7

In anime, strands of hair often disappear or stop short in front of the eyes. I've seen this often enough that maybe there's a reason or at least an origin of the pattern.

Why do the artists do this?

(Or do these anime characters actually have bangs?)

Kenshin's strands of hair disappear in front of his eyes

  • 4
    Since emotions are best expressed through the eyes, they are usually made visible even if the character has bangs or wear glasses. There are exceptions, when the character is meant to be mysterious, or to hide the character's emotion momentarily. The eyes are usually shown regardless to show the determination of the character. – nhahtdh Feb 22 '15 at 7:04
  • But why place those awkward hair strands there in the first place? – Praxeolitic Feb 22 '15 at 7:36
  • there are some anime where there are hair strands in front of eye but they are translucent(very lightly colored that eyes are visible)reason to do that are as nhahtdh said – mirroroftruth Feb 22 '15 at 7:43
  • @Praxeolitic: It's part of the character design. You can't just remove them, but they can be drawn partially or colored lightly in order to show the eyes. – nhahtdh Feb 22 '15 at 7:44
  • 2
    Parting the hair around the eyes would give you the Rukia hairstyle. – Catija Feb 22 '15 at 8:52
5

Since emotions are best expressed through the eyes, they are usually made visible even if the character has bangs or wear glasses. There are exceptions, when the author wants to give the character a mysterious aura, or to hide the character's emotion momentarily. However, the eyes are usually shown regardless when it is necessary to clearly portray the determination of the character.

Being able to see the eyes of a character is important - but why put the hair there in the first place? This is to distinguish characters from each other. Disallowing hair in front of the face limits the amount of hairstyles that can be used. Also, the characters generally face the camera, meaning that they need to be distinguishable from the front too.

enter image description here

Generally, if the hair isn't completely obstructing the eye or eyebrows, it would be fine to leave out the detail on the eye, but it's become the norm in anime so animators probably don't think twice about doing it. It also saves having to worry about the eye looking odd when partially hidden.

In a forum post here, one user suggests an alternative way of drawing such cases, in which the hair gradually becomes translucent as it nears the eyes, so the characters expressions can be seen more naturally.

enter image description here

  1. No Transparency
  2. Transparency
  3. Gradual Translucency
  • 1
    Nice find on that forum. Well, t looks even the artists are ambivalent about this point and that's as much of an answer as there can be. – Praxeolitic May 30 '15 at 7:24
  • 2
    This isn't even limited to hair, but anything that obstructs a character's eyes and face. Here's an example with staircase railing from Yasashii Sekai No Tsukurikata: imgur.com/44lWvj4 – Mark H May 31 '15 at 7:32
  • Good point @MarkH I've seen it in situations like that too. – Toshinou Kyouko May 31 '15 at 7:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.