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Deformed (デフォルメ) is the change of something or something out of shape. This article and tag is about an art style of caricatures from the french word déformé.


Deformed (デフォルメ, deforume), the Japanese art term, originally meaning simply "to change form", it has come to be used in the field of art to refer to expressing an object by intentionally transforming it. This applies to any kind of exaggeration, and the direction of the exaggerated look is not limited.
Note that in the U.S. and elsewhere, the term is also commonly used in a completely different sense in places unrelated to art or expression.

The term comes from french word déformé, meaning distorted or in an unusual physical state.
Incidentally, when the word defo (デフォ, defo) is used, it is thought to be an abbreviation of default (デフォルト, deforuto), not the art term. Default refers to the normal state of affairs.

Deform in Japan

As stated the Japanese perception of deformed often goes by the meaning of "exaggerating the characteristics of an object" = emphasis or simplification.
In other words, it is a method of depicting a character by incorporating a large portion of the character's personality in the illustration stage, and then removing the rest of the character's personality. The aim is to narrow down the information to be conveyed to the viewer and make it easier to grasp the charm and characteristics of the character.

For example, in terms of external characteristics, people who are taller than their surroundings should be made as large as giants, while people who are short should be made as small as dwarfs. Another example, a person with large eyes may have eyes so large that they protrude from the contour line, while a person with small eyes may have only a single dot.
For a last example, a person who is crying a lot in grief may be made to shed an unbelievably large amount of tears, or a person who is yelling with a big mouth may be drawn with a large mouth, ignoring their usual frame of reference.

The term super deformed (SD) was also coined to describe the extreme reduction of a character's head height to give the impression of being small and cute.

On pixiv

There are a significant number of illustrations that have been deformed by shaky notation.



Many of them have the character's head lowered, as shown above.

Re-Deformation of Deformed Characters


The left picture is an illustration of a character from Lucky Star and other works that were originally deformed with a low head height (this picture on the left is faithful to the original style). There are also many illustrations (right) in which characters from works are further deformed and made into a chibi character. However, in some cases, there is only a chibi character tag and no deformation tag for this type of illustration.


There seem to be many deformed pictures of robots with SD tags.
In addition to robots, there are also deformed pictures of cars and tanks.


Both of these images are deformed art. Note that the exaggeration is limited.

Deformation in English

In English-speaking countries, the word deformed is sometimes used with the bad connotation of "changed from its original form" or "disfigured".
For example, "deformed fighter" means a "derelict soldier" (a soldier who is disabled and unable to fight due to battle wounds).

For more details about the real life happenings of it refer to the article deformation.

Related Illustrations

ソニック デフォルメ②


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