(Edit, 17th July 2009: With thanks to calthyechild for the advice, changed the transition between grass and water. Hopefully that looks more natural!)
(Major edit, 20th May 2011: Image has been replaced! The NEON GREEN GRASS is now gone, Sheik's ear has been retouched slightly (poor stick ears, I don't even draw them like that any more), and his expression has been changed because, frankly, the original looked really sulky. Better lighting, too. The original NEON GREEN GRASS can be found here!)
Important: This page originally included a long discussion on why I viewed Sheik the way I do. That argument is now being rewritten and will be reposted (as a separate post). Until then, the archived version is available here, although please remember that this argument is several years old now and is not nearly as sensitively or coherently written as it could be.
I know you may personally see it this way but it doesn't make it true. The writers in the game didn't feel like they had to explain any more than they did because they figured players would be smart enough to figure it out on their own. Shiek has the triforce of wisdom, Zelda has the triforce of wisdom - and you can't fake that with magic. As for the lack of gender specific pronouns in Japanese... well, the Japanese language often does not use gender specific pronouns as the gender is to be determined by the context of the surrounding sentences. Classic Japanese literature and plays often use the "girl disquised as a boy" theme. And the reason the concept art is different is because when you look at Shiek you are supposed to be fooled into thinking she's a boy. It's like watching Ru-Paul's Drag Race and being amazed that those are really dudes even when in bikinis. As for Vivian - Vivian's gender isn't mandantory for the plot - Sheik's is. Poor Vivian suffered the same fate as Zoycite from Salior Moon - American censors don't like to have "children's games"
or "children's cartoons" reflect a gay or transexual character.
I'm not trying to be mean, I promise. I disagree with you.
Side note, however, love this pic. It's very well done!
Also, you mean Lucina. Marth is definitely male.
Also, what? Ruto has an hourglass figure and rather obvious breasts. She has broad shoulders, but she also has broad hips, and a narrow waist, and clear breasts, and feminine facial features, and...
I really don't see why it's such a big deal if she changes her sex anyways either like, it's not like this is the same series where powerful magic exists and can turn someone into an entirely different species (like Wolf Link, or all the masks in MM) but just turning one's self into a dude, no that's crazy talk!
besides, it's not like Nintendo would really... care if someone's theory was different from their own canon (whatever that may be)??? so I really don't see why the fans get so vehement over an issue like this????
also, it's like people seemingly forget that Sheik is supposed to appear as a dude no matter how they slice it, yet there are like these pictures of her oversexualized with breasts bigger than her head and somehow simply drawing Sheik as a male is 'destroying canon'? I don't even....
sorry for the rambling, I just had to say that...
(Also, on the part about binding. yes, yes and yes. being a crossplayer myself I know first hand that that stuff is NOT fun to wear! Especially not for long periods of time... guh...)
And yes, exactly @.@ Link can change into WOOD, which is an entirely different cell structure, or STONE, which isn't even organic! Why is it such a stretch to assume that Zelda can't turn herself into a guy, especially since we know how magically powerful she is?
And yeah, no matter what, Sheik is meant to present as male. Oversexualised Sheik with beach ball boobs (or Zelda, for that matter - have they SEEN the girl? She's a B-cup at best!) is just... blatantly contradicting canon. Drawing Sheik looking male, however, is exactly what the official art shows.
Ahh well XD Mutual rambling is fun!
(And I haven't crossplayed - well, I did, I just didn't bother with binding - but I have trans friends, and... yeah, it's tricky without commercial binders made of synthetic materials which I reeeaaally don't think are going to be around in Hyrule...)
Also I really don't understand where that 'girl power!1!!' thing comes from. Like wooo, Zelda has girl power for...... putting on a disguise and running around playing a lyre??? I mean I don't mean to hate on Sheik or the lyre but I'm pretty sure Zelda does more as well... princess Zelda than as Sheik rofl. Why can't Zelda just be badass as a princess??? Does her in a dress somehow make her less credible or
I just don't understand why this is a thing, like at all
Anyways, I completely forgot to say that the picture is really nice too! Sheik looks so chill... like he needs some lemonade.
