It's been awhile since I vented here. Anyway...
Recently, I've stumbled across a few artists who've made comments about not wanting to tell people their "technique" or have responded to questions about their techniques (as in, "How did you do achieve that effect?") with snarky comments or telling the questioner something along the lines of "Just experiment and find out for yourself". If it was a matter of not wanting to take the time to explain their techniques (which is often difficult to do) or not wanting to make a tutorial, I wouldn't have an issue with their comments... but in the cases I've seen, it's been because they're "guarding" techniques.
Are there really some artists out there who are so scared of art theft that they not only take safeguards to prevent their copyrighted images being stolen, but also refuse to talk about HOW those images were made? It's a bit scary to me, because what sort of society would we live in if people refused to lay bare the inner workings of their creations simply because they don't want others copying them?Caveman #1:
"I've invented written language!"Caveman #2:
"How's that work?"Caveman #1:
*gasp* "I'm not showing you, you'll steal my idea!" *tosses hands up, walks away*
Okay, that was a pretty lame and historically inaccurate way to illustrate my point, but you see what I'm getting at. And of course, there are countless artists (including professionals who've undoubtedly spent years developing their styles and techniques) who choose to explain their techniques in tutorial form ... but the arrogance of some people really get to me.
Speaking of arrogance... I recently read an artists' comment on a tutorial that included a line that went something like "Well, this is my old style and since I don't use it any more, I can show you how it works!" What was that comment about - coloring bishies in Photoshop or the newly-expired patent for the world's first viable cold-fusion reactor?! Seriously, Unnamed dA Artist, do you really think so highly of your techniques that you believe the moment people figure out how you did it you'll have a couple dozen dopplegangers churning out identical artwork? Reaaaaaaaaaaaally? It's rare for people to copy other's artwork from the "ground up", so to speak - most of the people who copy choose to just plain trace (MY GOD! WE MUSTN'T LET ANYONE SEE OUR ARTS! THEY COULD TRACE THEM!) - and frankly, if I made a tutorial and I found out somebody was copying it step-by-step, I'd be pretty damned pleased about it. THAT would be amazingly flattering to me (if not slightly creepy...)
I could go on, but I better end it here. (I have to save some rage for my next rant.) But I'll end on this note:
If you see something that in my artwork that you want to try, or a spot a technique you think you'll be able to use... ASK ME ABOUT IT!
Techniques are meant to be shared, admired, and looked upon by other artists for guidance when they need inspiration or help, not horded to oneself for fear of theft.