Before I start, don't worry, I'm not being harassed and bullied relentlessly for my new Spike fanart, the title is just a bit clickbaity because you know me, but it has created a bit of a conversation I'd like to add to as well as address something else I've wanted to talk about for a while.
All of you must be aware as well as the newer viewers since these were my most recent pics, I've been drawing some fanart of certain characters from My Little Pony Friendship is Magic in their more aged up versions in a sort of sequel show to "G4" that I have envisioned. In the same way I've created my own prequel fanfic (which sadly has been ruined thanks to recent events but that's another topic
), I have taken it upon myself to draw a few little cute pics of these characters if they were older. The 2 I've done so far are Flurry Heart and Spike.
These are easy to make since they are derived from vector puppets/rigs so unless the pose is dramatically different and hasn't been made yet, I usually just have to cut and paste a bunch of parts and then change them up whilst making new ones for facial expressions, hand gestures, etc. That's why I've made quite a few lately and it's helped me greatly in being able to produce art a lot faster now that I am using Adobe Illustrator instead of MS Paint. Now I've drawn quite a lot of Spike as you can see cuz people seem to really like his design and I myself love it too but it has created some questionable reactions from some people.
As you can see, one very prominent thing about Spike is that he's rather plump, especially in the belly. I've seen some people point out how the current canon Spike is a bit chubby and since I like to make some things look a bit chubby, I decided to make him like that. Me and other commenters have come to the conclusion that perhaps he's just eaten quite a lot of gems over time and it made him bigger but with his current proportions in the show, I think it still translates well into a hypothetical older Spike. Maybe in a way, Spike's more humble surroundings as opposed to the rough-and-tumble way of the other dragons made him like this but not in a 'man-baby' fashion, but rather a big, sweet, cuddly, loveable, oaf. Spike's already like that in the show for the most part so it's not too much of a stretch. Let's be real, he's not going to look like how he does in his little fantasy of him saving Rarity in "A Dog and Pony Show". XD
Now I'm not going to name names and thankfully you won't find any really whiny rants in the comments of these pics so please don't go searching for them, but some people just really had a problem with Spike being fat. Personal preferences aside, what gets me more is when people make certain judgements about me after seeing this art. I've already seen one person claim that this is fetish art. Yup.
I don't even think I need to tell people that this was not
meant to be fetish art, you guys are smart enough to know that. Fetish art is where people make it sexual or borderline sexual and it usually delves into rather gross territory like people having a like for farts or vore (characters eating another character and getting fat as a result). These pics of Spike are just random silly poses of him to show his expressiveness and perhaps inspire other people to draw Spike in this form (which I'm totally fine if people want to do that, in fact I'd love to see it from some people!). And to be honest, I really cannot see myself making anything fetishy of this Spike, that's just beyond me. Hell, I don't like fetish art in general. Things like vore and farts disgust me to no end but I'm even urked by the more innocent stuff like characters growing in size or feet being really close to the viewer. I haven't drawn any stuff like this and don't plan on doing it. Now there is a fetish for fatness it seems, and I am of course no stranger to making rather plump characters or making those chibis which are quite plump. My OC is very big and round and I've drawn human Pinkie Pie being a chubby girl and then I have my own human OC named Emi who is the same.
The best defense I can give for all of this is that it's simply my taste in style. What can I say? I like plump things. I've already said how I don't like fetish art and even if I have done some sexy stuff like my humanized pinups, I still prefer to keep them tasteful and that's as far as it can go.
That being said, this does bring me to another topic I've wanted to discuss for a while but just haven't figured out how till now. I'm sure a lot of you have heard of the "fat pride" movement, and if you haven't, well be prepared for some cringe:
The fat pride movement is people taking the concept of being overweight and treating it like it's a minority comparable to being black, Jewish, or gay. You might think that this sounds ok cuz it's like an anti-bullying campaign, well not quite. It's gotten so militant and out-of-touch with reality, they are starting to claim that health is a "social construct" and that it's still ok to be extremely obese and that if you try to tell people that they are basically killing themselves from severe weight gain and all the health concerns that come with it (which is very factual), you're "fat-shaming" or you're a "fatphobe". Some people have even went as far as to suggest that we should have laws against mocking fat people. This movement has infused itself with things like radical feminism, the anti-Trump movement, Antifa, and all the other cringiest groups you can possibly think of in the modern world. It's a shit-show to say the least.
Let me say first and foremost, I do not promote bullying of any kind. I was told as a kid that it is not ok to make fun of people for being fat and I never grew accustomed to that considering I got pretty chubby when I reached my preteen phase and do still have a bit of weight I could stand to lose in my stomach. I would not bully someone who is fat and I am perfectly aware that some if not most fat people can still be genuine individuals, I do, however, find it utterly disgraceful that we've reached a point in humanity where people are defending fatness and overeating even though it's very dangerous to the human body. And I'm not talking about people who are just a little plump, I'm talking about people who are obese and are clearly setting themselves up for health problems and an earlier-than-expected death. Health is important and trying to promote the whole "health at all sizes" concept is dangerous and will only encourage people to live very unclean lifestyles. In my honest opinion, I don't think fatness is something you should be prideful for just like I don't think that your skin color or sexuality is something to be proud of. Those things are not accomplishments. Being any of these things cannot make a positive influence on the world, only you can do that if you actually go out and work hard to be a blessing to others. The fat pride movement has done the opposite of that and has not only made some people ugly, but has turned the into very hateful individuals just like any social-justice cause has recently.
But here's the thing: I don't see the issue with having plump cartoon characters like the ones I've drawn. Spike is a fantasy creature, not a human and he eats gems so that can't really be used as propaganda for the fat pride movement if you think about it. As for human characters who are fat, I think it can still work as long as it's not a blatant PC message to shove in people's faces and try to "own the cons" or "resist Trump" or some other bullshit. More often than not, it's merely an art style. If it's non-human characters or an animal that would normally be fat, it's perfectly fine. This is just wishful thinking on my part but if I were to ever be fortunate enough to actually make a G4 sequel show and I put my version of Spike in it, I would have no problem reminding people that I did not make Spike chubby to support the fat pride movement, I just did it because I thought it looked cute. That's just my personal opinion, and even if I agree with people on the right with some things, I get tired of hearing them drone on about fatness and act like it's the worst thing ever. The part with the obesity and unhealthiness I get but with some people it's gotten to a point where they've gone after people who are just a little plump and probably still in decent health. All in all, it's what's on the inside that counts. Some fat people can be nice and some thin people can be total dicks and vice versa.
Simply put, I like my chubby grownup version of Spike and I don't plan on changing it. He's a big, huggable softy and my best supporters seem to love his design and that's all that matters to me. I've even thought of making some future versions of the Mane Six and might give Pinkie a chubby look but all the same things I just said apply to her and you can't stop me.TL;DR: I like drawing my grownup Spike and even though some people are giving me crap for making him plump, I'm not part of the fat-pride movement, it's just my style.