Cartoon prototypes

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In The Conlanger's Lexipedia, Mark Rosenfelder (Zompist) writes: "(I might add that if you ask a cartoonist to draw it, they’ll probably draw the prototype. From this we can learn that the prototypical hunk of cheese is Swiss, with really big holes.)"

Taking on this, here are the cartoon prototypes -- the way a typical member of various types of things or people is stereotypically drawn -- for many nouns.

Foods

Cheese

A hunk of Swiss cheese, with big holes

Apple

A bright red apple, probably a Red Delicious, with long stem and sometimes a worm

Egg

White, oval hen's egg, no spots

Ice cream

A perfectly conical, hatched cone with big scoops of vanilla ice cream on top

Pizza

A circle of cheese and red pepperoni pizza, with one slice being taken out

Hamburger

Tall, has a sesame seed bun with lettuce and tomatoes decked around the patty

Taco

Hard-shelled, with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, and beef

Sushi

A squircular piece of shiny, white rice with pink ambiguous seafood inside

Grocery bag

Always has a loaf of French bread sticking out

Hot dog

Red/pink color (cooked but not grilled), with ketchup and mustard

Doughnut

Round and brown, with hole in middle (not a jelly doughnut); often has sprinkles

Toast

Dark brown slice of bread in toque shape, covered with jam and a thick square of butter in the center

Cherries

Duo of bright red cherries connected by conjoined stems

Banana

Peeled open quite a bit, darker yellow peel and lighter yellow flesh

Soda

In can with pop top and design with sinuous curve or spot

Vehicles

Airplane

Plump and white, with a big puffy contrail coming out the back

Car

Bright red, fast

Noah's Ark

A brown wooden boat (not a box as in the Bible), with animals sticking their heads out of the windows and some on the deck; giraffes and elephants will ALWAYS be present

Fire engine

Fire engine red in color, number on side, ladder visible

Schoolbus

Yellow, many windows, kids inside sticking their hands out frantically and many of said kids smiling

Taxi

Checkered with white and black

Bicycle

Usually a boy's frame instead of a girl's frame regardless of the gender of the cyclist, basket in back (often with cat riding inside), decorative bells

Flying saucer

Classic double-saucer shape, metallic color, lurch of fire coming from below (if flying through space) or tripod sticking out (if landed), often has occupant (who is a prototypical Martian or prototypical Grey) -- or duo or trio of aliens of differing heights -- visible inside

Train

Black, red caboose in back

Clothes

Pajamas

Vertical red and white stripes

Tie

A solid red, full-width necktie

Office or classroom

Eraser (for paper)

Reddish-pink, shaped like a bar of soap

Drawing

Drawing on unruled piece of white paper, portrays house with tree and cloud outside, and often a person, quickly and sketchily drawn

Pencil

Long, slightly orangish yellow, pinkish-red eraser in back

Chalk

White, a piece of chalkboard chalk (not a piece of sidewalk chalk)

Sports

Bowling ball

Black, looks similar to eight-ball

Baseball bat

Made of light brown wood, grainy appearance

Natural nonliving objects

Moon

A yellow crescent moon, sometimes anthropomorphized as sleeping

Sun

Yellow, with rays of sunshine emanating from all around, often anthropomorphized as smiling

Star

Yellow, five-pointed

Cloud

A white, puffy cumulus cloud

Lightning

Yellow bolt, forms regular zigzag shape

Diamond

Blue, cut in rhomboid shape, glowing

Animal artifacts

Nest

Brown, round, made of thin twigs, has two to four eggs in it, inhabited by songbirds

Cobweb

Octagonal, like an orb spider's web

Animals

Bird

Songbird perching and singing a song (a bird seen at a distance, on the other hand, will be just a V, like the typical seagull)

Monkey

Brown, hangs from tree by versatile tail, funny/jocular expression on face

Cow

A Holstein cow, with cowbell

Horse

Brown with a black mane

Dinosaur

A big, green sauropod

Pig

Peach-like pink color, little hair, has some mud on it in which it rolled around

Sheep/Lamb

Very fluffy, with white wool

Goat

Thin, white fur, yellow horns, beard

Duck

White (unless it's a rubber duckie, in which case it'll be yellow), orange beak open with an enthusiastic quack, waddling on orange webbed feet

