Forum:Concept art & development images

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Forums: Yew Grove > Concept art & development images

Hey, just to note, this is the first time I'm creating one of those, so please let me know if I'm doing something wrong.

While the wiki has included concept art and various types of in-development images for a long time, the increased presence of Jagex artists on social platforms such as Twitter and especially Artstation as well as duirng various art/development streams means that in recent years we have gained access to much larger repository of that type of works. Thanks to the work of editors like Gaga Lady in recent months we have seen a huge increase in the amount of those images that end up on the wiki as well. While I don't think there is much doubt that having the development images on the wiki and expanding on the behind the scenes aspects of content is a good thing, there are also a few suggestions and potential issues that I think are worth discussing now, given that the concept art category alone currently includes over 1500 images and we can expect this number to grow consitently.

  1. Non-work in progress images: Aside from concept art, work-in-progress images from development and renders of individual models, the recent uploads also include a significant amount of images that are basically Jagex-made screenshots of the final product posted by artists for showcasing purposes in their portfolios (example #1, example #2, example #3). Since they are technically in-game screenshots with a bunch of logos on top of them, I wonder if there is actually a need for them as opposed to just having player-made screenshots, which is how we usually handle images of in-game subjects on the wiki. I don't have strong feelings either way, but there is a potential issue of redundancy and overuse of fair use images over player made ones.
  2. Crediting artists and categorizing: With the sheer amount of concept art/development images on the wiki, I think it's worth considering categorizing them by their respective authors, the same way we handle music tracks. If needed it probably could be semi-automated by adding artist/author tag to fair use template and generating categories based on the template parameter. This obviously applies to concept art & individual 3D models rather than general location images, since it's impossible to credit a single person with those usually. It would allow us to properly credit artists, would make it more convenient to browse each artist's works and make it easier to maintain the contributions of artists on their JMod articles, which currently usually inlcude very limited and often outddated choice of images & contributions.
  3. Sourcing: Continuing from the above, including artists in the fair use template should come hand in hand with directly sourcing each image. This is already a thing, however a significant portion of recent images has been added using SimpleBatchUpload, which means that the images have only generic fair use template instead of links to specific Artstation/Twitter posts etc. I'm not familiar with the tool myself, so I don't know if it's possible to add sources/artists to specific images, but if we are to improve the way we credit & source those images, it would be a good idea to make it compatibile with the existing tools that automate large numbers of uploads.
  4. Non-free images category structure: A bit wider/tangential issue, but currently the non-free images are all over the place and should probably be reorganized into more consistent structure. This is in part due to fair use template dumping everything into non-free images category on top of any other category they may be added to. This means we not only have a category that isn't even remotely convenient to browse, it also creates a lot of redundancy. All concept art/development images, website/news/social media images are, by definition, non-free, so it would make more sense to have those images only in their specific categories which in turn would be included in the umbrella non-free images category. However this would require change in apporach to fair use template (i.e. some switch parameters automatically adding to specific categories), possibly some bot work, so I think some consensus should be reached any attempt at clean up. Here is one potential structure:

This is probably a bit chaotic (especially the last section) and the issues mentioned here probably aren't a big priority for most, but in all my years of editing wikis the proper upkeep of image structure has always been a pet peeve of mine and I think there is much room for improvement. Feel free to share any opinions and suggestions you have on the matters. Mariobaryla (talk) 23:11, 2 April 2021 (UTC)

Discussion[edit source]

Comment 1; Support 2, 3 & 4 - I think there is value in keeping finished product images if: the images were released before the product was, or if they can be used to categorise a work by its artist. So we could categorise those location images primarily or only by its environment artist (I think everyone would assume that they wouldn't have been involved in concept art or animation). 2 and 3 fall mostly on RS:BB but I agree the importance of sourcing images should be made more explicit. As for making 3 work with the batch upload tool, I'm not sure there's an easy way so I'll let someone else chime in. Habblet (talk|c) 10:35, 3 April 2021 (UTC)

Comment 1, Support 2, 3, 4 - Regarding images of finished products, I do not feel there is any substantial reason to not include them as they could be attributed to particular artists through categories (mentioned more later). I do think that we should be better with sourcing images. I know that this can be a bit difficult when using the batch upload tool. Two ways around this would be to either use the batchupload function and modify the template's link param for each gallery the images are uploaded from, or go back after the the batch upload and modigy the templates manually, but I do think this needs to be managed better going forward. In terms of attributing to a particular artist, perhaps it might be an idea to create a new license for concept and development images that incorporates the free use license, but allows the artist to be entered as a param that would categorise the images accordingly. As for 4, I do agree that there should be a little more organisation within as it has now grown so large. Your proposed tree seems to be appropriate. Lava hawk.png BlackHawk (Talk)    12:07, 3 April 2021 (UTC)

Hi! I've never posted on the forums before - so I hope I'm doing this correctly. Thanks for mentioning me in this post and getting in touch with me to notify me of the 3D models category. When User:Nex_Undique referred me to his super useful batch upload tool, I think I was only made aware of the concept art upload and to otherwise use the fair use upload for everything else. I have a fairly significant drive of concept art, models, etc - but unfortunately, as I started it prior to editing the wiki, none are saved in relation to artist. Whilst, for the most part, I'd probably be able to find the source, there are many instances where an artist has removed their personal art portfolio or the art has been otherwise deleted from the web.

