Fan Art: An Explosion of Creativity | Off Book | PBS Digital Studios

Fan Art: An Explosion of Creativity | Off Book | PBS Digital Studios


BRAD O’FARRELL: Fan art is
often the viewer’s reaction to the show projected
onto the character. FRED SEIBERT: It is something
that happens in our culture that when we recognize
something we immediately want to participate. JONAH BLOCK: A lot of
people like to make fan art, and they’ll brush
everything from “Doctor Who” to video games– everything
that kind of falls into geek culture. ADAM JURESKO: People
have this outlet, and they want to
express their ideas. They don’t have to go
the traditional routes that you had to go years
ago to do this kind of work. They are taking their
style and something that is widely accessible and simply
mixing the two things together so that what they do can be
appreciated by more people. BRAD O’FARRELL: The significance
of fan art and fan fiction is that it’s the first
entry point in being creative for younger people. There’s a lot that goes
into character design and creating characters, and if
you just want to learn to draw, sometimes it’s nice to not have
to come up with a character and story and everything. Fan art and fan
fiction is like when you have characters that
are from a story or a movie, and you want them to be doing
things that they don’t do. It’s like wish fulfillment,
but for the characters. Usually it’s like really
strong relationships that aren’t romantic are
always turned romantic under the lens of fan
art and fan fiction. And I’ve noticed also it will
get really weird for shows that are really normal. The “Sherlock” fandom is
in this weird bubble where they– their– I can’t tell
if they’re joking or not, but they’re, like, in an
arms race to be more absurd. Like, I saw a fan
art/fan fiction where Sherlock was a llama and
John was a corgi, and they kiss but they’re having trouble
because their height difference. How is that what this show
is about in your head? The fan fiction that I
write is sort of absurdist. I like writing
crossover fan fiction because you could see
the story happening, but just the two things are
so completely unrelated. My favorite one was
“Beverly Drive Chihuahua,” which is the story of “Drive”
combined with “Beverly Hills Chihuahua.” So they’re both set in LA, they
both involve, like, heists, and they both have,
like, love stories. So I just made Ryan Gosling
fall in love with the chihuahua. Yeah. I– I– I guess just the
stupider the crossover is, the more I think it’s funny. I mean, a lot of people
who are into fan art and fan fiction
are very talented, but I think one of the
appealing parts of it is that it gives you motivation
to perfect your craft of either writing or drawing
if there’s an audience for it. Pretty much everyone I know
right now who’s an artist started out drawing fan art. ADAM JURESKO: How I
came into graphic design was through being in
bands and always having to make flyers for shows. After a show was
over, you, like, you had this piece of ephemera
that you wanted to hold on to, and I thought that was
a really powerful thing. Film is such a
personal thing to me, and I just wanted
to make something that I could wholeheartedly
stand behind. The process varies
from poster to poster, but the actual
construction is there’s an image that I want to work
with, and then I take that, and I just have to
build upon that. And every poster is always
different than the last one in terms of what I envisioned
to what comes across. Well the “Black Swan” poster was
one of the first ones I made, and I wanted to keep
it as simple and as minimal as possible,
but also I wanted to apply that grainy aspect to
it because it is such, like, a stark, terrifying
film. “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless
Mind” was a hard one because it’s such a love film,
and there’s so much going on and there’s so much depth to it. That poster was a really
complex poster to make, and I feel like that in itself
pays homage to the film. When I started doing
this, I had no idea that was such a huge
community of people that were so enthralled with fan art. And there’s such a
sense of community around it and not
competition, and that was really important to me. I really want to
make something that’s more personal to the
person who loves the movie, and I want to have them have
such a positive reaction with it and not view it
as just a movie poster. JONAH BLOCK: I have
to create fan art. If I don’t, I go crazy. I got my graphic design
start on Threadless because they gave me a platform
to show off what I was doing and have it made into something. A friend of mine, he had a
fan-run contest within the site called Threadless
loves minimalism. So we all just forced ourselves
to do minimalism designs. The superhero ones
start with Spider-Man, and it was so successful,
I decided to do a series. The rules for the superhero
ones are every character has to be broken
down into two colors so that one color could
be the man’s shape, and one color is the pun
that represents their power. If it’s Luke Cage,
I draw a cage. Aquaman, I drew a cup of water,
and people really react to it. I still don’t quite
understand it, but if I post it
