So, when you hear the words "Hetalia OC's", you probably cringed. Our fandom is known for making bad, inaccurate, and sometimes offensive OC's. Heck, if you really want some joy from bad OC's, there is a wonderful blog on tumblr dedicated on critiquing good and bad OC's -> fuckyeahshittyhetaliaocs.tumbl…
When I joined the Hetalia fandom earlier this year, I wanted to make an OC really badly. I was 13 and uber-obsessed with America, and wanted to make a country for the soul reason to pair her with him. I didn't give a single fuck about history, I just blindly researched a country.
First on my list was Luxembourg. I, being from the Netherlands myself, felt much connection with making this OC. But then after a little bit of research I found that there was a canon Luxembourg already. Then I wanted to make an Ireland. Oh, that was created already too. (Here's the source to all the characters that have made minor appearances -> hetalia.kitawiki.net/index.php…
These are the countries:
Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales
United Arab Emirates
Ancient Empires and Tribes
Kowloon Walled City
Provinces of China
So if you see your OC listed here...then you probably have not done enough research on Hetalia before creating them.
If you want to create a good OC, I would highly recommend doing these steps:
First and the most important, DO YOUR RESEARCH BEFORE CREATING YOUR OC
I learned it the hard way. The first OC I made was for Curacao. I've been there before but I ignored the fact that the major population has dark skin. I thought I could make her blonde hair, a bit tan skin, and green eyes. Curacao, for those of you who don't know, is a Carribean island which was once ruled by the Netherlands.
Look at a globe
I see a lot of State OC's. Some of them can be good but I find that they end up looking a lot like the OC creator. And if you're like me and living in California, you'd know that there are a number of California OC's. To be honest, I think there should be two California OC's if you decide to make one since it's such a large state and it's so diverse for wherever you go. For example, I live in the Bay Area (San Francisco, San Jose, etc.) and the demographic is mainly Asian. When you go down south, to Los Angeles, the demographics are mainly Latino. So much culture, why would one personify California as being blonde hair, blue eyes, silicon, and maybe even bratty? Yes, in some ways, that fits out stereotype, but remember that Hetalia is not mainly about stereotypes. I find personifying states harder than personifying nations, since you have to pay more attention to detail such as demographics.
Also, I've seen an eyeful of bad city OC's. Amsterdam, for example - don't shape that OC mainly because of our *and I'm saying our since the Netherlands is my home country like I said before* red light district and the fact that we smoke weed. (What's the big deal with that, guys?) But I also tend to find really good city OC's, but of course...not enough. ;w;
So when you decide to personify, remember that Himapapa has already personified the bigger countries for our ease. There are SO MANY countries that have not been personified yet. For example, Jan Mayen. Have you ever heard of it? Probably not. I discovered this country with the lovely aid of Google earth c: I found hundreds of small island nations that have not been personified yet by Himapapa.
I would also avoid personifying Antarctica or the North Pole. Nobody lives there (as in, having a house, there being grocery stores and those little things) ...so why would you even...
One more thing - keep in mind that Hetalia is about personifying NATIONS. I have seen weather, season, month, oceans, seas, and planet 'Hetalia' OCs.
Look at the demographics
I have seen TOO MANY white-washed Greenland, Alaska, South America, and even Carribean OC's. Now it's time for me to come out and confess that my first OC that I mentioned earlier *Curacao* was white-washed. But what happened?
Also, I've seen a lot blonde hair/blue eyed Czech OCs, and I don't know why. In most of Czech, the most common traits are brown hair with brown (or green) eyes. Just a suggestion.
History with other countries
THIS. THIS. THIS.
This is a vital part of your OC.
Especially if you have a smaller nation, there was a high chance that the country was ruled by a more powerful nation, like Spain, the Netherlands, France, England, Norway, Denmark, you name it.
Just because the country was ruled over by a more powerful nation *like how Denmark rules over the Faroe Islands and Greenland* doesn't mean the people on the country necessarily liked it.
A big mistake I see OC creators do is make their OC look like the country it was colonized by. I myself made this mistake with Curacao.
I'm going to use official characters to prove why you should avoid this:
France and Seychelles. France used to rule Seychelles. Did Himapapa make Seychelles a blonde? No. The minority of natives living on the islands of Seychelles (back then and to this day) are, well, dark skinned. So why whitewash? (STUDIO DEEN >:I)
I've also seen a few OCs hate on countries for no reason. Especially the female countries, like Hungary, Taiwan, Seychelles, Belgium, etc. without having any history. This...it's pretty self-explanatory.
Avoid interaction with countries that the character has no historical connection to.
The extra bits
(Keep in mind that here is where my personal opinion starts)
I would highly recommend staying away from using the erogenous curls. They are often overused and even if they do have a representation...they're just...overused. There are other ways that landmarks, places, or historical events can be marked on a character.
For example, my Faroe Islands OC. Faroe means sheep in Faroese, and there are many sheep on the islands. At one point there were six 'regions' on Faroe Islands (they were abolished in the 2008 election) so she owns six pet sheep, each representing each region. And when she was younger, the Faroe Islands was divided into two parts, one named 'Sheep Island' and the other 'Bird Island'. So whenever I draw her being younger, I draw her around a native seabird. And lastly, she wears a red-blue-and white striped scarf, which represents the colors of the Faroe Islands flag. She also uses it to cover up her face when she's emberassed or shy (so she covers her face up a lot since she isn't very social, implying that the island's location is very isolated from the rest of Europe.)
Even Norway, for example. Yes, he does have a curl, but did you also know that the cross in his hair represents the Nordic cross?
Or that Hungary's flower represents a lake? (I would avoid using flowers for colder countries though).
Oh yes, I'm also pretty sure that Netherlands' scarf represents the flag of Middelburg *considering that the Middelburg flag is white and blue stripes, yes, my awesome hometown~!* (Yep, each region of the Netherlands has their own flag) But it's not canon, so I can't start assuming.
And of course, who can't forget that America's glasses represent Texas?
I'm sure you guys get the idea. There are so many ways things can be personified on OC's.
I look forward to seeing more awesome OC's.