Pony Thought of the Day: More Thoughts on Toys

Still looking at my Lyra fig, and thinking about how little it looks like an actual Friendship Is Magic character from the front, it occurs to me: Are the characters even physically possible? I don’t mean as living things or anything like that; I mean as three-dimensional shapes. I’m not an artist, and I’m kind of awful at spatial reasoning, but it seems to me like the face-on views in the show are not compatible with the profile views–there’s no possible head shape for a toy that would accurately capture both angles.

0 thoughts on “Pony Thought of the Day: More Thoughts on Toys

  1. No. It's a great character design for a cartoon, but to make Ponies 3D means either acknowledging their unreality (The G-mod ponies sorta-kinda-sometimes fit in with TF2's cartoonish design.) or actively redesigning them to be plausibly realistic. So far, that's no-one's really done that. While the fan art has shown a plethora of different styles and redesigns, there's barely a drop of 3D modeling compared to the bucket of everything 2D. For a realistic-ish physical shape for Ponies, the problem is the face and head. The head needs to be smaller, (or the body bigger,) and that means changing the shape of the head. Changing the shape of the head leads to changing the shape of the face, and that means making their eyes way smaller. Basically, I've seldom seen fanart with realistically sized eyes, and that's the extent of my argument.

    The head-shape works in the cartoon because of the golden ratio. (No, seriously: http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m0j6us098w1r8y0avo1_1280.jpg or do a Google image search for 'Friendship is Magic Phi') There might be an argument that the character design doesn't use Phi enough to be realistic. (See: Giant cartoon eyes.) Buuut that picture's the only time I've seen Phi and FiM discussed together, so I don't have the data to start talking about that.

    P.S. Wings are made of more than seven gigantic feather-appendages.

  2. Well, like I said, I'm not too concerned about realism in terms of whether it looks like an actual horse's head. Ponies that looked like real animals would be creepy. (Have you seen those paintings of “real” Pokemon floating around the interwebs? *shudder*)

    I'm talking more in terms of whether it's actually possible to take 2D shapes of ponies from different angles, and construct a 3D shape that actually looks like that from those angles. I don't think it is, so any attempt to cast a show-accurate toy is kind of doomed. (Which doesn't justify the blatant recycling of 3.5 heads, but still.)

  3. As for the P.S.: Sure, birds' wings. But how do you know what pegasus wings are like? Have you seen a pegasus lately?

    It's like when the Lord of the Rings movies came out, and people were bitching that Gandalf falls faster than his sword and the Balrog. To which my response is that it's a WIZARD fighting a DEMON, they fall as fast as they damn well want to.

  4. Hah. I was just about to link to the pics from that EQD announcement.

    I hadn't seen the video before. It actually looks better, since the artificial lighting on the CG rendered Derpy gives an awkward fake-shadow on the snout. So I guess it's true what they say about CG versus miniatures in special effects…

  5. I just spent the past 2 days reading your entire archive after finding you on TARDIS Eruditorum. Very interesting project. I definitely have thoughts to share but posting on the archive of a blog is rarely productive. Just wanted to say hi and that I'm excited to see more!

  6. Horrifying, if true. But the source trail is kinda iffy; I've never heard of “Movie News Letters,” and why would they be the only ones with this info? I'm going to wait and see…

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