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  1. #1

    Advice needed: Art and Fallen Friendships

    Here's the deal in a nutshell. I had a friend (and ex) who liked to do art. On occasion said friend would do art for me (like for my birthday or something).

    The friend and I have since had a falling out, and looking at the art pieces reminds me of bittersweet things. But it IS good art. So I've kept it so far.

    However, at the moment, I'm trying to clean my room and cut down on the amount of just general stuff I own (running out of storage space, trying to avoid a hoarder situation xD).

    So my question is... what to do with said friend's art? Do I return it somehow? Keep it? It seems such a shame to trash it...

    For that matter, how many people here keep their old art? Do you keep it? What about when it tends to build up? All the sketches and line art and such.

  2. #2
    Junior Algorithmus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    If they are traditional works, I would suggest scanning them and storing them on a disk or your computer, and then just return the works or give it to someone else to keep.

    I tend to have a lot more digital work than traditional, so theoretically, that's not supposed to be an issue. I moved a lot when I was studying and after I finished studying, so it was also hard to keep any physical artwork on me, even if it's just a sketchbook because they can get heavy, and I prefer not to bring lots of stuff with me. However, I tend to find that even with digital, you eventually run out of hard drive space, and have to get another, and you sometimes lose track of what happens to your older files, or the hard drive fails, and you don't get them back. Alternatively, keeping my older works on websites is also another option. I've gotten plenty of older artwork that I no longer have the .psd files to anymore, but the finished pictures are still up somewhere on the Internet.

    Personally, I'd like to keep all my old art though because it's a good way to compare your newer stuff and to see how your style and ideas change over time. I'd rather not keep them in my gallery though, particularly if I join a new gallery because people will want to fave and comment on it, even though I've gotten newer, better artwork, and it sometimes feels like they're ignoring it on purpose (it also doesn't help that I had more fanart back then than I do now).

    But far be it for me to tell people what they can and can't like or comment on...

  3. #3
    I used to throw away my sketches, and now I'm really regretting that I don't have any of my pictures I drew of puppies and such from my childhood. Over the past couple of years I've finally learned that it's alright to keep 'bad' art around for comparison or simply for nostalgia value.

    I won't comment on your issue with your friend. I think you'll just have to work out what to do on your own depending on the history with your friend and whether you are on hostile terms with them or not.

  4. #4
    Retired Staff Tiger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    I have kept essentially every drawing I have done, and every sketchbook I have used, since my very first sketchbook back when i was 9. I have a massive storage container with so much art that the lid won't fit on it properly. I am a very nostalgic person, I hate to throw away anything that has meaning to me, so I have kept all my art. And I also agree with Tigercougar in that it makes me feel good to look back at older art and see how much I have improved- and I know this is digital, but it's an example of why I hang on to any and all artwork I do-

    With the friend thing, it really is up to you. It's not my place to tell you what you can and can't do with your possessions. I suppose it would depend on the situation, but I don't want to pry into your personal life and tell you the sentimental value of the work.

  5. #5
    Sketchbooks I keep, a lot of old loose pieces are in folders scattered about, good box or two of those. It's mostly the sketchbooks I get attached to, they tend to have all the little drawings I do when talking to or thinking about friends, always done for good moods it's hard to throw them away as I'd have to find them and look at them first reminding me why I'd kept it in the first place. They're much like photo-albums that capture streams of consciousness.

    Even if your friend's no longer interested in contacting you, giving the work back shouldn't be too difficult and really is the best solution. They did put work into it and it's fair to consider the effort, perhaps having it back could make things a little better between the two of you. I tend to forget my grievances whilst going through old work. I'm not saying it'll work like that, but keeping your language neutral and sticking to the point, giving the art back, should at least avoid hurt feelings. c:

  6. #6
    Junior traficalshours's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    I have gone through this ordeal. I agree with Algoritumus to scan them in, it generally is a nice way to keep those old memories safer. You don't have to worry about them yellowing/fading/or getting ruined by other means. You could even keep them safe in Dropbox or Cloud storage.

    As for what I've done with old art, I have a portfolio/folder where I have stored all my images that I personally draw, or have had drawn for me. If I move to a new dorm/house it always goes with me.

  7. #7
    Junior Herowuff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    I don't think you should trash it. I think you should get a folder and label it something like 'Memories' or such so when you look at it you can remember what it is. Then i think you should stash that folder somewhere with the pictures in until you come across it again some day, maybe seeking it out to add to the folder or just cleaning your room again.
    Pictures are memories, very powerful things and i believe them kind of pictures shouldn't be forgotten because, even if it's years into the future, you'll look back on them and remember past times, good and bad.
    I never throw pictures away that people give me, i have a special folder to keep them in and if i'm feeling down some days, i get that folder and look through them and you'd be surprised how much it lifts your spirits.

  8. #8
    Regular serbus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    I have given artwork to boyfriends before who later became ex's and if I were in the position of your friend I would want you to keep the art. No matter how bad our relationship ended, I made that artwork while I was in love with the other person and that how I want it to be remembered. I do not want my old artwork back, its like giving back an anniversary gift 5 years later. Or say you bought a really good flour mixer for someone and 3 years later they give it back saying they don't want it anymore. If you were in that position you'd probably be offended.
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