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Screenshots are not art by Illogical-Lynx Screenshots are not art by Illogical-Lynx
Video game screenshots are not art, stop posting them on an art website. Entertaining? Yes. Funny? Perhaps. Art? No. :movingon:


Made this a while back, figured I'd be selling my soul to the demon of insincere fanservice if I didn't post it.

TL;DR: No matter how new/inexperienced you are at drawing/painting/photoshop, I'll always respect you a thousand times more when you post real artwork than when you take the cheap and lazy way out. :hug:

Thanks to =jake10684 for the Awesome Stamp Border.

PS. This is not a personal shot at anyone, especially not those on my watchlist. If you're on my watchlist, I watch you because I love your ART. Post more of it and I'll be a happy camper indeed.

PPS. If you're going to post screencaps here, TOS requires you put them in scraps only. FAQ #578: What does deviantART consider to be a proper desktop screenshot?

Read it.

Now with a plz account so us non-subscribers can use:

:iconscreenshotstamp1plz::iconscreenshotstamp2plz:
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:iconkharlene:
Kharlene Featured By Owner Edited Oct 3, 2014
Ehh... I work as a graphic artist and do mechanical CADD work for HP, I have a BA in Graphic Arts from UCSD, and I have to say... I find this fairly pretentious (even more pretentious than my stating my credentials there). I do a lot of graphic design work day in and day out, I take photographs continuously, all because of my job. Unfortunately 99% of which I can't post or show here (or anywhere) because otherwise I'll be fired do to the fact they're concept work projects HP has yet to release (if they were released they wouldn't be concepts anymore). But one thing that I've found where I can do some of the graphic work I love doing is via screenshots of video games--namely Skyrim and Fallout: New Vegas are the two mediums I've utilized.

And before anyone gets on their high horse saying that it's not the same or similar to photograph. In one part you're right and in another you're absolutely wrong. If we're talking just a quick snapshot press of the button, then you're absolutely right. It's no different than if I were to step outside of my house right now take my digital camera, indiscriminately take a snapshot of the street I live on and then try to b.s. to everyone that it was a nice artistic view of my hometown avenue. All of which can be done in a sum of about 3 or 4 minutes, and even then I'm being a little generous. And yet, it'll still be considered art and photography merely for the fact it's a picture of relatively unbusy avenue from a front lawn with some fall leaves on the ground. :| (Blank Stare) 

However, if I were to post up something like this or this, which the textures are not vanilla (sweat doesn't exist in the vanilla game), they are high definition 2048x2048 skin and sweat textures done by phenomenal artists (i.e. neither being me), and the customized armor (which you will never find in the vanilla game because they don't exist) of the latter pic were done by others. However the sweat and skin textures (done by two different texture artists (they're modders but I call them artists because their work is as good as much of the professional graphic work I see on a daily basis at work)) originally were not compatible with the lighting textures and ENB that I created, which meant I had to recode each to make them work. All of which takes time--hours in fact to get it just right the way I want it. No differently then when I'm at work working on that shiny new concept ad for an HP printer or monitor at work. But then in the game itself I spent for either of those pictures a solid 2 hours each looking just for the right spot and right shot I wanted. I have about 1200+ hours logged in Skyrim alone, but I've never beaten the damn game (I haven't even genuinely played it for over a year), because I do shit I like just described in it and that's all I do, even after I've sank nearly 200 dollars in the game. While when I was in college as a poor student, I was doing photoshoots with my digital camera to later do PRECISELY what I do in Skyrim these days during my off-time.

The reason I bring up that very last bit is because I read one argument in these comments that screenshots isn't like photography because it's not a natural setting or genuine environment, it's one you paid for. And the first thing popped in my head was, "You mean like a studio?", I lost track of how many times in college in my graphic design courses, we had to alter pics we had taken with our digital cameras, and being poor students that we were we had no money for a studio, nor did we have time (do to other classes and part-time jobs) to go wandering around looking for "perfect shots". So instead what we'd do is make a studio, most when they thinking "studio" it's some rented out room with special props and background canvases. No. We're poor, we didn't have that kind of money. Maybe twenty bucks on us if we're lucky. So with that we'd buy 20 bucks worth of crap to set up a makeshift "studio" in the corner of or dorm rooms or some place outside or even on campus. And then snap an easy 100-1000+ pictures and sift through them to find the one we liked the most for our purpose to alter for class.

The most silly thing I keep seeing in these comments is the delusional belief that it's the environment that makes a picture of a photographer or digital artist artwork. It is not. It's what they do with the environment presented to them that makes the picture artwork, which can be any environment, any place and anywhere.
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:iconchiyosen:
Chiyosen Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you very much. :XD:
I can't stand a lot of groups when I watch them and then get flooded with screenshots the next day. I can go take my own screenshot or go to a site where you're supposed to share screenshots if I wanted one! 
So this is a nice stamp!
Reply
:iconfritsa-wolf:
Fritsa-Wolf Featured By Owner Edited Aug 14, 2014  Student General Artist
There's a dude that goes screenshotting any tiny hint of the 'Illuminati' or 'The Stone Masons' in TV shows, animated things, games, etc. They also take a photo of their TV or computer screens (the second one doesn't make any sense, I know). It's like "dude calm down".
Reply
:iconangel-of-the-triad:
Angel-Of-The-Triad Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Now, what if the screenshots were from a game such as Garry's Mod where people may take and pose in game props and models to form a scene that they've envisioned with said props and models and then take the time to line the in-game camera up just right before taking a screenshot? Would that make any kind of difference on the matter?
Reply
:iconhypertiz:
HYPERTiZ Featured By Owner Edited Jul 15, 2014  Student Digital Artist
hmmm...


true

that would be art

A) but if its a screenshot of the game etc you shooting then maybe.

 B ) if its a screenshot of previewing a model you made in game etc

examples like that/

although screenshots of eg

C) "www.deviantart.com/art/my-new-…"

is probably not acceptable?
Reply
:iconkit-tense:
Kit-tense Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I agree. Could I use this on my profile?
Reply
:iconillogical-lynx:
Illogical-Lynx Featured By Owner Jul 29, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Go for it, that's what it's there for! :)
Reply
:iconnumeriku:
Numeriku Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2014

Art takes effort!

*Takes a walk through the Tate Modern*

Ok...

I'm with GodForsakenBastard on this one. Whilst there are many people who take screenshots that took no effort at all, there are those out there who actually do take their time just like a photographer would in real life. It may be easier because unlike in real life you can pause, but then once again I could bring up digital art and the use of programs like Photoshop. In real life you don't have a undo function, as well as the plethora of other tools, but does that make the picture drawn any less of an art piece? No.

An example of what isn't art? This stamp.

Reply
:iconillogical-lynx:
Illogical-Lynx Featured By Owner Jun 14, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh man, modern art is a whoooole other kettle of fish. They had one guy in my country who won a modern art competition without even showing up. He ordered his lackey over the phone to gather up all the trash from the other exhibits and just pile it in the room where he was supposed to make his. The pile of trash won the competition. Ridiculous.

I feel your comparison to photoshop is unfair. Photoshop is a tool which can create 100% original artwork and you cannot create art without effort using it. I suppose you could say that you could download a whole bunch of complicated brushes (which are basically complete images of something) made by other artists and just stamp them on a blank canvas and call it a day, but I would equally decry that as not being art either. The reason a screenshot can never be art is because the artistic value of the image is entirely due to the work of the artists who worked on the game. 99.99% of the artistic merit in a screenshot belongs to those artists, not the person taking it.

I have pictures that I worked on for months in my gallery. The cruel irony of my most commented AND my most favourited deviations both being stamps whacked together in five minutes each is not lost on me at all. That said, stamps have their own category here which is "deviantart related" and not under "digital art" to stop people confusing the two. I don't have to violate copyright law or the terms of service to post them.
Reply
:iconnumeriku:
Numeriku Featured By Owner Jun 16, 2014
You missed my point it seems, or don't seem to want to view it from a different perspective other than your own. I suggest you reread what I wrote, because I in no way shape or form was denouncing the use of Photoshop as a legitimate tool to create art.

If screenshots broke copyright laws they would never allow the function to begin with, nor would many other websites allow said posting of screenshots. Hence why I side with GodForsakenBastard. One can take a screenshot which has had no work done in terms of changing the vanilla content, where as others mod their games to the point of it not even looking like the vanilla product any more. Doing these things ontop of setting up the shot and the time it takes makes them worthy of being art.
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