Hello all! This is a new, experimental recurring feature that I want to start up here on the blog. Inspired by Nate Ming’s Fanart Friday articles that happen over on Crunchyroll each Friday and by my love of pretty pictures (as I can’t create them myself) and by my newfound friend Pixiv, this is intended to be an opportunity for me to showcase some of the cool fanart that I find that otherwise might go unseen by the English-speaking, non-Pixiv-using anime fandom. Depending on how things go, I may reach out to some other platforms (DeviantArt, etc.), too. I’m no art critic, but I’ll at least try and explain what attracted my attention to each picture. For now, sit back and enjoy!
From the Summer 2014 season’s sort-of train-based anime Rail Wars! I found this one in Pixiv’s Autumn Illustrations spotlight. The color palette and the lighting were what caught my attention here. The sunset feel definitely has an autumn touch to it, but a warm one. Due to the copyright in the bottom right, I’m not sure if it’s actually original fanart (and I can’t read enough Japanese to figure it out myself), but it’s a pretty picture nonetheless.
This one popped up on the front page’s New queue. I have no idea whatsoever where this character is from (although she looks a bit like Kotori from Love Live! to me) and I can’t read Japanese (yet), but I liked the black and white, as well as the way the dots in the background got smaller as they approached the character.
This one, featuring Mekaku City Actors‘ Ayano and Shintaro, was a find from the women’s demographic top ratings for September 16 at #12. I have a suspicion I’ll frequent the women’s ratings more than the men’s (less gnarly fanservice, hopefully). Obviously, a cute picture, but what really caught my attention was all the stationary (Bakemonogatari, anyone?), and the light effects and faded colored triangles in the background (Gatchaman Crowds?). The combination of some abstract-looking stuff with geometric shapes worked really well for me.
You can probably expect to see both of these girls back in future installments of Anime Artwork Adventures, but crossovers are always fun, and Kyousougiga‘s Koto and Yozakura Quartet‘s Hime Yarizakura were two of the best female leads to come out of the Fall 2013 season. Both remind me a bit of my favorite anime character of all time, Soul Eater‘s Maka Albarn, in that they’re both brave, a little headstrong, a little rash, and intensely loyal. And where Maka has a cool coat, Koto has a cute ribbon and Hime has her scarf.
If you were worried that this post was going to be all cute anime girls, don’t worry! I had to go out and find some fanart of the guy who was probably my favorite character in Haikyuu!!, Seijoh’s setter, Tooru Oikawa. I liked this one because of the two shades of blue (Seijoh’s uniforms were the best in the show), and because Oikawa is looking a little more serious in this one. There’s a lot of fanart out there of him being silly, but I was the biggest fan of him when he was dead serious and set on winning.
You might not guess it, but reigning Queen Shinobu Wakamiya is actually my second favorite character in Chihayafuru behind Taichi. I love the intensity of her dedication to each and every card on the playing field. I’m a fan of the way this picture is framed in a sort of downward-angling direction. Snowmaru is also adorable, and I also like how shiny the reflections in Shinobu’s hair are.
Another one out of the Female Demographics ranking, coming in at #21 on September 21. This one, I’m fairly certain, is an original. Not sure exactly what’s going on (is it honey?), but I love the almost bedtime story-like vibe it has to it. Whatever’s happening, the different yellow and brown hues look really nice together and the six stars hanging from strings at the top of the picture add to the overall impression of the bedtime story feel.
Got this one out of the New queue (a word of warning: the New queue moves ridiculously fast, so if you see something you like, bookmark it right away before you move on). It’s not from any series I recognize, although the long blue hair reminds me of K‘s Kuroh Yatogami. I like the use of some more traditional art styles and the casual pose this androgynous character is in. And just look at the cute kitty cat!
So, that’s the end of the inaugural Anime Artwork Adventures! As this is a first time thing, leave some feedback in the comments for me! Did you like the format? The pictures? Were there too many images? Not enough? Is this something you’d like to see more of?
And, of course, if you have any particular characters you’d like to see show up in next week’s installment, let me know! I’ll do the best I can.