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Why can't westerners ,who draw manga,draw,ink and color like authentic japanese style?


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dcrigg



Joined: 05 May 2017
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PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 2:38 pm Reply with quote
They tend to draw it in way that is not japanese custom style.How they don't do it in japanese authentic style?
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Chiibi



Joined: 19 Dec 2011
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PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2017 8:58 pm Reply with quote
Because they are too ignorant to study it properly.

I, on the other hand am pretty good at it. Razz
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Shostakovich



Joined: 30 Oct 2003
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:04 am Reply with quote
If a Japanese artist tried to draw like Guarnido, Peeters, Vivès or Cho it wouldn't "work" either. He could analyze and mimic the art, the pace, the tone... but it wouldn't feel authentic. Of course there's a lot of mutual influence, but each country's comics have their own background and idiosyncracy and even the most cosmopolitan artist can't really get rid of that deep down.
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TheAnimeRevolutionizer



Joined: 03 Nov 2017
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:20 am Reply with quote
Shostakovich wrote:
If a Japanese artist tried to draw like Guarnido, Peeters, Vivès or Cho it wouldn't "work" either. He could analyze and mimic the art, the pace, the tone... but it wouldn't feel authentic. Of course there's a lot of mutual influence, but each country's comics have their own background and idiosyncracy and even the most cosmopolitan artist can't really get rid of that deep down.


^ Very on point. To master manga, it must be your style and dedication first and foremost. I've witnessed the progression of many peers in my youth who were absolutely great at it, but all eventually diverged at the start of their coed years to wanting to do more realistic and self establishing styles. I can understand their reasons why, but again, it requires more than just talent and mere want.

Granted, anime does have a lot of styles unique to every individual. Anyone who tells you otherwise is rather ignorant; anime is an art of subtlety. You cannot come to create manga until you grasp its finer points, the inner workings, and the soul of it. The same goes for any other style and artform.
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Tamaria



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:14 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
They tend to draw it in way that is not japanese custom style.How they don't do it in japanese authentic style?


Because there is no 'Japanese custom style'. There's a huge variety of styles to be found in the Japanese comic industry. And while they're certainly trends, an artists own style is an accumulation of their skills, experiences, influences, surrounding factors like their editiors, time and publication contraints and so much more. That's what makes art authentic: artists creating work only they can create.

You can 'study' all you want, but if you assume manga is a style with rules set in stone, you're setting yourself up for failure. Someone who only mimics another style, Japanese or otherwise, will never produce work that feels authentic.

Oh, and keep in mind that most manga popular enough to be translated to English is made by artists who've gotten to the point where they've developed their style and can use it (somewhat) effectively to tell a story. Look at some of the works drawn by beginners and you'll see them making the same mistakes as their western counter parts. Poor understanding of anatomy, inconsistencies in style, same-face-syndrome, weird page layouts and so on. How people overcome these mistakes varies from person to person (and some people even turn their limitations into assets), which is what will eventually make their art unique.
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Jose Cruz



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:16 am Reply with quote
While it's true that manga has a wide variety of styles is also true that Western and Japanese visual cultures have rather different flavors. What I mean by that is that if you compare drawings on Pixiv and DeviantArt you will notice that Pixiv's line art is generally a bit sharper and more subtle and the colors tend to be brighter, softer and muted. Japanese art usually has stronger more contrasting lines while western art tends to be more about volumes and mass. And notice that DeviantArt is heavily influenced by Japanese visual culture but even the drawings that consciously copy Japanese art tend to feel quite western.

Like this Vegeta:
https://quirkilicious.deviantart.com/art/Blue-Prince-701357178

Compare to something like this:
https://i.pinimg.com/originals/1e/29/6f/1e296f92a1a06a3195cb449c3d8f3411.png

It's easy to tell which one is Western.

Shostakovich wrote:
If a Japanese artist tried to draw like Guarnido, Peeters, Vivès or Cho it wouldn't "work" either. He could analyze and mimic the art, the pace, the tone... but it wouldn't feel authentic. Of course there's a lot of mutual influence, but each country's comics have their own background and idiosyncracy and even the most cosmopolitan artist can't really get rid of that deep down.


There are manga which copy Western comic styles. For instance, Ping Pong, which was adapted into a TV. series by Masaki Yuasa. It's style is heavily influenced by French comics since the manga artist who did it studied art in France.

