ITGS Syllabus

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Topic 207

Digital art: electronic music, interactive visual art, desktop publishing by Ronald Chu

Thanks to developing technology and human needs/greed, digital art has been invented. Digital art is art that is created on a computer in digital form. It can be completely generated by a computer, such as fractals, or taken from another source, such as a scanned photograph, or an image drawn using vector graphics software by using a mouse or graphics tablet. The availability and popularity of photograph manipulation software has vastly spread quickly. Using electronic versions of brushes, filters, and enlargers, these "Neographers" produce images through photographic tools. In addition, digital artists may manipulate scanned drawings, paintings, or lithographs, as well as using any of the above-mentioned techniques in combination.

These artists also use many other kinds of sources of information and programs to create their computer programmed work. Digital art is beginning to dominate the media. The mainstream media uses a lot of digital art in advertisements, and computers are used extensively in film to produce special effects. Desktop publishing has had a huge impact on the publishing world, although that is more related to graphic design. Nonetheless, digital art is yet beginning to gain the acceptance and regard reserved for "serious" artforms such as sculpture, painting and drawing, perhaps due to the erroneous impression of many that "the computer does it for you" and the suggestion that the image created could be infinitely repeatable.

Computers are also commonly used to make music, especially electronic music, since they represent a powerful way to arrange and create sound samples. It is possible that general acceptance of the value of digital art will improve progress in much the same way as the increased acceptance of electronically produced music over the last thirty years.

Digital photography, as opposed to film photography, uses electronic devices to record the image as binary data. This represents the storage and editing of the images on personal computers (PCs), and also the ability to show and delete unsuccessful images immediately on the camera itself.

Digital cameras now outsell film cameras (normal cameras where you develop the film and replace it with a new one) and include features not found in film cameras such as the ability to shoot video and record audio. Some other devices, such as mobile phones, now include digital photography features. These digital cameras are much more efficient and easier to use, thanks to advanced technology.

Digital photography and digital printing is now an acceptable medium of creation and presentation by major museums and galleries, and the work of digital artists is gaining recognition and fame through robotic installation, net art and software art. However, the work of digital painters and printmakers is beginning to find acceptance as the output capabilities advance and quality increases. Many museums around the world are now beginning to collect digital art such as the San Jose Museum of Art and the Victoria and Albert Museum print departments also have a reasonable, but small collection of digital art.

According to, “Desktop publishing (also known as DTP) combines a personal computer and page layout software to create publication documents on a computer for either large scale publishing or small scale local economical multifunction peripheral output and distribution.” The term "desktop publishing" is commonly used to describe page layout skills. However, the skills and software are not limited to only paper and books. The same skills and software are often used to create graphics for point of sale displays, promotional items, trade show exhibits, retail package designs, and outdoor signs. This is also thanks to advanced technology and human greed.


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