on Tumblr today, it’s going to get
reblogged 1,000 times. I collaborate with a
lot of other artists too, because I have more
ideas than I can draw. My most successful
thing this way was “Star Wars” with unicorns. It was a unicorn that looked
like Darth Vader and a unicorn missing a hoof that
looked like Luke Skywalker with light saber horns. And it has to be stuff
people can relate to. Unicorns are one of
the subcategories that people react to online. You got astronauts,
zombies, then there’s a huge audience
that really wants the stuff. They don’t just
want to look at it. They want to buy it on T-shirts
and show it off at conventions. Humans have a need to share
information and ideas. Anything we like, anything
that’s important to us, we have to let other
people know about it. It’s not enough to
just make things. Once you make it, you
want to show it off. SAM SPRATT: On some level,
I am just a fan boy, and I love certain TV shows, and
I want to pay homage to them. There’s an early
episode of “The Office,” and it ends with Jim as
Dwight saying, “bears, beets, ‘Battlestar Galactica.'” I
just loved that alliteration, and I thought it would be
cool to do a portrait of that. So I made Dwight wearing a bear. I gave him a little beet
juice stain on his collar and gave him a little
“Battlestar Galactica” pin. And so it’s all
really subtle stuff. It’s just a moment that
fans will appreciate. And those are the people
that will share it most. And, you know, there will
be people that rip it apart, and I love that, because if
you take enough of it in, it helps refine the next
piece and the next piece. And I really enjoy
that aspect of it. I had recently
joined Tumblr, and I started seeing these
rage comics pop up. And I thought it would just
be fantastic to, you know, just apply what I do with
my realistic portraits to these faces that are supposed
to be human, but kind of make them a little messed up. I made one for
fun, and, you know, some random person stuck it
on Reddit, and it went wild. I got all these requests
for– do “LOL Face.” Do “Why You No.” So I did eight that sort
of encompassed a wide range of the most popular ones. Then I packaged
them all together as the Illustrated
Internet series cause I just wanted people
to share them freely. And it’s for the internet. It’s for people to share. When it comes to
these internet memes, so many people from any fandom
can appreciate what they are. Thus, they will naturally
reach a larger audience. You know, people
write the internet off as if it’s a detriment
to creativity. To me, I can scroll
30 seconds on Tumblr, and I can see more images
than any other means of digesting content. And it just inspires you
immensely to keep going. FRED SEIBERT: Seven
years ago, Pen Ward pitched us “Adventure Time.” We made the short,
and when it came out, it had that really simple
art style that Pen has. But when you were done with the
cartoon, all you wanted to do was look at it again. Before we knew it, one of
the fans had ripped a copy and started putting
it up on YouTube, and it started gathering
millions of views. We were developing the show
for a television series, and Pen started coming into
the development meetings with all of this art that
clearly he hadn’t done. And he goes, oh, there’s
hundreds of pieces of fan art on DeviantArt. I went, wait a minute. We have one six-minute
film on YouTube, and the cartoon
was made for kids, and that has generated
hundreds of pieces of fan art. To this day, it doesn’t compute. The fan art didn’t stop. And in fact, it wasn’t
just somebody drawing. We have seen people who have
done cosplay and dressed up. We have seen 3D art,
LEGOs, clay, cakes baked as the characters. But the most exciting
part is the interaction of the artists who are on
the show with the fans who are drawing. One of our character designers,
a woman named Natasha Allegri, started doing her own fan art
of “Adventure Time,” making little comics of characters
that she had remixed out of the show. And instead of
Finn and Jake, she had created Fionna and Cake. And all of a sudden, we had a
whole community bubbling up, not of the show, but of
Natasha’s remix of the show in her comics on her Tumblr. We decided to produce a special
episode of Fionna and Cake. Turned out to be our
highest rated episode so far in the history
of “Adventure Time.” In this age of the
internet, I think that we have this possibility
for real time collaboration that, in our case,
has ended up being creative collaboration
at a level that I never suspected
was possible. BRAD O’FARRELL: If you’re
just drawing and not showing it to anyone,
then your drawings aren’t going to get any better. But if you put it
on the internet and there’s people
automatically caring, then you will get
better as an artist. SAM SPRATT: For
them, it’s a means of expression of how much
they care about these things. ADAM JURESKO: One of
the best things about it is that there’s such a sense
of community around it. JONAH BLOCK: If you make a
stylized thing about something people like, they’re
gonna want to share it. FRED SEIBERT: There is this
mind meld between performers, artists, and their fans that,
in the 20th century and beyond, has been almost
completely unique. [MUSIC PLAYING]