That explains why it doesn't look really like any other Japanese comics:
https://cosmoflips.files.wordpress.com/2016/01/68-11.png?w=640
It's a realistic westernized style although it still preserves some elements typical of manga like strong sharp lines.
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Tamaria



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 2:44 am Reply with quote
'Random cute girl' is just one style though, just one that tends to be really popular on the internet. Most manga artists tend to draw a larger variety of things and as a result learn to draw more than just moe art.
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Jose Cruz



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:28 pm Reply with quote
None of the images I linked have a girl in them though. The cutesy character in the pixiv image is of a bishounen. Razz Yes, I know manga artists draw way more things than "cute girls", although the average level of cuteness in manga/anime has been increasing over the past 20 years. I think that's natural since cutesy characters attract the human eye. I know there are many other styles, I choose a random pivix picture though and most of those have cute characters although the unique elements of Japanese/East Asian sequential art can be seem even in the more realistic drawings.

Edit: To be clear I don't regard cutesy character designs as a "defining" feature of Japanese art style. The most common features are: muted subtle colours, an emphasis on 2d representation, and high level of stylization and strong/well defined lines. These features I think are present in Japanese art for several centuries and they are even reflected in the art in Pixiv.
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Tamaria



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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 12:23 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
None of the images I linked have a girl in them though. The cutesy character in the pixiv image is of a bishounen.


Oh. And to think I'm usually pretty good at telling them apart.

Quote:
I choose a random pivix picture though and most of those have cute characters although the unique elements of Japanese/East Asian sequential art can be seem even in the more realistic drawings.


Here's the thing though: Pixiv is mostly illustrations. Illustrations are not manga. A single image does not make sequential art. Most people on there like drawing pretty pictures and the attention they get by doing so. If you want examples of manga, take examples from actual manga.

And though some of these images may be suitable as examples of the styles used in moe manga, moe manga is still but a small (but profitable) portion of Japan's comics output.

Quote:

Edit: To be clear I don't regard cutesy character designs as a "defining" feature of Japanese art style. The most common features are: muted subtle colours, an emphasis on 2d representation, and high level of stylization and strong/well defined lines. These features I think are present in Japanese art for several centuries and they are even reflected in the art in Pixiv.


Muted, subtle colours - I don't really see this. In moe art, which is supposed to be soft, sure, but moe art is just a fragment of all art made in Japan. The more mainstream anime and game art tends to use vibrant colours to stand out, for instance. And water colours would not have worked well at all with traditional traditional woodblock prints - colours like reds and blues came out much better.

Emphasis on 2d representation - Uh, yeah? When you draw 2D images, you tend to focus on how to draw a 3D world in 2D. Or are we talking about artists using simple perspectives? Can't this be said for most (amateur) art created? Drawing perspective is HARD. Very few people are good at drawing and using perspective in dynamic ways.(And the few mangaka that do, are the mangaka whose work we tend to remember.)

High level of stylization - Also nothing uncommon about this. Art is often about putting emphasis on important parts while ignoring the unimportant. Very few artists actually draw/paint/sculpt in a photorealistic style nowadays. Plus, with comics (and animation too), you have to simplify and stylise because overly realistic styles are extremely time consuming and thus not fit for work with strict deadlines.

Well defined lines - Uh, nothing unique there either. While technology has come a long way, it's still easy to lose details in printing. Strong, clear linework is pretty important in comics all over the world.
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Jose Cruz



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 7:11 pm Reply with quote
Tamaria wrote:
Here's the thing though: Pixiv is mostly illustrations. Illustrations are not manga. A single image does not make sequential art. Most people on there like drawing pretty pictures and the attention they get by doing so. If you want examples of manga, take examples from actual manga.

And though some of these images may be suitable as examples of the styles used in moe manga, moe manga is still but a small (but profitable) portion of Japan's comics output.


Good point. Perhaps I should compare the most popular manga with the most popular comics in Europe and North America.

