Jibble

Author Topic: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination  (Read 34899 times)

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #520 on: 22 Mar 2021, 01:33 »
That's a great point, though I also think the need of many animators to make all main female characters pretty plays a role too, similar to how an animated guy supposed to be an "everyman" will be drawn to look different than a typical Disney prince, but animated girls and women meant to be regular people still look like typical Disney princesses, to the point even female animals will share the same facial shape as the princesses.

Yeah, I try to vary the types of women I draw and steer clear of blatant stereotypes, but it's true that I also have the tendency to make men more goofy and heavily caricatured, while women are more often at least *somewhat* pretty. It's something I'm happy to avoid though (note to self: make more ugly, silly-looking women :)). I wonder if female artists also do this - it seems to me that they do.

What you're talking about is particularly noticeable in The Animator's Survival Kit. If anyone hasn't got it, it's a marvellous and incredibly useful guide to character animation by Richard Williams (the animation director of Who Framed Roger Rabbit).

Thanks for the tip, might check out the book - I think I've used some online images taken from it as a reference for walkcycles.

As a contrast, too many animated comedies has female characters that are nothing but crude fanservice, but tries to pretend it's parody, pretty much Poe's Law in action.

This is just an irrelevant nitpick, but isn't Poe's Law supposed to be about misunderstanding genuine parody?
« Last Edit: 22 Mar 2021, 01:55 by Honza »

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #521 on: 22 Mar 2021, 08:01 »
That's a great point, though I also think the need of many animators to make all main female characters pretty plays a role too, similar to how an animated guy supposed to be an "everyman" will be drawn to look different than a typical Disney prince, but animated girls and women meant to be regular people still look like typical Disney princesses, to the point even female animals will share the same facial shape as the princesses.

Yeah, I try to vary the types of women I draw and steer clear of blatant stereotypes, but it's true that I also have the tendency to make men more goofy and heavily caricatured, while women are more often at least *somewhat* pretty. It's something I'm happy to avoid though (note to self: make more ugly, silly-looking women :)). I wonder if female artists also do this - it seems to me that they do.
You already seem to be doing well in that regard!  :)

But it's true that female artists do this too, since nearly all cartoons and animated media features women with a very narrow set of facial features and a Disney princess look, many people sadly seem to think that's the only way to draw women.
This blog post has a pretty well-written analysis about a female artist who realized she was doing it when pointed out to her, and goes on to explore why that is.

As for Poe's Law, I thought it was about a serious work being so ridiculous it was indistinguishable from parody, but I admit I was going off from the top of my head when writing that.

I still think there are plenty of examples of artists defending bad works as "it's parody" though, not only in regards to sexism but for example, Tommy Wiseau claiming that "The Room" was
meant to be a comedy all along when people were laughing at the bad acting and weird script in his drama film.


Cassiebsg

  • Cavefish
  • Fleeing the Cylon tyrrany...
    • Cassiebsg worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Cassiebsg worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #522 on: 22 Mar 2021, 20:11 »
Tommy Wiseau claiming that "The Room" was
meant to be a comedy all along when people were laughing at the bad acting and weird script in his drama film.

If you can't beat them, join them...  (laugh)
There are those who believe that life here began out there...

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #523 on: 22 Mar 2021, 21:10 »
But it's true that female artists do this too, since nearly all cartoons and animated media features women with a very narrow set of facial features and a Disney princess look, many people sadly seem to think that's the only way to draw women.
This blog post has a pretty well-written analysis about a female artist who realized she was doing it when pointed out to her, and goes on to explore why that is.

This is kind of funny, because when blog author compares villains and sais that they are more diverse, I on contrary see that they have mostly similar facial features (eye shape, mouth, facial expression), different mostly in fatness and skin colour; only exception is Frollo from "Notre Dame" (but then maybe it's a matter of finding a different scene where he looks more in tone with others).
And when she sais that "two male leads of Frozen look quite different", they look pretty similar to me. I mean, their eyes, chins, and facial expressions are practically copy/paste; maybe it's only that one has rounder face and wider nose?

On another hand seeing the comparison of early "frozen" character sketches to their final look makes me sad.
Disney surely love sticking to the stock character looks.
(But then, the last Disney "princess" cartoon I've seen was "Tangled" probably)
« Last Edit: 22 Mar 2021, 21:14 by Crimson Wizard »

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #524 on: 22 Mar 2021, 22:43 »
But it's true that female artists do this too, since nearly all cartoons and animated media features women with a very narrow set of facial features and a Disney princess look, many people sadly seem to think that's the only way to draw women.
This blog post has a pretty well-written analysis about a female artist who realized she was doing it when pointed out to her, and goes on to explore why that is.

