Re: Animating Girls

1

why are we trying to get them off?

LHF.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 6:56 AM
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Next post on that blog has the answer, but I'm not going to spoil it for you...


Posted by: W. Breeze | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:00 AM
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It stems from the assumption that female characters have to be pretty, whereas male characters can be wacky, exaggerated, grotesque, etc. If you don't have THAT assumption, this concern about being hard to animate goes away.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:02 AM
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Perhaps the key is "are" instead of "is". Characters that animate are very difficult, i.e. headstrong, cantankerous?


Posted by: Vance Maverick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:05 AM
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I would have thought the difficult part of animating girls was the fluid dynamics when they run.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:05 AM
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2 gets it right.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:05 AM
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2 Next post on that blog has the answer

What does "off model" mean?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:07 AM
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Manga Iconography

Angry Wikipe-tan ...from super deformed Wiki page.

With advances in computer technology, we can now use super deformation in non-animated cinematic representation of emotion. Walter White and his exploding head.

Long after the age of Picasso, our main sources of visual images still look like Norman Rockwell. Something very wrong here.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:07 AM
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I can anticipate all the things that make women harder to draw, but I'm very curious what exactly the guy felt was too dicey to say outright.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:09 AM
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7: For an animated character, there's a sort of accepted range of movements and shapes that ensures that different artists maintain consistency. It's called a model sheet. When you start drawing things that aren't on the model sheet, you go off model and the character loses continuity.

On the Simpsons audio commentaries, they always point that out, like when a character gets excited and half of his face turns one direction and half turns the other direction.


Posted by: cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:10 AM
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Boobs. There, I said it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:10 AM
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5:Jiggle technology was perfected by Hideki Anno in the late 1980s. Gunbuster

Gainaxing


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:12 AM
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9: I don't think it was too dicey; I think he was just trying to figure out how to phrase it.

7: when you're animating something with a big team there's a thing called a "model sheet" (example) which shows exactly how the character should look from different angles and in different canonical poses. Going "off model" means making them do something that isn't captured on that sheet, which means it's up to the animator actually doing those frames to make sure they continue to look like themselves.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:12 AM
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14

Boy was I pwned.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:13 AM
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14, Not really. I thought going off-model meant making a mistake.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:14 AM
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15: hm, [... additional googling ...] I think it is at least something you want to avoid whenever possible, so I was less "pwned" than "incorrect".


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:16 AM
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It makes a lot more sense after reading the post referenced in 7, which makes clear it's about Disney's style. I assumed (mainly because it was a Doctor Science post), that the quote was talking about manga/anime, where off-model animation is pretty much the norm.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:17 AM
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This page is interesting as far as seeing the contrast in the range of face shapes available on-model for male vs. female Disney characters.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:20 AM
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The Disney animators woud draw their ideal female, and then then they couldn't bear to ruin her looks by allowing her to express emotions.

That's also the reason why models are so expressionless.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:22 AM
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Speaking of dodgy representations of women in cartoon form, I assume people here know Escher Girls?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:24 AM
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What's really horrible is how many animation studios deal with the difficulty of animating emotions by making all of their characters robots. Especially when they make them robots that can join together into one big robot.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:28 AM
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22

And then the robots share a continuous digestive system?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:30 AM
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I don't think so. Usually one robot is the torso and the rest are appendages. So I think only one robot can eat and shit.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:31 AM
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24

What if one of the robots that form the arms has a palm-mounted shit cannon?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:33 AM
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So no human-centipede-robot animé, then?


Posted by: MAE | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:33 AM
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26

"Robot human centipede hand shit cannon FIRE POOP LASER!"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:34 AM
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25 is super duper PWNED pooper!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:35 AM
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I don't know about poop cannons. And, more topically, it occurs to be that the Transformer with a female voice also has breasts. I hate robot cartoons.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:36 AM
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You don't remember Aphrodite A from Tranzor Z with the boob missiles? A strange, iconic memory from many a childhood.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:37 AM
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27 - No, 25 was in response to 22; I was adding value making it explicit.


