Monday, November 22, 2010

become a deviant: y/n

It's not a question you ever want to be asked in a work context; not in my area of work anyway! In some, I'm sure it's an asset. But for me, deviant, work, no.

That is, until I asked the manga girls whether they used Facebook. "Well, yeah," they said, "But mostly on Deviantart! Are you on Deviantart? Can we be your friend?"

Errrrrrrrrr. I said. Not yet, but I can be. What's your ID?

I'd picked up an ID on a trawl through online drawing groups years ago, but it had seemed a bit forumy, inexplicable and -- frankly -- grey, and I was sure that any profile, if it still exists, would be a tangle of abandoned fragments. Not to worry though, a shiny new profile is the work of a moment:

... and gives me a convenient place to drop any cartoons, pictures, etc. which I do at the art group which brought all of this up in the first place. I'm still feeling my way, because it's massive, with its own interface querks, dialogue conventions and games -- you can get an idea of the sheer size and breadth from the size of this meme-station:

Here, meme mans a blank drawing game. Fill it in, have fun, invite a friend! I have to say, the focus on creating, on creativity and collaboration is refreshing, healthy and exciting. Interactions seem mostly positive and it's a rich and thrilling environment.

Maybe that moment of "erk!" when you have to tick yes to "become a deviant" does a clever trick. It marks that step into virtual space, that fourth-wall moment where you step into your ID, and embrace the pseudonym, the performance.

It looks like a place where you'd be able easily to shake off your past with a change of ID, and skip through different characters as your interests change. Like somewhere you could successfully play. And that has to be a freedom worth having.