I've had various people ask me what they can do to get noticed on DA so I'll write a little journal about my experience with various methods of getting your stuff out there.
I am not at all claiming to be popular myself, I'm just providing feedback.
1. USE GROUPS Seriously people. It's probably one of THE best ways to get exposure. There are so many groups too! You will always be able to find one that is suited to your art. Groups are effective because it gets your artwork exposed to a new batch of watchers (the people who watch the group) besides your own. Try to join groups with lots of members and watchers, as these will give you the most views. A really great group to gain exposure from is
2. USE THE THUMBSHARE FORUM AND CHAT Lots of people go to the thumbshare forum and the thumbchat to find new artists to watch and to share their works. These are great places to meet new people and aquire feedback on your deviations.
3. DRAW FANART You don't need to dedicate your entire gallery to fanart or be unoriginal. A few fanart pieces can really help you get your artwork out there as more people will be searching for it. Also let's not say things like "OH SO UR TELLING US TO SELL OUT AND DRAW FANART EVEN IF WE DON'T LIKE THE SHOW!". There has to be at least ONE or two shows/games/comic series that you like. We can all find things to creat fanart for that we can enjoy. I won't lie though, drawing something from a very popular show is more effective.
4. HOST CONTESTS This can be a little more challenging than the other things I mentioned since you will need prizes. A good way to get prizes is by temporarily opening point commissions and then when you get enough, start a contest offering premium memberships. Free art can also be a good prize. This will sound harsh, but art as a prize is usually only effective if most people find your works to be good. The reasons contests help is because everyone likes prizes! More people will want to come to your page if they know you have an event going on that they can benefit from. It's a win win for everyone! CHECK OUT MY FRIEND MADI'S CONTEST:anything-artists.deviantart.co…
5. DO ART TRADES When you do a trade with another user, you also get exposed to their watchers. It's a great chance to get more people oogling your gallery.
Just doing a few of these things will help you a whole lot! Personally, I think groups are one of, if not THE best method.
I got noticed by drawing MLP fanart and i will admit, my original works aren't noticed that much except for my friends and people who've been watching me for awhile. Not to mention my shitty coloring skills but i am doing Art Trades at the moment and this is helpful~
I gotta say that number 3 is a tricky one. Sometimes the thing you like and are doing fanart isn't really popular, and thus won't gain you much. Other times, the stuff you will do fanart for is ridiculously popular, and yes will gain you watchers etc but it's only short-time benefit. Most of those people you gained attention via drawing fanart, will stop paying attention to you when you will stop doing fanart for that particular thing.
Well, Tips will always be tips, and practice will always be a practice. I kinda have the trouble with tip number 3, because it reminds me of MySpace Whores (see this to understand what I mean: [link]).
Also with number 1, I do not think this tip works that good. Here, let me show you an example: [link] Well, it is explained what that is, it has it's place in groups and favorite galleries. But... looking on how many groups have it, and how many likes it has... You don't think it should get a little more than it has now?
Also, I think the first tip o gain popularity should be 'make our nick sound decent' - Because in the marketing field, trademark can make a lot of difference. I know this from personal experience - That DA nick of mine was supposed to be a joke of myself, not to be taken seriously. Yet so Many people take it literally, that I started to loath it - and I can't change it without losing an account. I am, literally, paying the price for lack of thought-process.
I like your ideas although they're already well known but still well done ! BUT all of those ideas require spending LOTS of time on dA. I'm not sure whether it's worth it. I still think the best way to gain popularity is by working on your skills, improving your artworks .
I found the best way to get attention on DA is and always has been to just be an active member of the community and utilize as much as you can. People look at my gallery and assume I get pageviews because of my style... well I got pageviews, favs, and comments long before I even decided on my style! They see a photo and think it's got so much attention because it's in groups- when my stats tell me it's been one of my more popular pieces YEARS before groups. I just interact. Check out the work of others, use groups, use journals, use forums, get involved, do fun community things. I think that's always the best way. There are people on here with no galleries and a lot of watchers and views simply because they're active!
Do you think the contest thing would work for groups as well? I'm afraid my li'l group ain't so popular I don't care so much about personal popularity, but I feel like having an unpopular group sort of defeats the purpose.
I tried the fan art thing. The only problem with it is that most people want to see fan art from a certain fandom ONLY. It really drives certain people away while bringing in others and when you draw other things, those fans end up leaving too.
The groups advice is a good one, but I think if you want the best exposure from them try and find ones that don't get an absolute ton of submissions in short spaces of time, it can be very off-putting for people when their message centre is full up of one group's stuff which they can never get rid of, so they never properly look at it. I think finding a group which has a submission limit or not a massive following is good to avoid this.
Also, going a bit on =vedil 's point, the best way to get popular (if that's what someone really wants from this community) is to just be active on here, keeping their gallery up-to-date without 'spamming' it, and actually trying to self-improve. I think since I started here about 4 and a half years ago, I've posted no more than 3 pieces of fan art, yet have a decent following of people because I keep posting improvements, and asking people how I can improve further. To me, it's all about communicating with your peers.
This is a nice journal and all, but I must admit it makes me sad to see popularity guides in the footer once in a while. I don't get why everyone strive for popularity so much, totally overlooking the important factor - art. That is just sad. Instead of enjoying the amazing world of art and expressing yourself, focusing on improving, people try to become popular and cool, no matter what it takes. So that is why we get lots of quick fan art drawn instead of thoughtful pieces. Don't get me wrong - fan art is okay and there is a lot of absolutely beautiful fan art out of there, but when one draws it because it will make them popular or look cool... it just defeats the purpose of art.
Most people want their art to be seen. If they didn't they would just draw at home and not post online. Some people also try to make a career out of art. being popular doesn't take away from the joy of art, it just makes for more possibilities to make a living and get feedback to improve.
"Most people want their art to be seen. If they didn't they would just draw at home and not post online."
it's the same thing i'm doing
i've used to do a lot of 3d works, but after a bit it started to be more annoying than else having 400+ deviations on a time period of 2 and a half years which almost no one looked, faved or even just commented about.
as you'll see now, the gallery has a quarter of what i had because i made a clean up of ALL the real 3d works and left only those not entirely made by me such as screenshoots from games and a few photos.
i have 13-14 watchers, those who usually comment and/or fave are 2 or 3. once i made a journal asking to watchers what was their method and reasons of watching me, one of said that he likes "silent watching" and that he doesn't fav nor comment for that (personal note, i found that rather contradicting and, maybe exagerating, insulting).
in the past i've been in something like 4-5 groups at once, and of which i had to leave because it was one of those "we don't want newbie artists' works here" groups.
ooh and i've tried multiple times following these "be-popular" guidlines from multiple people. i think you can guess the result given i'm writing this right here.
i've promised myself that i'll re-start posting my 3d works on the 3rd year anniversary from when i joined da, but i think it'll end up like now: no faves, no comments, no one who suggests improvements, no one who asks for stuff, nothing at all.