Hen

Reddish-brown feathers, proudly broody or gossipy expression, often pecking at feed

Rooster

Thin, more colorful than hen, erect red wattle, in crowing position, perched atop fence or roost

Chick

Yellow, fuzzy, mouth open in peep, often still has part of the eggshell attached to it

Snake

Long, green, no fangs, like a python, often coils up like a spring

Rabbit

Cute, white, has pink ears; drawn with teeth visible; if there is any food in its mouth, it will be munching on a carrot

Mouse

Grey, in scurrying position, long tail, eating a piece of Swiss cheese

Rat

Grey, fat, long nose, whiskers

Hamster

Light brown/golden color, harried expression, riding on a hamster wheel

Guinea pig

Fat, spotted (with either the spots/patches or the main color being some shade of brown)

Parrot

Predominantly green with some red, mouth open to talk (or eat cracker), perched on somebody's shoulder or cage perch

Parakeet

Green-and-yellow color morph; like the parrot, will be perched on shoulder or cage perch

Seagull

White, fluffy down, in mid-flight with its wings making a V

Lizard

Green, sticking its tongue out to hiss at you

Alligator

Green, yellow underbelly, mouth wide open waiting to snap

Bear

Brown (probably a European brown bear), eating honey

Whale

Blue-grey in color, tail up, smiling, spouting a big spout of water from its blowhole

Fox

Red/bright orange, white tp of tail, prancing, with a crafty expression on its face (probably licking its lips)

Spider

Black, thin legs, only two eyes instead of the usual eight, dangling from string of cobweb, often fuzzy

Supernatural or mythical beings

Alien

A Grey with white skin and black eyes, lanky build

Martian

Green, antennae, squat build (mostly torso), number of eyes other than two

God

Man with white hair, white moustache, and long white beard

Devil

Red skin, caprine horns, arrow-shaped tail, hooves, carries a pitchfork, devilish look on face, black beard

Witch

Green skin, pointy nose, warts, often cachinnating, black robe and pointy black hat, rides broomstick with black cat as a familiar

Wizard

Older man with white hair and a copious white beard, blue or periwinkle robe, carries wand, wears crumply conical hat with moons and/or stars on it

Fairy

Small, female, wears dress, insect-like wings, playful expression on face, carries wand, slender

Fairy godmother

Same as fairy except older and overweight

Angel

White robe, white bird-like wings, either has a pageboy or medium-length curly hair, serene expression on face, carries harp

Vampire

Fangs, black hair in an Ivy League cut, thin build, black Dracula-style cape, skin is either white and pale or an inhuman green

Unicorn

White with golden horn, often has rainbow mane or creates rainbow colors in its wake

Superhero

Thin, wears spandex, cape on back often adorned with initial of superhero name (even though not all heroes wear capes), often seen flying through the air at quite a velocity

People

Baby

In diaper, big head, pink skin, one tooth, little hair, hairbow if a girl, crying loudly

Boy (child)

Blue eyes, red-and-white-striped T-shirt, blue jeans, sneakers, baseball cap, a little on the fat side

Girl (child)

Blonde hair in pigtails, blue eyes, pink dress, carries doll or teddy

Boy (teenage)

Brown hair is loose and messy, blue eyes, freckles, either a red-and-white-striped T-shirt or a polo with green and blue stripes or blue with one thick white stripe across the middle, skinny

Girl (teenage)

Blonde hair in ponytail, blue eyes, freckles, pink sweatshirt, blue jeans, prominent breasts

Young man (twentysomething)

Black hair, beard, black clothes, looks like a millennial hipster

Young woman (twentysomething)

Blonde hair in ponytail, physically fit, black tank top, prominent breasts

Grandmother

Grey hair, bifocals, smiling face, missing teeth, sweater, sitting in rocking chair

Grandfather

White hair, long white beard, wrinkled, body hunched over, angular body, plaid shirt and coat, carries walking stick

Doctor

Wears band with circle over head and lab coat, carries either stethoscope or tube of miracle medicine

