feature requests

Batgirl Artist Babs Tarr Accused of Racism and Blackface for Drawing Self Portrait With Tan Skin (Comic Book Forums)

  • Batgirl Artist Babs Tarr Accused of Racism and Blackface for Drawing Self-Portrait With Tan Skin

Author Discussion
  • Posted: June 7, 2020 2:18:45 pm
  • I don't think it's ludicrous. Her choice was definitely odd - if I was going to draw a self portrait, as a white male, I don't think I would choose a deep tan color, even if the portrait wasn't intended to be photo-realistic. What is the artist's point in doing so, considering there's no context for that choice? It's not like she's resting on the beach somewhere, it's just a plain white background. It's especially in poor taste considering what's going on in the world right now. It's not like she chose blue, or red or some other obviously inaccurate skin color.

    Who know why she chose to do so, perhaps it was just a simple mistake made on a subconscious level and there was no intent. But as an artist circulating your work online for millions of people to see, it becomes your responsibility to consider these things beforehand. It's even more mind-boggling considering this is her career.

    Of course 100% of lives matter, but the whole point of this movement is that the black community has been brutally discriminated against for centuries, and that their lives matter just as much as everyone else. So every time a person responds to this statement with a comment like "ALL lives matter", it just diminishes the whole point behind their movement. They are not saying that their lives are the only ones that matter.

    It's sad to me that this needs to be explained and re-emphasized over and over and I'm a little disturbed that I have to respond to these comments and that no one else has responded similarly. I hope that people of color who use this site know that not everyone on this site shares the opinions above. It's very clear that the black community (and other minorities who have been discriminated against) are rallying to be treated with the same respect as others who do not face discrimination to the same extent, and that is the point of this phrase and why they chose it as their rallying cry.

    Yes, there is a lot of sensitivity at this time, but is it so much to ask that we reevaluate and monitor how we express ourselves, if it occurs at the expense of others? Is this request for equal respect taking something away from anyone?
  • Posted: June 7, 2020 2:52:28 pm
  • This had nothing to do with the 'movement', nor did any of the comments made as far as i can read. simple fact of the matter is...is that it shouldnt be any kind of issue to draw yourself tan. Period. There was not even a small inkling of racist undertones in that art piece. This movement has for the 100th time brought discrimination back into the limelight. For good reason yet again from idiot police officers with egos acting like morons. This movement if very much Black Lives Matter, in all sense of the word, and i fully support it. At the same time you do not see other races doing this and i would argue that most are treated the same or worse.

    Is that okay...of course not. But acting like drawing a tan character is racism is losing site of everything going on. Throwing a microscope on artists art (not the worlds art, their art) is rediculous, especially becuase of the time we are in. "The Movement' is using the means of gathers to express themselves freely, yet we try to scuff and complain about a drawing in which they are...yes...expressing freely a drawing...A DRAWING....no verbiage, no previous racial comments from the artist, no damning, making fun of, discriminating against, nothing...So i Very much disagree with you marble...not that i dont like you, i just disagree that it should be a huge issue.

    Again it just became summertime...drawing a pic with a tan is not a big deal...its not even a big enough deal that it shouldve brought any kind of response. Unless looked at from a very racist point of view. And with people being hypersensitive about essentially everything nowadays...when is an okay time to draw said picture...? Never Marble? It shouldnt matter...it doesnt matter... Maybe we should all pick apart TV actors and actresses that have a tan...

    Drawing a Tan character has NOTHING to do with a movement against police brutality.

    Set. Match.

    P.S. Do we go after people for throwing naked statues up...is that discriminating against people who wear clothes or promoting for p o r n companies?

    And in response to your final thought there...is drawing someone with a tan doing any of those things you listed? No.

    Those of you that think getting a tan = Racist...i feel sorry for you as your world is an aweful place. Mine doesnt work that way.

    BTW Marble, if she chose red...then someone with 1% American Indian blood wouldve started this whole thing...Blue then a mythical mermaid from Atlantis wouldve.

