deviantART Website Poster Image




Online art gallery is creative space for older teens.
Popular with kids

What parents need to know

Educational value

Kids can learn advanced art skills using tutorials and develop identity by continuing to post work and get feedback. While deviantART may not be the perfect place for a standard art history lesson, the exposure to such a wide variety of art will be eye-opening. Imaginations will definitely be sparked here; teens can take inspiration from others to create their own unique work. They'll also learn to talk about art in a critical way. deviantART is a supportive community of artists that lets teens share their work, make connections, and improve skills in a highly charged creative atmosphere.

Positive messages

Messages are largely positive and built around creating and sharing art, as well as supporting other artists. But some art and groups have a sexist or otherwise negative theme.


Some art and literature feature violent imagery, blood, gore, body parts, and fantasy.


Provocative imagery -- especially of women -- is easy to find. Manga, cartoons, and stylized graphic art often show sensual imagery and frequently feature partially clothed people in provocative poses. Various groups with explicit names or inappropriate subject matter exist.


Images are named by the artist; user names are not always clean; group names run the gamut from squeaky clean and innocent (Sky and Nature Club) to sexually themed.


deviantART recommends an upgrade to their Premium membership for $4.95/mo, which offers more storage and access to additional features. Artists are encouraged to sell their artwork through the site and buy framed prints, so there’s an inherent consumerism just by posting your art. There are outside links and rotating ads that promote teen- and adult-oriented video games and action/adventure movies. Website-branded wearables are also available on the site.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Some of the art posted refers to or shows drinking, drugs, or smoking. While these references sometimes appear to be anti-drug, occasionally, drinking, drugs, and smoking are clearly glorified in the art or comments.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this arts-based online community is a great space for teens to showcase their artistic endeavors -- but it’s not for young kids. Over 100 million works of art -- from literature to photography to manga and body art -- can be found throughout the gallery space. Users can browse, comment, critique, and build their fan base. There’s even the potential to buy and sell art. The work featured in members’ galleries varies in quality -- and appropriateness. Parents should be cautioned that there are some images that may be offensive, including violent imagery, mild nudity, and provocative poses. Members can update their status, comment, send public or private messages, participate in art contests, and chat live in hundreds of different-- unmoderated -- chat rooms.

What's it about?

DEVIANTART is an online community of artists, where kids can share, discuss, and sell original artwork. With 26 million registered users, its huge social network reaches artists in 190 countries. Users create an account, then fill in profile information and add their art to personal galleries, which can then be viewed by other visitors. Art is categorized into searchable sections like \"Traditional Art,\" \"Photography,\" and \"Manga and Anime.\" deviantART also offers tutorials and a professional portfolio creator for artists ready to take it to the next level.

Is it any good?


As a global arts community, deviantART is not as deviant as it claims. There’s tremendous talent and creativity on display through the many, many galleries of art and literature on the site. Genres are vast and include everything from photography, cartoons, and comics to digital creations, film, and flash animations. Members can display and critique the works on display, and there’s a sense of support and camaraderie among the artists who participate. However, among the works with artistic merit, there is also some devious activity. Completely unmoderated, there are offensive posts, explicit group names, and some works that might be deemed inappropriate for younger eyes due to their sexual subject matter or graphic, violent imagery. Older teens interested in art will surely find some phenomenal inspiration, but they will likely come across some questionable content.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how a supportive online community can help build confidence in kids. What can be learned from other creative kids? Why is it important to provide constructive criticism in a virtual community? What harm can be done by doing the opposite?

  • Talk about online etiquette. What does etiquette mean to you, and how do you demonstrate it online? What rules of the road will help maintain a courteous online environment?

  • What should you do if someone in an online community is using inappropriate or suggestive language? What kind of information is safe to post in public forums? What can teens do to stay safe online?

Website details

Subjects:Language & Reading: discussion
Arts: drawing, film, photography
Skills:Communication: conveying messages effectively, friendship building, multiple forms of expression
Creativity: imagination, making new creations, producing new content
Self-Direction: identifying strengths and weaknesses, initiative, motivation
Pricing structure:Free

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What parents and kids say

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A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Parent Written byReviews4teens July 1, 2012

