Digital art is a term used to describe art that is made or presented using digital technology

1 of 3

The first use of the term digital art was in the early 1980s when computer engineers devised a paint program which was used by the pioneering digital artist Harold Cohen. This became known as AARON, a robotic machine designed to make large drawings on sheets of paper placed on the floor. Since this early foray into artificial intelligence, Cohen has continued to fine-tune the AARON program as technology becomes more sophisticated.

Digital art can be computer generated, scanned or drawn using a tablet and a mouse. In the 1990s, thanks to improvements in digital technology, it was possible to download video onto computers, allowing artists to manipulate the images they had filmed with a video camera. This gave artists a creative freedom never experienced before with film, allowing them to cut and paste within moving images to create visual collages.

In recent times some digital art has become interactive, allowing the audience a certain amount of control over the final image.

Digital art for kids

Someone operates a 3d printer in a dark room, it is printing a dark blue sculpture

Whether in the classroom or at home, these fun and unique resources are a great way of encouraging kids to create their own digital art.

Digital Makers: Make a drawing robot
Find out how to make a robot that draws!

Digital Makers: Be a 3D designer
This resource is a great introduction to 3D printing and explains how to make a 3D digital model.

Digital kit: Re-imagining landscapes
Make a digital world inspired by the works in Tate’s collection using photo editing software.

Tate Kids: Digital to Kit: Digital to Chemical
This great ‘to do’ activity shows how to create a negative from a digital photograph and turn it into a cyanotype print.