More Thoughts About Art And Organisation

2016 Artwork Art Organisation article

I’m not sure if I’ve talked about this subject before, but I thought that I’d talk briefly about organising the digital copies of art that you make. If you practice making art every day, then you’ll probably end up with a fairly large art collection after a while.

Not to brag or anything, but ever since I started making (and scanning) at least one piece of art per day in 2012, I’ve accumulated over a gigabyte of paintings, drawings and comics. So, how do I keep it in order?

As well as noting the date I drew or painted it (and the date it’s going to be posted online) next to the original copy, I originally organised the digital copies of my art using this simple format for the file names:

[Year] [Artwork/Fan Art] [Title]

For example, if I’d made an original painting called “Daffodils” in 2012, the file name would be “2012 Artwork Daffodils.jpg”. If I’d made a piece of “Star Trek” fan art in the same year, the file name would be “2012 Fan Art Star Trek.jpg”.

This worked fine for a while when I only posted my art on DeviantART, but after I started this blog in 2013, it wasn’t long before there was a (gradually increasing) difference between the days that I posted a particular picture here and when I posted it on DeviantART – whilst I could automatically schedule artwork to be posted here, I couldn’t do this on DeviantArt – hence the difference.

So, I’d sometimes lose track of which painting was next to be posted. So, sometime in 2014, I eventually started using a different title format:

“[Year] [Date it will be posted on WordPress] [Artwork/Fan Art] [Comic series title (optional)] [Title]”

By adding the posting date to my artwork, I was able to easily tell which painting or comic entry came after the previous one when posting on DeviantART. For example, the file name for the webcomic update (for a mini series called “Damania Resurrected”) that will be posted here tonight is “2016 15th August Artwork Damania Resurrected- Reflexes. jpg”.

This can look a bit unwieldely at first but, once you get used to it, it can allow you to find pretty much any painting or comic that you’ve made fairly quickly. Even if I’ve forgotten the title of a particular picture or comic update, I can still find it by looking for other pictures that I made at a similar time.

Of course, different systems work for different people but, if you’re practicing art everyday then it’s usually worth working out some kind of standardised system for the file names of any digital copies that you make.

Although it might not seem like a big issue at first, if you keep practicing regularly for any length of time, then you’ll soon build up a ridiculously large art collection. So, it makes sense to find a system to keep it organised.

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Sorry for such a short (and boring) article, but I hope it was useful 🙂

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