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Submitted on
January 24, 2013
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Traditional and Digital Mixed Media

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 3:50 PM

Fix That Miscat! is a series of articles aiming to  help you distinguish between galleries that are commonly confused or  abused in the category system here on deviantART. In this occasion we'll  talk about Mixed Media, both Traditional and Digital.

Mixed Media

Mixed  Media within deviantArt refers to artwork in the making of which more  than one medium has been employed. For example, a drawing that combines  color pencils, watercolors and inks in the same canvas.

hope by ryky
Music for my eyes by NekroXIII

To  be considered as Mixed Media, an artwork needs to combine 2 or more  traditional or digital mediums. However a big misconception is that  Mixed Media refers only to artworks combining digital AND traditional  and this is not entirely true. The combination can also be between traditional mediums only or digital mediums only and in fact, when you intend to submit to this category, you'll find that  you'll have to choose between one of the following:

Traditional Mixed Media

In Traditional Art, Mixed Media involves the combination of two or more traditional techniques such as oils, pastels, watercolors, charcoal, pencils, collage, acrylics, ink, etc.

 Stellar Horse by hontor Hyena by Skia
 Light bringer by AlviaAlcedo DOODLE: AWESOME MONSTERS!!! by vicenteteng

Digital Mixed Media

In Digital Art, Mixed Media involves the combination of two or more digital techniques such as digital painting, vector, vexel, 3D, photomanipulation, fractals, etc.

Reawakening by mOsk Plague Ship Sails into Korvosa by yanimator
Line-Dots-Seperate by YukoRabbit Inhale Exhale - The 7th Hour by emilieleger

One of the most common situations when it's difficult to determine if an artwork should go into one category or the other it's with Photomanipulations. To read more about the differences between Photomanipulations and Digital Mixed Media click here

So, what about combining both Digital and Traditional?

As explained earlier, Mixed Media is a combination of mediums, which can be between traditional only or digital only, so what about those that combine both?

deviantArt doesn't have a gallery dedicated to these pieces that combine both digital and traditional techniques, so it's up to you to determine which one is more predominant and then choose the more appropiate category. For example, a drawing done with pencils, scanned and then added other digital elements alongside other heavy edition should go to Digital Art.

Gift: The Fox and The Maiden by Edenized

If the traditional part of the artwork is more predominant, by adding just some minor digital elements and other minor adjustments, then it should go to Traditional Art

Sanve portrait by Nordeva

I hope this makes it more clear about what is and what isn't Mixed Media. Stay devious! - Thiefoworld & Astralseed

Who takes suggestions for these categories?

Digital Art > Mixed Media
Thiefoworld & vowbreaker

Traditional Art > Mixed Media
Astralseed, STelari, deshrubber & SRudy

An in depth explanation of what is Digital Media and what should and shouldn't go in this category.
Add a Comment:
KALgraphics Featured By Owner 5 days ago  Student General Artist
Thank you, you helped clarifying this issue for me
TenchuandAnimeluver Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2014  Student Traditional Artist
I wanna do both! I have a lot more to learn! ^^
nekoluver15 Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2013
this was so helpful!!
ArtByCher Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2013   Traditional Artist
Magenta-Fantasies Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2013  Professional General Artist
That's very helpful; I've been wondering this for years. :D

I still think there should be a specific category for Mixed Media art that is both Traditional and Digital, though.
Yamcha-Wolf Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Combining digital and traditional media is amazing and I commend anyone and everyone who can do. Fusing the primary human aspect behind art with today's modern capabilities is the best of both worlds. Why do one when you can have both. :)
Raph1966 Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2013  Student General Artist
This is good to know. I recently did a pastel (traditional) work and retouched it in digital. Just a layer of Corel "pastels" to darken it. Otherwise it's still the same old traditional work. Thanks for clearing things up for us. :D
rjonesdesign Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
This is still confusing. In my case, I am told I should put all my vectors in mixed media (99% vector, 1% raster for outer glows or flares, which are non-destructive, as Illustrator redraws them when sized). You state here that using vector and a vexel technique in the same piece makes it mixed media. I don't think my work should be mixed media at all since it is all in Illustrator using vector elements, its the filter that I put ON the vector element that makes it not vector?
I was told to put my work in vector and hope the vector gm doesn't move all my work to mixed media. So am I a vectorist, vexelist, or a mixed media artist?
I have always considered myself a vectorist because I work primarily in Illustrator. Anytime I use a Photoshop raster effect, I call it vexel, and everyone was happy before. I'm tired of having to fight to stay in vector and vexel. :(
Thiefoworld Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2013
But you are talking about effects done IN illustrator aren't you? I'm not a vector expert, but those should count as vector elements :o I would ask ^ChewedKandi, the Vector CV about this though, but in my opinion, if they are scalable they should considered vectors.
rjonesdesign Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Ugh, she is the one that has always wanted my art out of the vector gallery in the first place. I'm so tired of this, I already moved most of my art to scraps and now this, so I don't really belong in ANY gallery at dA. Why can't I just be a vector artist?
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