This is kind of funny, because when blog author compares villains and sais that they are more diverse, I on contrary see that they have mostly similar facial features (eye shape, mouth, facial expression), different mostly in fatness and skin colour; only exception is Frollo from "Notre Dame" (but then maybe it's a matter of finding a different scene where he looks more in tone with others).
And when she sais that "two male leads of Frozen look quite different", they look pretty similar to me. I mean, their eyes, chins, and facial expressions are practically copy/paste; maybe it's only that one has rounder face and wider nose?

On another hand seeing the comparison of early "frozen" character sketches to their final look makes me sad.
Disney surely love sticking to the stock character looks.
(But then, the last Disney "princess" cartoon I've seen was "Tangled" probably)
Well, the Disney villains have different nose shapes, jaw shapes and overall head shapes, and I don't see any big similarities outside of their "evil grin" facial expression. You gotta admit you could still tell them apart if they swapped costumes, right?

Meanwhile, the three female main characters in Frozen looked like this:


Also, Disney even took existing female characters, and made them less diverse when they gave them a CGI makeover for Wreck it Ralph 2, and the same goes for all the more recent marketing images of the princesses.


Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #525 on: 22 Mar 2021, 23:42 »
I was not arguing with your point, but made a casual observation on how these Disney characters look similar in general. Yes, they look pretty similar to me; it may be a subjective impression too. It looked even funnier that they are grouped in pairs (two first female(?) villains and then a female villain and Jaffar have a lot in common in their facial shapes).
Don't know whether or not I could tell them apart in other circumstances, besides I don't know these characters very well. But that's not really important.
« Last Edit: 22 Mar 2021, 23:49 by Crimson Wizard »

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #526 on: 22 Mar 2021, 23:52 »
I was not arguing with your point, but made a casual observation on how these Disney characters look similar in general. Yes, they look pretty similar to me; it may be a subjective impression too. Don't know whether or not I could tell them apart in other circumstances, besides I don't know these characters very well. But that's not really important.
Ok, I still don't really see how you think they are that visually similar apart from the typical evil smile and half-closed eyes. The red queen and Ursula both have chubby chins, but that's about the only thing those two have in common.

What would you consider a good example of clearly different character designs?
« Last Edit: 22 Mar 2021, 23:54 by Blondbraid »


Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #527 on: 23 Mar 2021, 00:20 »
Disney characters look similar because they are only interested in making money. So if Elsa is successful in bringing money, they will make every character look like Elsa because that's how they will make more money. And if there are similarities between villains it is because they identified those are the villains that are making money.

Disney doesn't worth the conversations people have about them. They're just an awful and toxic organization that would do anything and its contrary for the sole purpose of making money. Don't talk about them like they are anything else than a big money machine. Everything they do has the same explanation: it was the best way to make money. Everything else about Disney is irrelevant.

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #528 on: 23 Mar 2021, 00:49 »
Ok, I still don't really see how you think they are that visually similar apart from the typical evil smile and half-closed eyes. The red queen and Ursula both have chubby chins, but that's about the only thing those two have in common.

Well, I am not an artist; also I was talking about impression, of course was not comparing these faces mathematically. Plus this is very much offtopic, and I already wonder if I made a mistake posting this.
But if I am to explain further, these pairs of villains have similar "image" to me in general. First their facial shapes, eyes and mouths look similar. Then their posture and common facial expression too, which is imo an integral part of a character in cartoon (e.g. the Disney "princesses" also seem to very similar set of expressions at least lately).
One mistake I made is comparing Jaffar and Cruella, their facial shape seemed quite similar on the given screenshot because of the Jaffar's smile, increasing the effect, but on screenshots made in different scene one can see that Jaffar has of course got much longer face when he's not smiling (looking at Jafar from other pics made me think they drew him from a camel... maybe it's a real fact...). But on that particular pair of screenshots they look like some kind of spiritual twins to me. Difference in noses, for example, is less important in this context imo, because they blend into rest of an image.


