What is Emoticon Art? As founder of #Emoti-Art, that's a question I get asked a lot. What criteria is used that sets one piece apart from another?
First, it should be noted that I am of the belief that all emoticons are art. I feel a level of skill is needed to make them, and even a simple static emote is creative. Sure, it may not be high-art, such as a child's sketch is not a Mona Lisa. But there is still effort behind it and that's important. For more thoughts on this issue from the emoticon community, check out this article.
When we use the term "Emoticon Art," it's a classification, much like Chat-Friendly. Traditionally, Emoticon Art pieces are larger and more detailed. Because of their size and theme, they are often not useful for chats or comments. They are pieces that are simply lovely to sit and look at, admiring the details and pixelling, or marvelling at the high-level of skill and complexity of the animation.
Of course, the question often arises, can "chat-friendly" emoticons be emoticon-art? That's tricky and there are different schools of thought on the issue. Personally, I feel they can, but it's more of an exception to the rule. For the mostpart, chat-friendly are functional and not meant to simply be admired. Chat-friendly emotes that fall into the "art" category usually include additional pixel art, props, disguises, or other features which make the piece stand apart from regular emoticons. While I have seen some amazing chat-friendly emotes, the bottom line is that even if you have an out-of-this world emoticon smile (or wave or wink), chances are you're not gonna sit there for several minutes admiring it. That's not its purpose.
Visual Purpose is the phrase that is used to describe most Emoticon-Art. It's to be admired, and perhaps used as decoration. But, again, not all visual purpose emotes are emoticon art.
Whatever the case, Emoticon Art is a valuable part of the emoticon community. It is a cross between standard emoticons and general pixel art. It gives emoticonists a chance to spread their pixelling wings and create something special. This article showcases a collection of some emoticon art favorites. This is just a small collection of what you can find around deviantART. Be sure to check out the Visual Purpose gallery and #Emoti-Art to see even more great pieces.
All of these pieces are part of #Emoti-Art
When creating this article, I asked `Synfull if she would be so kind and give me a list of some of her favorite emoticon art pieces. Here's her collection:
Since I love to spread the Emoticon Art love, I also asked `Ravenswd to give me a group of his favorites. Here are his picks: