When I try to think back I must have been drawing ever since I was little. I can't remember an exact age but I was very young for sure. However back then art was only a minor hobby, I never invested too much time in it.
When I turned 18 I started with university and having to work besides it to pay for rent and food didn't leave me a lot of time for drawing or painting anymore. I basically took a hiatus of almost four full years. In this period I might have drawn four or five works without even slightly being satisfied with any of them. Obviously that didn't increase my motivation.
Then in November 2010 I stumbled across a flyer of a local store back home in Austria which advertised a small Medion Graphic Tablet/Mouse Pad for only 20. It immediately sparked my interest since I've had always wanted to try out digital art.
Equipped with this tablet I dove into the world of digital drawing and it immediately captured me. I used the tablet so intensively that the pen tip was completely used up after only two weeks. (The cheap material and the rough tablet surface probably didn't help either. ^^)
I felt a little sad that I couldn't use the tablet anymore so even though money was tight at that time I went to a huge electronics store to see if it was possible to order a new pen or pen tips. They told me that for those certain brands they couldn't order them but at that point I almost wasn't interested anymore anyway since my eyes fell on the tablet I currently own. Had I been at the store alone I probably would have left without it since I felt it was a little too expensive for me back then but my wonderful fiancé "forced" me to buy it since he knew what art meant for me by then.
It had basically become my fuel for life. Without exaggeration life had been (and still is) quite a bitch to me and my art became exactly the distraction I needed. Taking out my tablet meant pushing a magical trigger that opened the gate to another world. A world where my mind could go blank and my worries were wiped away for several hours straight every day.
I think without those carefree hours and the simultaneous joining of deviantart I might have gone insane. For real.
Over the last year I have become more and more involved with deviantart and its community and at the same time my art evolved from something that kept me alive to something that made me feel like I was doing something useful. I still feel it's the only hobby that can in no way be branded a waste of time by anyone. And if anyone tried to tell me it is then you can guess what I'd tell them to go do.
I honestly think though that none of these developments would have taken place without deviantart. Being part of this site not only granted me an incredible amount of inspiration and helped me improve my skills to an extent I never thought was possible, it also made me meet so many wonderful people who - with or without being aware of it - enriched my life in countless ways.
Deviantart has literally become my second home.
I've been a part of a lot of different communities ever since I was old enough to explore the internet on my own but none of them kept me interested for too long a time. DA however...just feels right.
And all these wonderful experiences I have made over the last year... I hope to be able to give back to the community in equal value.
Now tell me, my dear watchers and other deviants, what does art and/or deviantart mean to you?
Does it play an equally important role in your life as it does in mine?