Let's see, this is the top selling seinen manga in Japan right now:
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Dmhi4p23iDs/VQhXUDZG90I/AAAAAAAAA-Y/weI5X2MZoYc/s1600/j002.jpeg

This is the top selling comic in the US right now:
http://www.comicsblog.fr/images/galerie/bigimage/marvel-legacy-preview-1-2.jpg

A random French comic image:
http://www.wallcoo.net/anime/Dargaud_Comic_Wallpapers_02/images/Dargaud_Wallpaper_132.jpg

Overall there are more similarities than I though. I have the impression that US comics are looking progressively more like manga in art, camera angles, use of visual language to show movement and panel organization. But there are some important differences as the manga is still more stylized than both French and US comics.

Quote:
Emphasis on 2d representation - Uh, yeah? When you draw 2D images, you tend to focus on how to draw a 3D world in 2D. Or are we talking about artists using simple perspectives? Can't this be said for most (amateur) art created? Drawing perspective is HARD. Very few people are good at drawing and using perspective in dynamic ways.(And the few mangaka that do, are the mangaka whose work we tend to remember


But I think that creating perspective in images is more valued in Western art.

Quote:
High level of stylization - Also nothing uncommon about this. Art is often about putting emphasis on important parts while ignoring the unimportant. Very few artists actually draw/paint/sculpt in a photorealistic style nowadays. Plus, with comics (and animation too), you have to simplify and stylise because overly realistic styles are extremely time consuming and thus not fit for work with strict deadlines.


Still manga you have complexity in stylization. The images are stylized not because of a constraint but because they want it to look like that. In Western art stylization emerges for different reasons.

For instance in the US or in French comics the degree of realism tends to be much higher when the degree of visual complexity is high. In manga it's common for stylization to persist even when you allow the artists more complexity. Tamaki Saito talked about the reasons for this discrepancy.
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Tamaria



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 3:51 am Reply with quote
Jose Cruz wrote:


Overall there are more similarities than I though. I have the impression that US comics are looking progressively more like manga in art, camera angles, use of visual language to show movement and panel organization. But there are some important differences as the manga is still more stylized than both French and US comics.


Should be no suprise. The current generation of artists is just like us: they grew up with access to comics from all over the world. Not to mention that the industry has always benefitted from cross-pollination. American animation, especially the Disney movies, had a huge impact on Tezuka's style, and he went on to influence a whole generation of manga artists himself. Frank Miller thought American comics were too wordy and looked towards Japan for ways to decompress storytelling.

There is no set style. Just trends that stem from succesfull artists influencing others.

Quote:

But I think that creating perspective in images is more valued in Western art.


I disagree. Creative perspectives are more valued in genres like action, and since the more wellknown American comics tend to be of the action variety, you might associate that with western comics. But look at genres like drama and gag comics, and you'll see a clear preference for simple perspectives no matter the origin.

Quote:


Still manga you have complexity in stylization. The images are stylized not because of a constraint but because they want it to look like that. In Western art stylization emerges for different reasons.


Why do you think that?

First of all, stylisation in manga is just as well a result of constraints. You know why Akira Toriyama made his style more angular as Dragon Ball progressed? Easier and faster to draw. Do you know why backgrounds tend to become less common in later chapters of long-running shonen series? Because backgrounds are a pain in the ass the draw. You need to keep track of the character's surroundings all the time. Even if you have an assistent who excels at adding backgrounds, it's very time consuming.

What you do see, is that the priorities depend on the artist's preferences and the industry they work in. For instance, it's much easier to skip drawing backgrounds if the comic is in black and white, because having a white background won't stand out much. However, if you're working in colour, you can't cheat like that and figure out other shortcuts.

You seem to assume that because American and European comics don't look 'pretty' in your eyes, it must be because the artists do not have the option to draw like that. Has it ever occured to you that these artists are aiming for something other than pretty? Good art is interesting. Sometimes it's interesting because it looks beautiful, but that's far from the only reason to want to look at something.

Quote:
For instance in the US or in French comics the degree of realism tends to be much higher when the degree of visual complexity is high. In manga it's common for stylization to persist even when you allow the artists more complexity. Tamaki Saito talked about the reasons for this discrepancy.


I disagree. Complex images and a cartoony artstyle where common in Europese comics (Europe has more comic producing countries than just France!) as far back as the sixties. Franquin ring a bell? If anything, it was the Britisch and their black and white comics that were often in a more realistic style (unless they were gag comics).