Pirate

Jolly Roger cap, eye patch, red-and-white-striped T-shirt, hook for hand, peg leg, parrot on shoulder, beard

Burglar

Long-sleeved shirt with horizontal stripes, raccoon-like mask over eyes, carries a bag with a dollar sign on it

Basketball player

Very tall, African-American, good-looking, wears shorts and numbered tank top in matching colors

Quarterback

White male, large hunk build, wears shoulder pads, numbered football uniform, golden smile, princely good looks

Soccer player (male)

Hispanic, physically fit and energetic-looking, shiny black hair, dressed in team's colors

Soccer player (female)

Shiny black hair in ponytail, physically fit and energetic-looking, dressed in team's colors

Tennis player

Black hair, head band, polo shirt and preppy clothes, thin, ponytail if female

Baseball player

Vertically striped button-up shirt, forward-facing baseball cap, eager look on face that evinces an "in it to win it" spirit, in shape but neither short nor tall

High school/college jock

Wears letterman jacket (which have been out-of-date on real high school jocks since the nineties), carries football under arm, tall, well-built, head turned up into the air

Scientist

Older Caucasian (usually White but often Jewish) male with messy white hair, unkempt appearance, white lab coat, glasses

Housewife

White woman with medium-length curly red hair, average build, white blouse, blue apron with white polka dots on it, often runs vacuum or carries tray of baked goods right out of the oven

Dad

White man with dark hair in businessman hairstyle, slippers, smokes pipe, grey suit, tie (which he probably got for Father's Day)

Metalhead (or heavy metal musician)

Light brown hair in mullet, edgy look on face, black T-shirt with logo of metal band, spiky metal jewelry

Opera singer

An overweight Nordic woman with a big, open mouth and a Viking hat, dressed in black, cups shaped like round shields over breasts

Cop

Overweight, male, wears blue uniform with eight-point hat and police badge in the shape of a golden shield (or seven-point star if a sheriff)

Villain

Black hair, vaguely non-WASP-looking (either Italian, or Mexican, or Eastern European), black villain moustache, black clothes, menacing grin

Psychologist

Teutonophone or Jewish man, grey hair, prominent beard, wears sweater, has hand up to lips

Butler

Gaunt, in black tailcoat, carries tray

Fitness trainer

Young woman with blonde ponytail, top is either white or black and other clothes are black, a lot of skin showing

Coach

Burly man with whistle around neck

Nerd

Dull brown hair and brown eyes, thick-rimmed glasses, acne, dress shirt with pocket protector, suspenders & bow tie, pants pulled high up, often wears propellerhead beanie

Neckbeard

Middle-aged White male, obese, unruly facial hair, acneous, junk-food-encrusted face, pasty skin, wears either a black T-shirt or a plus-size football jersey with number on it

Mortician

Dressed in black, thin and, well, cadaverous, short stick-up black hair, lots of stubble, morbid expression with visible teeth

American Indian chief

Beige clothes made of animal hides, feathered headdress, stripes of paint on face, tall face with thoughtful expression, carries peace pipe

Professor

Big balding head (the "egghead" look), black mortarboard cap and black clothes, carries pointer, wears glasses, has in-the-air look (often with eyes closed)

Bully

Male, large, very big chin/jaw, hair is either messy or very short

Chef

European man wearing a white top with no pockets and a white toque, fat, thin black moustache

Gangster (Interbellum-era) or Mafioso

Pinstripe suit, black hair, sunglasses, smokes cigar

Detective

Brown trenchcoat, deerstalker, moustache if male, constantly carries magnifying class of front of him/her

Surfer

Long, straight, blonde hair, suntan, wears beach clothes or PacSun T-shirt

Cowboy

Brown cowboy hat, plaid shirt, bandanna, chaps, skinny and bowlegged

King

Crown, imperial beard, wears robe with fur coat, holds sceptre, well-fed

Queen

Woman with brown or red hair, crown, wears dress with fur coat, holds sceptre, well-fed

Jester

Wears caps-and-bells, elf-like shoes, particolor clothing, is laughing out loud

Clown

Rainbow wig, white face paint, big red nose, cheeks painted red, ruffles on clothing