The Uncanny Valley

Have you ever been disturbed by a style of animation?

I remember thinking there was something a bit unsettling about the characters in the Polar Express.  At the time I didn’t know it was such a universal phenomena and even had a name.  Apparently, Tom Hanks was the conductor of the creepy train headed straight into the pit of the Uncanny Valley.  [the place this omen baby lives]  A hellish slope dotted with humanoid robots, all the way down to the creepiest of zombies.

“Japanese roboticist Masahiro Mori stated in 1970 that the more human a robot acted or looked, the more endearing it would be to a human being. For example, most lovable Robot Buddies look humanoid, but keep quirky and artistically mechanical affectations. However, at some point, the likeness would seem too strong, and it would just come across as a very strange human being. At this point, the acceptance drops suddenly, changing to a powerful negative reaction.”  Television Tropes and Idioms

What is the uncanny valley?

“The uncanny valley is a hypothesis in the field of robotics and 3D computer animation, which holds that when human replicas look and act almost, but not perfectly, like actual human beings, it causes a response of revulsion among human observers. The “valley” refers to the dip in a graph of the comfort level of humans as a function of a robot’s human likeness.” Wikipedia

Uncanny Valley graph

Film and game makers & the uncanny valley

Vector Art

Digital Artists Rock!

Some people don’t place much value on digital art.

I’ve read articles by art critics who don’t consider digital art legitimate. I’ve met ‘brush & canvas’ purists who felt they were more talented because they used real paint. I’ve also met people who had no idea about the process of making digital art. They think all digital art is created equally, and it’s just as simple as clicking the mouse a few times. Appreciating digital art can be understandably confusing since there are so many ways to create digital art.

vector art of wacom tablet by Jayme Art

Any art created using a computer is digital art.

 Digital Art is an umbrella term that covers a range of methods, and techniques used to produce various types of artwork such as: 2-D paintings, vector illustrations, fractal art,  3-D rendered creations, ect.

There are many programs available for creating digital art.

Each may require different skill sets. Some programs used in creating digital art may call for drawing and painting skills, while others need less, and some may require none at all.  There is a variety of ways to use each program.

Digital art techniques vary.

Some digital artists start on a blank ‘page’ and draw or paint very much like you would on paper or canvas. Another technique would be using photo-manipulation with filters, or even using programs that trace images. Regardless of skills, programs or different styles, methods and techniques used, I believe it all calls for creativity on the part of the artist, and what they produce is art.

Art is subjective.

I have my own personal criteria and taste about what appeals to me. What catches my eye in a piece is not what everyone else will like.  Each person likes what is aesthetically pleasing to them, or what evokes a certain emotion in them, or what they feel requires a great deal of artistic skills or talent, or because of a message it communicates to them….or any number of other reasons.  Despite my personal  taste, I am very inclusive of what I consider art.

For the record,  I like to create both digital and analog art.  I like ART!  ☺


Bloggers Unite for Dog Rescue

Each year millions of dogs and cats are euthanized  because not enough people are adopting them through local rescue groups and shelters. Many people buy dogs from pet stores instead, not aware that most come from puppy mills.

Learn more about puppy mills at the ASPCA click here 

Along with all the wonderful benefits of owning an animal companion, much time and dedication is required in being a responsible pet owner. Some people can’t keep their pet for various reasons and are forced to leave them at a shelter, others simply abandon them. This cute little guy was brought to our local shelter after someone had found him wandering on the side of the road.

Can I come home with you?

jack russell photo © Jayme Art


  • Local dog rescue organizations consist of volunteers who help by fostering dogs in their own homes while they search for permanent placement, taking dogs to adoption events, fundraising to cover medical and boarding costs to name a few.  Most rescue groups do not have the luxury of employees or people dedicated to promoting their efforts on a large-scale.
  • As their own resources permit, these groups work with local animal shelters in an effort to place adoptable dogs that are scheduled for euthanization. The sad fact is that many dogs die every day before they find a “forever home”. The commercials you see on television about neglect and abuse are very real. Consumers can literally save a dog’s life simply by choosing adoption over a pet store or breeder purchase.

Many cats are also waiting for a loving home.

These are a few we visited yesterday…

Orange cat photo © Jayme Art

I’d like to encourage you to make a difference by:

  • Adopting a companion:
  • Donating to a local animal rescue organization
  • Fostering a dog or cat
  • Volunteering at a local shelter or rescue organization
  • Sharing this post across all forms of social media and encourage others to participate!

  “Nationwide, only about 20 percent of dogs in homes come from shelters—the rest come from other sources. It would only take a relatively small increase in the adoption rate along with a modest reduction in the birth rate to go a long way toward solving the problem of euthanizing healthy and treatable dogs in many communities.”  ~Humane Society of the United States

Life of a Puppy Mill Dog.    

See the list of other blogs participating here:

Digital Art

Curious Kitty

 kitty digital painting © Jayme Art

I painted this kitty yesterday using a free version of Sketchbooka program that came with my long-awaited, new graphics tablet.

 Creating art is often challenging, but it’s what I love to do. Finding ways to market my artwork online is the hard part. I’ve been testing and comparing a few of the POD sites lately to see how they operate and if I like them. I’m considering alternative routes to the POD sites as well, like Etsy. Etsy is not a print-on-demand site but a place to: “Buy and sell handmade or vintage items, art and supplies… Etsy, the world’s most vibrant handmade marketplace.”
 The high-resolution version of this kitty (and a few other pieces I’m working on) might make nice greeting cards or posters, so I was thinking about having some printed out to sell on Etsy.
 I’ll keep researching.  I think eventually I’ll find the best place for me and a method of selling my art that buyers are happy with. Then I can focus on creating and improving my artwork. (the fun part)

Public Art in Houston

The exhibit, Circle of Animals/ Zodiac Heads, by artist Ai Weiwei is on display at Hermann Park in Houston, Texas.  (March 3 – June 3)
I took a few photos of his sculptures during our visit and posted them here at my photo blog. Below is one of those pictures with a little color and texture added.

dragon photo art © Jayme Art