The Age of Digital Art

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The advancement of technology has created a diverse range of enjoyments, comforts and methods for expressing ideas via a wide range of appliances, mechanisms, gizmos and gadgets. Computers, in particular, have revolutionized today’s lifestyle and the recent rise in popularity of mobile devices has further expanded the ability to access information, do business, communicate and play games while on the go.
Digital art has solidified a major role in society with increasing opportunities for its use continuously manifesting. Digital art now flourishes in practically every area of society and is used to create websites, video games, Hollywood movies and animated productions, advertisements, art stills and even music.
What Is Digital Art?
Digital art began to be used in earnest back in the 1970s when it was dubbed computer or multimedia art. This form of artistic expression was born out of the rise of the computer age which began using computer software programs to produce works of art. From this point, desktop publishing took off which led to a growing field of graphic art expressions that was eventually picked up by the mainstream media and film-makers. The visual effects that digital art has provided allows for new, vibrant, interesting and more cost effective means to create images to be used throughout various industries.
As digital technology progressed, computer design also became known as graphic art and then progressed to digital art which is actually a subcategory positioned under the more expansive umbrella of new media art. Today, digital art can be completely computer-generated by relying solely on algorithmic and fractal methods, or it can be combined with traditional art using vector graphics software and other digital media technology.
Digital Art Categories
There are several forms of digital art that fit into various categories. Software can be purchased that is specifically designed for such art expressions as illustration, painting, 3D modeling, raster, mixed media and more.
Illustration (Vector) Digital Art – Those wishing to illustrate can obtain vector software that digitally saves the basic lines, dots and colors required to create an image. This type of software does not save the individual pixels, but instead only those items necessary for the basic image. The advantages are that illustration software images take up much less memory and they can be enlarged without losing crispness. The disadvantage is that they cannot be adorned with much detail.
Raster Digital Art – Those seeking to create images with a great amount of detail will want to use raster software. Such programs save all bit information so that shapes and layers can be utilized to provide desired effects. The downside of raster creations is that they are extremely memory-heavy and cannot be enlarged much without experiencing pixel distortion.
Painting Digital Art – Paintings can also be created on a computer or mobile device by utilizing digital art software specifically designed for the task. This category of software recreates paint strokes in a number of techniques including oil painting, water painting and dry painting.
You can see more of this article in the May 2014 issue of ModelsMania

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