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Forums » Smalltalk » "Anthro" vs "Furry" art

I'm going to preface this with: I'm not a furry.

Having said that, here's a few facts about me:
-My favorite video game series is Sonic the Hedgehog followed closely by Spyro the Dragon
-Almost all my OCs are anthro
-I curate a group on this very site where the theme is a magical forest world where everyone who enters transforms into an anthro animal (if they were not one already.)
-My favorite D&D5e setting is Humblewood
-My favorite Tabletop system is Wanderhome (which is like Ghibli films and Redwall smashed together)
-I will play anthro characters in every campaign where that is an option.
-Most of my friends are furries or furry-adjacent.
-If you pitch something to me and it has talking animals in it, I am 300% more interested in it.

I really like anthro characters and anthro art.

But I don't like "furry" art and I actually find it a real turn-off.

Games on Steam that have a distinctly "furry" aesthetic make me bounce off them pretty hard. I cannot get into Dust: An Elysian Tail because the character art is just too far in the "furry" area for me, but I like the art for Backbone: Prologue. I've yet to play Crown of Leaves because its character art is teetering in that direction, and obviously, though I enjoy content with animals quite a lot, there are a number of artists on Twitter I avoid because their style is just "too furry."

Every time I try to explain the difference in anthro and furry though, I feel like I'm talking mostly semantics nobody else sees but suffice it to say, I can point to someone's art and guess "They have an FA account" and I'm usually (but not always) right.

I have nothing against furries at all, I just don't like these stylistic quirks that identify something as furry. They take too much away from the animal nature of a character for me, and they cement it as something no longer distinctly an anthro, but some other thing that looks like an abstraction of (mostly canid) animal features, or they simply look "too human" especially in the face, if that makes sense. (It doesn't make sense to me because I like Sly Cooper's art but I definitely preferred his model in the first game because his facial structure looked more animal than human. I suppose there's a spectrum to this.)

Also, not every furry artist draws in the 'furry' style, it's just... this 'identifying' style that is, or seems, ubiquitous.

It's not that I dislike stylization either. (Again: I love Sonic and Sly Cooper) but more that there are stylistic cues in anthro art that are whimsical and fun to me, and perhaps at least some of this is because I am very used to associating certain quirks of what I have identified as "furry" style in NSFW art, and now I cannot unsee this. (I have nothing against NSFW artists either, you are entitled to your expression, but seeing those quirks in SFW places... squicks me a bit.) Obviously not all furry art is NSFW and I'd say that most of it isn't but the association with certain style quirks exists in my mind regardless.

Perhaps it's because I used to be a furry, I was a furry for 10 years, and so I've had more exposure to furry art than most people.
I know there are a number of people of the furry persuasion on this forum though so I'm wondering if others who have spent a lot of time in the fandom will know what I'm talking about, perhaps there are even some lurking around who prefer the "furry" style over more generic anthro and can tell me what they like about it?

hello yes, i have "furry" characters but i refer to them as "anthro" to avoid the negative connotation/being associated with a community i'd rather not be. my issues with the furry community are an entirely different topic, however, and i'm not sure that describing them is suitable for public forums since it has to do with a lot of "not respecting someone disliking nsfw content"

i sort of fall in the middle of 'furry' art and 'anthro' art. a mish-mash, if you will? i like the colors of furry art but i prefer the anatomy of anthros. lucy, for example, has a neon "oh god why" palette but relatively mundane, realistic cat proportions. ...i've got a snake character hiding around here somewhere but i can't seem to remember what i've done with her picture.

i think the issue i take with most hyper stylized furry art (re: the style every big artist has now) is that you can't actually tell what species a character is just by looking at them. everyone has the same canine snout and body proportions. pretty much all that changes from "rabbit" to "dragon" is the addition of horns and changing the shape of the ears.

anthro, or the classic redwall style, however, i can tell by looking at the silhouette that a character is a cat, mouse, rabbit, whatever because it takes into account body proportions and classic species features. the cat looks like a cat and not a dog with a slightly shorter face, huzzah. it puts more emphasis on creating unique designs through a cohesive theme as opposed to relying on flashy color palettes and slapping random stuff on the character. that's not to say that 'flashy color palette' is inherently bad, only that it shouldn't be used as the sole means of making a trademark character design. (IN MY OPINION lmao)

also, yeah. yeah. i get what you mean when you talk about the quirks........if someone draws teeth or mouths too well i'm immediately side-eyeing them because there's a 90% chance they have a [REDACTED] account

i feel like i should add an obligatory "this is my personal preference towards character design and art, and is by no means the word of furry gospel on what is and isn't acceptable, nor is it me declaring you to be a horrible person if you don't share my opinion"

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