T7

I donít even know where it came from, but I suddenly remembered a really really old, hmmh, theory project I had as a teenager. Basically it was about creating a scoring system for the creation process of an art piece, a sort of measurement of how succesful the process and therefore the end product was. Back then I wanted to write something really fancy and official sounding about it haha, but that never got really far. Those days are long gone and I havenít though about the whole thing in years, but now that it crossed my mind once again I wanted to put down at least a few words about it.

The theory was called simply T7. It contained seven different categories and they were all labeled with words that started with the letter t. The T7 combo could also be neatly merged into one single symbol, so I guess looking cool also contributed to that. (Although when I started the name was merely T4, but I soon realized I needed a few more categories for things to make any sense.)

The scoring was supposed to be separated into personal and global scales, personal ranging from -35 to 35 (-5 to 5 points per category) and global from -70 to 70 (-10 to 10 points per category). I never got far enough to precisely pinpoint what exactly wouldíve been worth what amount of points, but the basic idea was simple: the more points you got the better! If one category affected the outcome of your art piece negatively, you would give yourself minus points, and if the category contributed something to the successfulness of the piece youíd give yourself plus points. The categories were:

  • Tieto (Knowledge)
  • Taito (Skill)
  • Tahto (Will)
  • Tuuri (Luck)
  • Tarve (Need)
  • Tiima (Time)
  • Tarvikkeet (Equipment)

(Actually itís a darn big wonder I still remembered all of these names haha.)

Tieto (Knowledge)

This category was about the amount of theoretical knowledge of your subject. Do you actually know what the thing you are drawing looks like? If itís a specific character or person, how deeply you know their personality and background? Do you know what sort of perspective you should be using in this piece? Do you know what sort of architecture you should be drawing for it to be accurate for your intended scene? The list of things to know is endless, but a good research helps a lot for this one. Experience is also valuable, as you do know a thing you have drawn 100 times a lot better than something you have never seen before.

Example of positive effect of this category:

In this picture there are several characters Iíve personally created. I have drawn them as well as other members of their species many times as well as written a whole lot about their adventures. I have very detailed knowledge about their body types as well as what each and every expression, eye shape and apparel means.

Example of negative effect of this category:

This was my first time drawing this particular character, so colors and overall posture isnít quite what they should be like. I hadnít drawn a lot of other cats either at that point, so the anatomy is all over the place.

Taito (Skill)

If the previous category was about theoretical facts, this is about how you do things in practice. You may have anatomical knowledge, but do you have skills to transfer those facts to the paper? Do you know how perspective, foreshortening or color theory affects your piece in practice? Also how well you handle the medium of your choice: drawing tablet, watercolors, ink or wooden pencils. Can you produce the sort of style you are aiming for? As you can see, this category is mostly about experience, although to learn things faster you can certainly take advantage of many sorts of tutorials and such.

Example of positive effect of this category:

This picture was really testing my skills in many ways, and I think I succeeded in most of them. The angle was especially difficult to make work properly, but things like color scheme, focus points and perspective all played a role, too. I also did my best to convey the feelings of both fluid (water) and light (sun) to the viewer.

Example of negative effect of this category:

In this picture I had ambition and clear idea, but my skills were severally lacking. I didnít have any idea how to make the angle of the head work nicely, nor did I have skills to make the line art look clean and the coloring look smooth. The only hint of skill is how Iíve tried to make the back spines turn according to angle, but thatís not enough to carry this piece very far.

Tahto (Will)

Knowledge and skill were the main big categories that walk hand in hand; the rest of these are going to be much more simple and specific. First one of them is simply about how much willpower or motivation you feel towards completing the piece and/or making it the best it can be.

Example of positive effect of this category:

Time and skills werenít exactly on my side with this piece, but I still tried my best because I really darn wanted to! The motivation alone made me work with this almost through the whole night.

Example of negative effect of this category:

I made several different ďcoloring book pagesĒ of requested Pokťmon, and this one was for the ones I had absolutely no motivation to come up with anything special. Thatís why even the poses are copied nearly straight from the official art.

Tuuri (Luck)

Luck is a darn difficult category, because itís not easily affected by our concious actions. You canít really do anything to prevent your pet sneezing on your paper, your friend spilling coffee on your note book or your computer suddenly crashing. Risks can be minimized, sure, but some times it seems like universe is going to get that piece of art no matter what you do.

