Comic Fury Webcomic Hosting - Would you draw a British character any differently to an American character?

You are not logged in. Log in, Register, More info
Forum > Webcomic & Art discussion > Would you draw a British character any differently to an American character?
Pages: [1] [2]

"Would you draw a British character any differently to an American character?", 13th Aug 2017, 12:16 AM #1
RJDG14

User avatar
Posts: 1680
Registration date: 23rd Sep 2014
Location: UK
Maybe this is just in my head, but to me, I can usually tell from a picture or silent video whether somebody is British or American. Americans and Australians often have slightly wider mouths and more defined jawlines than the average British person from my experience, while I rarely see that where I live. My characters are supposed to be British (though one has an American father) but for some reason I can only picture most of them having an American accent because I rarely see British people with pointy jawlines, even though I use them because I find it makes my style more attractive.

I don't know if these differences are environmental or genetic. I'd be enclined to say the first, due to additional hormones in American meat plus a higher protein diet, higher brace-rates and an accent that creates a slightly smilier resting face, plus I've seen images of identical twins who grew up in the two different regions and look slightly different.

Moving onto the character aspect, look at the humans in 101 Dalmations, The Beano, or some old Giles cartoons, and most of these seem to look British to me, despite being drawn in a slightly out of date style from 50 years ago.

Is there really any difference or not? I like my character designs but they just don't look British in the way that most people in Britain do.
_______________________
Follow me on:
Deviantart | Tumblr | Twitter

Gourlish (my central art site, linked with my Deviantart and Twitter pages)
13th Aug 2017, 12:30 AM #2
zerothe3rd

User avatar
Posts: 302
Registration date: 5th Feb 2014
Location: California
Physically Americans are more mixed in phenotypes compared to the British. However, as far as European Americans go, the British and American phenotypes are roughly the same. I would draw them exactly the same. Anything more and it falls into stereotypes. When I was in London, other than voices and slang, it was impossible to tell by face or body types alone. However there is one very major difference that I would follow:

British people tend to dress better than most Americans. By that I mean they wear nicer clothes more often. If you lived in a major city in the US you might not notice though; as they are pretty similar. If you live far away from major cities it is more of a mixed bag as far as clothes go. Then again the same thing could happen in Britain; further from cities, less nice clothing.

Maybe exclusively spell things the British way when they talk too; addin' all those u's?
_______________________
image

13th Aug 2017, 12:54 AM #3
Fabian W.
it feels so good
User avatar
Posts: 1239
Registration date: 19th Apr 2014
Location: Country of Beer and Sausages
I made a quick sketch of how I'd draw them differently... ;-)

image
_______________________
image
13th Aug 2017, 12:58 AM #4
JammyTheBirb
Birb is the Worb
User avatar
Posts: 3339
Registration date: 17th Aug 2012
Location: Englishland
I dunno, I never really think about this. From all the character designs I've seen in anything, there's usually no difference I can see between British characters and American characters. Unless they give the British characters bad teeth, in which case goodbye, I'm done with that show or whatever. I honestly can't see why there'd be a difference. I wouldn't consider this stuff when drawing an American or British character.

As for the clothes thing, interesting. I always assumed it was the other way round. probably because of movies.

I guess the one difference I can think of that I notice is hairstyles, but that's with real people. There are some I've only really seen American people have, or at least, much more often.
_______________________
image
13th Aug 2017, 1:04 AM #5
RJDG14

User avatar
Posts: 1680
Registration date: 23rd Sep 2014
Location: UK
What do you mean in terms of hairstyles? Both seem pretty similar to my knowledge.
_______________________
Follow me on:
Deviantart | Tumblr | Twitter

Gourlish (my central art site, linked with my Deviantart and Twitter pages)
13th Aug 2017, 1:08 AM #6
JammyTheBirb
Birb is the Worb
User avatar
Posts: 3339
Registration date: 17th Aug 2012
Location: Englishland
It's something I notice with older people more often. But in general I'd say my impression is that American hair tends to be... neater? I don't really have any examples, so it's kinda hard to explain what I mean. ^u^'

Edit: I'm actually only talking about hair here.
_______________________
image
13th Aug 2017, 1:10 AM #7
deerwithgoggles