Posted by: MAE | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:38 AM
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29: I don't even recall Tranzor Z.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:40 AM
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I guess it was actually called Mazinger Z, but it was Tranzor Z during the brief window when I watched it. Anyhow: boob missiles.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:45 AM
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From 2nd post:Bottom line, animating stiff, contained subtle characters is difficult because they're more realistic. Realistic animation is always harder than goofy bouncy animation.

Norman Rockwell really had it tough, huh.

And, unfortunately, "realistic animation" is the norm in anime, the iconography or super deformation is usually used in comedies or comical moments. Anime uses the rest of the toolkit:music, mise en scene, coloring (bluish tints for sadness) cinematography, editing, etc to convey emotion...much of which is less available, in at least adventurous or unconventional ways, to Western cinematographic realistic filmmakers.

Shin Sekai Yori y'all.

I like the way anime extensively uses set-ups, pillow shots, establishing shots...shots without people in them...to help establish moods and emotions.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:47 AM
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And in action.

What the hell, childrens' TV of the eighties?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:48 AM
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A strange, iconic memory from many a childhood.

How many childhoods did you have?!?


Posted by: Bave | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 7:56 AM
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It's hard to know. Every time I tried to figure out the boob missiles it triggered a singularity.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:01 AM
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37

Especially when they make them robots that can join together into one big robot.

You know, I watched Pacific Rim with the kids this weekend, and it was remarkably watchable for a giant-robots-punching-monsters movie.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:20 AM
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It would be more remarkable if a giant-robots-punching-monsters movie wasn't watchable.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:22 AM
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I liked when the giant robot punched the monster.


Posted by: OPINIONATED YOUNG FLIPPANTER | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:26 AM
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"The Disney animators woud draw their ideal female, and then then they couldn't bear to ruin her looks by allowing her to express emotions."

I'm confident the rule that girls had to be pretty came from on high. And human female characters other than "the girl" was relatively rare.


Posted by: David the Unfogged Commenter | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:28 AM
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I guess what was really rare were goofy, humorous female characters, even including anthromorphic ones. I guess Ursula would qualify, fairly late in the game.


Posted by: David the Unfogged Commenter | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:32 AM
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38: Well, I don't know if you remember me bitching about the latest Star Trek movie -- I do get cranky if even a silly movie doesn't seem to make sense on its own terms. This, once you got past the premise, nothing was incoherent enough to yank me out of the willing suspension of disbelief.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:33 AM
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38: What about the recent Transformers movies?


Posted by: Benquo | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:33 AM
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Are we in 'safe to threadjack' space yet?

I had a 'there but for the grace of God go I' moment on the subway this morning -- I ran into the woman who had the office next to me at my last law firm, and she still hasn't recovered from that snakepit. We started talking about the place and all the horrible horrible people there, and she came close to breaking down. Working as a contract attorney, trying to get a non-law career started; she's a mess.

And she was a fine lawyer, five years ago: I've worked with better, but I've worked with much much worse. She just got emotionally involved with trying to make it in a no-win situation, and lost every vestige of confidence she ever had.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:58 AM
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45

43: giant robots, but no monsters.

42: agreed. I loved it. Realistic politics too - it made perfect sense that governments, faced with a serious problem (kaiju) and a proven solution (giant robots) would decide to bin the solution in favour of a completely unproven one (big wall) that didn't work.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 8:59 AM
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41: the fairy godmothers in Sleeping Beauty, at least.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 9:05 AM
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They were only included for the people writing GILF fan fiction.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 9:09 AM
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45.1: I'm pretty sure I saw some monsters in one of those movies. Robot monsters, but monsters nonetheless.

Although to be fair, the real monsters are the people responsible for those movies getting made, which admittedly makes it more difficult for the robots in the movie to punch them.


