I wonder what's the name of the style of drawing of the pictures shown below.
I know it's some kind of digital painting, but if I want to draw characters like this with a pencil, can I find references using the keyword 'cartoon', or 'realistic'?

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Artwork appears to be by Ross Tran


Each artist is going to develop their own style. So, those images are examples of Ross Tran-style digital figure illustrations, notable for their vivid palettes and fantasy and sci-fi themes.

In general, you're not necessarily going to be able classify every type of figure or portrait drawing into a "style" that is anything beyond the "semi-realistic" term that you found, or perhaps "slightly stylized". And unfortunately, neither of those terms hold much value. For instance, semi-realistic is a term coined by artists that simply means "I'm not trying for realism", which describes a great majority of art. It's sort of akin to referring to the Romanticism, Abstract, Pop art and all these other eras combined as the Semi-realism periods.

As it seems you're trying to analyze how to convert these images from digital to traditional media, it may help you to think of them in gray scale. Or, if you have access to digital tools or a black and white printer, to actually convert them to gray scale. That way you'll be looking at the stroke for their values and not getting confused by their "hues". Ross Tran's vibrant hues may remind you of cartoons, but I believe you'll think differently once you see the images in black-and-white.

Another point to make is that knowing the name of the style, in this case, doesn't really help in learning to draw it. What's going to help is finding examples of what you'd like to draw, and drawing them. And also just drawing everything else. While I can't speak to this artist's journey, many start by learning how to draw as realistically as possible, practicing and studying artistic anatomy and live models. As their expertise grows, they're able to bend the "rules" of anatomy and develop their own style.

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Manga is the term I would use.

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    Can you add some details about manga characteristics that you identified in this artwork? It's great to know what it is, but more educational if you explain why it's that. – Erica Feb 18 '17 at 13:16
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    Manga is a format, not an art style. There are dozens of different art styles used in manga. – Catija Feb 18 '17 at 14:35
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    Just because an artist gives something a generic term to describe what it is doesn't mean that it's "correct". This is the absolute most generic, answer you could possibly give. You may be "technically" correct in some sense of the word but, based on the question, the person asking is clearly looking for something more exact. Very little manga is colored with this degree of realism, heck, most of it isn't even colored at all. Regardless of whether the base character style is a "manga" style, the coloring clearly is not. – Catija Feb 18 '17 at 17:54
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    Also, the fact that the only way you describe "manga" as "over-sexualizing of female subjects" shows that you don't know what manga style is. This is not inherent to the manga style at all, it's a common theme but is not a definitive style nearly as much as something like oversized eyes, elongated forms, elaborate costume and hair design... these are what define most manga forms but I still argue that manga is largely a format, not a style, as many manga do not follow these guidelines. – Catija Feb 18 '17 at 17:55
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    Many art forms "over-sexualize female subjects" It's common in most comic book styles and in many other forms. If that's your only reasoning for why this is "manga", then you haven't sufficiently explained why it's not those other forms. A single sentence is almost never a sufficient answer. – Catija Feb 18 '17 at 17:58

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