It’s been a little while, hasn’t it?
When I first released Sheezy.Art Beta to the public in 2020 I, we, were absolutely blown away by the response it received.
They say everyone needs a hobby, and my hobby, as silly as it might seem, is building websites. I never originally intended to release the thing at all - so you can imagine my surprise when, a year later, we were inundated with thousands of passionate artists wanting to be a part of our fun little adventure.
Unfortunately, timing was simply not on our side back then. I and many of the other Sheezy team members were only a few months into a university course, attended with the intention of becoming a qualified animator to satisfy my other hobby. I was an unemployed student, relying on student loans to survive, and suddenly I also had a bustling community to tend to and pay for.
It was damn near killing me.
Shutting down the site was a decision that followed a lot of sleepless nights - I was devastated to lose something so special, and I know that a lot of you were devastated too, which only made the decision harder.
Despite letting it go and retreating back into my hermit shell to recuperate for the last couple years, all I’ve been able to think about, every waking hour of every day, has been Sheezy. Not necessarily the website, but you. All of you.
I did you dirty by creating this community and wrenching it away so suddenly. And I’m sorry. From the bottom of my heart, I’m sorry.
Of course, circumstances were out of my control. But I still failed you, and that’s something that’s been eating away at me ever since.
Fortunately, time heals all wounds.
Things are different now - you’ll either be happy or indifferent to hear that I graduate this November and no longer have any working commitments whatsoever.
I got married! And my wife just so happens to be one of the most supportive and loving people I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing.
The planets have aligned, so to speak, and so, in typical Ry fashion, I have been building a website in my free time.
Sheezy.Art Version 2 will be available for beta testing at the end of November.
The original team is backing me up once again, and we will be opening a brand new Discord server on Halloween 🎃
Come join us for our inaugural Sheezy Discord Stream at 6pm GMT on October 31st. There may well be a couple treats in it for you!
I know a lot of you will have many questions - and we’ll be around on Discord to answer them for you.
To answer some of the questions I’ve seen floating around already:
- It’s still me, Ry, developing the site by myself
- The original core team is still here, raring to go - we’re hoping to re-recruit more of the originals as time goes on
- Our rules, terms and policies remain exactly as they were right before the site shut down. Nothing has changed there
- Your data and artwork will be waiting for you where you left it, providing you didn’t delete it before the shutdown
- Your account will be hidden by default, and you’ll need to sign in once the site is ready to make it public. I want to give everyone a chance to tidy things up a bit - it has been a few years, after all
- The new site is built with React - at a certain point I realised it was apt for me to get with the times
- We are thoroughly anti-NFT, anti-crypto, and are actively figuring out how we should approach AI art
I am very opinionated when it comes to AI. For the site’s various functions, there is a possibility that I might implement some kind of AI to ease the burden on our moderators, but I want to make sure that nobody’s data is going anywhere they don’t want it to go. We’ll be actively discussing AI art as a team and will also field it to the community as to how we should approach it - whether we ban it outright or implement strict tagging criteria. But that’s a conversation for later on down the road.
One of the most important questions I see people asking is “How can we trust you?” - and it’s a fair question. I understand that perspective completely, and I don’t blame you at all for wondering.
Frankly, I can’t give you a good answer. I’m just some British guy who likes building websites and making art, and who wants to meet and hang out with other artists.
Whether you trust me or not is up to you - but I hope you’ll agree with me when I say that whether the site succeeds or fails, having a community come together the way ours did is an immaculate treasure, and something that I’d be overjoyed to be a part of once again.
Also - to speak candidly - I have no interest in doing anything else with my time. I want Sheezy to be my career. I’m more than willing to pour all of my blood, sweat and tears into making this an online home that we can all be proud of, and all feel safe within.
This time around, I have been lucky enough to secure a small bundle of funding that can go straight toward hosting and service costs. Monetisation will likely happen much the same way it did before - Patreon goodies, Discord extras, etc. I am still adamant about avoiding ads.
I’m excited beyond words at the prospect of bringing back our charming little ethos to this colourful corner of the internet - and we, the Sheezy team, really hope to see you around.
Can’t wait to get this thing built!
See you soon,