If I had to point out a difference between Japanese comics and European and American, I'd say it's flexibility. Japanese mangaka are more eager to bend their style to set and certain atmosphere or tell a joke. Some go as far as inserting a completely different 'chibi' style, though this is less popular now than it was in the 90s. Plus, this flexibility is something new artists have learned from manga as well.
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Jose Cruz



Joined: 20 Nov 2012
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 12:31 am Reply with quote
Tamaria wrote:
Quote:
But I think that creating perspective in images is more valued in Western art.


I disagree. Creative perspectives are more valued in genres like action, and since the more wellknown American comics tend to be of the action variety, you might associate that with western comics. But look at genres like drama and gag comics, and you'll see a clear preference for simple perspectives no matter the origin.


I guess I am wrong but I got this impression actually from Japanese anime directors who said they don't use CG because they claimed the Japanese mindset is two dimensional.

Quote:
Quote:
Still manga you have complexity in stylization. The images are stylized not because of a constraint but because they want it to look like that. In Western art stylization emerges for different reasons.


Why do you think that?

First of all, stylisation in manga is just as well a result of constraints. You know why Akira Toriyama made his style more angular as Dragon Ball progressed? Easier and faster to draw. Do you know why backgrounds tend to become less common in later chapters of long-running shonen series? Because backgrounds are a pain in the ass the draw. You need to keep track of the character's surroundings all the time. Even if you have an assistent who excels at adding backgrounds, it's very time consuming.

What you do see, is that the priorities depend on the artist's preferences and the industry they work in. For instance, it's much easier to skip drawing backgrounds if the comic is in black and white, because having a white background won't stand out much. However, if you're working in colour, you can't cheat like that and figure out other shortcuts.

You seem to assume that because American and European comics don't look 'pretty' in your eyes, it must be because the artists do not have the option to draw like that. Has it ever occured to you that these artists are aiming for something other than pretty? Good art is interesting. Sometimes it's interesting because it looks beautiful, but that's far from the only reason to want to look at something.


The thing is that when they aim for "pretty" the western conception of beauty tends to be more realistic than the Japanese conception. Hence why pretty women in Western comics are usually drawn in realistic fashion while in manga pretty women can be very stylized (and sometimes very realistic as well). And western porn comics' art is much more realistic on average than in porn manga.

It is easy to notice that when comparing Blade Runner 2022, an anime made for Western audiences which has a super realistic style:
https://pixel.nymag.com/imgs/daily/vulture/2017/09/27/27-blade-runner-anime.w710.h473.jpg
compare to this:
https://manga.tokyo/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/MADE-IN-ABYSS-1.jpg

Stylized and pretty is a very Japanese thing. In other words, in Japanese culture stylization can be dignified while in Western culture it is generally not. The type of art common in Pixiv and like the art in Made in Abyss is essentially Japanese because it is dignified stylization. Of course you can find western artists doing the same thing, although generally it is because they are reproducing their own subjective impression of Japanese-style art.

Quote:
Quote:
For instance in the US or in French comics the degree of realism tends to be much higher when the degree of visual complexity is high. In manga it's common for stylization to persist even when you allow the artists more complexity. Tamaki Saito talked about the reasons for this discrepancy.


I disagree. Complex images and a cartoony artstyle where common in Europese comics (Europe has more comic producing countries than just France!) as far back as the sixties. Franquin ring a bell? If anything, it was the Britisch and their black and white comics that were often in a more realistic style (unless they were gag comics).


Well, but there are important differences, very stilized western comics tends to be comedic and more serious or pornographic comics tends to be more realistic. While it's common in manga to have highly stylized serious stories (like Made in Abyss). That's dignified stylization.

Quote:
If I had to point out a difference between Japanese comics and European and American, I'd say it's flexibility. Japanese mangaka are more eager to bend their style to set and certain atmosphere or tell a joke. Some go as far as inserting a completely different 'chibi' style, though this is less popular now than it was in the 90s. Plus, this flexibility is something new artists have learned from manga as well.


I agree with the word "flexibility" as think that the main difference is that Japanese artists do not consider manga to be a more restricted medium of expression while western cartoonists tend to be believe comics should be more "restricted" and tend to follow invisible rules to a greater degree.

This interview with Frederick L.Schodt for instance he argues that Japan has been the only country to develop comics into a "true mass medium":

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TaZzzf9vMzY
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Tamaria



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:56 am Reply with quote
Jose Cruz wrote:


I guess I am wrong but I got this impression actually from Japanese anime directors who said they don't use CG because they claimed the Japanese mindset is two dimensional.