Posted by: Benquo | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 9:14 AM
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Sally finished the movie saying that she and Newt could totally run one of those things. Which left me visualizing a giant robot repeatedly punching itself in the face.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 9:14 AM
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Two from Azumanga Daioh

Line Up 1

Line up 2

Even from these two stills, I bet many people unaware of the manga/anime could make a decent guess as to what these characters are like, what their emotional range is and the roles they play. If one looks overexuberant and another looks pensive, well no shit. Expressiveness ain't at all hard. Check out the different ways they dress in the second link.

God I despise Disney, Pixar and America.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 10:36 AM
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I've been getting interested in doing storytelling (true experience, 5-10 mins, no paper). A woman in Sacramento coached me for an afternoon. She told me "You have a beautiful face, but it is more important to express emotion than to protect some newscaster prettiness." I'm not doing that to be vain. I just like to keep an intellectual distance from real emotions.

The whole scene is 70+. I've seen some of their emails to each other. They refer to me as "the young lady" and hope I'll bring my young friends to the storytelling nights.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 10:39 AM
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42, 45.1: Personally, I imagined a plot point where the major governments of the world had been sabotaged by Cthulhu-worshipping cultists. We know such cults exist in that movie: we saw them in that city scene when the geeks met with Hannibal. Clearly, then, any bad decisions made by the government (or anyone!) were the result of people trying to sabotage humanity.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 11:48 AM
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OH HOW CONVENIENT THAT THE KAIJU APPEAR JUST AS THE ANTI-KAIJU MEASURES MIGHT GET THEIR BUDGETS CUT #falseflag


Posted by: OPINIONATED GRANDPA | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 11:54 AM
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You don't remember Aphrodite A from Tranzor Z with the boob missiles?

I found that hilarious when I was a kid, and I remember it being Tranzor Z as well.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 10- 9-13 11:56 AM
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53: Great idea for the sequel. As in "Guards! Guards!" by Pterry... ("How convenient, he thought, that just when the city needed someone to slay a dragon, a king turned up. He thought about that for a bit. Then he turned it around. How fortunate, he wrote, for a lad that would be king, that he should find a dragon to slay to prove his bona fides.")

Are there sequels planned? I hope so. "Atlantic Treaty". "Mediterranean Basin". A great force for international unity, combining to build giant robots to punch monsters.

(Though I am still baffled how a bloke from South London ended up in charge of the Pacific Rim Defence Force.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-10-13 7:30 AM
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||

Cutting and pasting from Jeffrey Nealon with Alice Munro and Away From Her on my mind. There is a link on her Wikipage to an Atlantic Online article that is very good.

However, given not so much its temporality but its privatizing form (the book and private time of reading), literature is forced to pursue its interruptive work on what we might call the "retail" level of the individual consciousness; and if that's to be the case, it would seem literature is gone forever as a generator (or even as a reflector) of meaningful levels of widespread cognitive dissonance. The inscribed page is simply not a mass phenomenon in the way that the dancing screens of visual culture (television, Internet, even film) inherently are.

Given DeLillo's characters' rendering, one might say that writers have become the last believers--not in any positive content or anything as predictable as "meaning," but writers are the last believers in language's ability to be the primary driver in the interruption and reshaping of subjectivity (which is also to say, the resisting and disrupting of so-called
normative subjectivity).

The interruption and reshaping are necessary to pull us out of immediacy and nostalgia and create a space for a future. (Use this sentence to think about Away From Her)

|>


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10-10-13 8:57 AM
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Continuing the live blogging of my reading:

