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Anime The character designer thread [image heavy]


Dagger
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So like the title says, this is a thread for sharing & discussing the work of your favorite anime character designers (or complaining about ones you dislike, haha).

I'll start with [b]Yun Kouga[/b]. She's best known as the manga-ka of series like Loveless and Earthian, but she also did the original character designs for Gundam 00. Here's her version of the four main pilots:

[IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v632/DaggerIX1/gundam1.jpg[/IMG]

And what they look like in the anime:

[IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v632/DaggerIX1/Gundam00a.jpg[/IMG]

Although Sunrise did a good job of adapting her art for animation, I can't help but prefer her version. I just love her coloring. Here's another comparison, this time between the Loveless manga (left) and anime (right).

[IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v632/DaggerIX1/loveless.jpg[/IMG]

I would say that the Loveless anime designs are more accurate, but Loveless's animation and general style is rather different from Gundam 00's to begin with--wispier, paler and more ethereal. Kind of like how although Code Geass and Tsubasa are both based on recent CLAMP artwork, they adapt that style for animation in noticeably different ways.

~Dagger~
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[COLOR="DarkOrange"]In terms of ones I dislike, pretty much all shoujo and bl designs. Just hate em all. The chicks are always creepy-looking and the dudes look like blocks - or like chicks, and then still like creepy-looking chicks. Guess it's cuz I'm a guy?

I'm, unfortuenately, a moe-fan XD though I'm still picky even when you get down to that category. I like things small and cute. Simplistic, but elegant. however, I also appreciate when something is very unique or carefully detailed.

When it comes to an individual designer, I absoluetly MUST pick Yoshitoshi ABe. The ultimate fusion of cute, simplistic, elegant, detailed, and simply ****ing beautiful is found in his work.

His most beautiful designs probably belong to Haibane Renmei...

[IMG]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/rakkabutterfly.jpg[/IMG]

...though my favorite chacter is Lain (see Moe Points for image dump)

[IMG]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/lain-stare-1.jpg[/IMG]

And then his darkest characters are in Texhnolyze

[IMG]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/1280.jpg[/IMG]

I even own an artbook for Serial Experiments Lain. My only artbook, and I don't regret the 40 bucks spent![/COLOR]
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Abe's Haibane Renmei art is so... soothing. Restful. When it comes to anime, though, I think Texhnolyze is the best-looking (or at least highest-budget) production using his designs. Didn't like NieA.

Not sure it's fair to lump all shoujo and BL together. There's just as much variety in those genres as there is in "moe" art, however we define that (female fans use the term too, after all). Personally I would find it hard to dismiss POP (Moe-tan), Noizi Ito (Haruhi, Shana), Peach-Pit (Rozen Maiden, DearS), Ryukishi07 (Higurashi), Carnelian (see below), Kozue Amano (Aria), etc., in one fell swoop...

Plenty of manly-looking guys in BL, I can promise you that much. And shoujo covers everything from Shugo Chara to Banana Fish...

[b]Carnelian[/b] is the famous artist who did the original designs for Touka Gettan, Kao no Nai Tsuki (Moonlight Lady), and Yami to Boushi to Hon no Tabibito. I used to feel kind of ambivalent about her art--it's very distinct and doesn't always look great in motion--but her game CGs are lush and incredibly appealing. She works on both eroge and BL games (e.g. Messiah, from which I've been grabbing my current avatar set). Her male and female designs are equally polished.

The samples below are from Touka Gettan (top) and Messiah (bottom).

[IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v632/DaggerIX1/touka.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v632/DaggerIX1/mes.jpg[/IMG]

The way she draws eyes and hair makes her character designs pretty easy to recognize. I would say that Carnelian's art played a big role in why YamiBou became a cult favorite of sorts.

~Dagger~
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[COLOR="DarkOrange"]While I am more than aware of those facts, the reason for such a sweeping generalization is that there is SO MUCH shoujo that I have seen the designs for and hated. At least 95% of the shoujo characters I saw were the same, and I hated them. Now, since I don't feel like naming all the 5% i did like, i'm just gunna leave it at 'I don't like shoujo designs' for now, because you do get what I mean. There are prolly some designs I like ( I don't mind Peach Pit, especially their desing of amu. usually, at least.) but I'm not getting into it when there are other designs to be mentioned.

[quote name='Dagger']Yami to Boushi to Hon no Tabibito[/quote]

Now see, I've only ever seen it compared to Kannazuki no Miko (both yuri, but I also think they were both based on VNs by the same company?) but I figure I can trust you before crappy yuri fans - is it any good?[/COLOR]
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Kannazuki was based on a manga. YamiBou was based on a game by ROOT (no connection). I have to admit that I got distracted a little over halfway through the anime and never finished it. That said, although it has some issues, it's not a total turd like Kannazuki. I would definitely recommend giving it a shot. Half the fun lies in its sheer trippiness.

