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~