It is fun sometimes to peek behind the curtain of an artist. As a photographer and a digital artist, I often work on pieces where the transition from the first original photo up to the final rendering makes for a dramatic change. Photography sets the stage for a great piece of art. If the photo isn't interesting to start with, then the final digital art wont be either. Photography is the beginning, digital art is the end. What takes place in between are a thousand small moves. In those small moves a story emerges. Digital art is not just about sitting in front of a computer and creating fractals or anime girls with huge eyes. Its about composing a story that the audience can see in the art and add their own details to. This is why a great photo must begin the process. If I as the artist, can grasp the beginnings of a story within the photo and then let it emerge naturally into the final art, then I've done what I set out to do. But there is one more element that must be created to make it a great piece of art. That is emotion.
Think of it this way. The story "Jack and Jill went up the hill" is just a story. Its easy to tell and probably wouldn't create a very good piece of art. There is no emotion. But if the story was "Jack and Jill started up the hill until Jack said its to high, I'm going home and went back down the hill without Jill." creates a simple emotional component to the story. The story is now more interesting because there is emotion within it. Jill is now alone on the hill. Jack is a bit of a pussy because he can't handle the walk. Emotion. Tell the story with you art, but tell the emotions also. In the piece below, the emotion is all in the title. Miss Rosa Marie the boat now takes on the human emotions of death and a final resting place. The piece is no longer just about a boat, but about a majestic old lady. Emotion.
But as I said, its fun to show the beginning and the end so that the viewer can get an idea of what goes into the process. Here is Miss Rosa Marie.