Posts tagged ‘illustration’
This week I just want to brush over how to get your proportions correct just by knowing how tall your character should be.
In my case my average character is 6 heads high. Male or female. Males can be 7 if you like and females can be around 5 if you prefer. 6 is just average. Take a look at the drawing for this week.
I have sketched a character, paying attention to where all the important joints should be. All together it measure 6 heads in total. Usually the crotch area is 2 and a half heads down from the chin. And the last 2 and a half heads are the legs.
My character is almost perfectly split. 3 head bottom and 3 heads top. Experiment with height and let me know how it turns out.
This week we are going to look at knowing where your shadow areas are going to be.
This will all depends on where your light source is coming from.
I usually do this in colour (we will cover this in a future blog), but a lot of artists do the shadows in the drawing phase. So if you’re that way inclined have a look at the drawing for this week.
From left to right. The first guy is a typical male character and the light source is coming in from the right. Therefore all the shading would be on the opposite side. Notice what happens with eyes, nose and cheeks. Make sure that your shading takes into account the contours of the face.
Secondly, the smiling character. The light in this case is coming from underneath his face. This is probably the hardest to do because all the shading would be in areas which usually have no shading. So, this can be rather confusing, just plan correctly.
The 3rd drawing of the woman. The light source is in the same place as the 1st drawing although her head is slightly turned towards it. Look at the significant difference it makes to how you shade her. Now the shading doesn’t cover half the face anymore.
And lastly in the fourth drawing the light is coming from behind the character. So all his forward features would be in shadow.
When you choose a light source you need to consider what impact the shading will have on the character. Is this going to work with the rest of the emotion that you are trying to convey?
Tip: When you are trying to decide what to shade and what not to shade, look at the parts of the face that protrude. Chances are that those are the parts that aren’t shaded, they would create shadow behind them.
Practice makes perfect with this one. Experiment and have fun!
This week we look at how eyebrows and eyes can affect expressions and how they can depict different character personalities.
Picture 1 & 2
Sharp angles on eyebrows are usually used to depict bad guys, but the can also be used for neutral characters. I had a bit of fun with the top two and it’s pretty easy to tell what they are thinking.
In the third picture the eyebrows were placed to show fear. This is pretty universal and easy to grasp. When working with eyebrows it’s important to not forget the rest of the forehead, note how each emotion adds furrows or wrinkles to the face.
In the next illustration I’ve drawn your typical calculating, bad guy. To get this effect use black, heavy eyebrows to draw attention to the character’s personality.
Picture 5 – 8
With the last four I just had fun. The old Chinese shop owner, the goofy fat guy, the narcissistic hero, and a dark haired guy flashing a goofy smile – Note how the cheeks go up and the eyes squint.
Examine each of these and just have fun! Create a few characters of your own using what you see here!
Picture all the elements that make up a character. His home, his village, his arch nemesis.
Here I started with his home. I drew his mushroomed old rotted wooded home in the cave where his people live. I mean, if you lived in a cave you wouldn’t seem very approachable and you’d end up very withdrawn. So that adds to his shyness. And every story has to have a villain or someone that’s a contrast to the hero in some way.
In this case, I drew up a villainous bear that lurks in the woods where the gnomes go to look for food. As with all good characters he needs to have some physical characteristic that makes him stand out from others. So, I gave him a few scars and made him look pretty mean. On a side note. When drawing animals, try to stay away from realism. This is a comic tutorial, so give your animals some comic qualities. Like the human eyes and mouth I gave him. Makes it similar to what Disney used to do with their animated movies. Makes it your work. Not a realistic copy. So with the bear in the woods it makes the gnomes very fearful. You see the story developing?
Give us some thoughts on where you see the story going.
Sheena’s note: Scars are an interesting addition to a character. It shows that they have been in fights and lived. This probably means that the other characters have come off worse than them. Unless it is a very particular scar, like the strangulation mark on the gnome’s neck. This shows a trauma to a character.
Tip on how to add life to your character.
The second part in how to illustrate a character. In this session we look at how to add colour.
Our resident super illustrator Roland, guides you on the first step to character illustration.