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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Digital art on the World Wide Web, 1996-1997 Johnson, Mia


This study draws upon what Howard Becker (1984) called "conventions" or characteristics that identify an art world, to determine conventions in the use of tools and techniques by digital artists. Two hundred images were sampled from approximately 600 "digital art" sites on the World Wide Web during 1996. A taxonomy of the characteristics or properties of these images was developed, partly by the researcher alone, and partly by the researcher in conjunction with five independent raters. Digital art conventions were identified, defined and analyzed in five categories: formal properties, content, styles, and digital properties unique to 2D and 3D graphics. The frequencies of 98 characteristics in these categories were then compared by gender, types of sites, types of programs and to each other. This study provides field-based groundwork for educators interested in developing curriculum for digital art, using approaches afforded by Discipline-based Art Education (DBAE). Following the summary of data, content analysis and discussion, this study assesses the findings in terms of their implications for discipline-based digital art production, aesthetics, criticism, and digital art history.

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