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Krakatoa
Post subject: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 3:53 am
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Colo said on the Yamato Aegis thread:

“No not at all... I've been following this thread with great interest. The discussion here is the discussion I wish we could always have on this board…”

I agree totally with Ian.

It is a pity that this board is so endowed with people who can only supply the “one line superlatives”, what I think of as the “Awesome Brigade”.

For the last 24 hours or so a lot of Shipbucket has gone deathly quiet. Not even the Awesome Brigade is out. Everybody is scared of being seen as being for or against the discussion in Garlic Designs thread.

There is no further discussion, the almighty’s have spoken. There is to be no discussion on a drawings design, only the quality or otherwise of the drawing itself. Which is funny, because the whole reason that my AU thread ‘The Fisherless RN’ was so successful was the discussion on the designs, where the backstories were going, the drawings and everything about the thread. Other members wishing to post drawings, different sets of drawings being done to go with other member visions. The member interaction on that thread has been second to none.

That Hood, has been the best of the AU’s so far. I miss it, but it had run its course. Your choices I could shred to bits because they all have major problems which the owners can never overcome, but those errors are fundamental to those AU’s existence. It is sad that so many of the AU’s on SB have had so little done on how the AU land came into existence. Followed by "can the AU survive in the light of future real life events". The answer to that is ‘no’. The drawings might be good to great - but the drawings are not what makes a successful AU. Without a decent set of histories/backstories for an AU it is just a collection of personal designs.

There are a lot of good to great pixel artists in SB, (even I qualify) and the drawings we all do are pretty much first class. Some of the designs we do are a bit outlandish (see the Incan AU) but they do spur discussion, both good and bad.

It is that discussion that is missing from a lot of the AU’s because the people doing them leave no room for discussion. Everything is cut and dried. That does not make a good AU, it just makes it ‘Awesome’ - think of awesome as a dirty word.

I hope people are wise enough to keep discussion in this thread off of personalities and focused on how to improve discussion in and on AU's.

Nigel. (otherwise known as that rude, awful and most helpful person Krakatoa)


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Tempest
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 8:49 am
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My thoughts are that AUs are where people can let their minds run wild, whether drawing purely fantasy drawing or well thought out ones If people want to be part of the "awesome brigade" and look at the drawing for what it is... a drawing, well thought out or not, or if people want to be a be part of the armchair naval architect club and critic every detail it doesn't matter. It's a bit of fun.

All the best

Tempest.

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Hood
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 9:16 am
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Well I don't think the board has gone quiet over the last 24hrs, on the contrary there is the first real design posted in weeks with the USS Pyro.
I don't see as what happened in GD's thread as being anything less than a friendly disagreement, but this thread has opened an avenue for me to vent my views, which have been building up over the last few weeks.

I don't generally give much concern to the AU or personal designs thread. The aim of this site is, "Shipbucket is a collective group effort to compile a database of ship profiles (drawings) primarily of real life naval vessels depicted in a common style and at a common scale."
So sad then that the real life thread for the past few months has been largely deficient in anything other than Lazer_one's fine icebreaker and arctic vessels and StealthJester's HMS Neptune. The never-were thread has been nicely ticking over with the German capital ship designs by maomatic and Tempest.

Also sad that when questions came up on another site regarding Ace's DX series that I had to assure the other site that SB wasn't just full of kitbash AU stuff and actually could be relied on to document real ships and draw them accurately.

Yet if we look at the AU and personal design pages that's precisely what's been flooding the site, a whole rash of crude primary colour repaints and hideous kitbash jobs with a supporting case of seriously faulty AU scenarios, most of which seem to die after two drawings and others that created 3-4 pages of text yet no drawings at all.

Personally I don't see AUs as having to be all encompassing 100 page reads of history. My view is that an AU should be the glue that holds a series of personal designs together, a fleet. A good AU should explain where the ships come from and what drives their design and to some extent to justify why and how these ships could be manned. Texan Cowboy's Texan AU is a good example of this. Of course with AU's based on real nations we can more easily gauge how a fleet can be afforded and manned and how the ships are designed and the weapons they carry It takes a greater leap of faith to buy into the idea that the 16sq mile island of Zakroynia Pao Pao can support a fleet of ten super-YamatoNimitz class superbattlecarrierships and an army of 500,000 that just occupied 3/4 of Africa. But if Zakroynia Pao Pao has a natty fleet of three very slick looking and well thought out OPVs we can all get on board with that. I could even buy into the super-YamatoNimitz if its well drawn and actually has elements self-drawn and just bashed together and actually makes some sense.

Sometimes I don't care about the backstory, if a drawing is really good then I can make my own story up or just admire it for what it is.
There was nothing in GD's "poor" ships to say they were crappy designs if you simply looked at the image and didn't read the backstory. It is what the author wants it to be, but it can equally be whatever the viewer wants to perceive it as.

