The "GFX" community isn't dead it just moved

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Ultra.Magnus, Oct 20, 2018.

  1. Ultra.Magnus

    Ultra.Magnus Member

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    Hey Everyone

    I'm a long time member and owe a lot to this site for getting me into design. I ended up even going to school for it and now its my job (due in large part to the experiences I had here).

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    Anyway I stop here from time to time to see whats going on and I see some talk about sites like these being dead..which is true....compared to the old days this place is a ghost town.

    Thats not because no one is designing stuff anymore though. From what I can see there is still a big community of young hungry guys/gals that are pumping out designs left and right!!

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    The landscape is very different though...on GR and other sites it was all about sigs tags and avys ..this isnt the case now.

    Now there is a huge focus on video game streaming and esports so logos, stream overlay design, social media avatars and header images. Alot of guys are independent but there are little organizations "orgs" that have sprung up as offshoots of these esports/streaming teams.

    Here are some links to some of the designers I follow:
    https://twitter.com/NEORFX
    https://twitter.com/moushn
    https://twitter.com/Acu4D
    https://twitter.com/_LancePorter
    https://twitter.com/OwenMRoe

    These are just a few but there are MANY MANY more

    If this is still the type of stuff that interest you I suggest getting active on social media and following along, keep working and getting better and sharing some of that with the community that is STILL AROUND.
     
  2. Shaggy

    Shaggy Administrator Staff Member

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    Wouldn't mind pushing that on here to be honest.
     
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  3. Ultra.Magnus

    Ultra.Magnus Member

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    Yea dude it would def help to make GR relevant again to a new generation of designers for sure
     
  4. twiisted_kaos

    twiisted_kaos JDM PEARL

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    Very keen observation and I approve of this message!
     
  5. xlink

    xlink GR's Tech Enthusiast

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    I think your post has a lot of truth to it. There does need to be an evolution.
     
  6. FKR-Ender

    FKR-Ender Senior Member

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    Makes a lot of sense. Boards like this are dinosaurs, kind of like me lol
    Was never a huge contributor but I had a lot of fun on sites like these.
     
  7. Amora-Bunny

    Amora-Bunny Well-Known Member

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    I just came back - the issue with GR that I'm seeing is that it caters towards forum signatures, which are dying out as websites go away from that kind of thing (Think Twitter). But the graphics creation certainly can help us as web devs.
     
  8. SwAT

    SwAT Well-Known Member

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    You are definitely right. People are still making graphics and photoshop content but it has definitely shifted from renders and signatures to many of the things you have mentioned. And yes, part of the blame can be rested on forums falling out of fashion compared to the other popular social media sites like reddit, instagram, and twitter. I'm going to use part of a message I sent to Shaggy as a jumping off point for my ideas/strategy for this site.

    Message:
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    Overall, I think to make this site viable again it needs to pivot from what it used to be. Nostalgia might get people back, but it wont get people to stay unless there is new content. I don't know how popular renders and signature are currently because I've been out of the scene for a while. But there is still definitely a market for photoshop content. For example: https://www.reddit.com/r/photoshopbattles/ where people have contests about making the best (funniest, most technical, most creative) edits of a particular image. There is a lot of popularity too for animated gifs where people edit scenes from shows to make jokes or show technical skill. There is still and will always be an audience for traditional art or digital art/painting. I wonder if this site could also be a way to foster newcomers to graphics and photoshop in general. I remember tutorials always being popular, so maybe that could attract people? I don't know, just brainstorming.

    I think it is possible to tap into that group of people, but I don't really know how. I hate to keep mentioning reddit, instagram, twitter, etc, but those are our competitors. People only have so much time to browse and participate in forums, and you have to make GR more appealing then the other options.
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    You can probably get a lot of old members here again with an e-mail blast because this place clearly creates a nostalgia factor for a lot of people. This site has also launched a lot of graphics careers, so there are people that are invested. I think to get it popular again maybe we could emphasize the marketplace aspect of the site. Credits were very popular and the quest to get more kept people coming back. Maybe there could be a way to integrate some type of cryptocurrency into the forum? Whether its an existing currency (Bitcoin, Etherium, Litecoin, etc) or maybe its possible to roll out a gamerender specific one? but that would be much harder. People were always interested in exchanging credits for USD and vice versa, so perhaps making the credit system more robust could attract people. You could develop a marketplace where people create and buy/sell graphics related content. I'm imagining almost a fiver type of system but focused on graphics. I don't know if the cryptocurrency angle is even viable, but I think the marketplace and economy of the site are critical to its success.

