Anime/Manga style drawing
Anime/manga style art is the way it is for many reasons. Here are the things I like and want to emulate:
- Cartoon styles can be exaggerated, meaning they can be more lively and expressive than realistic styles, which can look static by comparison.
- It’s simple, attractive, and easy to draw, which helps when you’re going to draw an entire book of manga on a deadline.
- The pacing and plot lines. They’re beautifully flowing, interconnected hill climbs, with periodic bursts and falls. They line up perfectly with my EKG. Long-running TV shows also do this well: They’ll have a mini arc within the time between a commercial break, a larger arc in the 30-minute episode, and an even larger arc encompassing the whole season. This makes me happy in a very deep way. I got distracted didn’t I. What was I talking about? Anime art?
What I don’t like:
- I’m not good with faces, and I have trouble telling characters apart sometimes if the artist doesn’t do a great job with character design, because all of their faces are the same.
- It has a standardized visual language to communicate standard emotions or character types. This is cute and very effective, but leaves little room for complex emotions or characters. The best manga writers use these only rarely.
Learning to draw digitally, I was getting pretty frustrated (as my sharpest regular readers no doubt picked up on, haha). I thought, dammit, I CAN DRAW. And I figured I’d do an anime style as a morale booster. It wasn’t as easy as I expected, but it was certainly easier than everything I was attempting. Morale was boosted. I realized I was trying to develop my own style while also trying to learn new software. No wonder I was frustrated.