100 thoughts on “Fan Art: An Explosion of Creativity | Off Book | PBS Digital Studios

  • June 25, 2012 at 7:44 am
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    Dante Basco gonna voice Marshall Lee… just your daily news.

    Reply
  • June 25, 2012 at 10:25 pm
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    I do liked it.

    Reply
  • June 26, 2012 at 3:54 pm
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    no ponies *sniff sniff*

    Reply
  • June 29, 2012 at 8:36 am
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    @Emideus thats a really good uestion one that i keep asking my self. i do not have the answer but if someone gave it to you let me know please.

    Reply
  • June 30, 2012 at 5:27 pm
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    God these are so great.

    Reply
  • July 1, 2012 at 4:46 am
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    but this would be all in the same show really. it would be more like that last episode of the spiderman cartoon from the 90's when all the spidermen had to unite to save existence. that was awesome.

    Reply
  • July 7, 2012 at 4:37 am
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    I have to pause this video often.

    Reply
  • July 16, 2012 at 10:33 pm
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    i want jonah block to say "i'm scott matthessen and i have i diabetes."

    Reply
  • July 17, 2012 at 5:01 pm
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    What was the name of the song that introduces the fanart for Adventure Time?

    Reply
  • July 24, 2012 at 7:42 pm
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    Boba-saur is awesome

    Reply
  • July 26, 2012 at 5:34 pm
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    I think Adam Muto said that they'll be doing one…I hope so.

    Reply
  • July 27, 2012 at 4:22 pm
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    no MLP art? :/

    Reply
  • July 28, 2012 at 10:29 pm
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    Someone should just do fandom in general.

    Reply
  • July 30, 2012 at 4:33 am
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    1:11 sherlock fandom survives on 3 episode a year i think they are allowed to be a bit crazy.

    Reply
  • August 6, 2012 at 8:00 pm
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    I'm asking the same question :/

    Reply
  • August 11, 2012 at 3:58 am
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    cool video, but why didn't you talk to any women? especially when speaking in reference to the tumblr fan community which is predominantly female?

    Reply
  • August 11, 2012 at 4:02 am
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    never mind, i guess that's been covered. still, it was pretty jarring. first reaction was, where the hell did they find a dude who writes fanfiction?

    Reply
  • August 13, 2012 at 12:23 pm
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    I just keep watching the Adventure time part over and over again, it's Soooooo good

    Reply
  • August 19, 2012 at 5:00 am
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    I love the Unicorn Star Wars.

    Reply
  • August 20, 2012 at 5:19 pm
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    Aswom

    Reply
  • August 21, 2012 at 6:04 pm
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    Omg a vido who isn't all like "look at all these strange fandom people".