The "frozen"'s male characters posted there look just too much same to me, although of course I realize they have different "weight" to their faces, and different hairstyle, but... don't know how to explain better... imagining overlaying them on each other I see practically same face. It's like they made a "typical good guy" face, then stretched it to create a second character.
Maybe I need to watch these two in action where their expressions change according to situation to unsee this.


What would you consider a good example of clearly different character designs?

Erm... well, the sketches from the "Frozen" posted on the same blog. The first pair is kind of crazy, and frankly I could not believe it was drawn by Disney artists. Guess this is a stereotype in action too... but of course they are all real people with their personal art styles. Second pair seems closer to Disney style, and it's not only that they maybe look differently by face (maybe, as it's not easy for me to tell by the sketch), but also their style and expression are different, imho this all integrates in a character's "image" in cartoon.
« Last Edit: 23 Mar 2021, 03:04 by Crimson Wizard »

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #529 on: 23 Mar 2021, 08:42 »
Disney characters look similar because they are only interested in making money. So if Elsa is successful in bringing money, they will make every character look like Elsa because that's how they will make more money. And if there are similarities between villains it is because they identified those are the villains that are making money.

Disney doesn't worth the conversations people have about them. They're just an awful and toxic organization that would do anything and its contrary for the sole purpose of making money. Don't talk about them like they are anything else than a big money machine. Everything they do has the same explanation: it was the best way to make money. Everything else about Disney is irrelevant.
Well, Disney also used to make a lot of money on films featuring racial caricatures, but stopped including those designs in their later films when enough people called them out on it.

Crimson Wizard: I think there's a difference in having similar expressions and similar faces. And the villains do change expressions in their respective films, if anything, they're often having more different expressions than the heroes.

As for the differences in the male main characters in Frozen, I will agree that that image in the post made them look similar, but they do look more distinct in the film, just look at these gifs:


Now compare those two to the two female protagonists:

And they don't even change faces from when they are toddlers in the prologue of the film!


Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #530 on: 23 Mar 2021, 09:21 »

Well, Disney also used to make a lot of money on films featuring racial caricatures, but stopped including those designs in their later films when enough people called them out on it.



No, they stopped doing racial caricatures because racial caricatures stopped bringing money and could actually cost money. 

Elsa and Anna are sisters so it kinda makes sense they would look similar. But I still agree with you that they have a lot of princesses looking alike. But again, it's not a statement on women, it's because they know that's how they'll make money.

You are giving Disney way too much credit. And probably too much attention as well. Disney does not have the bravery to create trends, they follow them once they are deemed profitable enough. If you ever see Disney doing something progressive it is not because they genuinely support it, it is because it has become a better way to make money. Thus it means that trend is already established by other people who were more brave and less greedy than them. These should receive praise and attention, not Disney.

They are filthy and should not be granted so much attention in the first place. The way we will stop looking at them as if they were some sort of important cultural landmark we will have done a great progress in humanity.



Ali

  • What will become of the baron?
    • Ali worked on one or more games that won an AGS Award!
    •  
    • Ali worked on one or more games that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #531 on: 23 Mar 2021, 10:08 »
No, they stopped doing racial caricatures because racial caricatures stopped bringing money and could actually cost money. 

I don't know that this is accurate. Aladdin had several edits after it's release in response to criticism. (Not in terms of character design, which obviously, wouldn't be possible.) Similarly, no longer releasing Song of the South can't be said to have made them any money, but it has saved them from (I would say, valid) criticism. No one's praising Disney for doing the bare minimum, here.

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #532 on: 23 Mar 2021, 20:37 »
No, they stopped doing racial caricatures because racial caricatures stopped bringing money and could actually cost money. 

I don't know that this is accurate. Aladdin had several edits after it's release in response to criticism. (Not in terms of character design, which obviously, wouldn't be possible.) Similarly, no longer releasing Song of the South can't be said to have made them any money, but it has saved them from (I would say, valid) criticism. No one's praising Disney for doing the bare minimum, here.
Indeed.
They are filthy and should not be granted so much attention in the first place. The way we will stop looking at them as if they were some sort of important cultural landmark we will have done a great progress in humanity.
Even if you think so, ignoring Disney will not make it go away, and it has had a huge cultural impact on western society whether you want it or not, and right now the best we can do as individuals is to call them out on problematic depictions to make them improve, even if Disney's just improving that stuff in order to avoid criticism.


Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #533 on: 24 Mar 2021, 00:47 »
Crimson Wizard: I think there's a difference in having similar expressions and similar faces. And the villains do change expressions in their respective films, if anything, they're often having more different expressions than the heroes.

Sure thing. But I can assure you that there's no need to tell me this. I even feel akward having to discuss this, so much this is silly.
Speaking freely, it often seems like you think people are arguing with you unless they explicitly state they agree in their post. But I've already said before that was not arguing with your point. Of course I saw these princess characters are same (maybe using same 3D model).
I made a casual observation on how other Disney characters look similar, which seemed funny to me, in general and in context of that article. I tried to explain why, but that is really irrelevant, and in retrospect was not necessary. You are discussing serious things here and guess my comment was out of place. So, I apologize if this caused distraction.
« Last Edit: 24 Mar 2021, 01:49 by Crimson Wizard »

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #534 on: 24 Mar 2021, 01:27 »
Even if you think so, ignoring Disney will not make it go away, and it has had a huge cultural impact on western society whether you want it or not,


There is no such thing as "western world". Your use of this term is cultural appropriation and ethnocentrism. This "western world" you are talking about includes plenty of rich and independent cultures that have nothing to do whatsoever with Anglo/Nordic/Protestant people and it is not appropriate of you to speak in their name. If you actually knew about these cultures you would know that in most of them, my opinion of Disney being a tacky entertainment of secondary importance is often the norm, and they do not see Disney as so omnipotent.

and right now the best we can do as individuals is to call them out on problematic depictions to make them improve, even if Disney's just improving that stuff in order to avoid criticism.

So you believe individuals can change the world's views on society, gender, and minorities; but you don't believe individuals can change the world's view on a greedy corporation having too much control?

The best we can do as individuals is not enabling Disney further into their dominance by giving them the feedback they need to improve their marketing and comfort their position. The best we can do is spreading more awareness of how problematic it is that one massive company has such a weight and ensure it is not enduring.

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #535 on: 24 Mar 2021, 02:01 »
You are giving Disney way too much credit. And probably too much attention as well. Disney does not have the bravery to create trends, they follow them once they are deemed profitable enough. If you ever see Disney doing something progressive it is not because they genuinely support it, it is because it has become a better way to make money. Thus it means that trend is already established by other people who were more brave and less greedy than them. These should receive praise and attention, not Disney.

I don't know much about Disney's agenda (I just keep hearing they're evil, mostly from youtube critics), but you might be throwing the baby out with the bathwater here. However power-hungry they may be, they still employ some genuinely talented, creative people. I loved The Lion King as a kid and I think they took some risks with that one, the death scene especially. I still have a soft spot for it, it's one of the things that got me into animation. Also Aladdin by the way, especially the platformer based on it - I would constantly pause it to see each animation frame :).

Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #536 on: 24 Mar 2021, 02:37 »
You are giving Disney way too much credit. And probably too much attention as well. Disney does not have the bravery to create trends, they follow them once they are deemed profitable enough. If you ever see Disney doing something progressive it is not because they genuinely support it, it is because it has become a better way to make money. Thus it means that trend is already established by other people who were more brave and less greedy than them. These should receive praise and attention, not Disney.

I don't know much about Disney's agenda (I just keep hearing they're evil, mostly from youtube critics), but you might be throwing the baby out with the bathwater here. However power-hungry they may be, they still employ some genuinely talented, creative people. I loved The Lion King as a kid and I think they took some risks with that one, the death scene especially. I still have a soft spot for it, it's one of the things that got me into animation. Also Aladdin by the way, especially the platformer based on it - I would constantly pause it to see each animation frame :).

true but sadly that was a long time ago  :( Walt Disney himself was a great person and he was actually very daring and willing to experiment. That's how he was successful in the first place. But he is long gone. Disney as we know it today, 25 years after the Lion King, is much different.

Look at the last time they experimented with something new: the design of Hercules or the whole Treasure Planet thing. They made less money, so they stopped. Now everything they do smells like analytics and marketing. They had a strong commercial streak for a long time but now that's all they are about.


Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #537 on: 24 Mar 2021, 08:11 »
Crimson Wizard: I think there's a difference in having similar expressions and similar faces. And the villains do change expressions in their respective films, if anything, they're often having more different expressions than the heroes.

