Aeros wrote:Do you have any kind of degree in any form of art?
A degree can help inform an opinion. A background in art, either as an artist or education in art, can also help. However, appreciation, which includes critical analysis, of art doesn't require formal education or a stamp of approval such as a degree.
I'm speaking as someone who is pursuing education and training as an artist(formerly of Sheridan College in Oakville, Ontario, Canada, currently seeking an atelier to enroll at). The only reason I feel it's relevant to mention this is that I've witnessed some artists wave the "you have no right to criticize art unless you're an artist" card, which I see as something that parallels the approach of questioning of someone's credentials in order to invalidate criticism of artwork.
A person doesn't have to be a professional cook in order to say something tastes good or bad. The processing, analyzing, and ultimately forming judgment of visual information isn't something that requires a degree.
Aeros wrote:You can't call it bad art just because It's different.
I have yet to read anyone's opinion at this forum state that they do not like the artwork or that it's bad artwork simply because it's "different".
Ryan/Seibertron has recently posted the factors involved in his opinion of Don's artwork, specifically the way he portrays the Transformers' faces.
More than one person, including myself, have expressed similar criticism of how Don draws faces in previous threads discussing the ongoing monthly Transformers comic.
Aeros wrote:Different art, yes. Will it take some time(Maybe A LOT)to get accustomed to, Sure. But "Bad Artwork" it is not.
Maybe it's not "bad artwork" to you but the way in which you posted your opinion comes off as assertion of fact rather than a personal judgment of the artwork.
Personally, while I don't particularly like Don's current style with regards to the faces, it's not as simple as not liking the faces. My criticism is that the faces seem to possess little emotive potential beyond a few expressions. All of the expressions I've seen so far involve closed mouth deadpan faces, baring of teeth in grimaces or open mouthed showing of anger or pain, and what could be a smile but looks more like a rictus grin.
I think Don's intent was to create simulated facial features with mechanized components to bridge the gap between the humanistic G1/typical anime Super Robot faces and the mechanically heavy features of the live action movie Transformers designs. Unfortunately, he ends up creating very sinister facial features. I actually think this style of facial design, as Don is utilizing it so far, is great for the Decepticons but isn't successful when used for Autobots. Don did a great promotional piece for the comic where the Autobots and Decepticons are having an all out fight with Optimus Prime and Megatron in the center. Seeing this style of facial design on Megatron was very cool.
To me, Don's current style for the bodies of the Transformers characters is great. I have a definite bias because I'm a big fan of mechanical design(I love the complex designs of the live action movie CG models and I'm a fan of the Binaltech/Alternators and Alternity toy lines). My nostalgic side definitely enjoy the G1 style of blocky late 70s/early 80s anime robot designs but my eye for mechanical designs developed over the years of mecha fandom enjoys the more detailed style that Don is currently employing.
It's a shame that a lot of negative attention is centered around Don's facial style. I haven't read a lot of comments all around the internet on the rest of his artwork, for better or worse.