In regards to the in-game screenshots, I have no preference as to whether we use the images uploaded by the artists or use screenshots taken by players. I did this because, as the pages had very few (or a complete lack of) in-game images, it was much easier for me to grab the in-game images uploaded by the artists at the same time as compiling their concept art, development images, models, etc. I also considered these images to have the additional benefit of crediting the artist via the watermark - but I can see how that might also be viewed as an eyesore. As mentioned above, I have a metric-ton of concept art which isn't on the wiki as of yet and so I'm trying to upload it batch by batch to the relevant page rather than an image at a time. Unfortunately, in-game screenshots of locations are sometimes quite lacking - but I'm not always going to have the time to log on and take photos. In these scenarios, is it better to leave the page without in-game screenshots (in some cases, pages which are more than a few years old) or to upload the in-game screenshots taken by the artist? I don't have any problem with deleting these images but, in my opinion, they should only be deleted when replacement images have been taken. I think it would be a shame for these pages to be without any in-game images, especially when some of these pages have been without for years.

I totally support the proper sourcing and categorisation of these images - my only issue is how much more difficult this is going to make uploading things, without the proper batch tools. I don't wish to appear as lazy or arrogant, but I worry this might be something that discourages the uploading of images. For myself at least, partly because I've had these images stocked prior to joining the wiki, a fair amount of time goes into batch uploading the relevant art. E.g: Renaming any images which I already have, checking which images the wiki has, finding the more obscure images (usually from reddit, old social media posts, wayback machine, etc), etc. A good example of this is the Menaphos page where I recently uploaded quite a lot of stuff, perhaps closing in on a hundred images. These were from old videos, RSOF, 'insider' posts, artstation, sketchfab, facebook, twitter, reddit, etc. Adding the source and specific artist for each of these is going to make the task much, much bigger. I'd be more than happy to do this of course - it's just probably going to result in me doing these things much slower, bit by bit, or prioritising other things on the wiki. Having said that, I'm definitely eager to update everything with its relevant art, there's so many pages with a ton of missing images - it's just going to make the task exponentially larger. There's every chance that I'm wrong about this though. Whilst I've added a fair amount of stuff to the wiki at this point, I'm not totally in the knowhow about all of the shortcuts and cheats. Is there a way for me to edit multiple images at once?

Another suggestion I'd like to add into the mix is a 'gallery' section on the page of each artist as I think that would be super cool. Anyway, I hope this response has been of some value. I hope you don't view what I have said as disinterest or laziness; I just wanted to be honest about how it will probably effect the rate at which I'm able to add stuff (and trust me, there's a ton of it!). Thanks again! Gaga Lady (talk) 07:18, 4 April 2021 (UTC)

Just to clarify, in no way I meant to imply anyone's laziness or anything of the sorts, just that with the increasing amount of development images on the wiki it would be good idea to consider some additional aspects - it's easier to make changes when we have 1500 images rather than when this number doubles or triples. I have no strong feelings about the Jagex-made screenshots and all the arguments presented here are very reasonable, it's just that I remember that at least some time ago images taken i.e. from now-defunct Jagex-run wiki as opposed to player made ones were frowned upon. Either way I don't think there is any benefit to removing what was already uploaded and a good case has been made for having them regardless.
As for the crediting and sources, it absolutely would heavily slow down the upload process unless the upload tools are somehow updated to make it easier, so I feel it's fine if those are added at a later time when appropriate changes are made to templates etc. I mostly wanted to note that crediting & categorizing by would benefit us in the long term, it would also make it easier to check whether certain images have already been uploaded, as I noticed there is a bit of overlap/duplication with existing images as some have already been added from i.e. news posts. I'm not sure what the policy is in that case - replace those with higher quality version or keep them as separate images? Anyway, I'm more than happy to slowly go back through the uploads and add artist credit/sources/categories once we establish some consistent system for it. The abundance of more obscure sources like social media or streams is precisely why I think it's best to deal with it sooner rather than later, as the original source may be impossible to find after a few years pass.
I also agree with the galleries on artists pages - as I already mentioned this is something that already exists, but they are usually fairly outdated and have a small choice of images. If we had by artist categories, we could probably auto-generate a gallery with random choice of images from the category (as we do for composers) - although it would mean the images won't have any description as to their subject. Either way the categories would provide a convenient and mostly comprehensive "portfolio" of each artist's contributions.
This reminds me of one more thing: which development images should go on which page? Personally I'm in favor of redistributing certain images to individual pages rather than lumping everything on the main project page. For example articles like Menaphos, Lost Grove or Anachronia should include general concept art related to the area as a whole, the environment art and kits and all the marketing stuff, while concept art for individual characters, monsters or items should probably be either moved or at least duplicated on relaevant pages. The latter is pretty obvious, but the question is whether we keep/duplicate those images on the main article or keep them only in relevant ones, especially if they were not part of the same release. Should i.e. Lost Grove article feature all the Solak & Merethiel concept art, seeing as they are technically a separate update that came at a later date, especially since i.e. Anachronia page doesn't include Dino farm & Orthen dig site concepts? I'm not sure where the line should be drawn, but I think that as cool as it is to have all the concept art, it's also important to spread it and keep it relevant so that individual images don't get visually lost in the massive have-it-all galleries. Anyway, those are just some things to consider, keep up the good work and thanks for responsens. Mariobaryla (talk) 11:44, 4 April 2021 (UTC)

