaments, people write requests that are featured in the first post, and then it's up to any artist to attempt doing it justice.

    These threads provide a bit more in-depth advice, as well as providing a venue for artists to ask for advice or encourage users to give specific feedback.

    Professor Smeargle - How does that artist choose her colours? How does that guy get his lines so smooth? Professor Smeargle is a collection of tutorials by Smogon's leading artists, who have graciously decided to share their techniques. Feel free to add your own tips and tricks.

    Rate My Art (RMA) - Even though any artist is free to open up their own thread here in the studio, some may still feel that could use some extra critique. In this thread, artists who submit some of their work to the thread leader can then have their work evaluated more closely by the community, as well as some of our more seasoned artists.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 6, 2015
  2. Zracknel

    is an Artist Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnus

    Jan 24, 2006
    Smogon is always in need of artists who are willing to lend a hand and volunteer artwork. Make no mistake about it. However, Smogon can also be a pretty big place, and many artists also aren't that involved in competitive battles. If you feel that way, don't worry, we're mostly a friendly bunch, and the fact that you're reading this means you have arrived at Smogon's very own artist studio!

    In order to give you some ideas about what new users can do and what places either promotes or demands art, please continue reading!

    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.nYou cannot get a badge for doing these, but they will allow you to get acquainted with the forum.

    1. Read the rules. Check 'em out, they're right here. Most of the rules are there to keep the forum organised and to make our moderators' jobs easier, but continuously breaking some rules can result in infractions. Plagiarism in particular is a serious offense in this forum and will not be taken lightly, but overall, we're a pretty chill place.

    2. Consider Posting an Art Thread. As long as you've got a minimum of three original pieces of artwork, you can post your own 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.

    3. Chat with our community. You can get feedback from artists by asking in #smeargle, Smogon's art channel on IRC, or you can talk about whatever you want if there's no current discussion. Read this guide (with links on the left) for details about smogon's IRC community.

    4. Community contests or challenges. There are sometimes community projects either in the studio or elsewhere that invites various artists to participate or challenge each other, such as Battle Free For All or our Annual Secret Santa project! We encourage any artist to try them out since they focus on being fun and just generally experimenting outside your comfort zone, so just let loose. :)

    5. 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!

    Apply to be an approved artist

    Smogon has several various workshops and media outlets that all can be improved by having illustrations included with their written articles, but rather than approving people for each individual place, one can apply to be an approved artist and gain access to those venues directly. For more information, check out this post. Being an approved artist also opens up the possibility for you to be rewarded with our very own Artist Badge (more about that in Part III).

    When you feel ready, post your application in this forum. Users who don't moderate that forum can only see their own threads, so if it looks barren to you, then that's completely normal. For questions regarding contributing art to Smogon or approved artists, feel free to chase down Bummer and speak of your concerns. Any image contributed to the site this way will go towards awarding you with an art badge.

    Artwork for Tournaments and Projects

    Our studio has two threads dedicated to illustrating images and banners for tournaments and various community projects, Artwork for Tournaments and The Studio Workshop respectively. You don't need to be an approved artist to contribute to this, so feel free to take up any requests that you feel you can make justice.

    Other than that, 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 and see if there's something you can do to spice it up a notch.

    If you've done several quality pieces for ongoing or important discussions that have been approved, please contact Bummer and let him know about it. 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 us know.

    The Create-A-Pokemon (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.

    Part III: The Artist Badge

    Hopefully, each and every art contribution you make should be met with heartfelt appreciation and thanks from the users who receive it, but we try to honor generous artisans through other means. The Artist Badge is rewarded to users who not only knows how to illustrate good images, but who at several times have used their skills to create illustrations and banners for Smogon. Any badge a user receives comes with a nice slew of other benefits (can be read about here once you have one), but the artist badge not only proves that you are a contributor to Smogon, but that you also possess considerable skill within the visual medium, be it traditional art, digital drawings, or spriting. So wear it with pride!

    At the time of writing this, Bummer is the art leader while Layell is the sprite leader, and thus the people in charge of rewarding approved artists with the badge when they have contributed enough quality images to Smogon. If you believe yourself to be eligible for the badge, feel free to contact them and specify where you've contributed, and they'll be sure to either fill out your paperwork or explain why you haven't been rewarded yet.