Thank you! It was fun to draw
Ugh... yeah, Idk why, and I'm probably getting irrationally annoyed by this, but the 'Zelda/Sheik gurl powah' thing just rubs me the wrong way ahaha... and I don't even have a problem with fem!OoT Sheik. Whoops, now I'm almost tempted to draw Sheik in Zelda's dress for shits n giggles. Boy powah!
Eheeeh... sorry, I blabbed a bit again
Yeah, I've drawn and written fem!OoT Sheik myself, I don't hate the concept, just. Zelda is cool on her own ;_; I wish people would realise that! (DO IT. I did that once before [link] but I'd love to see you tackle it too doooo iiiiit...)
Aww, Sheik looks so cute! ^3^ And Zelda looks... so smug. I like it Crossdressing is the best, I swear (and I'mma give dat a try when I am... more awake ahaha...)
Artwise...I use pose maniacs too!
In fairness, people also draw het and yuri with female Sheik for no purpose other than fanservice, too. Or just sexualised female Sheik on her own - there's a ton of art that show some impossibly skinny girl with huge breasts and long hair who bears absolutely no resemblance to either Sheik or Zelda, it's definitely not just yaoi fans and male Sheik fans who draw fanservice.
And heh, I'm sure she could handle it, especially if it was a matter of survival! She's endured worse - like her father being killed and being sent into exile and blaming herself for it. A bit of shapeshifting is nothing in comparison.
Yeah, that's true. Zelda has gone through a lot.
All the characters in OoT have, really. Malon, Saria, Ruto, Darunia... and ESPECIALLY poor Link!
And yes, lol. Poor Link, he was orphaned, raised by a tree, sent to sleep for 7 years, saved the world, then sent back in time to save another world...and he had only 3 days! Add that to the fact that he probably dies a virgin(he was friend zoned by most of his potential mates...and by the ones who he wasnt, he had no interest in in the first place)
All that would suck horribly.
Well, not so much the 'friend zoning', since shipping is really open in OoT - but for a lot of that, yes. He has a rough time!
Shipping is pretty open, but yeah. Pretty much.
My headcanon is that the first person to swear alleigance to Hylia was a member of the then-unnamed Shadow Folk, named Sheik. He died to protect her, expressing regret that he couldn't protect her any long. To remember his sacrifice, the remainder of his people (including Impa) were renamed the Sheikah, and Hylia preserved his soul and promised to fulfill his dying wish to always protect her, and allowed him to be reborn/recalled from the Sacred Realm whenever she had a need to do so.
Cue Ocarina era, and Zelda needing to be protected. His soul basically joined with hers, creating a new life in that era so he could protect Hylia's descendent.
And different opinions are great! Thanks for the comment!
2) Nintendo's official stance on the subject is contradictory. Nintendo of Japan refers to Sheik as male. One person in Nintendo of America refers to Sheik as female (which makes sense, given that they arbitrarily slapped a gender on him for Smash Bros' English translation), and another has said, 'There is no answer, use your imagination'.
3) Seriously, Nintendo of Japan has NEVER said, "Sheik is just Zelda in drag". They've always referred to him as male in official sources. In this case, the 'official stance' is 'Sheik is meant to appear to be male, for any more details, use your imagination'.
What individuals think - that doesn't make anything official. There's no master document on Sheik's gender. People are free to like what they like.
And I love them as childhood friends
For the second link, the question was a) specifically about Sheik in Brawl, who does appear to be female and who isn't the same character as Sheik in Ocarina of Time, and b) is from Nintendo of America, which is a biased source. Remember, Nintendo of America are the ones who arbitrarily decided that Sheik would be referred to with female pronouns in Smash Bros! Nintendo of JAPAN, the actual, reliable source, has never assigned a gender to Sheik.
Nintendo of Japan, for what it's worth, has only ever used gender-neutral pronouns for Sheik, or male ones ('seinen' on the official site - it means 'young man'). Aonuma has mentioned Sheik as female once - when describing the type of characters that AMERICAN audiences like. It was just Nintendo of America who went, "...Oh, we have to translate these trophies, and there's no gendered description for Sheik... well, Zelda turns into this character, so despite him being described as male in the source material and looking male, that's ~icky~, so let's say she's female!"
Or, well. Slightly paraphrased