    Reply
  • August 25, 2012 at 12:56 am
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    SHERLOCKKKKKKKKKKKKK

    Reply
  • August 26, 2012 at 1:57 am
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    Llama llama llama

    Reply
  • August 26, 2012 at 9:48 am
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    Btw thanks for featuring my artwork (I'm Chocoreaper, I did the Adventure Time genderbent fanart) :]

    Reply
  • August 26, 2012 at 9:49 am
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    I bet you most of the fanart featured are done by girls.
    Oh wait, it's already the truth 😀

    Reply
  • August 31, 2012 at 10:52 pm
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    This was amazing and you guys should feel amazing for making it. Fandom on the internet is one of the most amazing things on this entire series of tubes.

    The ur example in my book would be Homestuck; In addition to transcending the definitions of what a comic can be on the internet, the whole thing has been essentially a giant collaboration with the fans since day one; The art and music team is composed entirely out of readers, and even elements of the plot are based directly on fan speculation

    Reply
  • September 7, 2012 at 9:29 am
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    Why would you subtitle a video about fanart with "An Explosion Of Creativity" – that's the exact opposite of what fanart is?

    Fanart is a way of being artistic without being creative or original in any way, it's almost the definition of it

    Reply
  • September 11, 2012 at 1:35 am
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    Does anyone know where I can find the Fionna and Cake episode online?

    Reply
  • September 11, 2012 at 8:45 am
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    Actually, by watching the video you can SEE the creativity that comes out of fanart, which isn't necessarily always traditional art. Themed cakes, floor murals, plushies, lego – fanart in its many forms is the very essence of creativity, as people take a thing from its original format and make it their own in new and interesting ways.

    Reply
  • September 12, 2012 at 4:42 am
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    true dat

    Reply
  • September 14, 2012 at 7:39 am
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    cre·a·tiv·i·ty /ˌkrēāˈtivitē/
    Noun:
    The use of the imagination or original ideas, esp. in the production of an artistic work.

    Reply
  • September 14, 2012 at 6:10 pm
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    Your music is AWESOME!!!

    Reply
  • September 15, 2012 at 3:10 pm
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    The comment about the Sherlock fandom. I think it's partly to do with the long breaks between 'seasons' but also because absurdity is a very British type of humour. (Although the corgi/llama thing may just be poking fun at how Martin Freeman is half a foot shorter than Benedict Cumberbatch.)
    But the Adventure Time segment just made me grin so widely.

    Reply
  • September 17, 2012 at 2:12 pm
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    Thankyou for reinforcing my point ;3

    Reply
  • September 19, 2012 at 12:58 am
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    um… real quick, is it not true that if it is not a direct copy, then it must be original and creative? Straight piracy is not creative, but fan art and fan works certainly are. Ask yourself: is West Side Story not original or not creative? After all It's based on Romeo and Juliet. Is A Bug's Life uncreative for being based off of 7 Samurai? Starwars because it's built on the hero's journey?
    Spoiler, the answer is, of course they fucking are. It's the very nature of art.

    Reply
  • October 6, 2012 at 11:44 pm
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    Connection has been made C: now drawing fan art at maximum speed.

    Reply
  • October 7, 2012 at 12:22 am
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    I love this so much. It almost made me cry and I am not sure why….that rhymed. 🙂

    Reply
  • October 7, 2012 at 9:29 pm
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    Futurama?! Adventure Time?! My favorite shows were the best of first of the first few.

    Reply
  • October 20, 2012 at 6:51 pm
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    The amount of times Sherlock fanart was shown just shows how AWESOME it is!!

    Reply
  • October 21, 2012 at 2:23 pm
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    Natzilla! 🙂

    Reply
  • October 21, 2012 at 9:09 pm
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    fandom terrifies me….. and yet, i'm part of it….. i luv fandom

    Reply
  • October 26, 2012 at 11:18 pm
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    Thumbs up if you paused it every time to get a good look at the paintings.

    Reply
  • November 6, 2012 at 6:39 pm
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    WHY DO PEOPLE WASTE THEIR TALENT LIKE THIS??!?!?!??! We're screwed man! Nobody produces anything original any more!