Oh no, sorry, I didn't mean to imply that I was implying that you was implying that he was implying that she was implying that my neighbour was implying laziness. I just didn't want anyone to get that impression from me as I said it would take me much longer to upload art, etc. Everything you've said makes complete sense, I'm pretty much in complete agreement - even despite the time it would take.

My feelings around which art should go where is that, in my opinion, an overarching area should include the art of the content within that area - even if added at a later date (e.g: A Morytania page might have an image of Castle Drakan; a Misthalin page might have an image of Shattered Worlds; etc). This would probably be better under different subheadings though. That being said - I'm totally okay with whatever everyone else thinks to be the best course of action. The images should definitely be copied over (e.g from The Lost Grove to Solak), I was meaning to do that - I just hadn't got to it yet. Plus, a lot of these things are designed together but released at different points (e.g Raksha only came out last year but was designed at the same time as Anachronia/120 Farm).

I can't really speak for News Posts as I'm not super sure how they work, unfortunately. I'm on the discord btw - if it's any easier to chat there :) (Just search @Gaga Lady or @Jack). Gaga Lady (talk) 12:37, 4 April 2021 (UTC)

I see your point, I'm not really sure having every remotely related image in every article is sustainable in the long term and I feel it ultimately clutters the pages and takes focus away from the images that are actually relevant. Looking at the images added to Solak and Merethiel articles I feel a lot of them really should be kept only on one of those pages (and maybe the main Lost Grove article). Concept art for creatures and environments on Merethiel article isn't really what (I think) people are expecting to see on that page, the same way we wouldn't add Charos or Thok concept art to Kerapac article just because they were made for the same quest. When every page has a massive gallery overlapping with several other articles, it may be overwhelming & confusing for readers and actually discourage them from browsing through those images. To follow your example, it's fine for Morytania to have a concept art gallery featuring like one or two images for each area (Castle Drakan, Darkmeyer, Everlight etc.) as an example/showcase, but I think it would be a complete overkill to have all Everlight concept art in Morytania article. A Shattered Worlds concept art may be used in Lumbridge Swamp article, but I don't really see much use for it in Misthalin article. Unlike actual screenshots that should showcase each area of various kingdoms, development images should be largey reserved for most relevant artciles IMO, the same way we wouldn't pile trivia from every Myreque quest on the quest series article. I think it would be a better alternative to consider having categories for development images by area or subject like "Development images of Morytania content", because that's basically what those galleries would keep growing into. Personally I just don't feel that having a gallery of loosly related images that is longer than the actual article is really beneficial, but I'll gladly hear what others think about that.Mariobaryla (talk) 19:32, 6 April 2021 (UTC)

Comment 1, Support 2, 3, 4 - For 1, if we can take the exact same image without the watermark of the individual artist to represent a location, I would prefer that. I have no problem with images from 1 remaining in development galleries on the relevant pages with other design images. I agree that sourcing and crediting should be performed for any place we use these images per your suggestion, and also think the category tree that you proposed looks fine. Smithing.pngAescopalus talkCrafting.png 15:29, 4 April 2021 (UTC)

'Support 1,2,3,4 - In regards to 1, I have several reasons. As mentioned above, it allows crediting the artist better, some were released with news posts/before the updates etc. They also provide a permanent image of how the area etc looked as it was designed/released. While there may be in game screenshots that are identical (although in some cases I think the views aren't actually possible to get in game), those may be updated in the future as things change. Furthermore, if we want to use some (eg all those featured in newsposts/as teasers) it's most likely just easier to keep them all then sort through them. Seers headband 2 chathead.png Elessar2 (talk) 11:23, 12 April 2021 (UTC)