Art (wallpaper in this case) either looks good or it doesn't. How much work went into it, the technique, etc., etc. isn't worth a damn if it doesn't look good.
I can understand the artist/designer feeling a bit peeved over the fact that a number of non-skinners and "amateurs" a critiquing their work. Most of the skins and wallpapers however, do not show up on walls in houses (some wallpapers might, if printed), and are utilized as part of GUI customization; they show up on desktops and help to cerate the "feel" and "look" of an individuals computing experience. So, we need to consider that as well.
The question is this: do you need to "understand" digital/computer design in order to judge its quality? Does the average person have a good sense of style, in terms of what will look good/bad on a desktop?
I, as most of you might know, have not really skinned anything or designed anything yet. Alright, I have been involved in a collaboration, but that to me does not count as something I created on my own. Yet, I do critique wallpapers and I consider my judgements to be spot on more often than not. Do designers feel insulted or offended when I, a non-designer leave a long, detailed review? Further, since I mainly submit screenshots (some that are good), do I have have a sense of "style" and "design" (maybe a bit different from the wallpaper designers) that allows me to - or better yet, gives me the authority to, critique art and skins?
Those are good questions. For me it is a bit more simple: 1) I love the method of screen shots. The wall of fame is a cool idea. Then they delete all the rest. It helps pread unique ideas. I like DA's method too. I like to see the desktops of others, and show off my own. 2) If they use a skin by me, I like thier screen shot. ^.^ If they give me constructive or good comments I like them. 3) Most ppl gotta start someplace, and contribute in other ways. Help in forums, comic reliefe, beta testing, news posting ^.~, etc. Some even have things they tweaked and can't put on the web, but they could e-mail to few ppl who really wanted it.
These things all have a purpose. If it's non of these things, then there is little to no value to the screen shot or comment and they should be deleted!!! Just IMHO.
I have a strange feeling I missed something, so I may add something to this later. I hate that feeling. -.-;
LTD: when working, I always ask to anyone who doesn't know anything about design whatever they like or not what I did. Then I go with a collegue.
When you create a piece of art or a design, you don't create it only for artists or designers, you create it for everyone. In design if you do something that only other designers understand and like, it will probably be not commercial at all and will fail in the market. So I consider sometimes is most important a "common person" opinion.
I guess for wallpapers and skins is the same thing, you don't create it for other artists, you create it for everyone.
I think it's cool (being one myself) for non-makers to give their opinions, so long as they don't try to give the impression they know more than they actually do. If it's purely on a cosmetic level, then cool, but don't go criticising anyone's techniques if you haven't got the first clue yourself.
Beauty has always been in the eye of the beholder,There's nothing you can look at, and not learn something.You might not always agree with what a piece suggests,or represents. But, you can always learn something new from it.To those who post neg. comments your selling yourself short because, it's your next submission that will fall upon spiteful eyes
This (for me at least) is a sticky issue. On the one hand, most of my work is targeted at making stuff that works with people's desktops by filling niches for people. So in that respect, being rated by screeners and other non-skinners gets me a lot of extra high scores.
On the OTHER hand... there have been times where my first review was somebody who didn't know what they were talking about gave me a bad score, and other people just followed his lead. The sad truth is, the overwhelming majority of people check the scores before rating. There was a case once where a resubmitted skin of mine went from an average in the low 60s to high 80's, and nothing had really changed except ten pixels being fixed in a close button.
Someone [I forget who, apologies if it's a regular] said once that a skin I'd spent 30 hours on looked "...like I was in the early stages and just said 'screw it'...", and that's a comment which has haunted me ever since. Almost everyone else who posted just mimiced that comment instead of providing a real critique. It wasn't a great skin maybe, but it was the result of experimentation and trying totally new things, and the negative comment made me afraid to experiment anymore.
The non-skinners who give me decent critiques? I like them fine. A lot of wallpaper guys give me great insights. A lot of theme guys help me to help them make cool screens. Those people are great!
It's the people [in general] who give low scores because "I'm not feeling it", "It's not my style", "I wouldn't use it", "This has been done to death"... those people should just go lie in the road.
: I paid $14 for a T-shirt and all I got was this stupid T-shirt :
I think it's a good thing having people who just use the stuff rate it because it gives a better overall picture of what people in general think. And people can have a good eye for what looks nice without having made anything themselves, kinda like interior designers.
On the "this sucks" type of comments though, I agree the community would be better without people who just say things like that. It's just not constructive.
