Before the likes of websites such as Furaffinity, Inkbunny and SoFurry, there was an archive called VCL (Vixen controlled library?) It was a website that had very little in the ways of functions – no commenting system, no favouriting – but it allowed users to upload and share their artwork and contact one another via email.
I joined the site in 2003 and have used it as an archive for my anthropomorphic artwork ever since (on and off)
Yesterday, I believe that the site went down – I don’t know if it’s a permanent thing VCL being down, as I think it has vanished before.
I do know that the website is barely maintained and has been gathering dust since its ‘revival’ in 2014 – which sadly came to nothing.
Other than the loss of my own artwork, I am saddened about the site going down for all the treasures that were stored on there!
Artwork that isn’t shared anywhere else from artists that have long since moved on.
Not everything on VCL was good and the uploading rules were dubious at best – if I recall correctly, anything traditional had to have a perfectly white background (At all costs) but it did introduce me to some wonderful artists, most of which I aspire to still.
I ‘met’ some of my best artsy friends via VCL also and was introduced to the site by Sy-Swift who I mentioned in my previous post. So I think that this post for me is somewhat bitter sweet considering what I write about yesterday.
Needless to say, I will be really sad it VCL has stopped working permanently, but we all need to move on sooner or later and I haven’t uploaded to my account since last year. I guess it’s time to find another avenue for sharing furry artwork and ‘getting with the times’ finally.
I think as a part of my artistic journey I should be branching out from what I have done before; finding different creative ways to express myself in order to find what is at my core. As a part of this, and because I saw it on my twitter feed a few days prior, I headed down to Bury Art Museum for a free Workshop they were holding called, Catalogue Poetics – I didn’t quite know what to expect or what the workshop was actually about, but I thought it would be artsy being held in a gallery and all. So I bit the bullet, told the other half I wanted to go somewhere and off I went.
It was a fine first step into the creative atmosphere again, as there was only a couple of us; so the process wasn’t at all as scary as I was first fearing.
The workshop itself was about Archives and how they in themselves are a work of art and creative writing.
More than that though, we were talking about how we would archive works. Going on the creative process again was at first rather daunting. This is the first time in months, maybe years, I feel I have accessed a higher level of thinking when it comes to a creative approach. Honestly, I was thankful for it. There was some gentle prodding to get the brain going again and while looking at an exhibit containing Starbucks coffee cups and a disposable bag (Only fine art, eh!) and attempting to archive he exhibit in the way that a traditional archivist would – followed by our own individual way.
In the end, I somehow stumbled across the idea of using how I looked at the exhibition as a means of archiving it and the steps that I took, along with my initial thoughts on the pieces. Even this was interesting – whenever I see an exhibition I look at the information about it first, then have the intention of walking around in a clockwise order, but get distracted by something that looks ‘prettier’ and drift over to that instead! So somehow, my archival technique would end up being read like a set of dance instructions.
You can see the pink post-it notes on the table, which is where the idea formed. To be honest, it was mostly just nice to be around two other ladies who shared an interest in the creative world and connect with that side of things again, even if it is in a way that didn’t completely resonate with me. When I think of art, I tend to find more pleasure in the purely visual side – paintings on walls and such – but it was nice to experience another side of creativity and see what could come from it.