Single Status Update
So I took the dive at @Kiah's advice and attempted to sum up the rationale behind my Rosy redesign as concisely and as briefly as I could. It's still over a thousand words long though so sorry for the length in advance.
A question I frequently get involving my Rosy redesign is why I opted for a leotard with the most common criticism being that it makes her look incomplete without shorts or a skirt. It’s kind of a long story in its entirety as to why and ties into the entire redesign on a whole but for the sake of brevity I’ll try to break it down by point by point.
Insight into a Redesign
Part 1: The Inspiration to Redesign
So first and foremost let me address the history points that made me want to try redesigning Amy.
· I’ve always preferred Amy’s classic design and wanted to see it brought back.
· While on a forum I saw a frequent complaint against Amy’s design was panty shots and a desire to have her redesigned to avoid them.
· On the same forum I had frequent arguments about rolling gameplay versus hammer gameplay with a common excuse for Amy not to roll being that she wore a dress.
· I was growing tired of the insistence that a hedgehog in the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise should not be able to curl into a ball and roll, no less that a hedgehog should be deprived of their natural ability to curl into a ball to defend themselves.
The above points were the primary things that led to me wanting to redesign Amy to address my concerns as well as the concerns of others.
Part 2: Why a Leotard
Motivated to actually redesign her I needed something that would tie all of my thoughts on the matter together and also feel in character enough to be believable. A leotard proved the ideal starting place to me for the following reasons.
· The choice for a leotard had actually started long before any of the arguments that got me started as there had been a pic on DeviantArt with Amy in a white leotard that struck me in just the right way and stuck with me for a long time.
· As rolling was a major component of most of my arguments I found a leotard was an immediate visual cue that implied tumbling and acrobatics to which rolling and curling into a ball is a natural part of.
· As athletic wear a leotard is meant to be seen and to show off the figure in motion meaning that there would be no modesty problems like with a skirt.
· I found that a leotard simplified Amy’s design and silhouette and allowed her to better blend in with Sonic and Tails without being too busy. Or breaking SEGA’s need to have female characters dressed.
· Another benefit to the leotard design was the similarity to one-piece swimsuits which can be worn as a triathlon suit which fit for Amy being an adventurer going through numerous environments of which swimming was a part as well as running.
· Character-wise, Amy is supposedly a tomboy so a leotard would be slightly questionable on its own but I found her love of retro tidbits such as old cars and her go-go boots made 80’s leotard fashions something she would buy into.
· Originally introduced as an 8yo Amy is typically a little girl who is as a girly as she is tomboyish and I’ve seen many a little girl proudly run around in public after dance class in nothing more than a leotard so I found that to be something that a small girl like Amy would do as well.
· As a Phantasy Star fan back in the day I was aware that after the original all of the main heroines (Nei, Mieu, and Rika)
(Sorry for the tiny pic)
wore leotards while adventuring and thought since Amy is supposed to be the main heroine of the Sonic franchise that it’d be a nice tribute to Phantasy Star.
So for the most part those are the primary reasons as to why I settled on a leotard and did not add shorts or a skirt to my redesign. The imagery of a leotard and everything it represents would be lost if I added garments that obscured it thus defeating the point of using one in the first place.
Part 3: Other Design Decisions
Obviously there was more to my redesign than just putting Amy in a leotard and all of those reasons tie back to making her look like rolling should never be a problem for her as well as making her fit aesthetically more with Sonic and Tails.
· For my redesign I brought back Amy’s original quills both because I prefer it and because it makes her look like a Sonic franchise hedgehog which makes it easier to believe that she can curl into a ball and roll.
· I changed Amy’s original back quill to a pair to match the other hedgehogs and also because I find the symmetry more aesthetically pleasing.
· With Amy’s eyes I opted to use her original shape as it felt softer and less aggressive which I felt better fit with her being cheerful and energetic.
· I changed Amy’s eyelashes from long and slender to a more bubbly, chubby, and blocky design inspired by the character Narugino Mikatan
from the anime Punchline (please don’t judge me, it’s a really good story) as I felt the effect was more childish and bubbly which better fit Amy’s personality and age.
· Another thing I brought back for my redesign was Amy’s original nose both for species consistency and also as I feel it balances out the weight of the head in the front with the quills in the back.
· Sticking with Amy’s modern hairband was to keep her design sleeker and less cluttered which was also the thought process for using her original bangle-less gloves.
· The white color of the leotard was inspired by the same picture that had put the idea of a leotard in my head in the first as the color contrast between the pink and white I found striking, but also to imply a certain degree of purity to Amy’s character as an optimistic Genki Girl.
· The puffy sleeves and collar of her leotard were taken directly from her classic design as again it was my preferred design but also to add some character to the design while making it easier to tell that she was wearing something. Additionally, the puffy sleeves tied into Amy’s girliness and brought that element back to her design.
· For my redesign I’ve taken to having her tail wagging to add a constant visible element emphasizing her energy and good cheer.
· Her shoes were inspired by her Olympic Game slippers for her gymnastic and swimwear as I both fell in love with the design and also because it tied back into the tumbling mentality of putting he in a leotard. The socks were added primarily to make her match Sonic and Tails and their aesthetic.
· Lastly, I chose to use her Rosy the Rascal name as I felt it better fit her playful and tomboyish nature as well as being a name that better implied that she would have no problems tumbling and rolling about as well as describing her constant disposition. Changing to using her Rosy name was also a way to differentiate my redesign from the Amy Rose that everyone normally thinks of.
And that on a whole is the basic rundown behind the thought process that gave birth to my redesign of Amy into my version of Rosy. I hope this as brief as I could manage list of points helps answer any and all questions about my design process and why I actively choose to leave her “incomplete” by not adding a skirt or shorts.
I do like how you detailed your reasoning for a design! It's clear you put a lot of thought into it, and how you stand your ground in regards to why you stuck with this idea even when other ideas are proposed that stray from your ideals.
It's kinda similar to how I design my Sonics, and how the simplistic round designs have a purpose in plot so it's why I stick to my childhood concepts.
I did word that a little over dramatically admittedly, but the point is still valid. A leotard conjures up certain imagery to me and if I were to slap on a skirt or pair of shorts you would end up with little more than what appears to be a tucked in shirt. At that point my entire design decision is invalidated.
@Failinhearts I honestly probably put too much thought into any design I do, but I still feel regardless that a design without reasoning behind it is too superficial. Even a design as simple as jeans and a tee-shirt should tie into the character at hand. It doesn't necessarily have to speak about the character like I aimed for with my Rosy design, but it should be something you can believe the character would wear based on what you the audience know about the character. As a result, even if I come up with a design before a character I will spend massive amounts of time thinking about what type of character would wear that design or what type of circumstances would result in the wearing it. Character design is astoundingly in depth and a lot more work than I think most people give it credit for, but taking the time to do it right definitely pays off in my opinion.
Also before I forget, I went and updated the post a little bit as I forgot to include in the Other Design Decisions part why I made the changes to her eyes, eyelashes, and nose.