I think that's mostly older directors being grumpy. It used to be a huge feat to animate in interesting perspectives, especially if that perspective shifts during the cut. Nowadays scenes like that are easier to create using CG, because you can try different things without having to create a new storyboard for every attempt. Not that it doesn't take any skill - you still need great spatial visualization abilities to make those scenes work, not to mention the skills to create good looking 3D models and have them move the way you want them to.

Using CD for action scenes is becoming increasingly more common in anime. (And other anime with interesting visual effects as well, like KADO: The Right Answer earlier this year.)

Quote:

The thing is that when they aim for "pretty" the western conception of beauty tends to be more realistic than the Japanese conception. Hence why pretty women in Western comics are usually drawn in realistic fashion while in manga pretty women can be very stylized (and sometimes very realistic as well). And western porn comics' art is much more realistic on average than in porn manga.


Haha, you've never seen an american comic from the 90s, have you? Huge breasts, tiny waists, exaggeration all over. The difference has nothing to do with realism. It has to do with cute versus sexy.

Quote:
It is easy to notice that when comparing Blade Runner 2022, an anime made for Western audiences which has a super realistic style:
https://pixel.nymag.com/imgs/daily/vulture/2017/09/27/27-blade-runner-anime.w710.h473.jpg
compare to this:
https://manga.tokyo/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/MADE-IN-ABYSS-1.jpg


That's like trying to prove all American cats are black and all Japanese cats are calicos, because your neighbour owns a black cat and you see calicos in anime all the time.

Anime with more realistic, less cutesy styles happen all the time. It's not the prefered syle of every designer and director, but it's kind of mean to claim fanfavorites like Ghost in the Shell, Ergo Proxy or With Hunter Robin and anomalies. In fact, I think you're looking at it the wrong way. You assume the style was designed to appeal to American tastes, but Shukō Murase was drawing and directing like that before the West really took notice.

You're also competely ignoring the styles currently popular within western animation. American cartoons especially are currently very cartoony, colourful and oftentimes even cute.

Plus, there's more to chosing a style than pandering to the audience. Directors have their preferences, of course, but there are also things to consider like:
-Style of the original work (in case of adaptations)
-Tone of the show
-Budget (simple designs tend to be easier and faster to animate)
-Skills of the animators you're working with

Made in Abyss isn't cute for the sake of being cute. It's cute to give the viewer a false sense of security, to contrast style with content.

Quote:
Stylized and pretty is a very Japanese thing. In other words, in Japanese culture stylization can be dignified while in Western culture it is generally not. The type of art common in Pixiv and like the art in Made in Abyss is essentially Japanese because it is dignified stylization. Of course you can find western artists doing the same thing, although generally it is because they are reproducing their own subjective impression of Japanese-style art.


'Dignified'? That's kind of insulting, don't you think? There's nothing undignified about not ignoring or even exaggerating flaws. As if there can be no beauty in flaws. Not to mention that it's pretty easy to pinpoint all sorts of cute art trends/franchises in the west even before anime/manga really hit. Sarah Kay, Nijntje... And have you seen the kind of images they've been putting on young girls' magazines the past decade? Basically all super pretty girl art, even more sparkly and soft than what you'll find on shojo manga covers.

Quote:

Well, but there are important differences, very stilized western comics tends to be comedic and more serious or pornographic comics tends to be more realistic. While it's common in manga to have highly stylized serious stories (like Made in Abyss). That's dignified stylization.


Super hero comics tend to be heavily stylised as well, just not in the same way as cutesy anime and manga. Super hero comic art tend to emphasise character traits like strength and sexyness. There's absolutely nothing realistic about the way many super heroes look.

Quote:

I agree with the word "flexibility" as think that the main difference is that Japanese artists do not consider manga to be a more restricted medium of expression while western cartoonists tend to be believe comics should be more "restricted" and tend to follow invisible rules to a greater degree.

This interview with Frederick L.Schodt for instance he argues that Japan has been the only country to develop comics into a "true mass medium":

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TaZzzf9vMzY


I don't think restricted it the right word. It implies stifled creativity. I'd say their styles tend to be more consistent and that's not necessarily a bad thing. Flexibility allows for art distortions that leave impact, but for every succesful attempt there seem to be about a dozen lame or cringeworthy chibi-transformations... Not to mention a lot of distortions have become cliches in their own right, like the shonen protagonist's rage face (that often looks like he need to take a really big poop).

