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As a Community Volunteer - I do as much or as little within the community that I feel comfortable doing. We're not pressured to do this and that, we don't even have to give a Daily Deviation every day, we choose how we promote our selected galleries/chats and forums and we're not fixed to any specific rule on how much or how little we do. But I do believe that it's important to share with you just what the community volunteers do and why we do it. More importantly it's so easy to get lost on this site full of many people - and miss out on the awesome that's going on. So I'm going to share with you exactly what the latest awesome is...
Almost every week since October last year the Community Volunteers have been working hard both independently and as part of small teams to bring You Project Educate.
Project Educate is about bringing forward art forms whether they are popular or overlooked and giving up to date features, interviews and history that will help you learn a bit more about whatever you are interested in. Sometimes it's also fascinating to step outside of your comfort zone and look at what other people do for Art that you might never have tried. Many Community Volunteers hold chats and critique nights, question and answer sessions and live tutorials on how to create your own masterpieces so it's almost like going to a huge art fayre without having to leave your house.
That's why I'm writing a journal today to give a bit more insight into project educate. Whether or not the current week focuses on your interests, it's important to share the information and support it as much as possible. We love feedback, we love comments and above all we love hearing what we could do better next time, or next week. For Project Educate of 2011/2012 lots of people worked hard polling answers and questioning people on what they would like to see and I strongly feel that we are providing that now!
How do I know what's going on each week?
You can see the full and up to date schedule right Here which will tell you what the current week is and give you a link to the Community Volunteer that will be running it. Right now it's ^SanguineVamp with a Whole month of Photo-manipulation!
Now that we have #projecteducate the group - it's much easier just to head over, join or watch and get all the updates you need throughout your preferred weeks!
How can I get involved in Project Educate?
Although Project Educate is headed up by each specific community volunteer to the relevant galleries and chat/forums - there are many opportunities for you to express your views on your chosen art forms. If you see something coming up in the schedule and you want to help out, then note the Community Volunteer and offer your services - we don't bite! Many Community Volunteers are also looking for people to Interview so if you feel you are a strong example of a specific genre of art or your know somebody that is then put your name forward. We're also well tuned to running Community Weeks now - so if you want to contribute an article then do let the team know by noting the group!
But what do I get out of it?
Well for starters there are the material things - the prizes, the chance to be interviewed or featured - the feedback you can get on your work. Then there is the taking part - yeah yeah, it's always said isn't it? But I knew nothing about Fractal Art before reading `SuicideBySafetyPin's article Fractal Week. And then I stopped by the chats - wow! Did you know about the 1,000 Paper Cranes Project? Well you can find out loads more now from the Community Projects Week. There is so much to learn and pick up on - not to mention join in with. I constructed Photography Basics Week alongside `ScENeYmE and learnt LOADS just by researching for the article aboutNight Photography.
^DistortedSmile heads up the Art History Project and you can find a full and most awesome article about it all Right Here. The Art History Project is running much like Project Educate with Community Volunteers and members of the deviantART community writing articles to educate those who are interested on the History and Origins of many types of Art. There is so much to learn so keep an eye on the blog to see the updated articles.
Can I get involved?
Absolutely - if you have something that you think is worth contributing you can note #ArtHistoryProject and see if there is any way for you to be involved. Whether you're an Art Major or not, you might just fancy Surrealism as a bit of a hobby or quite like the look of a certain period of historical art - you can get involved.
These are just two of the huge amount of projects going on courtesy of the CV team. There are official contests, unofficial ones, features, interviews and articles happening everyday. We Celebrate Diversity every week with an article that's the baby of ^pica-ae - We run Chat Events every month having already run SIX during October! All of the Photography CVs contribute on a weekly basis to the Photography Weekly Articles to ensure that you're getting lots of fresh material in your inboxes. ^3wyl highlights the unknown and Under-appreciated Talent. There are Artisan Craft Features and Creeping Wednesdays as well as the increasingly popular Did You Know? articles.
Who To Follow...
You don't need to watch individual Community Volunteers if you don't want to - #communityrelations is the group to be to keep up to date with official contest announcements from the CVs, News, Newcomers and Departures and much more. Joining as a member is automatic after you click and you won't regret it!
So What About DDs?
Oh yes! Daily Deviations! With all of the excitement and hard work that goes into the above I completely forgot about those! We do them too. Some of you have noticed, many of you moan, lots of you suggest and a few of you are genuinely grateful for the time and efforts that go in to selecting and featuring a piece of art. Lately I've noticed comments asking what the point is of DDs, why there aren't certain DDs every day for a certain category and why Volunteers are generally lazy and don't do anything. Do you really think that's the case? Honestly? The Community Volunteer team (the clue is in the name) is made up entirely of Volunteers.
We love doing what we do, if we didn't we definitely wouldn't be here in the positions that we are in. But actually, above Daily Deviations stands the opportunity to have a platform to shout about art from. Daily Deviations are great, but if we just gave them and did nothing else on deviantART, I do honestly believe that it would become quite a boring place for many. News articles, features, interviews, competitions, they are what gets the community going and they are what people thrive on. Daily Deviations occasionally get a controversial discussion going and they always highlight talent, but that is all they do. A lot of the time they aren't even a reward for hard work - many of the shots I have featured are incredible and I love them - but it might have taken the artist two minutes to achieve them. Where Photography is concerned especially, sometimes it's about being in the right place at the right time.
Don't apply or strive to become a Community Volunteer if all you want to do is give Daily Deviations. I will be the first to admit that it was the biggest and bestest attraction about joining the team back when I did. Then I grew up. You need to be so much more than that, you need to be like any existing member of the team right now, or better! We all have flaws, we all forget things and (this is the big one) we all have real lives. But we love what we do, that's why we are here. And if you want to be a part of that, you need the same attitude.
Daily Deviations are a huge attraction of this site, and I love being able to select them. But we aren't obliged to do so and a lot more of our input, efforts and community spirit shines through via many of our articles, contest and events - either through our own personal dA accounts or through the projects mentioned above and #communityrelations So do yourself a favour today, watch a CV, join the CR group, follow #projecteducate or head over to #ArtHistoryProject - delve into the team list and see if there is a series of articles for your favourite genre - immerse yourself in the other side of being a CV.