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Interview: Creating Manga Art with Rena Saiya and Danica Davidson

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Joined: 08 Jul 2018
Posts: 217
Location: Ikebukuro
PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 9:13 am Reply with quote
So ninja, butler, maid, chibi, magical girl, shrine maiden, students, etc.

...nekojin, gag, soldier, bride & groom, seme & uke.

“database of characters”

See.... this is the problem.

It's a problem to look at writing this way when you're just trying to write a thing at all (e.g. "I want to write a novel, so let me pick my characters from this database of stereotypes" instead of making three-dimensional characters based on human beings)...

.... it's sort of even more of an issue when you're saying "I'm not Japanese, but I want my comic to look like it's Japanese, by picking from *this* database instead of *that* one." Note, though - saying "Half of the media I like is Japanese, but I'm American, so I have to make sure my comic looks American, by avoiding the Japanese database, and only picking from the American database," is just as bad.

Like... write what you want. Write all your influences, the way you feel them. Take your anime and Marvel and Tolkien and Homer, and Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and the Bhagavad Gita, and Firefly and Friends and Dracula and your unique combination of things from all over the world, from all different time periods that you like, and don't try to write Japan, and don't try to write America, and don't try to write whatever other country you happen to be from, or live in, or like movies from... just write you.

Take inspiration from all of those things, but don't try to cram yourself into the box of any of them.

Like, if you need one new book to tell you what "types" Japanese publishers want to see... you're not there yet.

... also, what happened to celebrating the fact that the internet helps artists find an audience for things publishers wouldn't take a chance on, so that you don't need to cram your work into the "types" some or another publisher wants....

We show maybe 15 steps per drawing, on average. By the time we were going to work on the Heian Woman, we had run out of page space.

...because they wore like 15 layers of splendid wonderfulness <3 /Heian-love gap-moe
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Joined: 20 Nov 2010
Posts: 699
PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 4:55 pm Reply with quote
I think it's far too reductive to see "here we'll show you how to draw certain types of things to help you build up a database of material to draw on", and from that alone go "Oh, but you don't want to learn how to draw other stuff and be a true original artist??"

It seems like that always comes up when someone decides they want to draw or sturdy anime or manga, somebody's gotta go "how could you JUST look at manga, you're not doing this and this and this!" Yeah, okay...but that's on the individual, isn't it? If you want to study or draw something manga-like at the moment, yeah, of course you're going to want reference that focuses chiefly on that.

If you want to draw manga or something like it, why shouldn't a reference book cover how the industry works, even if you don't plan to enter it? It factors into how it looks and works in general.

I can only say so much since I haven't read this book, but it sounds like as good a base as any, and I don't think the industry experience of the authors should be downplayed. Writing three dimensional character is great of course, but gotta start somewhere.
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Joined: 17 Nov 2014
Posts: 511
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:58 pm Reply with quote
Better than Chris Hart at least, though that's not saying much.

That guy should look into infiltrating encrypted internet servers or using table saws because he's a strong candidate for the dictionary definition of "HACK."
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