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Anime Style! What Does That Mean?

Updated on April 16, 2020

Let me explain

I have heard the art style described many times in such things like the Legend of Korra, Breath of the Wild or RWBY as being anime like or anime inspired and I suppose I can see where they are coming from but the more I thought about it that's not really being to accurate is it?

There are many different anime over the years and just like any cartoon or piece of art there have been many different styles, down below I have four anime characters each with very different style but ultimately each would be described as being anime styled.

The Examples

Ichigo from Tokyo Mew Mew designed by Mia Ikumi
Ichigo from Tokyo Mew Mew designed by Mia Ikumi
Light Yagami from Death Note Designed by Takeshi Obata
Light Yagami from Death Note Designed by Takeshi Obata
Son Goku from Dragon Ball Designed by Akira Toriyama
Son Goku from Dragon Ball Designed by Akira Toriyama
Monkey D. Luffy from One Piece Designed by Eiichiro Oda
Monkey D. Luffy from One Piece Designed by Eiichiro Oda

Do you see it!

Forget that they are legitimately anime characters and just focus on the art. Notice that they are all very different from one another the eyes the nose the thickness of limbs, you can tell straight away that they are different artist.

Each of these characters are creations of each of their different artist. Akira Toriyama has a unique style of art that shouldn't be just simply tossed into a barrel of "anime styled" and nethier should Eiichiro Oda especially when they have influenced so many people that to the point we have many imitators trying to mach their specific art styles and sometimes coming shockingly close.

In Conclusion

This is art and with many different artist some similar to others but even mostly very unique on there own. We often do it to our own American characters to technically Popeye, Superman and Richie Rich are all comic characters but they look nothing alike in terms of style now of course Superman has had many different artist at the helm but they have all tried to maintain a particular look no different to fan trying to maintain the style of Akira Toriyama.

Also anime is just the Japanese term for cartoon, so technically regardless if it is Dragon Ball Super or My Little Pony Friendship is Magic all cartoons could pass as anime especially given that some are written in the sates while being animated inn Asian countries like the Simpsons is animated in Vietnam for example.

So what's my point?

Ace Venture or Jim Carry Caricature
Ace Venture or Jim Carry Caricature

I think "anime" is to broad of a term to be affective it's like saying "Wanderin Jim was done in a American cartoon style," what's that? the U.S. as produced many cartoons each with there own styles Including Bugs Bunny, Superman, Mickey Mouse, Yogi Bear, My Little Pony and RWBY the very cartoon described as having a anime style.

I just think we should be more descriptive like "he looks like classic Hanna Barbera" or "something akin to the 90s Batman cartoon" provided of course you can't name the artist directly. Of course this is no easy feat given that many of these often change style and format over a few short years, perhaps the studio wants to go another way or it's a whole new studio or the artist got better or changed to a whole new artist and he brought his own style to the mix.

We have our favorite comic book artist how come it seems like we often give cartoons a pass when they often have equally talented artist each with there own style.

Speaking of comics, this whole thing goes to manga as well the term "manga" just means comic in Japan so technically they are all manga or all comics.

I need to wrap this up

to put it in short terms, the artist and their styles deserve to credited more for their unique talented, that goes double for the ones who have a look that is not seen with anyone else such as Akira Toriyama or quite honestly Laurin Faust.

Am I on to something or am I just full of hot air, also what's your favorite cartoon artist and style let me know what you guys think in the comment section below have a good one stay healthy.


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