I never thought of this day

But here is is.

An artist that looks just like Kantoku.

Whoa.

Piromuzi’s blog Pixiv

Kantoku’s art, for comparison. The shape of the eyes and the way that shadows are drawn are almost completely the same, although Piromuzi is less polished.

I mean, this isn’t anything new. Everyone has seen their fair share of Itou Noizi/Tony/insert name here copycats. But what is more interesting is that we have artists like El-zeng, who copies many styles and in some ways surpasses them. The above image is in the style of redjuice, who seems to be his favorite artist.

Original art by Redjuice

But it always feels like a surprise, you know, when you realize the connection between things.

What also seems interesting to me, however, is the direct copying of material. Yup, El-zeng put the above image on his pixiv account.

Original art by Hiro Suzuhira

When I saw that, I had no idea how to react. First, I went “Seriously? What kind of idiot are you, copying off of Hiro Suzuhira like that?”. Then, I realized that he actually credited her as the original artist. And after that, I realized that I prefer El-zeng’s version over the original. Usually, and let’s be frank here, copies are crap. They look awful, and the reason for that is a less skilled artist is taking an image and changing it, calling it their own. But their modifications are absolutely awful due to the aforementioned lack of skill. Sometimes a fan of the original notices and starts flaming, sometimes no one notices. Usually, people looks down on the copier, and think that the copier did something wrong, and maybe unforgivable.

But what do you do when there is credit AND it looks better than the original? In some ways that’s no different from those “anime wallpapers” that you see all over the place (I put brackets because they often aren’t images from anime). But there is still that lingering feeling of disgust or annoyance, that feeling of “why are you doing this?”

How do you feel about this?

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6 thoughts on “I never thought of this day

  1. I have no problem with it, if it’s a labor of love. Homage comes in varying forms, and people will always disagree on whether it’s an improvement. I consider it a form of artistic collaboration, so long as credit is given and the original work preserved for all the compare.

    I mean, people don’t generally feel as disgusted about music being “copied”.. it’s considered a neat remix or edit instead. Why then should we get so up-in-arms when someone “remixes” an artist’s drawing? Heck, people buy posters of classic works all the time, even if they are “re-envisionings” or simple distortions of some form.

    If no toes are being stepped on, then why complain. Now, when money’s involved it becomes a more difficult argument.. but I have no idea where to draw the line there.

  2. I think copies are fine. You’re still doing the work. If you want to spend all that time on something that you can never be credited for as the original artist, so be it.

    I do, of course, prefer original pieces. Because they let you get into the head of the artist much better than some idea they borrowed off of someone else.

    • As for style copies, I feel like that’s just an honor if it’s done in small quantities. If it’s their main style (the copied style), it annoys me to see just as a viewer.

  3. Whoah, an artist that draws like Kantoku. Man and just a few days ago I was raving about how much I like Kantoku’s drawings (wanting a Miyazawa Midori shikishi and all). Hm maybe I’ll drill down my drawing to obtain that style. (Uh no I’ll stick to tracing until I draw frequently.)

    I’ll look at it this way. Personally I probably don’t prefer copies (well, 100% ones), but then again when the character is the same, the attire and/or personality is going to be the same (or much similar). It’s nice to have variety but you also go with what works.

    If there’s crediting in a fair manner, that’s fine.

    I mean we always like to see something new. So if you see something new that’s similar to what you already like, that’s sort of a visual winner isn’t it?

    I’m surprised you didn’t correlate this topic with your older one, regarding “drawing for the heck of it” as opposed to “paid to draw it”, because the pixiv members have more of that freeflow kind of drawing, while a recognizable artist draws for a company, or whatnot. This threshold seems to make it possible to exceed the original drawing (especially with the time difference too)

  4. i face the same dilema when it comes to copying actually. and sometimes when you use things as references, you unconsciously copies parts of the art actually.

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