Example of positive effect of this category:

This creepy Pikachu cookie was so beyond my skill level at the time that I still donít understand how I managed to create it! To put it into perspective, this piece was made during the same year as the cookie thing.

Example of negative effect of this category:

It canít really be seen if you donít know it, but I had to completely redo this piece because of some paper related misfortunes. I think the colors didnít react the way they shouldíve to eraser, and instead of getting erased they just smudged somehow and ruined the whole piece beyond salvaging.

Tarve (Need)

This category is pretty similar to will, but you certainly can have one without another. The need to have an art piece finished is when for example someone has paid you for it, you need it for your personal project or it is part of a school assignment. If you donít have any need for the picture, thereís always greater possibility that youíll leave it unfinished or maybe never even start it at all.

Example of positive effect of this category:

I needed to create this piece in order to start playing in an arpg I had been eyeing for a while already. I was very eager to get started, so I drew this as soon and fast as I could.

Example of negative effect of this category:

A messy doodle I drew while waiting for a bus. The only reason for its creation was to make time run faster, so in the end it was left into a very unpolished state.

Tiima (Time)

Among all the categories time is likely the easiest one to understand! Even if it is certainly possible to ruin a piece by overworking it, most often pieces that you use a lot of time into end up being much more polished than the ones with very little time sacrificed to them.

Example of positive effect of this category:

One of my most detailed pieces to date. Completing it took over 100 hours, and I think it really shows. It was so god damn painful though.

Example of negative effect of this category:

Art pieces that were created with very tight time restrictions in mind. I think these are perfect pictures to illustrate how time as a category can affect the end results very much!

Tarvikkeet (Equipment)

And finally the last category (that I used to hate because of its long name haha). Equipments are also pretty self explanatory, as every kid who were handed the crappiest crayons money can buy to draw with can tell. Itís possible to create stunning art with very modest equipment, sure, but even then part of the charm comes from overcoming the boundaries that usually are very solid for most artists. Equipment can also have an effect to your will, as it can be really demotivating when the tools just donít work the way youíd want them to.

Example of positive effect of this category:

Just a quick test I drew with the most high quality pencils Iíve seen to this day. The way they blended and how vibrant the colors were was just amazing!

Example of negative effect of this category:

This on the other hand was drawn with nearly dried out line art pen and color pencils that barely had enough pigment to leave a mark on the paper. Thatís why the result looks really messy.

Conclusion

So, with all this in mind, how wouldíve the scoring worked in practice? Iíll explain the personal point scale with yet another example. Letís take the most recent art piece Iíve done:

  • Tieto (Knowledge): 2
  • Taito (Skill): 3
  • Tahto (Will): -2
  • Tuuri (Luck): 3
  • Tarve (Need): 3
  • Tiima (Time): 1
  • Tarvikkeet (Equipment): 1
  • = 11 points

  • Tieto (Knowledge): I had good reference images and pretty clear idea of what the characters were like. I hadnít drawn these exact Pokťmon before, but especially Luxio was easy to base into real animals.
  • Taito (Skill): I got to take advantage of some neat little tricks, like blurred line art and harsh shading with interesting light source. I think the expressions also came out rather nicely.
  • Tahto (Will): I had very little motivation to draw anything and I was practically forcing myself to work, which affected especially the simplicity of the background. The idea was somewhat inspiring though, which prevented the score from getting lower than it is.
  • Tuuri (Luck): I drew this to test out if the Windows update had messed up my tablet settings or not. I found out it didnít, which I do consider lucky!
  • Tarve (Need): Like I said, I really needed to to test the functionality of my tablet. This compensated my lack of willingness to draw a lot. The art piece was also somewhat time sensitive, as itís about an ongoing Nuzlocke, so in order for it to be relevant drawing it was sort of a ďnow or neverĒ deal.
  • Tiima (Time): I used just a bit more time on this than was absolutely necessary, mainly to make the line art look more striking.
  • Tarvikkeet (Equipment): I know my drawing tablet very well, but it is a really old piece of technology that is barely hanging in there. I know how to handle its odd quirks, but still it would of course be easier if there werenít such quirks at all. Still, itís endlessly better than using just a mouse to draw!