Anim8or Community

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

An update to Anim8or, v1.00b, is available with a few bug fixes. Get your copy HERE. See the "ReadMe" file for details.

Author Topic: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.  (Read 319 times)

fromsoysauce

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 360
  • Be creative and have fun
    • View Profile

So I am currently in an animation class in college. During critique of project one the prof and TA's description of my work inspired me to analyze and research the soundness of their claims. This video essay was the result:
&lc=z22lz3eagqyvj50kbacdp430a3yqfo5vojbuhy4yvwlw03c010c.1504844098373013[/youtube]
Logged

ENSONIQ5

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 921
    • View Profile
    • Mission Backup Earth
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2017, 11:58:55 am »

I have to disagree with your Prof and TA, I don’t think Robin or Sharkey are ‘over-sexualised’ at all.  In my opinion, the term ‘over-sexualisation’ would only apply where a deliberate attempt was made to sexualise a character inappropriately, or the sexual characteristics of a character have been dramatically enhanced.  The term should not apply to every character with sexual attributes arbitrarily, seeing a character as sexy does not automatically make them ‘over-sexualised’.

For example, Jessica Rabbit is over-sexualised in the sense that her bodily proportions are dramatically exaggerated to super-human levels.  This is perfectly in context in this case, she is supposed to be the epitome of the 1940’s sex bomb and is drawn accordingly.  On the other hand, if a My Little Pony character was drawn this way it would be clearly inappropriate.

Lara Croft may be a good example of a sexy, but not over-sexualised character.  She is supposed to be fit and healthy with a good BMI and many people will find that attractive, particularly teenage boys and young men, a fact that the game developers would have been counting on for sales.  However, while LC would be considered sexy by a certain demographic her bits are more or less in relative proportion, though some iterations of the character are a bit ‘pneumatic’.  HOWEVER, as soon as the game designers coded in boob-wobble, she became over-sexualised.  This physics-defying feature serves a single purpose: to titillate (pun intended) the game’s predominantly adolescent male audience.

Sharkey and Robin may be considered sexy, while I’m definitely not a furry and not into animals (in that way) I can see and appreciate the distinctly ‘womanly’ characteristics of these characters.  Combined with the cuteness factor that large eyes always lend to characters, these attributes result in attractive characters.  The poses I have seen have tended towards cute rather than provocative.

I doubt your teachers actually consider Robin or Sharkey to be over-sexualised, more likely they are not comfortable with the idea of characters being in any way sexual or gender-specific.  Perhaps they stir some uncomfortable and unwanted feelings of attraction that they are not able to verbalise, instead reacting negatively towards them.  Regardless, please continue doing what you do, your character modelling and rigging is among the best I have seen.
« Last Edit: September 08, 2017, 12:14:29 pm by ENSONIQ5 »
Logged

fromsoysauce

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 360
  • Be creative and have fun
    • View Profile
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #2 on: September 08, 2017, 06:50:29 pm »

Yea I think "Arbitrary" is a good word for this discourse. She has not addressed the video yet, but she did email me an elaborated version of her critique, which I put in the video's description, and I do feel that the things she points out are, as you said, decidedly arbitrary. i.e. she at some point says: Sharkie’s blond hair reminded me of conventional western beauty standards. I am not saying she can’t be blonde, but my question is why is she blonde.

Now read it again but replace Blonde with any other arbitrary color.

Ok I had to research the physics-defying boob-wobble, and yea when it gets to that level I can see how your description makes sense. Though I bring that up because I feel like jiggle physics are not inherently a feature that must be limited or intentionally for the sake of fulfilling that description. 

Second motion in animation is the key to making a character feel like they have weight that can affect the world they exist in, and when applied well to things like spines, and limbs the character becomes more believable. I extend this logic to say that it holds up when you apply it to things like hair and busts: after-all there is an amount of reflection of real life in the idea of that behavior of motion.

In much the same way that a character with long hair that is not rigged to react to her movement would have this uncanny feeling of making her feel like a plastic figure where the mass of her hair might as well be a solid chunk of metal, and that we as the viewers would get more believe her hair existed as what we are to perceive as hair if it properly flows with second motion when animated, I think breast physics can be used just as well to try to ground characters in a more believable space and weight in the world.