    Reply
  • November 7, 2012 at 2:01 am
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    great video , suscribed

    Reply
  • November 11, 2012 at 9:28 pm
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    I don't get how somebody is wasting their talent, fan art is a great way to refine your skill while channeling your passion for a show/book/game/etc. and also it's a fantastic way to get your name out there. People may come for the fan art but they stay for your talent as an artist. Not to mention not everyone wants to go professional, for some it maybe a hobby not their career choice.

    Reply
  • November 11, 2012 at 9:29 pm
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    aww you guys forgot fan music. Can we get a special on that?

    Reply
  • November 14, 2012 at 12:39 am
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    I started doing fan art of characters when I was little and later it inspired me to create my own characters. It improved my artwork and makes me feel a part of the fandom by contributing my opinions or ideas on the show.

    Reply
  • November 20, 2012 at 10:21 pm
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    Sam Spratt's work is the only variation of the rage faces I've ever respected.

    Reply
  • November 30, 2012 at 12:10 am
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    yes, fan art and fanfic-ness is insane, we like to turn consulting detectives into hammerhead sharks and whatever John is into hedgehogs who wear red underpants!

    Reply
  • December 1, 2012 at 4:26 pm
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    What is this tumblr everyone talkn about?

    Reply
  • December 3, 2012 at 5:59 pm
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    id much rather do cocaine than get back into tumblr

    Reply
  • December 8, 2012 at 8:10 pm
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    And why is there no petition to make fan art legal?

    Reply
  • December 13, 2012 at 4:40 pm
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    Fan art is definatly not the most original thing in the world, but it defiantly can start you upon your own track.

    Reply
  • December 14, 2012 at 5:47 am
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    I think it is legal, but I don't think you can profit from it. Don't take my word for it, I just heard it through the grape vine.

    Reply
  • December 14, 2012 at 5:50 am
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    It's like a blog site that allows you to follow a ton of other blogs. It's surprisingly addicting.

    Reply
  • December 20, 2012 at 10:08 pm
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    I'm doing comics about marceline and Finn they get married and stuff Finn dies after like 80 years and marceline did 't age at all then she goes off and lives as a wild animal

    Reply
  • December 31, 2012 at 8:39 pm
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    is it okay to make your own characters? cause if it is I got some crazy ideas I want to share! 😀

    Reply
  • January 4, 2013 at 12:54 am
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    Delicious

    Reply
  • January 4, 2013 at 11:52 pm
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    So… Batman doing a handstand on the cn tower isn't creative?

    Reply
  • January 13, 2013 at 10:36 am
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    Fan art should be legalized!

    Reply
  • January 25, 2013 at 1:31 am
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    Fan Art is Art by all definitions. Can an artist really lock himself in a white room and come up with some thing completely new and original: can she make something new that relates to nothing else ever done before.
    Humans shape their world through interpretation and imagination: creating or expanding their world and worlds that do not exist.

    Reply
  • January 27, 2013 at 12:18 am
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    I LOVE fan art.

    Reply
  • January 27, 2013 at 4:52 am
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    I'd be way more into fan art if there weren't so many horribly disgusting fan-made items about Adventure Time, threatening to ruin the show for me.

    Reply
  • January 27, 2013 at 4:54 am
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    Sure mang, peeps do it all the time! 🙂

    Reply
  • January 29, 2013 at 12:03 am
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    Look at 10:00

    Reply
  • January 29, 2013 at 11:56 pm
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    You missed out on a very good story,

    Reply
  • January 31, 2013 at 10:34 pm
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    @Sean Fitz-Gerald I know what you mean. On deviantart you use filters to only view appropriate fanart

    Reply
  • February 1, 2013 at 11:48 am
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    If you go by that logic, drawing *anything* that exists is uncreative.

    Reply
  • February 1, 2013 at 10:20 pm
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    If it weren't for the power rangers fanart when I was in gr.1, I wouldn't be drawing today

    Reply
  • February 2, 2013 at 4:42 am
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    I love this so much. Words cannot even express how happy I am to know of such a community like the "fan art" community. This is why I love art and the internet combined.