Sure thing. But I can assure you that there's no need to tell me this. I even feel akward having to discuss this, so much this is silly.
Speaking freely, it often seems like you think people are arguing with you unless they explicitly state they agree in their post. But I've already said before that was not arguing with your point. Of course I saw these princess characters are same (maybe using same 3D model).
I made a casual observation on how other Disney characters look similar, which seemed funny to me, in general and in context of that article. I tried to explain why, but that is really irrelevant, and in retrospect was not necessary. You are discussing serious things here and guess my comment was out of place. So, I apologize if this caused distraction.
I'm sorry if any of my replies came off as confrontational, I didn't mean it to be. I was merely curious as to what similarities you saw and trying to elaborate my point, and I have no problem with anything you've said here.
One of the downsides of text communication is that it's harder to gauge what tone one is giving off.  :-\


Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #538 on: 24 Mar 2021, 08:21 »
There is no such thing as "western world". Your use of this term is cultural appropriation and ethnocentrism. This "western world" you are talking about includes plenty of rich and independent cultures that have nothing to do whatsoever with Anglo/Nordic/Protestant people and it is not appropriate of you to speak in their name. If you actually knew about these cultures you would know that in most of them, my opinion of Disney being a tacky entertainment of secondary importance is often the norm, and they do not see Disney as so omnipotent.
Really?
This is literally the first time ever that I had heard anyone having a problem with "the western world". It's a pretty well-established concept, but also, I'd say that when I've travelled to different countries,
I did see more cultural similarities in Spain, Germany and the USA than I did between India, Thailand and Nepal, especially in terms of what media was consumed and advertised.

Plus it's commonly understood that "the west" is more about culture than geographical markers (like how Australia often counts in, but Eastern Europe don't).
You are giving Disney way too much credit. And probably too much attention as well. Disney does not have the bravery to create trends, they follow them once they are deemed profitable enough. If you ever see Disney doing something progressive it is not because they genuinely support it, it is because it has become a better way to make money. Thus it means that trend is already established by other people who were more brave and less greedy than them. These should receive praise and attention, not Disney.

I don't know much about Disney's agenda (I just keep hearing they're evil, mostly from youtube critics), but you might be throwing the baby out with the bathwater here. However power-hungry they may be, they still employ some genuinely talented, creative people. I loved The Lion King as a kid and I think they took some risks with that one, the death scene especially. I still have a soft spot for it, it's one of the things that got me into animation. Also Aladdin by the way, especially the platformer based on it - I would constantly pause it to see each animation frame :).

true but sadly that was a long time ago  :( Walt Disney himself was a great person and he was actually very daring and willing to experiment. That's how he was successful in the first place. But he is long gone. Disney as we know it today, 25 years after the Lion King, is much different.

Look at the last time they experimented with something new: the design of Hercules or the whole Treasure Planet thing. They made less money, so they stopped. Now everything they do smells like analytics and marketing. They had a strong commercial streak for a long time but now that's all they are about.


And that's why, to me, I'd rather get people to set higher standards for their Disney entertainment to try and get them to go back to the artistic ideas that made them create timeless classics than do away with Disney entirely.


Re: Bechdel test and other media analysis about discrimination
« Reply #539 on: 24 Mar 2021, 14:08 »
There is no such thing as "western world". Your use of this term is cultural appropriation and ethnocentrism. This "western world" you are talking about includes plenty of rich and independent cultures that have nothing to do whatsoever with Anglo/Nordic/Protestant people and it is not appropriate of you to speak in their name. If you actually knew about these cultures you would know that in most of them, my opinion of Disney being a tacky entertainment of secondary importance is often the norm, and they do not see Disney as so omnipotent.
Really?
This is literally the first time ever that I had heard anyone having a problem with "the western world". It's a pretty well-established concept, but also, I'd say that when I've travelled to different countries,
I did see more cultural similarities in Spain, Germany and the USA than I did between India, Thailand and Nepal, especially in terms of what media was consumed and advertised.

Cultural similarities between Germany and Spain? LMAO. As a Spaniard who has lived in Germany for 12 years, I can assure you that is absolute bullshit. Culture goes WAY beyond which media gets "consumed and advertised", and you can't possibly have the slightest grasp on the differences between two cultures by spending a few days in a country, especially if you don't speak the language. Such statements are not just frivolous, but actually insulting, especially towards immigrants like me who have to bear the full brunt of xenophobia, cultural stereotyping and discrimination towards Southern Europeans/Mediterraneans that those of us who are trying to build a new life here experience. Stay on your lane.