This topic applies mainly to still (non animated) works created in 3D packages. I’ve seen some truly amazing things on these and other forums and I’m been wondering whether this medium will be elevated to true art in the mind of the general public.
Certainly those here would agree that it is true art but I have yet to see mainstream exibitions featuring this type of work. Or people hanging this work in homes, offices, etc. Or universities offering studies on interpretation of CG work. In essense, will it become a true artform at the level of traditional oil paintings, or even stage, or music. These mediums are all studied or admired based on their content but 3D work is usually only studied based on the technical techniques used to create it, not on the composition itself.
Given how new this field is, it normally would only be a matter of time before this recognition took place. For example, film was regarded as a non intellectual medium when it first appeared at the turn of the 20th century and was never compared in the same sentence with an established artform such as the stage. The same holds true for rock music, which at first was frowned upon by “respected” critics but is now considered a classic and important art form.
I think 3D cgi is still in this new state. The general public finds the imagery and stories of Pixar, etc entertaining and enjoys the benefits of visual effects in gaming, live action film, etc. But yet, few people outside of this field spend any time admiring the types of individual works we see on these forums and even fewer could consider putting a framed print of one in their home or taking a class which discusses the themes in 3D works.
One issue that comes to mind, and I know others may disagree, is that 3D art is easier that traditional media. I think this is especially true in the minds of those not involved in the field. For instance, when you look at a work by Rembradt or John Waterhouse, part of the appreciation of the work comes from the admiration of the skill of the artist. The work before you is obviously the result of years of learning, observation, artistic skill, and developing technique. Many people think that cgi is only a few steps above clicking the “make pretty picture” button and that the computer does a lot of the work for you.
And I think that is true for the most part. Not to say, that developing quality work does not require the same level of skill, observation, and technique, becuase it does. Compared to a traditional medium, such as oils, it requires many of the same skills; lighting, form, observation of references, texture, technique. However, I think the computer makes learning and reaching these skills much, much easier than doing so by a brush and canvas. I have attempted oils in the past and did not reach any level of sophistication. However, I have been using XSI for a year now and have produced far superior work in 6 months than I would have in years using a traditional medium.
This is not to discount the artists here because I am in awe of some of these works and they inspire me to continue building my skills. I realize their results display every bit of talent and technical knowledge that any “traditional” master would posses. I;m just wondering if this perception is exaggerated by others and will be fueled by the growing sophistication of 3D apps so that CGI work will never be as widely recognized and regarded as it should.