But physics defying breast-physics do look kinda ridiculous, but so too does it look weird when the physics for hair flowing is done wrong.
Logged

thecolclough

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 815
  • 3D Ignoramus 1988-2002, Anim8or User 2002-present.
    • View Profile
    • www.mattghc.com
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #3 on: September 08, 2017, 11:56:06 pm »

i'd have to agree that this topic in general is very subjective, but i'd probably second Ensoniq's position overall.

tbh a lot of the type of exaggerated features you mentioned around 8:40, e.g. bold-coloured lipsticks, don't make much sense or hold much appeal to me either, despite me being a straight male.

also (veering ever so slightly off-topic, maybe), re: the caption at about 4:50 - i'm pretty sure that's the first time i've seen anyone write 'Dogs are notorious for not looking at all like sharks.'  that amused me :D
Logged

ENSONIQ5

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 921
    • View Profile
    • Mission Backup Earth
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2017, 02:41:04 am »

Jiggle physics and secondary motion are, as you say, vital in creating a character that appears to be 'real' and has actual mass.  With a deft touch it should be almost unnoticeable, conspicuous only when absent.  This is in stark contrast to the frankly bizarre levels of jiggle physics used in some games (eg. Google 'Dead or Alive jiggle physics GIF' if you dare - Warning: not safe for work!).  The difference between appropriate, accurate jiggle physics and the ridiculousness of Dead or Alive is the same difference between 'sexy' and 'over-sexualised'.

The comment 'Dogs are notorious for not looking at all like sharks.' made me laugh too.  Very Terry Pratchett-esque!
Logged

fromsoysauce

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 360
  • Be creative and have fun
    • View Profile
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2017, 07:03:35 am »

Well I'm glad you found my editing funny. My humor when editing mostly revolves around pointing at things that are either obvious, absurd, or absurdly obvious. Though I don't do it just for fun- I tend to try using it as a redundant alternate way to describe the point I am voicing, just in case the vocal version doesn't resonate.

So she emailed me an elaborated version of her critique which I put in the video's description. She said she would respond to the video over the weekend.

I am excited at how even though I have been on a youtube hiatus for a long time, my subscribers were eager to weigh-in on the discourse.

Though I would like to point out that there are a number of comments that are a lot less lenient than my presentation of the points in the video. The subtext in them, I tend to read as: I'm giving her too much of the benefit of the doubt.

I have been trying to piece together all of it. And let me know if this sounds too concpiracy theory or if the logic is sound.

Premise 1: Radical Feminist are of the opinion that oversexualization and the male gaze are sexist.
Premise 2: FSS fans are disturbed at the noticeably feminist claims that my Prof and TA said.
Premice 3: Prof and TA said my designs were oversexualization and claimed that they were influenced by the male gaze.

Conclusion: FSS fans are disturbed because the claims made by Prof and TA are tantamount to calling FSS designs sexist.

I honestly can see how calling something "oversexualized" is essentially a euphemism for calling it sexist. Though that's mostly because the only feminists I know of who describe things they don't approve as as oversexualized tend to do so to imply that it is sexist.

A summery of her expanded critique are things like Why the: miniskirts, short-shorts, croptops, hour-glass-shaped bods, big eyes, exaggerated eyelashes, youthful, the make up (My characters are wearing make-up????? That's news to me!).

But the thing is I don't think she's actually listing off sexualized traits, she's just listing off the traits that define my characters as having femininity.

Sooo femininity is over-sexual?
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 08:33:50 am by fromsoysauce »
Logged

thecolclough

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 815
  • 3D Ignoramus 1988-2002, Anim8or User 2002-present.
    • View Profile
    • www.mattghc.com
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2017, 12:39:24 pm »

...
Sooo femininity is over-sexual?
it is to some people, unfortunately :(
Logged

NoobJens007

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 9
    • View Profile
    • www.jkh-art.dk
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2017, 07:11:13 pm »

I dont get why she said they are over-sexualized . My guess too is that femininity just appears that way to some people.
Logged

BlueDalek

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 23
    • View Profile
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2017, 05:43:46 am »

I will definitely check your link out.
Although a long time user of Anim8or, I still lack skills in certain areas. ::)

I admire your work on youtube and been subscribed.
Logged

ronaldefarmer

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 293
    • View Profile
    • Ron's Website
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2017, 07:31:25 pm »

"Over-sexualized" is a value judgement. I'm sure it's not part of the curriculum. It's just an opinion.

Anyway, maybe it's sort of like a Rorschach ink blot test-- the individual's interpretation tells you something about the individual.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2017, 07:36:00 pm by ronaldefarmer »
Logged

fromsoysauce

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 360
  • Be creative and have fun
    • View Profile
Re: Made video about the way I design characters that I make in Anim8or.
« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2017, 03:51:12 am »

@ronaldefarmer, That's my hypothesis to. The word for seeing recognizable shapes in arbitrary places is "pareidolia."

I think that when someone calls something over-sexualized or describes it as a result of the "coding in the male gaze" it's a clear cut case of pareidolia.

@ Everyone else, I'm always happy to make are with An8 and see that that An8 community enjoys it!
« Last Edit: September 15, 2017, 03:52:11 am by fromsoysauce »
Logged

fromsoysauce

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 360
  • Be creative and have fun
    • View Profile

Since she's supposed to be a representation of the Shark in the anim8or tutorial as well as the one that used to appear in the previous splash screens. It just dawned on me that her name should be "Shakie Splash" that would also suggest that Robin's full name could be "Robin Icon".
Logged