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Poster Gal also known as Y2K Chibi is an aesthetic that was prevalent from roughly 2002 to 2013. It is often described as a more feminine and nerdier version of Olderbrothercore. Its main motifs are anime-inspired art styles and pop culture from that time period. The aesthetic gets its name from an observation made by NekoRikiRawrr, who coined the aesthetic name based on the large Lord of the Rings poster she had observed in a few of the aesthetic’s pioneers’ bedroom photos.

Visuals[]

Art style[]

The Poster Gal art style can best be described as a heavily stylized and exaggerated Chibi art style with western animation influence. The art style usually with features that show the art’s age and are more difficult to replicate perfectly these days, such as low quality airbrush shading or visible pixels

  • Stylized animesque art style
  • Large feet
  • Connected, often simplified fingers
  • Exaggerated expressions
  • Scanned paper (if traditional)
  • Fangs (even for characters that do not have them)
  • Airbrushed/Smudge shading (if digital)
  • Occasionally slightly pixelated (if digital)

History[]

Origin (1997-2002)[]

The Poster Gal aesthetic has been around since before the age of deviantART, however really began taking off once the 2000s rolled around. With the advent of the site deviantART in August 2000, posting art on the web was now far easier, so as artistic teenagers with internet access do, they flocked to the website in droves and began to post images. Most were geeks and otaku, drawing in a modified anime art style described best as “What if Tiny Toon Adventures was an anime?”

Rising Popularity and Peak (2002-2013)[]

2002 and 2003 were the years that many artists now associated with Poster Gal joined deviantART, with Brianna Garcia, whom is the most notable Poster Gal artist joining in 2003 and instantly gaining traction.

Due to the success of Brianna Garcia’s works, many copycats soon followed, evolving the Poster Gal art style. “Bri-Chan was the new thing, everyone was hopping in to also make it big like she did.” NekoRikiRawrr says. Bri-Chan’s success is a contributing factor as to why much media associated with Poster Gal is even associated with it at all, along with the general interests of these geeky teenage girls.

This is not to say Poster Gal was entirely based on Bri-Chan’s works, as it existed before she did, and some Poster Gal artists did not seem to have any influence from Bri-Chan’s work

As the year 2006 hit, Bri-Chan began to drift away from Poster Gal art (although she had been drifting from it since 2004) but some of the artists that were still around from Bri-Chan’s popularity boom continued to use a Poster Gal art style if their art had not already evolved past her style.

An offshoot of Poster Gal known as Kawaii Warrior started to appear in 2009, and it attempted to keep the legacy of the aesthetic strong, combining a less refined Poster Gal art style with bright, colorful characters often described as “Sparkle-dogs”, even outlasting the Poster Gal aesthetic itself

Decline (2013-present)[]

By the mid-2010s the anime craze of deviantART had begun to recede and most of the artists associated with the aesthetic had left the website or had a more evolved art style. Kawaii Warrior was still going strong, but was more prominent on websites such as YouTube, in which animation memes as we know them were arguably born.

In mid 2024, Brianna Garcia deleted her deviantART account, although she had been taking down photos en masse for long before that, many of these photos being her Poster Gal works

Music[]

Poster Gal music is mostly just what was popular around the era in the alternative and rock scenes, along with music many deviantART users of the period listed in the 'Favorite Musician' tab of their profile. Genres commonly associated with it include:

  • Pop punk
  • Post-Hardcore “emo”
  • Nu-Metal
  • Alternative Metal
  • Pop Rock

Bands known for their association with this aesthetic include:

  • Linkin Park
  • Evanescence
  • AFI
  • Finch
  • The Ataris
  • Blink-182
  • Buller For My Valentine
  • Garbage
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • Malice Mizer
  • Everclear
  • Taking Back Sunday
  • Senses Fail
  • Thursday
  • Thirty Seconds To Mars
  • Limp Bizkit
  • Breaking Benjamin
  • Flyleaf
  • Papa Roach
  • Three Days Grace
  • Fleshwater, a more modern band associated with Poster Gal

Later on, Poster Gal music also began to encompass bands such as

  • My Chemical Romance
  • Panic!At the Disco
  • Rammstein

Media[]

Poster Gal, as an aesthetic, is highly inspired by other media, with most of the art related to this aesthetic being fan art for other pieces of media.

Film[]

  • The Lord of the Rings trilogy
  • The Matrix trilogy
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Harry Potter
  • Most Kevin Smith movies
  • Tim Burton movies

Video Games[]

  • Final Fantasy series
  • Grand Theft Auto
  • Neopets
  • The Matrix Online (2005-2009)
  • Resident Evil
  • World of Warcraft

Literature[]

  • Tolkien's Legendarium
  • Jhonen Vasquez's comics
  • Animorphs
  • Stephen King novels
  • Harry Potter

Television[]

  • Many 80s-90s cartoons
  • Invader Zim
  • Various anime
  • Clerks: The Animated Series

Artists[]

Gallery[]

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