A mother at my daughter’s school, after learning that I was an illustrator, commented something to the effect that she knows it’s so much easier for someone to make art now that there are programs like Photoshop out there to do it for you. I informed her that, even with Photoshop, it still took work to create decent art and that there was no automatic “Create Art” button in Photoshop. She reluctantly conceded that, but responded that she thought that it was only a matter of time until there really was. I tried to explain why that wasn’t practical and wouldn’t happen, but she didn’t believe me. Her faith in the possibilities of tomorrow’s technology was fierce, if simplistic. It was a very strange conversation and I came away from it feeling vaguely insulted.
So, in case there is any doubt by anyone out there, I would like to say:
Digital art takes just as much talent as any other genre of art. A digital painting is usually created by an artist using a stylus on a graphics tablet. It’s very similar to using a pen and paper or a brush and canvas. It’s just another medium, with its own techniques and challenges. Although Photoshop does have some very cool, arty filters, there is no automatic feature to create art. Good artwork, digital or not, takes work. It always will.