Why do artists draw “unrealistic” body types and “ignore” minorities?

Do contemporary artists draw unrealistic or non-average looking persons? Yes. Has any artistic style or period ever drawn something that looked realistic AND average? I doubt it.

For the purposes of this blog post, “artists” means those that paint, draw, and design characters for popular media. Movies, comic book, video games, or even some ads are what interest me. Therefore, fictional people, not real models. Think Lara Croft, not Angelina Jolie.

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