    Last edited June 7, 2020 3:21:41 pm
    "How to destroy a man... Grant him his heart's desire." --Victor Von Doom
    - - - - - - - - - -
    Latest Additions
    NYX #3 - 1st X-23
    Amazing Spider Man #78 - 1st Prowler
    Avengers #55 - 1st Ultron
    Amazing Spider Man #134 - 1st Tarantula, 2nd Punisher
    Avengers #196 - 1st full Taskmaster
  • Posted: June 7, 2020 4:18:09 pm
  • There are two issues being discussed here:

    1) is it socially acceptable for artists to draw themselves as tan if they are white?
    2) is it socially acceptable to state "all lives matter" in response to people stating "black lives matter"?

    You brought up issue 2 in your initial response to the article about this artist's depiction of herself as tan, and I responded to it. So that is my response to your first sentence.

    As to issue 1, yes I think artists should be free to draw themselves as tan. But again, is it obvious to a reasonable person seeing this image (not knowing the artist is white), that this is a self-portrait of that artist as tan? No. So, this begs the question, what was the purpose of her coloring her skin that way, with no other context? At minimum, it was not very thoughtful, in light of the current "movement", as you call it. She doesn't need to have her career destroyed, she shouldn't be sent to jail, but I think it deserves some explanation.

    Should this be a huge issue? Perhaps, if it continues to be done by this or other artists, I would definitely call it an issue to be addressed if it starts affecting the way that people of color view white people as appropriating their identity. And white people should be concerned about doing this, because it is a tactic historically used to take advantage of minority cultures. To dismiss it as not odd, is itself, odd, because it is unusual to draw yourself that way without any context. People that have tans are not representing themselves as anyone else but themselves, and a naked statute is not a real person (and the naked person industry is not a discriminated industry). These analogies are not useful to our discussion.

    As to item 2 - just because other races are not protesting on behalf of their races doesn't take anything away from the meaning behind these protests. The black community is protesting because black people were recently murdered and the world bore witness. Not taking away from other racial injustices, but these incidents were the straw(s) that recently broke the camel's back. Even if another race has been treated worse (and I'm not sure which race you're referring to), does that mean they don't have the right to protest? Not sure the point being made here.

    There is no set match here, there is no winning or losing. There are just actions and consequences, and learning to better ourselves in the process. We can have different opinions about these issues at the outset, I just hope that we can eventually all come together (this website community, artist community, collecting community, world community) with the same mission of empathizing with each other, instead of getting frustrated at the anger being expressed by those who have been discriminated against. They have been through enough - can't we lend them a hand, instead of dismissing their anger and frustration as hypersensitivity?
  • Posted: June 7, 2020 4:25:33 pm
  • ok im done talking about this rediculous claim...ALL ARTISTS SHOULD ONLY USE GREEN OR PURPLE FOR EVERYTHING THEY DO, ANYTHING ELSE IS INSENSITIVE AND COULD LAND YOU IN HOT WATER WITH PEOPLE FOR NO REASON AT ALL...Sorry Everyone.

    Unless insect people are found, then only use purple.

    FYI Talk is cheap...actions matter. What have you done lately? (speaking to everyone as a whole)

    Just wanted to point out that a girl with no history of racism at all drawing a picture now is lumped in with racists, and against a movement of police brutality on black people...seems fair .

    Last edited June 7, 2020 4:29:07 pm
    "How to destroy a man... Grant him his heart's desire." --Victor Von Doom
    - - - - - - - - - -
    Latest Additions
    NYX #3 - 1st X-23
    Amazing Spider Man #78 - 1st Prowler
    Avengers #55 - 1st Ultron
    Amazing Spider Man #134 - 1st Tarantula, 2nd Punisher
    Avengers #196 - 1st full Taskmaster
  • Posted: June 7, 2020 5:09:22 pm
  • Like I said in my initial post it doesn't matter what you say or do you will end up offending someone.





    Last edited June 7, 2020 5:11:37 pm
    "Disliking everything is not the same thing as having an opinion"

  • Posted: June 7, 2020 7:33:19 pm
  • Canuck said:
    Like I said in my initial post it doesn't matter what you say or do you will end up offending someone.





    Looks like I opened a proverbial can of worms. Eh, I don’t mind opinions that differ from my own. I just thought people losing their cool over Tarr’s drawing is silly.