As for the Schodt video: anything from 2004 pertaining the global comics industry is pretty much outdated. We've seen some huge developments in the past decade. Webcomics, the decline of manga sales as a result of competing mediums (and just plain cell phone usage), an american cartoons renaissance. Manga and anime played a part in that (by influencing creators all over the world), but never forget that anime and manga were not created in a vacuum.

And while it's true that the Japanese comics industry is amazing for a variety of reasons, especially the high volume content being produced, this does not make the Japanese comic industry superiour. That industry has its own struggles. High levels of saturation have resulted in many manga artists working for tiny wages (and things being even worse in the anime industry). Lots of content is simply regurgitated and meant to latch onto popular trends (though this is arguably even worse in the closely related light novel industry). Even the whole Pixiv and dojinshi culture can easily be seen as a negative, because it's the stuff that appeals to the lowest common denominator that gets the money and attention. It's not the kind of setting were originality is awarded.
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TheAnimeRevolutionizer



Joined: 03 Nov 2017
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:07 pm Reply with quote
My issue with all of this isn't about what is superior, it's rather about who is doing what with their stuff. These days I'm really not seeing too much being done about it. Creativity and making that come to life with hard work is what will bring home the money, along with great business decisions and knowing how to present your stuff for people to know about it. I find that there's a lot of potential to be had but there's not much being done with it, and I think that's a real shame.

With comics, they've still got a large series of obstacles and tests of character to overcome, and this still goes for stuff since the mid 1990s. There are still large stigmas about how comics are mainly about superheroes, that the writing for them is still horrendous, and while there is something being done about it ie. animenewsnetwork.com/bbs/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=3069615, and that not just Kingdom Come and Watchmen, but Scott Pilgrim is evidence that comics can tell great narratives, I can tell though that there has to be a very, very big change in not only literary presentation and consumption, but also in writing, creativity, and application on a very, very big scale. Marvel and DC's aesthetics work fine, but they are the two biggest corporate entities people turn to in the States for comics, and they've unfortunately typecasted themselves to where they really need to get in some new work and stories and get to doing new things. They may have tv shows and movies these days, but I'd hate to be around when that bubble bursts again, as time before has shown us. Marvel's new attempt of being diverse recently has shot themselves in the foot with a lot of controversy not just on the comic but behind the scenes, and they've seen a 91% decrease in profits. It's still not looking pretty. Maybe in the future, a work will lead a small publisher to rise up and take the lion's share that Marvel and DC has under their belt and redistributes it, but that's only a probability and a wild out there scenario of speculation. They seriously need to learn from past mistakes or else the consequences are just only going to get worse.

Up next on the roasting block is the beloved style and medium of manga. I'm not going to be pretty here. While anime and manga are beloved for being from Japan, as I've said before in an earlier forum, artists and those inspired to want to make manga and anime have to realize what anime and manga has in their own cultural and historic influence. I'm sure you know that in Japan, anime and manga are practically as common as the grass and the water, but as history's told me and continues to press on today, anime and manga are huge when it comes to what influences they brought when they crossed the seas. It's a gross mistake to not acknowledge such great waves the mediums have made not just in a few countries, but the entire world over. You think that anime and manga are such a common thing now in the States? Back then it was like a breath of fresh air and the sunny high noon sky among a verdant forest out of a dank underground labyrinth. People were blown away at how there were comics and animation that wasn't superhero stuff, that there was children's series written really well, that there were stories for adolescents that held truths and content about maturity, that there was even porn and adult stories, and had stories for girls and women. It's like the saying seeing the trees instead of the forest. Anime and manga, at least probably for me, represents not just really great, cool, and emotionally moving modern day art, but a style that had upset the status stereotype quo that animation and comics were nothing but disposable tripe, and stuck it back to those people. For what it is, anime and manga in the States represents the reminder that expression and creativity should not ever turn down for excessive, rancorous censorship, and that it always has the right to be what it wants to be with conviction, integrity and dignity. Anything regarding nationalism and jingoistic sentiments can crawl right back into its birthplace too, because it's crossed lines of race and nationality into the human soul as far as I know.