    That should cover most of it. Do you still have questions about art badges? Comments? Concerns? Then look no further than any of our studio moderation staff:


    Thanks for reading! :)
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 6, 2015
    Pent, Bummer, wishes and 4 others like this.
  3. Bummer

    Bummer Jamming to the beat
    is an Artistis a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Smogon Media Contributor
    Art Leader

    Jan 5, 2011
    [​IMG] Becoming a Community Contributor [​IMG]

    The Community Contributor (CC) badge is, as the name implies, rewarded to users who are a positive influence in a certain section of Smogon, either by giving helpful advice or hosting various activities. Naturally, this also applies to Smeargle's Studio, but in order to help users who want to contribute, what follows is a list of stuff that would go towards earning this badge. Whether or not the badge is rewarded is judged on a case-by-case basis. You don't need to fulfill all of the criterias below, about 2 of them are enough in most cases. Lastly, we'd like to remind everyone that the CC badge is an activity based badge, so if you leave Smogon for a long time or don't participate in this section anymore, you may risk losing the badge (although being a contributor in another section can still allow you to keep it).

    Giving feedback to artists

    Anyone can give advice to the numerous artists who have set up their threads in this forum! However, posts that merely state "Good job" or "Looks awesome" (or posts that can be summarised in those words) may work well as positive reinforcement, but doesn't really point out what's good in their images. In those cases, you're better off liking their posts. Be specific and detailed about why you liked it and why the artist should continue doing that.

    Critique can be a touchy subject, but without constructive feedback, artists may go on drawing without being made aware that something fundamental in their style could be improved, changed, or even removed! But in these cases, it is more important than ever to explain why you feel they should improve in a certain aspect, as anyone wouldn't feel inclined to change something about themselves unless they got a good reason. A good formula for giving feedback is the "critique sandwich". Start off with positive praise, move on with giving some helpful critique or more direct advise, and then finish the post with how they've performed thus far and how they're cpaable of striving further. So basically, critique in-between two slices of kind words.

    So to reiterate, you don't need to be an artist yourself to give feedback to other artists. If you don't know the specific terms, try to use more general terms while still being specific enough so that the artist understands what you're trying to bring attention to. Critique can also come in the form of suggesting what the artist should be working on next, or to encourage them to draw something they're not used to. Be creative, and the artists you help will become creative as well!
    Hosting Community Projects
    Most of the threads marked with a [​IMG] welcome submissions or input from anyone in the artist community, be it fun activities or more serious work. While the moderators and studio leaders try their best to keep these threads active and updated, we all have limited time and effort, so having others volunteer to manage these threads and keep them active is very appreciated!

    With that said, handling threads like this is to be seen as a commitment. Mods and above can edit the first posts in any thread, while regular users cannot, meaning that they need to create new threads for them to edit freely. However, since the old thread will become invalid, all threads that refer to that thread will need to be updated with a link to the new one. So before you volunteer to manage one, it'd be wise to know if you'll be able to stick around the site for some time, as it'd be a hassle to update the new thread only to have its manager phase out after three weeks. If it happens, it happens, just don't try to bite off more than you can chew. If you have any questions about managing threads, just ask the mods or the art leaders, and we'll be glad to help you!
    Participating in community activities

    Much like the above criteria, participating and keeping alive various forum threads by contributing your own advice and art will not only help anyone seeing your work, but also encourage others to do the same! Make sure to read the guidelines in each thread before posting in them, as some may be more lax in their rulesets while others are more serious and certain requirements must be met. We cannot ask anyone to participate in every activity at once, but every contribution in this fashion serves to make the studio better and more active than before!
    Being a positive influence in our chat rooms

    Smeargle's Studio has an official chat room named #smeargle (available at @irc.synirc.net), as well as a chat room on Pokemon Showdown simply named the Art Room where several smogon regulars hang out, are great places to show off stuff you're working on and generall swapping advice. Being active in those channels, where you can either get a chat going with new topics, or by helping other users by giving live advice, are great ways of supporting and improving the chat. It's also the undeniably best away to become more involved with the community, as nothing beats interacting with other users in real-time!​

    If you can think of other ways to either improve or promote our studio, feel free to contact any of the studio mods and art leaders. Even if you're not intentionally aiming to become a Community Contributor, we appreciate each and every user who takes their time to reply and contribute to our very special corner of Smogon. Thanks for reading!
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2015
    Kris and brightobject like this.
  4. Bummer

    Bummer Jamming to the beat
    is an Artistis a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Smogon Media Contributor
    Art Leader

    Jan 5, 2011
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