I’ve learned two things in my time on this earth. The first is that nothing tastes as good as food eaten after 2 a.m. The second is that everyone has a different definition for what is beautiful to them. And I don’t mean what turns you on or what’s sexy to you. I’m talking about what you look at and think, “Oh, wow. She’s flawless.”
My favorite concept of true beauty comes from the Japanese tradition of Kintsugi. It is the concept of taking broken pottery and repairing it with liquid gold. It’s about taking something that was once beautiful and acknowledging that it will never hold that beauty again but will instead be something new and even better.
But the beauty within 3DX is its own interesting creature. The amount of time spent to make an image is the same as an artist that makes a vase or sculpture. But their end product is something completely digital and unbreakable. And like the art that has come before it, it both follows the beauty standards of the time and reinforces them.
The Solid Gold Standard
3DX is art. There’s no question about that. It’s a labor-intensive work of true love, which we use to convey emotions and expressions of all types. But what separates 3DX from other forms of art is that while most art draws from life, 3DX models are created. Though some are completely original, many morphed together from online parts purchased from a store. For many, it comes far too close to the conceptions sci-fi placed in our minds about building the perfect woman.
Currently, for America and the Western world, the traditional standard for beauty is a Eurasian woman with blonde hair and light-colored eyes. She has B-C cup breasts and is around 5’10. Sounds familiar? You could say that’s the description for half the women available to purchase as models from the DAZ3D Store. When using the DAZ3D Studio program, you can buy models to morph and change into the characters you want to see. But they can only be so varied when your basis all resemble this stereotypical woman.
But that’s what most people in 3DX find attractive, so that’s what they make. It presents an interesting circle, doesn’t it? We find the things most presented to us attractive, so we make more of it. 3DX lends this ability to create a fantasy where not only is the scenario fictional, but the beauty standards are as well. No one can have a six pack, size D breasts, and a dick the size of her entire torso. And considering the suspension of disbelief, I don’t expect to. However, it’s the fact that every woman has that same curved waist, thigh gap, red lips. Is it possible that we could we lose sight of what women look like and deserve to be depicted as in the future?
Shattering the Stereotype Ceiling
It’s important to find a balance in both creation and practice. Diversity is important as well as trying to create based on real models. If we don’t, these women may become too uncanny and perfect for us to truly enjoy. The imperfections, the gold poured into our cracks, make men and women beautiful in a way that art can imitate in the best ways. If we’re too heavy on the photo-shopped, modeled perfection, then the characters can loose the basis of human attraction. If they are too real, we lose the fantasy element that draws people to 3DX in the first place. Right now, we need more original characters with unique attributes that may not fit traditional or stereotyped beauty convictions. But most of all, we can’t lose sight of the fact that it is not the girls or artwork that draw us to 3DX; it’s the endless possibilities.
Side Image: “Young Dragon” by supermarioART
Main Image: “Rebecca Golden Autumn 4: by BestmanPi
Cover Image: “Sexy Egi” by Balassa