Anime Transformation March 4, 2011Posted by leskanturek in Animation, Art History, Comics, Film, Student Blog posts, Student Post, Visual Narrative.
Tags: Anime, Death Note, Sailor Moon, Sarah Ding, Transformation
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Post by Sarah Ding
Anime is a distinct art style that originated in Japan during the 20th century, in which Japanese filmmakers first became influenced by Western animation techniques. The highly successful Disney 1937 animated film “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” became a huge influence on manga artists, who simplified many of the techniques and styles of Walt Disney’s animations due to low budget and labor. Throughout time, the distinct look of anime has transformed significantly, and although there are numerous different styles of anime, they all have common stylistic elements typical to the anime style.
So what exactly is the anime style? Although the features of the face and proportions of anime characters are exaggerated, they are not necessarily classified as cartoons. The most distinct feature of anime characters is their overly large eyes, in order to express their emotions through to the viewer.
However, recently anime has started to become extraordinarily more realistic in terms of the facial features. Even body proportions are beginning to fit the standard human proportions we would normally recognize. The most familiar form of anime could arguably be Sailor Moon, created by manga artist Naoko Takeuchi.
(above) Sailor Moon, A team of magical cute girls who are in reality magical warriors destined to save the Earth, and later the entire galaxy. Their features and proportions embody the look of anime girls.
Anime might on the surface appear to all look very similar but is in fact quite varied. The anime style of Sailor Moon is remarkably different than the style the viewer sees in Death Note, a well-known manga created by writer Tsugumi Ohba and illustrated by manga artist Takeshi Obata.
(above) Two of the characters in Deathnote , Light Yagami, and “L” .
The art and possibly even the story line has taken on a more realistic approach. Here, the manga artist is deviating from the usual large eyes and small mouth characteristics that are typical of anime and drawing features more in proportion.
(above) Death Note illustrated by Takeshi Obata
Although there will always be different variations of anime (from very generic to semi-realistic), I feel that this style in general is starting to become much more realistic by opening itself up to different influences and styles.