    Reply
  • February 2, 2013 at 9:17 pm
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    The url for this vid ends in o_O haha

    Reply
  • February 9, 2013 at 8:19 am
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    I love that the end of the url for this vid ends in "o_O"

    Haha. ♥

    Reply
  • February 18, 2013 at 8:09 pm
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    4:31 LOL

    Reply
  • February 28, 2013 at 2:57 am
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    You know what never gets old? Hearing someone say "fanart isn't Art." Then observing the reaction when you point out that for hundreds of years artists were almost exclusively focused on producing works inspired by if not based wholly upon scenes from the bible. Think bout it, how many paintings have been made depicting jesus on the cross? But I don't see many people saying that only the first person to paint it was an artist and everyone else a bunch of un-creative fans.

    Reply
  • March 3, 2013 at 11:08 pm
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    i cried about fionna and cake, ngl

    Reply
  • April 12, 2013 at 3:20 am
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    Accurate description of my life. Fandoms…

    Reply
  • April 25, 2013 at 4:34 am
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    C xc. ,c opp popfcvnbnm

    . /
    Pp/

    Reply
  • May 9, 2013 at 4:29 pm
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    I never knew that, very fascinating stuff.

    Reply
  • May 13, 2013 at 4:11 am
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    I cam here for Adventure Time.

    Reply
  • May 20, 2013 at 9:32 am
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    DOCTOR WHO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  • May 31, 2013 at 3:19 am
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    I don't know how people do this shit. I tried to draw a tree yesterday and got so angry I had to lie down and count to ten.

    Reply
  • July 23, 2013 at 1:46 pm
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    All these vids are so inspiring! :'D

    Reply
  • September 14, 2013 at 3:00 am
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    I love how sherlockians are the moon moons of the fandoms.

    Reply
  • September 16, 2013 at 11:05 pm
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    There was a female artist in the spotlight and they made a big deal out of her art, you vou have notice it if you had payed attention to the video instead of finding sexisom in it.

    Reply
  • September 21, 2013 at 7:59 pm
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    Please add credits: chouette-e. deviantart. com

    Reply
  • September 30, 2013 at 4:01 pm
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    Interesting video about fan art…

    Reply
  • October 16, 2013 at 3:57 am
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    Haha pretty much all the Sherlock stuff is dead serious btw.

    Reply
  • October 16, 2013 at 4:00 am
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    And it all goes back to Tumblr….

    Reply
  • October 24, 2013 at 6:20 pm
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    the only had 3 artists. why does it have to be about sex to you?

    Reply
  • November 8, 2013 at 5:27 am
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    I'm one of those people that can't get into doing fanart. I love watching fan art of course, unless its sonic or mlp spam, but I never enjoyed producing fan art 😛

    Reply
  • December 31, 2013 at 10:58 am
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    [silently raises hand as a Sherlockian]

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  • March 10, 2014 at 9:15 pm
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    [whispers] but johnlock is real

    Reply
  • May 14, 2014 at 12:58 pm
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    Заебись)

    Reply
  • May 17, 2014 at 8:12 pm
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    Hola a Todos Soy Nuevo en youtube porfa denmen like porfaaaaaaa

    Reply
  • July 14, 2014 at 6:09 pm
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    Da fuck u show only m+m slash =_=

    Reply
  • July 14, 2014 at 6:09 pm
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    Da fuck u show only m+m slash =_=

    Reply
  • August 17, 2014 at 6:14 am
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    I make A LOT of fan art!! I do creepypastas and anime!! 😀

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  • March 15, 2015 at 5:01 pm
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    The Sherlockians even have a webseries (yes I am very happy to be in this insane fandom).

    Reply
  • May 21, 2017 at 11:19 pm
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    You see these on DeviantArt.

    Reply
  • January 21, 2018 at 1:01 pm
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    That Chihuahua one, oh my God.

    Reply

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