Kannazuki was based on a manga by Kaishaku, whose other works are Steel Angel Kurumi, Magical Nyan Nyan Taruto, Kagihime Monogatari Eikyuu Alice Rondo, UFO Princess Valkyrie, and Kyoshiro to Towa no Sora. The common point between all of these is that they're kind of bad. :p

[IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v632/DaggerIX1/alice.jpg[/IMG]

Kaishaku's style is distinctive, too, but I can't say I like it very much.

ETA: Not to drag out the shoujo talk, but I guess I have a little trouble understanding because there are so many similarities between shoujo and moe art, especially big-eyed younger shoujo.

~Dagger~
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[font="trebuchet ms"] Whoever designed the Haruhi girls is awful. Not to point out that one person, but it's just an example of what I dislike about most anime styles.

All their faces are the same. Their eyes are identitcal, and their face shapes, everything. The only think that's different is the hair style and the eye colors, which doesn't say much about talent. If there [i]are[/i] differences, they're not strong at all. The same can be said for 99% of all anime; Haruhi just came to mind first. Other anime with bland face designs can strengthen things with clothes and other stylistics designs, but Haruhi pretty much has same everything. Haruhi is supposed to be 'really pretty', but her face is the same as everyone else's. :|[/font]
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I always found that amusing. I guess the problem is partly that most anime can't bear to include [i]un[/i]attractive characters of any kind to begin with, so even if a character is supposed to be really outstanding, s/he usually looks about the same as everyone else...

~Dagger~
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ANN says the character designs were adapted for anime by Itsuko Takeda (who also adapted the character designs of stuff like Boys Be and Mirage of Blaze), but the original work is by the manga-ka [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akihito_Yoshitomi][u]Akihito Yoshitomi[/u][/url].

[IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v632/DaggerIX1/blue_drop000a.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v632/DaggerIX1/bd.jpg[/IMG]

I like the manga art better than what I've seen of the anime, although neither inspire a strongly positive or negative reaction. From what I've heard, their stories are different, so it might be possible that the anime characters don't actually have manga counterparts.

~Dagger~
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[quote name='Dagger']I like the manga art better than what I've seen of the anime, although neither inspire a strongly positive or negative reaction. From what I've heard, their stories are different, so it might be possible that the anime characters don't actually have manga counterparts.

~Dagger~[/QUOTE]

[COLOR="DarkOrange"]Having read the manga and continung to watch the anime (my second favorite of the season thus far) i can confirm this. There are none of the same characters, because the anime is a distant prequel of the manga. I didn't have any real reaction to the chaacters at first either, but as you see more sides of them and more expressions, you come to appreciate the character designs more. [/COLOR]
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[quote name='Dagger']I always found that amusing. I guess the problem is partly that most anime can't bear to include [i]un[/i]attractive characters of any kind to begin with, so even if a character is supposed to be really outstanding, s/he usually looks about the same as everyone else...

~Dagger~[/QUOTE]

[font="trebuchet ms"] Yeah, I see your point, but faces can be drawn differently and still be attractive. I guess my main beef is the fact that they don't even try; everyone would be carbon-copies if you just took away the hair.

I will say that I love the character designs of [i]Mononoke[/i]. I might be gushing because I'm also taking into consideration the overall style of the anime, but it was so refreshing to see unique character designs within every episode.[/font]
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[quote name='Lunox'][font="trebuchet ms"] Yeah, I see your point, but faces can be drawn differently and still be attractive. I guess my main beef is the fact that they don't even try; everyone would be carbon-copies if you just took away the hair.

I will say that I love the character designs of [i]Mononoke[/i]. I might be gushing because I'm also taking into consideration the overall style of the anime, but it was so refreshing to see unique character designs within every episode.[/font][/QUOTE]

[COLOR="DarkOrange"]Go watch the movies Mind Game and Tekkon Kinkreet (sp?). Definitely the most unique character designs I've ever seen. Also, I find that a lot of seinen manga has different desing - usually far more mature and realistic. PLANETeS migt be a good example of this.

EDIT: a little late, but Dagger, I agree NieA isn't the best design, buut some of the show's characters are~

[IMG]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/vlcsnap-11598392.png[/IMG]

And THIS GUY

[IMG]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/vlcsnap-11635303.png[/IMG]

lol. I also like these ones~

[url]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/vlcsnap-11659982.png[/url]
[url]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/vlcsnap-11645499.png[/url]
[url]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/vlcsnap-11642371.png[/url]
[url]http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b269/MetalSonic700/vlcsnap-11661105.png[/url][/COLOR]
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