This paper details an investigation into a network of practice centered on arts and making. By active participation on deviantART.com with my own digital images, I set out to describe the various ways we learn from each other in the process of making art online. This participation is set into perspective by a thorough description of social media that deals with art in general, followed by a thick description of deviantART specifically. Further depth and details about the network, the community and its multifaceted practices, is provided by interviews with long-time members.
Finally, the investigation is connected to relevant thinkers, writers and theorists. In figuring out what the term "community" is supposed to mean when dealing with learning, the project includes writings by Lave and Wenger about situated learning and communities of practice. Further, the Norwegian educator and forward-thinking A. Krokan sheds some light upon how learning processes could, and should, be enhanced and altered by the emerging technologies of Web 2.0. My research benefited greatly from the recent dissertation on deviantART as an evolving infrastructure for art-practices by D. Perkel, Berkeley, CA. A critical perspective is provided by J. Lanier in dealing with the "hive mind" and other kinds of online collective endeavors. Lastly, P. Duncum gets to make sense of the rhizomic field of visual culture by providing taxonomies of imagery and shedding the legacy of the modernist curriculum. The point to be made is this: is learning impacted most by the community, the technologies at hand, or the learner himself?