Make an "Anime character sheet" with a 3D model


Hello everyone and welcome to my very first tutorial on Clip Studio Paint! ^^
Today, I'm going to show you how you can make a Character sheet for anime, in other words, a concept art sheet for your own character. The main part of this tutorial will focus on the use of the 3D model in detail, but explained in a simple way, which will allow us to use it as a basis for our character sheet. Let's go !

The sketch of the desired pose

In general, the anime characters cards are presented as follows: a drawing of the whole body of face, back, profile, to which we add some facial expressions characteristic of our character. The important thing is that thanks to it we can identify the appearance and character of the latter. It is therefore essential to have an idea of character worked upstream, to choose a pose that will perfectly match and expressions that reflect the main emotions defining it.
Assuming you have your character in mind then, let's start by drawing a sketch of the pose that we want to give him. For that, simple lines of constructions are enough. Do not go into the details of the anatomy, because in any case the 3D model will guide us on this.
Personally I mostly use geometric shapes to represent the members and their joints in a simple and concise way, but there are a whole bunch of techniques that I let you explore for yourself (lines connected by points, circles, ect); )

Choice of the 3D model

Our draft is finished, we must now correct the anatomy of our character: this is where the 3D model comes into play! To select it, we have to go to Window> Hardware> Hardware
Then open a window with different characters.

Of course we could use the simple default template, one that has no accessories. However, I find it more interesting and especially faster for us to choose a preconceived model that already has the appearance and clothing of an anime character. It is through this one that I will explain the operation of 3D models.

You pose

You will find that in the tab "pose" we have at our disposal a slew of pre-recorded poses and body sizes that you can use as you see fit for your model. There are also plenty of others on Assets, so have fun!
However, I will rather teach you how to do a pose yourself from scratch, so that you will not be caught off guard when you do not find any pose that suits you.

Using tools related to the 3D model

Here is how our model presents itself. I chose this one because his haircut looks a little like that of my character, but let's go ^^
I will present here only the tools that will be useful for the realization of our pose.

Above we notice some tools at the top of the model. These are the tools that will be used to position our model:
- The small yellow square is used to move the model in space. It is also interesting to note that the character's skirt moves when moved with this tool, and that it freezes when you stop the movement. So it is very relevant if you want to adequately reproduce the movement of the skirt!

The tools on the right of the small square are also used to move the character in the space, I let you discover them;) Be careful though not to use them if you have already defined the position of your skirt: it will lose its movement for take another depending on how you move the model!
Instead, use the tools to the left of the small square, which allow you to make equivalent movements but as if you were moving a camera.

As we can see above, we find in the bottom right of the model a palette of tools that will be used to modify some features of our character (the head, the expression of the face, props, etc.). Choose the ones that are closest to your character!

For my part, I favored cat pillows, which are close to the raccoon ears of my character, and I have in addition to that slightly modify his haircut.

Move members of the 3D model

That's it, you now know how to move your model in space. But that's not all, it must now give him a pose!
This is the most important part here, so I show you all that.

Touch your model wherever you want, and see what appears:

Here we are.
Here, the blue dots that we notice are those that allow us to move a whole body part in the same movement. So if we move the one at the level of the hand, the entire arm will move and not just the hand: you can then bend and move as you please along the rotation axes symbolized by the arrows and circles of color.
Note that the whole body can also move to adapt to the position of the arm for example: it gives us as a result a natural pose, a crucial point to take into account in our pose because we do not want unrealistic movement in general, unless your character and his universe lend themselves to it.

Finally, if you double-click on a specific area of the body, say forearm or shoulder as above, you will see new axes that appear for the member in question. Their movement works in a similar way to that presented just above, so do not worry and just follow the axes! You will see that everything is very easy to master here, trust me: 3

Tip, put your model right next to your draft and not above. Indeed, in my opinion it is difficult to reproduce the pose properly by lowering the opacity of the model because we do not see all the details of it well enough. So the only way for us to reproduce this pose while having it in front of us is to position our model next, that's all.

In the end, with a bit of patience and some trial and error, we find ourselves with the model in the desired pose!

Make several poses from the original pose

Now that we have our final pose, we get rid of the draft made at the very beginning of the tutorial. You can hide it, or simply cut it if you are 100% sure that you will not use it anymore.

Before continuing further, let us remember the purpose of this tutorial: make a character sheet. But as I mentioned at the beginning, it is composed of a pose of face, back, and profile. We have here our pose face, we miss more than the other two.
For lack of space, I will omit the pose of profile, but free to you to realize it. The basic principle will be exactly the same as for the back pose we are going to do.