    Imagine living in North Korea and you are a free market capitalist. Imagine living in Iran as a Christian where building a church isn’t allowed by law. People like that are truly oppressed and endure institutional bigotry.

    Black Americans have been given special scholarships just for them, government aid, affirmative action hiring, etc. Do some police target them unfairly? I’d say yes. Do blacks commit more violent crime in the US despite being only 13 percent of the population? Also, yes. I believe it’s cultural. Violent rap culture belittling women, glorifying criminal lifestyles, and calling each other the n-word is not productive. Sadly that creates a negative perception of black people.

    But here’s the truth. Each person should be treated as individuals based on each individual’s actions, not what body the person’s soul is born into. None of us got to pick our bodies or decide our ethnicity, and we are all flawed people.

    I am a Christian, and I’m taught to not only love my friends and family—-that is easy. I’m taught to love my enemies as well. So everyone who reads this post, I’m sending love your way.
  • Posted: June 8, 2020 1:54:50 pm
  • That is so ridiculous. I have met her at conventions and she greets all her fans, regardless of race, color, or gender, and she has a bubbly personality. Really sweet girl. The people who point out skin color and see that first are usually the ones that have a race problem.
    We strike hard and fade away into the night
  • Posted: June 17, 2020 2:01:30 pm
  • Head back to the original story and scroll down. She apologized. She owned that she made a mistake, and she owned that she compounded that by blocking people that pointed it out. She also asked people to stop defending her poor decisions. And finally, I think (reading her posts) she genuinely wants to learn and grow from the experience. I think that's a fantastic outcome. As for offending someone no matter what, don't be offended (see what I did there Twisted Evil ) but, I think it's OK if we all try a little harder to be kinder. No. Big. Deal. YMMV.

    Last edited June 17, 2020 2:01:47 pm
  • Posted: June 17, 2020 3:16:16 pm
  • madtruk said:
    Head back to the original story and scroll down. She apologized. She owned that she made a mistake, and she owned that she compounded that by blocking people that pointed it out. She also asked people to stop defending her poor decisions. And finally, I think (reading her posts) she genuinely wants to learn and grow from the experience. I think that's a fantastic outcome. As for offending someone no matter what, don't be offended (see what I did there Twisted Evil ) but, I think it's OK if we all try a little harder to be kinder. No. Big. Deal. YMMV.


    She didn’t do anything to apologize for. She was afraid she would no longer be able to work in the comic book industry if she didn’t cave to the cancel culture mob. Drawing herself with a suntan isn’t a sin. The people complaining about it wanted to get their virtual signaling power trip by throwing a fit. And they won.

    Real racism is a sin. But what Tarr did was nothing more than drawing herself with a tan.

    Some reasonable people attempted to defend her, but she rejected them, and told them to bleep off. It was like her saying, “see, I’m on your side. Please don’t cancel me. I’ll do or say whatever you want.”

    We all have to decide sometime or another if and when we are going to stand up and against these bullies. Because that’s exactly what they are.

    Last edited June 17, 2020 3:18:38 pm
  • Posted: June 17, 2020 6:09:26 pm
  • AMEN!
    "How to destroy a man... Grant him his heart's desire." --Victor Von Doom
    - - - - - - - - - -
    Latest Additions
    NYX #3 - 1st X-23
    Amazing Spider Man #78 - 1st Prowler
    Avengers #55 - 1st Ultron
    Amazing Spider Man #134 - 1st Tarantula, 2nd Punisher
    Avengers #196 - 1st full Taskmaster
20 posts • Page 1 of 2
World Community Grid Logo
ComicBookRealm.com: 65 years, 221 days, 11 hours of Run Time
Help projects like: Smash Childhood Cancer, OpenZika, Help Stop TB, FightAIDS@Home - Phase 2, Outsmart Ebola Together, Mapping Cancer Markers, FightAIDS@Home
Join World Community Grid today!
  • Newest
  • Marvel Comics's Sabretooth Issue # 4b
  • Newton Comics's The Incredible Hulk Issue # 11
  • Adhesive's Too Much Coffee Man: The Magazine Issue # 22
  • Marvel Comics's Wolverine Issue # 22illum-b