User avatar
Posts: 786
Registration date: 25th Aug 2013
Location: Diculn
i dunno, i haven't really thought of this! one of the main characters of my comic is british (or i guess coded british? this is a made up fantasy world) but i don't know if it's easy to tell, apart from the slight differences in how he talks. so i suppose i don't draw a british person differently to an american person at the very least intentionally, though there may be subconscious differences there?
_______________________
image
13th Aug 2017, 1:16 AM #8
RJDG14

User avatar
Posts: 1680
Registration date: 23rd Sep 2014
Location: UK
JammyTheBirb:It's something I notice with older people more often. But in general I'd say my impression is that American hair tends to be... neater? I don't really have any examples, so it's kinda hard to explain what I mean. ^u^'


Yeah. Many British people born before about 1960 looked slightly older and less tall for their age than those born since the mid-60s due to rationing after WWII, whereas America never really had the same issue. I also think the slightly untidy 70s hairstyles that were very dominant 40 years ago in Britain have sort of stuck with some people of 60 or so.

I'd possibly say the average American is also an inch or so taller and slightly broader physically than the average British person. I've looked at current pictures of American people my age and I'd also say that clothing tends to be slightly looser there on average, which may reflect average size in the two nations and may also be why I struggle to find clothing that fits me well at the moment in Britain - I have a 20 year old secondhand t-shirt that came from neighbouring Canada (it says on the label that it was made there too) and it's a lot looser on me than anything I've been able to find in the stores where I live, even though most of my tighter t-shirts are officially the same size (L).
_______________________
Follow me on:
Deviantart | Tumblr | Twitter

Gourlish (my central art site, linked with my Deviantart and Twitter pages)
13th Aug 2017, 2:05 AM #9
swamp

User avatar
Posts: 161
Registration date: 8th Feb 2017
zerothe3rd:Physically Americans are more mixed in phenotypes compared to the British. However, as far as European Americans go, the British and American phenotypes are roughly the same. I would draw them exactly the same. Anything more and it falls into stereotypes.

British people tend to dress better than most Americans. By that I mean they wear nicer clothes more often. If you lived in a major city in the US you might not notice though; as they are pretty similar. If you live far away from major cities it is more of a mixed bag as far as clothes go. Then again the same thing could happen in Britain; further from cities, less nice clothing.


I think more accurately you could say Europe in general has more emphasis on men's fashion and large, older cities tend to have a more formal style that you don't see off the east coast.
In my experience, Women tend to dress about the same, while lots of things considered trendy for men in European cities (scarves, dress shoes, earrings) are considered too feminine for men here.

My Mom tells the story of coming back from living in Scotland with my Dad, who had gotten his ear pierced, grown out his hair, and started wearing scarves, and had my ranch worker grandfather, who'd only ever worn button up shirts with caps, tell her to "teach him how to dress".

Other major trend differences.
-It is incredibly rare to see an American woman who's gone grey still have long hair, while this is more common in the UK.
-The stereotype of about british having 'bad teeth' comes from more social pressure for cosmetic orthodontia in America.
-Differing ideals of country aesthetic, though less so on the east coast. America has the cowboy image, the UK has the village life image.

There actually are different phenotypical trends!
http://www.mediadump.com/hosted-id167-average-faces-from-around-the-world.html#.WY-yJ1GGPIU
This is a great view of facial averages using composite images! Obviously every British person will no look one way and every American will not look another, especially since some white Americans may have no British ancestry, while others may have exclusively British ancestry

-Also that thing where guys gel up their hair in the front like a Cockatoo? It's longer and more swooshy in Britain. Look, it seems small but when you travel from one to the other it's really surreal
_______________________
13th Aug 2017, 3:44 AM #10
ChristianRepass

User avatar
Posts: 257
Registration date: 6th Apr 2017
Location: Rochester, New York
I never take phenotypes into account, lol. I just pay more attention to naming. Here's an example, with a few characters taken from Arena 20XX, which is STILL on hiatus...
Let's play Guess the Brit! The object is to tell which of these characters is either English, Welsh, or Scottish! Ready? No? Well, too bad! GO!
image