    Another angle that was very popular when it was out (and was personally my favorite) was the IRC channel. Although IRC still exists, it is definitely fallen out of favor for Discord, which was primarily a game chatting system, but has become a way for communities to gather around certain topics or certain personalities such as twitch streamers or youtubers. I think you are spot on in saying that demand for content has shifted to things like overlays and logos. The site is still "game"renders, so you could possibly appeal to those gamers and streamers and make this a place to get new graphics content.

    Additionally, there is the whole tutorial/educational angle. Personally, I originally came to this site to learn how to make signatures and learn about renders. Originally, I just wanted a signature for myself that I could use on other forums, but I found that this site was more active, more interesting, and had more to explore and learn. Perhaps there could be a part of the site, separate from the forums, where tutorials and educational materials are stored? Hopefully people would google how to do something graphics wise, find this website, learn from the tutorial and keep coming back for more. Eventually they find the forum and participate here.

    Unfortunately the internet has grown a lot in the 15 or so years since this site's heyday. The demand for graphics content is still there, but you have to make this more appealing than the existing social media communities which is no easy task. Maybe a strategic relationship with a streamer or youtuber could help you gain more members.

    Maybe I'm totally on the wrong path. Maybe you really want to focus on professional graphic designers and developing a place where people can network and learn more advanced skills. Focus on power users and niche content, rather than the mass appeal stuff that has been gobbled up by reddit, twitter and the like. I have no clue where they existing traffic comes from, and what search terms lead people to this website, but maybe that information could indicate which strategy is the most optimal.

    Finally, this site needs its own social media presence (on twitter, instagram) to participate with the existing graphics community. Engage with those people and show how much more they could learn/see/do by being a part of gamerenders. Show them that what is on social media is only the surface. Gamerenders has depth.

    I didn't touch on 3D content or webdesign, but those were also popular types of content on this site that I remember, so they could also be part of any strategy for growth.

    Cheers to anyone that made it through my whole post. I'm happy to help in anyway that I can because I still have a soft spot for this site. I look forward to hearing other ideas. Hello to all my friends on here, its been a while.
     
  9. madmav

    madmav Well-Known Member

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    Another blast from the past! There's a name I haven't seen in a while, great post too.
     
  10. Scamp

    Scamp Well-Known Member

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    /wave
     
  11. Shaggy

    Shaggy Administrator Staff Member

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    The thing is, an the Game Render concept work with he new version of GFX? Can I keep the name and just run with a new setup on the site?
     
  12. Porknpogn

    Porknpogn Member

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    I think so.
    The domain itself is nostalgic and should be kept, even if you do decide to implicate new ideas.
     
  13. Mycro

    Mycro New Member

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    I know this is a shot in the dark at commenting, as it seems the activity is so low and I'm very happy I found this post. It's absolutely correct about the direction of the gfx demands. Leaning towards social media, gaming consoles and the like.

    By the way, I'm a return member. Posted here back in 2012 under my original screenname Mycrospyder (don't have the email so couldn't reset password). I know fkr-ender and helped with JakoolDesigns back in the day.

    I've recently started a subreddit page on reddit to try and get back into the graphic design fun that I used to have. r/SpyderGraphics

    It's barely a month old and I've already started to see traffic for requests on console gamerpics, twitter profile pics and other items. The need for graphics are still around, that's for sure, it's just finding the right people to provide them.

    Now I know this site has had a long time of success and it's a shame that the demand for it dwindled over the years (I know from experience of this after trying to get Jakool's back on the radar and failing) but if any of the designers that worked on this site are looking for somewhere to spend some time and join back into a growing community for current social media demands...then please come join up with me or check it out for yourself.

    Hope all is well with all of you...and HI ENDER!!
     
  14. FiReWaLL

    FiReWaLL Well-Known Member

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    Ah, it's been awhile. Just bought a new MacBook and going to get back into it all again. GR is actually where I started (name was immune aka mune around other forums). GR was detrimental for me managing to be classified in semi-professional in my work, it's where I got my start really. I know I am necro posting but hey, it's been a minute.
     
  15. madmav

    madmav Well-Known Member

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    we're still here
     

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