Artists, Don’t Draw Anime or Manga!

Now before you come pelting me with your stabby accusations and unkind names in the comment section for my clickbait-y title, stay tuned for the whole post. I’m going to be delving into two sides of this debate:

The hobby side, and the professional side.

I think there are two underlying problems here… Even though the message is the same for both.

With that outta the way, let’s jump in and get started!

 


 

Drawing Anime for a Hobby Artist.

 

Picture this scenario:

You’re drawing in art class. You’ve loved the creative arts since you were but a bean in your mom’s belly, which led you here to this day in your class.

Naruto and Dragon Ball-Z-Kai were your favorite shows when you were little. They spurred you onto drawing in the first place- so that’s pretty much all you ever drew. You wanted to eat, breathe, and bleed the anime art style you edgy child, you.

Now your art teacher comes walking over from the front of the class to look over your shoulder at your work. The only thing she sees is Naruto doing ninja things that ninjas do with Sasuke, tying up Piccalo because he Hulked out on everyone ever since Vegeta “IT’S OVER NINE THOUSANDDDDDD!” him in the head, which made him go a little nuts.

Your teacher compliments you on your imaginative plot-line to go with the drawing.

But she also tells you to stop drawing anime.

 

Firstly, here’s what we need to figure out-

Is your teacher telling you to stop drawing anime to help you develop your skills, or is it JUST because they hate the art style?

An awesome art teacher will want to help you grow in art. That’s what they’re there for. It’s hard to draw your favorite characters the way you want to if you don’t have a solid foundation in the basics of art, like anatomy and structure. They want you to know the rules of art before you bend or break them. Because they do understand it’s going to warp your artistic sense if you copy out of proportion characters over and over again.

But if they’re telling you to stop drawing anime because they don’t like the art style…

Don’t pay attention to them.

Keep growing and draw other things? HECK YES. Draw those sexy squares. Draw those shaded skulls. Draw allllll of the backgrounds, portraits, and still life drawings. Watch those color theory videos. And yes- feel free to draw anime for your enjoyment- but don’t let it turn into your crutch.

Hobby artists, don’t ONLY draw anime or manga.

 


 

Drawing Anime for a Professional Artist.

 

Now preferably, you’ve taken the advice for hobby artists to heart.

You can not only draw anime and manga, but you can draw portraits, still life, backgrounds, animals, cartoons, and you might’ve even developed your own style over time.

THIS. IS. AMAZING. Your skill is awesome, your skin is somewhat pale from sitting inside and drawing so much, and you have a permanent hunch in your back not to mention you’re broke for paying for your art supplies can I get an AMEN.

It’s time to figure out how to market yourself.

You start to gather your work from all the time you’ve spent honing your art into a finely crafted trade, an- OOOOOOOOOOH. That Death Note fan art is incredible! You’re digging the Rem watercolor, too. That original character design piece that you totally didn’t lift from My Hero Academia was lying around there somewhere… Wait. IS THAT YOUR OLD FRIEND SASUKE???

Nostalgia washes over you in waves as you hold your babies to your chest, and carefully collect them to add to your portfolio to show to your clients.

 

But here’s the problem-

If you plan on working as an artist in North America with that kind of a portfolio, you better get ready to get rejected. Over and over again. In fact, you might or might not become the literal example of the saying “starving artist.”

Because the predefined market for North American anime and manga style artists just isn’t quite here yet.

Sure- they used to be considered a niche group, and that isn’t the case anymore. Anime and manga are popular here. But American anime or manga are considered inauthentic most of the time, and clients aren’t really looking for that kind of work here.

Feel free to add one or two pieces of anime or manga style pieces into your portfolio selection for diversity- and heck, get in touch with people who might be interested in creating a company here in the USA for anime and manga artists who would like to be paid for their work cause getting fed every now and then for a style we like to draw in would be nice. But I recommend against putting a large gallery of your fan art together for clientele. Most of the stuff you end up getting paid for is for your portraits if you’re just getting started or new to the art industry.

Professional artists, don’t ONLY draw anime and manga.

…for your stomach and bank account’s sake.

 


 

~ F E L I C I T Y ‘ S   F O O T N O T E S~

Eyyyyyy! Wassup, you guys? It’s been nice being able to write another blog about two things that I like.

Or, y’know- even HAVE an idea for a blog post.

Not only have I been getting busier with school with GED classes that are about to become my reality here (SCHOOL IS IN THE HOMESTRETCH YAY), but I’ve just been lacking subjects on what to talk about.

This is where I open up the stage to you guys:

What kind of blog content would you like to see from me in the future? What kind of subjects would you like me to talk about? Definitely drop me a comment below because I’m super curious to see what you guys think.

As for this post in particular-

What was going through your mind during the post? Do you think the anime market is big enough here in the USA to where it isn’t a problem, or do you agree with what I said?

 

Thank you for reading to the end of the post!

~Felicity Annora

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Where I pretend I'm not actually Smaug

So It Is (Re)Written

from concepts to final drafts - and everything in-between

Art of Annastacia Henry-Ramos

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An impatient 20-something learning to embrace life, her low-funtioning sociopathic dog, and a budget.

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