A good AU or personal design should educate, Erik_T's personal designs are always thought provoking and educational and I learn a lot from them. Citizen lambda's post-1990 Sovremenniy ideas make me seriously geek-out with the levels of research he's done into Soviet and Russian electronics.
A good AU idea takes time to mature, I give mine at least 2 month's thought in planning even before pixel bashing, in some cases I've discarded them because they weren't good enough to be realistic enough or allow enough ship design scope.

So my list of the role of AUs is (in no particular order):
1) To allow an artist to experiment with style refinements and some "down time" from drawing real ships.
2) To allow an artist to explore their ideas based on real ships and projects beyond the realm of never-weres or to explore more nebulous real-world projects
3) To educate newer members how to draw in SB scale, though in my view this is no real substitute for drawing a real ship as its hard to give feedback on drawing style when your correcting basic technical and design errors.
4) To allow a series of personal designs to interact within a framework.
5) To have fun, but remember this is not NationStates, Wesworld or Navalsim, we are not a simulation site but a ship drawing site.

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acelanceloet
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 9:44 am
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to add to that, it is not forbidden at all to have technical discussions on personal design or AU threads. what however is frowned upon, is forcing your opinions of what needs to be done on other authors. if the artist decides they want to keep something as is, then the discussion is closed on that matter. I have not always been the perfect example of how that should be done, and there have been issues with people asking comments on their design and then not being happy with being told the design was somewhat 'awful', but I try to do it that way, and I believe that is the way it should be done on this board. comments are always allowed, just don't go too far with them.

most of my work is in the never build section, as I like researching how plans and the ships actually build compare. however, I do a lot of real designs as part of that and what I can think of as 'why has this never been done' finds its way into the personal designs sections and sometimes an mini-AU. This is the way I like to develop ship designs.......... which makes me completely different from most of the people having AU's on this site. but still, I applaud discussion always, but I hate it when people keep dumping their idea's or critisicms multiple times in a single thread. Keep an eye on that, and you can never go wrong in my book ;)

on a sidenote, I am really interested in discussions concerning my project DX thread on other boards, Hood :P

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Krakatoa
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 9:56 am
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Something we all say to newbies when they ask for feedback is to draw a real ship. One of the problems with doing that, is that all the popular/common ships have been drawn more than once. I know when I first started, all of the real life ships that I would have liked to draw had been drawn. I ended up with the D's and E's (UK cruisers) which filled in a hole in the real life archive. Smurf has thrown me a few bones to chew on with never were designs that were enjoyable to do. Yes, there are still a lot of real life ships to be drawn, but the ones that would be considered 'sexy' to draw are done.

There are a few countries that we have lists of what have been done and what is yet to be done. The Japanese is probably the best of those (thanks to Emperor Andreas) but the rest are by guess.

Do we need a task force of some kind to write down every real life ship (and a few never weres) for each country and note what has been drawn and what has not??


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acelanceloet
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 10:07 am
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I somewhat disagree, there are for example huge gaps in the US destroyer, carrier and some smaller gaps in the cruiser line. the RN is largely drawn, but there are quite a few drawings that could do with an update or an recheck. I am quite certain there are more gaps when looked into other navy's as well. The big issue however is that new guys do not always have the ability to look for references other then a quick google, and if that is your only reference, all ships are already drawn..... and more! :P

wikipedia keeps excellent lists of ships, and the archive (especially the soon to be released new archive) should be clear enough to find which classes are represented.

that said, redrawing an existing ship drawing as your first shipbucket drawing is no crime, but then it will only go into the archive if it is significantly better or more accurate.

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Shigure
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 10:28 am
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I'm planning to draw several US destroyers which were missing, including the Mahan and Farragut classes. I stopped drawing them for awhile because I was busy with my AU. But I think I'll start them up again.

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Cascadia
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 11:04 am
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acelanceloet wrote:
I somewhat disagree, there are for example huge gaps in the US destroyer, carrier and some smaller gaps in the cruiser line.
There is also the rarely explored world of auxillaries.

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acelanceloet
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 11:07 am
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Cascadia wrote:
acelanceloet wrote:
I somewhat disagree, there are for example huge gaps in the US destroyer, carrier and some smaller gaps in the cruiser line.
There is also the rarely explored world of auxillaries.
agreed, but there are few who call those sexy (as what was this about, IIRC)

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heuhen
Post subject: Re: Problems in AU'sPosted: August 20th, 2016, 2:02 pm
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I could always comment more, but I am rather that type of person that comment when something is realy good...or just hilariuse stupid, the inbetween I leve to more experienced members that have that little knowledge.


I am also a slow drawer, I draw when I get feel for it, I never want to force it. Just to give an example, for one of my AU I have drawn a coastal defence ship. It's not yet finished, but I have been working on it for around 3 weeks, and that is a small ship. I have ships I haven't posted yet (I'm holding them back for the moment§!!!) I have used a couple of months on.


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