DeviantArt (styled as deviantART from 2004-2014) is a website featuring art from registered users. Art types include full-fledged paintings, sketches, digital art, photography, sculptures, writing, fan art, fanfics, comics, and more; there are extensive downloadable resources such as tutorials and stock photography. "Fella," a small, robotic, cat character, is the official DeviantArt mascot. It is currently owned by Israeli web software company Wix.com Ltd.
DeviantArt was originally launched Monday, August 7, 2000 by Angelo Sotira, Scott Jarkoff, and Matt Stephens as part of a larger network of music-related websites called the Dmusic Network. The site flourished largely because of its unique offering and the contributions of its core member base and a team of volunteers after its launch, but was officially incorporated in 2001 about eight months after launch.
DeviantArt was loosely inspired by projects like Winamp facelift, customize.org, deskmod.com, screenphuck.com, and skinz.org, all application skin-based websites. Sotira entrusted all public aspects of the project to Scott Jarkoff as an engineer and visionary to launch the early program. All three co-founders shared backgrounds in the application skinning community, but it was Matt Stephens whose major contribution to DeviantArt was the suggestion to take the concept further than skinning and more toward an "art community". Many of the individuals involved with the initial development and promotion of DeviantArt still hold positions with the project, from administrators to volunteers serving as gallery directors and Message Network Administration. Angelo Sotira currently serves as the CEO of DeviantArt, Inc.
DeviantArt has a reputation for deleting artwork that they find to be risqué or outright pornographic, a great irony considering the site's name (and the fact that a good-sized portion of the artwork that doesn't get deleted is still pretty risqué) and the "Artistic Nude" category. Not-too-un-relatedly, it also has a infamous reputation for being allegedly populated by furries, oversized egos, inflation, "vore" and bad fanart. There's even a game about making a search with at least two words or more and trying not to find Anime, Comics, Manga, Pokémon, Naruto, Sonic the Hedgehog, Overwatch, Transformers, My Little Pony, Five Nights at Freddy's, Undertale or certain popular modern day cartoons. All in good fun of course, and the fanart/"creepy"-art-to-"normal"-art ratio is not as high as some parts of the Internet may claim.note Nevertheless, it's still widely derided for the tons of Rule 34 art that avoids deletion by playing to various fetishes, and the site's become the butt of many jokes relating to such imagery. It is also rather infamous for occasional bouts of paralyzing bugs. Trying again shortly never works.
DeviantArt also has a reputation for how many people think there should be a "Quality Control". However, because "Quality" is extremely subjective, a lot of peoples' "Quality Control" wouldn't be to remove poorly-drawn work from the site, but to remove entire genres of art that a given person doesn't like from the site in general. It's also known for blocking criticism from some art, meaning you can be banned for criticizing the art. However, this was put in place due to the amount of people who didn't seem to realize that Constructive Criticism has to be constructive and were flat-out insulting the artists personally or mocking the work. It extends to people who don't want to hear criticism at all; constructive or not, but you do hear people who want critique on the site and specifically request it.
In 2019, the site unveiled a new visual layout, termed "Eclipse", as an alternative option to the default on. On May 20, 2020, the older site was permanently retired and all accounts were switched to the Eclipse theme. This was... not a popular change, to put it mildly, and attracted considerable criticism from users regarding increased difficulty in using the site, a number of bugs, numerous missing or altered features from the old site, and lag.
Other communities that offer a similar focus include Pixiv, which is essentially a Japanese counterpart of DeviantArt and tends to have less censorship regarding suggestive themes and is limited to just drawings and literature, so sorry, photography fans. Concept Art Dot Org is a (now completely defunct) site for people who actually make a living drawing all day and will eat you alive if you're not prepared to take criticism (the real kind). Elfwood is an older fantasy art gallery that DeviantArt may have been later inspired by, and had its own share of backdoors drama in its heyday. Cghub.com was a site purely for professional artists, but effective censorship of suggestive pictures was sacrificed in exchange for a massive amount of truly talented work (for those interested, archived snapshots of several artists' pages can be found online).
Check out our Tropers group we have over there!
Also, on an interesting off note, this wiki had an It Just Bugs Menote page for DeviantArt before the site had a work page, which, needless to say, is something very uncommon.
- Cap: The max amount of Llama and Cake badges one can receive is 100,000 and 20, respectively.
- Cosplay Fan Art: Many artists have fun with characters dressing up as other characters.
- After Disney bought Marvel, there was a spike in pictures of the Disney princesses dressing up as Marvel superheroines (and some DC ones).
- Content Warning: Mature content filters block mature artwork with a sign and warning. Moderate Mature content can be viewed after processing the warning for anyone, while Strict Mature content can only be viewed by adults.
- Costume Porn: Whether fanart of existing costume designs, or original creations, a lot of the pictures here can show very elaborate and imaginative costumes.
- Everything's Better with Llamas: One of the site's beliefs. Users can even give other users one free Llama Badge each (it doesn't do anything however). When the site held a party to celebrate their tenth anniversary, they brought in real llamas to the party.
- Emoticon: They have a long list of emoticons that can be used, and they follow a mostly consistent art style. The image that's on the trope page comes from this site. This is also abused with the many "plz" accounts. Since the site allows for all users to link other users with their 50x50 pixel avatar images, there are a lot of these that show an image of popular things like memes or characters.
- Fan Art: Yes, they do indeed allow this.
- Fan Fiction: Also allowed as an extension of the above, as a subcategory under "Literature".
- Jungle Princess / Tarzan Boy: A percent of the website has art and fanfictions that feature these tropes.
- Scenery Porn: Many artists love to draw detailed areas.
- Unfortunate Name: The concept of "Deviant Art" * is used by totalitarians to justify censoring pieces of art who invoke a usually bigoted rhetoric. Ironically, a lot of the art on the site is largely agreed to be "deviant" in some way and users of the site are referred to as "deviants" which could give totalitarians a field day.