Please learn from my mistakes

My 16 yo daughter got involved with this website before I knew much, if anything, about it. I should have trusted my instincts and deleted her account early on. Recently, I held my breath and finally clicked on many of the member's profile pages. Shocked and sickened would describe how I felt knowing that these people were discussing art and their interpretation of life with my daughter. Obscene swearing abounds on some of the profiles and don't even look at their 'favorites'. I clicked on one only to see Sherlock Holmes and Watson doing something that definitely was not in the movie. Yes, that. In addition, there is lots of anger coming from many of the members. Just think about getting tons of confused (and often neglected) teens together and have them all compare notes about all the pain in their lives and on top of that, display all this pain in drawings or paintings or whatever. Well, just enter a search for blood or death and you'll see what I mean. How many ways can one draw pain? There appears to be quite a few. I have to ask some of you out there who say that this site is something that your 6 or 7 year old should view, have you gone there and really dug around the muck? I wish I had done so earlier. I give it 2 stars because the site is set up nicely where one can display his or her work. Some of the art work is beautiful; there are many talented people out there. Otherwise, I would give it a 1 star for low standards. First, for allowing so much profanity and second, for their labeling system. Just labeling something as 'mature doesn't cut it; kids are swearing that they are 18 and clicking on it all; don't assume they are turning a blind eye. And be sure you are monitoring the Notes section. This is where all the fun really happens! Just imagine, talking to someone in another country, and role playing fantastical stories. Just imagine what that can lead to. Believe me, it does lead to some nasty stuff. I have seen it. Deviant Art can be an okay site, but monitor, monitor, monitor.....I cannot stress that enough. Don't be in my position, having to parent reactively. Parent proactively and protect your child.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Safety and privacy concerns
Teen, 16 years old Written byISpeakTheTruth January 2, 2011

Don't even waste you're time.

I have been a memeber of Deviantart for a month and I can tell you that the site is okay in some regards. However, I have many pet peeves with this site in particular because it seems to me that everywhere theirs a noticible over abundance of fanart from over 85% of the "artwork" contributions. This would include many characters that are from popular games, cartoon series and the most widely used one Anime. Because of this, many users on the site, if they were to draw fanart alone and be really good at it, this might cause a lot of popularity for that artist. Now if you're not accostomed to drawing fanart, like myself, but are really good at your work despite that then Deviantart is NOT the place for you. Sure, there would be some people that would like your work, but you wouldn't be have as successful as any of the other users. You either have to be really good at doing fanart or really good at doing art period. Otherwise, you will have a hard time trying to get 'watchers' (people who subscribe to you in order to view your most recent work) on Deviantart. Another issue that I would like to bring up is the fact that their is a significant amount of swearing in the "Complaints" forum, all of which seems to go against the sites ettiquette policy. If that's not stressful enough, the admins on the site when you go to report a legititmate problem then when go to the help desk they seem rather reluctant to listen to your issue and hardly ever do anything about it. There was this one time a couple years back that some users were unfairly banned because they kept pestering them with certain users that were harrassing them. Also, their seems to be a rumor that seems to be most likely true concerning the sites management when it comes to punishments. For starters, it's been noted that users that usually have premium memberships, or have advanced accounts are usually given lighter punishments versus users that have just a standard membership; which in turn are given harsher punishments for some of the most minor offenses. And you know it really seems to get really sad, when some of the news articles on the site even says that "Deviantart sucks" or "Deviantart admins are unfair" and so on. And as for the pornagraphic pictures on the site, their are some labels that artists can put some of the pictures under, like "mature art" or "mature restricted to 18 plus" which for the most part is one of the good aspects of the site. Unfortunately, their seems to be a lot of pictures on the site that aren't put under any of these labels that include young women wearing mature outfits or are either shown completely topless. I've even seen pictures that have a lot of disturbing messages and show a lot of disturbing images that may offend some users. And believe me, their is nothing "artistic" about some of the pictures that include that at all. It's sick really. It's like a form of soft porn fetishes under the fake classification of "artwork". Which is sad, considering that it violates some of the sites policies and yet the administrators on the site do absolutely nothing. I wouldn't dare recommend this site to anyone who wants to show their artistic expression outside of fanart or anybody who wants to have a certain amount of feedback on their work, or to anybody who's 13. Infact don't even waste your time. There are better sites out their than this one. Believe me.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Parent of a 13 year old Written bybobsax September 16, 2012

Perverts may be lurking

I noticed that somebody had commented on what a pretty girl he thought my 13 yo daughter was. I checked him out and he is at least old enough to drink because he states in his profile that he likes good beer. His gallery was a few photographs of landscapes but his favorites was almost entirely young girls in underwear. Much of it was blocked because my daughter has explicit content blocked. I find this a little disturbing in many ways. One of which is the message that you'll be popular if you take provocative photos of yourself. Some of the girls look pretty young also. Isn't there a law about that? My daughter is a great artist and she gets a lot from the site and has friends of the same age that are on the site. I was not aware of the recommended age of 15 here at CSM.
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Safety and privacy concerns


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