Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Character Design Notes

There are distinctions in character types that help separate your lineup.  A good place to start is with understanding male and female types.  It’s very important to understand your characters construction.  What is the body type as well as individual qualities? What adjectives come to mind - Heavy, lumbering, light, long, curvy?

Whatever type, they ALL have construction. This construction is going to be valuable in posing your character and adding attitude.  

Creating creatures is easier if you start with big basic shapes first.

 Begin with these and then combine 2 of them for head and body or modify one of them by cutting into the big shape with smaller shapes.  Just remember to keep it simple. 

Examples by Melissa Van Der Paardt, Nico Martet

If you're having trouble coming up with designs,  combine animals, maybe 2-3, but, make only one animal element dominant. 
If you are going for more realistic designs, than construction is super important.   Consider how the character or creature will walk or climb or fly.  Use animal elements and deconstruct how the limbs or wings work in real life. Afterwards, simplify your shapes!  It will only make your designs more solid and interesting.

Remember those simple forms?  The concept of flow directions, like the human abstraction forms can be used for critter design as well.

Examples of great shape design by various artist.  The best way to learn how these character designers did such great designs is to deconstruct their forms.  What's the simplest forms they started with, how did they break these up, etc? 

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