I have personally used the "I wouldn't use it" and "it's not my style" comments but I don't just leave it at that, I always try to say why. And I won't rate it if I think it's good but doesn't appeal to me personally because it wouldn't be a fair rating.
i love art, and thats why i am here. although i dont create mind blowing wallpapers, i do know what looks good and bad. i do know what takes time and what doesnt. i am seriously trying my hand at digital art, because i am hopeless at real painting drawing etc. and its art on this site which i really wish i could do. i try to rate all things from a totally unbiased and constructive point of view
I think the whole basis of this thread smacks of "It's my ball and I don't want you to play". Somebody doesn't deserve the right to voice an opinion because they don't want to inflict their second-rate shit on everyone else? You want to start censoring comments the way you do uploads? Given the quality of some of the stuff that's been uploaded here, I think the non-uploading critics deserve a pat on the back for sparing everyone more torment. It's like the whole Pop Idol/American Idol thing with Simon Whathisname. He tells a load of piss-poor kids that they can't sing for shit, and suddenly he's the bad guy? Because he's telling the truth? Get a reality check.
I think people should post their screenshots if it's something out of the ordinary. I like looking at people's desktop and changing my own setups but it gets repetitive if we see 5,000 different versions of using one particular winamp skin... something like that!
Well, designers and non-designers alike have equal rights to voice opinions (I know some of you hate that - just burns your ass, I know, but ya gotta live with it.) I don't know the first thing about Photoshop - tho I'm sure I could learn rather quickly. But I DO know a great deal about colour and composition, and what simply WORKS on a desktop. I can't really explain it, I just have a feeling for these things . . . . go figure.
What I think we can all agree on is that people who have not submitted anything, yet have the gall to post completely inappropriate, derogatory comments, i.e., "that's shit" or "this sucks", etc., etc., should just lie in the road, as was said. Hey, one of the reasons I posted such long and detailed reviews is that I feel that since I am in the company of so many talented individuals, I should justify my comments by being as descriptive and constructive as possible. Why? Because I get to use all this wonderful art and amazing skins FOR FREE! We are talking about people who put some real effort and TIME into their productions and are doing it mostly for free, for the love of it. Let's be honest, I'd pay a fee (not alot but a fee nonetheless), for some of the better works around here. But, I get to download these for free. How many art sites are there where you're charged a monthly fee to access certain images? Quite a few. So, the least I can do to show my appreciation and even learn a bit is to try and evaluate a piece as honestly as possible and be constructive in my reviews.
The point (finally): For those of you who do not submit anything (or who only submit screenshots because you can't create walls to save your life), understand that you DO have a right to review submissions, like anyone else, BUT also understand that in your position you need to make sure you keep comments all the more constructive and thoughtful. This kind of attitude, IMHO, would probably go a long way in easing tensions between designers and non-designers (if this "tension" exists in the first place, that is.)
LTD :: i have to agree fully with you.. lol im one of those "who only submit screenshots because you can't create walls to save your life" and i take everything in stride... if someone flames one of my submissions it will up set me... not because i got flamed (well maybe a little.. but thats because of they way the comment was issued)... but because I didnt do something right.. it was one of Max's comments that made me strive to do a better job at matching etc.. (see it here :: ::) though i got good reviews from other peeps at custo.. it was Max's that counted most for me... as you can see from the submissions that were posted afterwards..
when i comment or "review" a sub. i try to, and i hope i do it well, let the submittor know my thoughts on why it works or does not work for me.. it dosent mean that it "sucks" or "is shit".. just that it doesnt work for me.. IF and ONLY IF i feel the need to turn on the heat i will normaly restrain myself and just not post a comment at all... i think it best that way... i dont feel like starting any flamewars... besides.. there are others that do such a better job at it than me... lol
______________ I'd like to put something witty here, but I'm just speechless.
I was just about to mention movie critics when I read what colossus said. Darn it. Anyway, I don't think I've submitted anything here. That doesn't mean I never make anything, it just generally stays half-done and on my computer. That said, I thin that as long as I try to make intelligent and polite comments, I am entitled to do so. As the sort of person that has a rediculously large wallpaper/skin collection, and is quite proud of it, I am your audience. I'm not saying that my word is law or anything, just that my opinion is as relevant as anyone's. If I think that your wallpaper could be improved by moving this image down a little, or by getting rid of some of the orange, or what have you, I don't see any reason not to suggest it. After all, I'm the sort of person that's going to be deciding to use or not use your work, and I would assume that if you're posting a work, you want it to be liked and used by as many of us as possible. It's just a question of whether or not we're giving constructive comments (good or bad, just as long as they're constructive), and of course, it would be wrong of us to say that we could actually do better unless we're willing to back the statement up. If I submitted alot, I would definately want any helpful comments I could get, and I realize that the majority of people won't be experienced skinners. They still have eyes, so they can still be helpful.
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