Let me tell you an old timey story of mine. Back around the early 2000s, and I'm very sure you were probably just as young as me around that time, I was in high school. Anime was everywhere in the pockets of nerddom. But the one thing that haunts me to this day still were the people who could draw anime and manga really, really well. I couldn't draw back then, and I can't even draw to this day. They were absolutely mind blowing and amazing when they portrayed their works. They drew the style as simple as one could breathe air. Some of the group who weren't as good were aspiring to want to make their own manga and they practiced day in and day out. I was astounded and impressed back then.

Time passed. I eventually graduated. Me and an artist friend from that time still stuck around and as hardcore anime nerds with undying love for the medium even to this day. One day not too recently, we found a reunion group for our anime club on deviantArt. Sadly, what was presented was kind of depressing and heartbreaking. We were a few years too late, but we recognized a few of them as the really great artists from the anime club group. Looking at their portfolios, some of them turned to branching out into other styles. Sure, times change, but it was absolutely rending to see that they didn't appreciate what they had. I know the call for other things is great, but there's a point where you can't just give up what you got if you just have real talent. The real kicker? Their accounts were long dead since the turn of the 2010s. Artists don't give up, but as we could tell, it was just a passing hobby for them.

The only person i know who is still aiming high as an artist and author of manga into this day is my close friend. And as I can tell, he shares the same sentiments as me. He admits that it's hard to break through, but he's keeping at it studying and working out his stuff. From all of this, I can tell the difference from the group from him. He's dead set on the style and goes as far as to study what cultural backgrounds anime originates from. He also knows what historic and cultural weight anime has over here. While stuff like RWBY and Avatar still exists, I can tell his work holds something that they don't. I can't pin it down, but.... It's just that something that makes anime "anime".

Seriously, while Japan's industry is still running despite the news of issues and probable decline, I don't think they're going away anytime soon. But I do know that tastes differ widely across the seas. Maybe for the most part our generation as fans inspired has flickered out too soon to show the impact, but I don't think that's majorly the case. I think again that fans inspired to take on the style here underestimate their worth and need to realize that into their convictions and inspirations as well. Japan's not going to cater mainly to the US nor abroad all the time, and while there will always be interest in anime in the new over here, fans need to step up and take charge too. It's going to take commitment and serious want to understand to establish that the US can draw and write with the best in terms of manga. Moreover, I think this also ties back into society as well. As much as anime and manga may have such connotations I've explained back there, manga is still portrayed as a strictly Japanese thing. Outside of here, I read an Ask John article not too recently about if manga will be realized as an established style overseas, and due to cultural factors it'd take a while for the style to be legit, despite evidence of the contrary. Yes, there are cultural factors that are Japanese that get anime to be anime. But think about series like Black Butler, Cowboy Bebop, A Bride's Tale, Hellsing, Full Metal Alchemist, and even to games like King of Fighters, Guilty Gear, No More Heroes, and Metal Gear Solid. I've seen evidence that you don't have to be strictly Japanese to portray an anime/manga or a literary work in the fashion of it.

As for anime and manga being "stale", it's going to require not just a wildcard that turns things around but also keeps the spirit and traditions going in a fresh way. I don't know what that is, but all I know is that is key for the future, and they who has it will open the way.
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Tamaria



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
Posts: 1511
Location: De Achterhoek
PostPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:26 am Reply with quote
Ah, so you're one of those people who calls manga a style. How would you define that style? Smile

As for the other topics you touched upon:

Comics - There's a lot out there that's not superheroes. Image comics, for instance, may not be getting any big budget movies, but they have plenty of big hits and acclaimed series. The Walking Dead may be a thing you've heard about. Walk into a comic book shop and don't be surprised if some of their best selling TPB are sciencefiction and fantasy series published by Image.

New generation of artists - I guess you haven't noticed, but we are seeing a generation of artists who grew up watching anime and reading manga now being succesful in the animation and comic industry. Take a look at a random popular American cartoon and you'll bump into references to manga/anime soon enough. Not only that, you'll see story concepts, themes and other non-visual ideas that were clearly influenced by the anime and manga the creators loved when they were teens. People like Rebecca Sugar (Steven Universe) are creating wonderful things and to say it's a shame they aren't copying popular visual styles from Japan is insulting.
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