I don’t think “manga” had this kind of stigma back in my day *brandishes cane*! If it did, I didn’t notice it or I was too self-absorbed to care. But I think my teenage era was when manga was “teh sh!t” so everyone and their mom did it, most of them (including me), pretty badly. I can see why people grew adverse to the genre because its styles require a lot of precision (therefore a good foundation in anatomy and golden proportions) to actually pull it off properly and entirely, so amateurs will naturally only produce terrible examples of it. And being exposed to terrible examples of anything all the time is bound to leave a bad taste in your mouth. It was even worse because these terrible examples became popular and so the whole genre became too mainstream
for the hipsters and suddenly people started “growing out of it” to get into art schools haha… I honestly don’t blame the art schools for turning their heads from “manga,” because most of them were probably terrible examples thereof with 0 versatility or foundation in the rest of the portfolio.
But when “manga” is good, it’s SO AWESOME, which is a part of why I still draw the way I do. I think I picked a hard road, but I also relate to it the most so there wasn’t even a question of ditching the style. More than anything I would personally get enraged at such proposals in general because they were mostly for vapid reasons. But I know people who’ve switched out of it or redefined it completely with their own flavour because it just worked for them better, and that’s cool too!
I always derail into an essay when anyone asks about “manga” IT TOUCHES A NERVE, EVIDENTLY HAHA. So the other question about where I got advice and critique when I was just starting out? I didn’t LMAO. I didn’t seek them, nor did I feel the need to, which in hindsight was stubborn and cocky, but after you get past the beginner phase, you’re never going to feel 100% about your work ever again, so why not enjoy it hahaha!! Q_Q I had sense enough to improve on my own by just paying attention, but it might have gone faster if I let people help me, who knows! Sorry, this probably wasn’t very helpful but I hope it was at least entertaining to read.