Answer is in the spoiler.
_______________________
image Updates on Tuesdays & Fridays!
13th Aug 2017, 4:02 AM #11
Caley Tibbittz Collopy
Sword dude
User avatar
Posts: 4239
Registration date: 6th Mar 2012
Location: YOUR MOM.
A British guy plays one of the most American characters on TV: Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes. I didn't know he was British until someone told me.
_______________________
(Formerly known as Pigtails McBonergiraffe)
image
Read 6+ Issues of SwordCat Princess™ FREE! | SCP Patreon Rewards! | Twitter | "LIKE" | Please VOTE!
13th Aug 2017, 4:19 AM #12
ProfEtheric
Dry Soil
User avatar
Posts: 3242
Registration date: 17th Aug 2014
I saw a discussion a few years ago that basically presented the question: why do Americans have to pick Australians to be our most rugged characters (Russell Crowe is a good example).

Also, along Tibbittz's point, we now have a British guy playing the all-American teenager (Tom Holland as Peter Parker).

I wish there was a (non-stereotypical or offensive) shorthand to mark a British character as opposed to an American character. It would really have helped when we introduced our British spy character, Kadira Morningstar, or our British businessman, Edward Chapel (or when we reintroduce his brother, Andrew).
_______________________
13th Aug 2017, 4:27 AM #13
Jean_Q_Citizen

User avatar
Posts: 1492
Registration date: 21st Oct 2015
Location: That place where I am
I have one British character. He basically just looks like a nebbish-y type, which he pretty much is. I don't really think you could pick him out as a Brit unless you knew ahead of time, though.
_______________________
image
13th Aug 2017, 4:30 AM #14
Caley Tibbittz Collopy
Sword dude
User avatar
Posts: 4239
Registration date: 6th Mar 2012
Location: YOUR MOM.
Did not know Tom Holland was British. Wow.

...honestly, we mostly can't really tell the difference. This makes sense, considering America started as a British colony.
_______________________
(Formerly known as Pigtails McBonergiraffe)
image
Read 6+ Issues of SwordCat Princess™ FREE! | SCP Patreon Rewards! | Twitter | "LIKE" | Please VOTE!
13th Aug 2017, 4:32 AM #15
Jean_Q_Citizen

User avatar
Posts: 1492
Registration date: 21st Oct 2015
Location: That place where I am
Knew Holland was, didn't know about Lincoln. Wow. Still, I kinda hate the "Make British actors American, or make them villains" B.S. prevalent in Hollywood.
_______________________
image
13th Aug 2017, 4:56 AM #16
SharpyTheYellowKirby
got away with it
User avatar
Posts: 770
Registration date: 27th May 2014
Location: Setting His Controls For The Heart Of The Sun
Of course I would!

image

The British girl is frowning and the American girl is smiling!
_______________________
image
13th Aug 2017, 5:24 AM #17
Maxis-Geryon

User avatar
Posts: 220
Registration date: 26th Jul 2011
Location: U.S
Depending on the art style. In anime, British and Caucasian Americans tend to look similar in terms of physical characteristics. Same for Black British and Black American. The only real difference are the dialogue, fashion sense and priorities.
_______________________
13th Aug 2017, 5:32 AM #18
Van Husk I
Official Age Monitor
User avatar
Posts: 3601
Registration date: 31st Jul 2014
Location: H-town, Texass
Hugh Laurie passes for a pretty good American on House.
_______________________
imageimageimage
#FTFRB #DeadLetterMail Avitar by harajuku_Smittle_
13th Aug 2017, 5:38 AM #19
ProfEtheric
Dry Soil
User avatar
Posts: 3242
Registration date: 17th Aug 2014
I knew I was forgetting someone...

Along similar lines, Benedict Cumberbatch made a good Dr. Stephen Strange (who is American).
_______________________
13th Aug 2017, 5:46 AM #20
Van Husk I
Official Age Monitor
User avatar
Posts: 3601
Registration date: 31st Jul 2014
Location: H-town, Texass
That's the most Brit name I have ever heard...
_______________________
imageimageimage
#FTFRB #DeadLetterMail Avitar by harajuku_Smittle_
Forum > Webcomic & Art discussion > Would you draw a British character any differently to an American character?
Pages: [1] [2]