Foucault "Lives of Infamous Men", via Nealon

Just as an apparatus [dispositif ] was being installed for forcing people to tell the "insignificant"--that which isn't told, which doesn't merit any glory, therefore, the "infamous"--a new imperative was forming that would constitute what could be called the "immanent ethic" of Western literary discourse. Its ceremonial functions would gradually fade; it would no longer have the task of manifesting in a tangible way the all too visible radiance of force, grace, heroism, and might [puissance], but rather of searching for the things hardest to perceive--the most hidden, hardest to tell and to show, and lastly most forbidden and scandalous. A kind of injunction to ferret out the most nocturnal and most quotidian elements of existence . . . would mark out the course that literature would follow from the seventeenth century onward, from the time it began to be literature in the modern sense of the word. . . . Whence [literature's] dual relation to truth and to power. Whereas the fabulous [le fabuleux] could function only in an indecision [une indécision] between true and false, literature based itself, rather, on a decision of nontruth [une décision de non-vérité]; it explicitly presented itself as artifice while promising to produce effects of truth that were recognizable as such. (2003, 292-93)

I call bullshit on the Atlantic writer, of course Munro is doing some kind of mimesis. There is still an attempt to "reveal" a quotidian reality hidden from those of us with less perspicacious abilities.

What is anime (or comics, SF, etc) compared to "literature?"

For the most part anime represents recognizable interior conflicts in an unrecognizable and alien setting, both substantively and formally (overtly "unrealistic" non-representational art). Why is that better? The cognitive disruption, the generation of indecision.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10-10-13 11:47 AM
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So I have started watching Simoun

which takes place in the land of "Simulacrum" (Jeebus)

Everyone is born biologically female, and chooses to become female or male (why?) at age 17. Ok, science ain't so great, so they need more than one. It takes 5-10 years for all the hormones to kick in. In some sense, since they have the memories of their youth, everybody is probably mostly female til they die. Unless they are personal differences in individual youths that determine why they choose to become male, in which case they be in some sense majority male as teens.

The society we see is religious, moderately militarized, lightly hierarchical (senpai!),competitive...not so far from Girls und Panzers.

Is there any good sense whether I am watching representations (not only visually, but especially behaviorally) of girls and women, and should judge whether the artists have represented women fairly or sexist? Do "women" exist without a Patriarchy?

What does the Bechdel test really mean? Is the stricture against discussing relationships with men... about men, or about relationships? Cause Simoun is one legendary yuri masterpiece in which relationships and romance are front and center and intense.

Does the Bechdel test demand discussions of carburetors and coding?

Yuri Anime List ...by a guy, I think


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10-10-13 4:44 PM
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Fuckyeahfeminists says ok fine.

I am relieved.

I just wanted to share this wonderful anime series I've been devouring for the past few weeks. It's called Simoun, and it's about a team of humanoid pilots who present themselves as feminine until choosing their gender at age 17.

There's so much going on in this series: queer relationships, gender issues, politics, spirituality, team dynamics, fancy outfits. I could go on.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10-10-13 4:49 PM
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55: ooh, apparently there is a "Pacific Rim" sequel planned. Excellent. (It will be tragically devoid of Idris Elba, but hey.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10-11-13 1:32 AM
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Pacific Rim had the least memorable human characters of any movie ever. The only reason I remember Idris Elba's character from the movie is that I already knew who he was.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10-11-13 4:19 AM
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Note:Large eyes.

Everybody knows the cognitive stuff, that a person looking at a frame is directed by light sources and then looks at the eyes. If not read Bordwell or SEK.

The large eyes in anime are pretty simply justified, as opposed to American animation or the classic Hollywood style of closeups and extreme closeups, large eyes in anime allow the artists/director to pull the camera back a little and get more of the other characters, background/surroundings/context, and action and movement into the frame.

There is more going on, from the emotional resonance of childlike eyes to avoiding the disruptions of editing in closeups and medium shots, all the way down to Deleuze's distinction between movement-image and time-image


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 10-11-13 4:25 AM
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The point of the Bechdel test isn't so much that any particular movie fails to meet it, but that so few movies do. Fight Club fails the Bechdel test, which doesn't make it a bad movie, because it's a movie about masculinity. It's all the movies that unthinkingly violate it.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10-11-13 4:42 AM
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