Let's first explain our model: there is no point in starting from scratch again, unless you want to get another pose for the back view. If this is the case, simply repeat following the previous steps, but put your character back to the camera :)

To duplicate it, right click on the mask containing the 3D model and choose "Duplicate Layer"

This done, I return my model with the camera tool to take care not to change the position of the skirt again.
Here we are now with two different views of our model!

I will now proceed in the same way with the busts of my characters who will be there to bring out the different emotions that best define my character: choose the right, and take the time to explore your character to do. Your character sheet will be more relevant 👍
And for once, you can pre-select emotions directly on the model as I explained above, so enjoy yourself;)

Use the 3D model to sketch the character

Now proceed to the realization of the sketch of our character from the pose given by the 3D model made by us here. This is an important step as it comes just before the definitive line art stage: so some attention will have to be given to it;)

Let's start by transforming our layer into a "raster layer", which will allow us to lower the opacity of the model so that we can draw on top, but also to lighten our drawing because a 3D model weighs heavier than anything else and can slow down your computer.
For that, right click on the layer> convert layer.

A window identical to the one below will then open:

Then choose in "Type" mode "raster layer" (I do not know what it gives in French but I think you will understand haha)
You can now lower the opacity of the model, which you will not be able to move further in space since it is now considered a 2D image.
I usually configure it to 50%, enough to see through without being too disturbing.

On a new classic layer this time, we will begin our sketch using the 3D model. I use for this the tool "lighter pencil", which allows to obtain a light rendering unlike a feather.

Then I begin by tracing the shapes of the 3D model, and this by hiding the details because unless you want to draw exactly the same character it will not be necessary to be encumbered with all the small details of the latter. Especially since your drawing style is probably different and you will want to make changes to the sketch.
So reproduce the coarse face and its main elements, and the outline of clothes and hair that you will need (hence the importance of choosing the right model: some one skirts, others pants, short sleeves, etc)

In passing, I advise you not to reproduce the hand of the 3D model to the identical: it is often too large compared to the rest of the body. So prefer to adapt to an angle close to that of the original pose, or if you do not yet master the drawing of the hands decal the hand and reduce there after.

We finally end up at the end of the first step of this sketch. See the before / after result below:

Details of the draft

Last step of our draft: the details! These are important and must be worked on beforehand because they define your character. What are his tastes, his character, the universe in which he lives? The elements detailing your character's outfit must be able to open a window on the answers to these questions, which requires a little design work before tackling the character sheet of a character.
I strongly advise you to look into the subject, you will find plenty of tutorial on the site of Clip Studio, but also on other sites such as Pixiv and Deviantart, or in the very good see excellent tutorial books coming from the Japan! (very easy to identify the issues even if you do not speak the language, the images are sufficient on their own)

Suppose now that you know where you are going and know your character well.
On another layer, you go according to your drawing style to modify specific elements of the body. In my case, I adjusted the size of the head, the face, the hair and the feet.

Remember to give movement to the hair and then to the clothes according to the direction of the skirt, for more dynamism in the pose!

Once done, take another color on another layer and add all the details, clothes and accessories of your characters! At this point, you can even add some along the way if an idea comes to you. Just make sure to keep it all in tune with the universe in which the character evolves, as well as with his tastes and personality.
If you need ideas, watch tutorials, references, or video games that often have a wide range of outfits. Inspire yourself without moderation, but do not copy completely! And then look at your closet too, put on a piece of clothing and take a picture of yourself to study the folds. This is an interesting way to proceed, which has the advantage of detaching itself from Internet references that are not always good to take to obtain a credible result. I do it often, and I can assure you that we learn a lot from this technique :)

The difference in color allows us to distinguish between the added details and the shape of the basic body.

For example, here my character is a hybrid. Very attached to nature and passionate about medicine, she trains in the creation of magic or herbal treatments. She is very friendly, but always very concentrated and therefore sometimes detached. She lives in a world that is both modern and fantasy-based.
In my opinion, the accessories I am assigned to him are therefore justified. This is the way to proceed, take elements of the life of your character and make him an appropriate outfit from his information.

Let's go back to our drawing.
We will now delete the hidden parts by the details we added (hence the benefit of having two different layers!)
Once finished, we put everything in the same color and we are left with before our eyes the final sketch.

Line Art

We are almost there !
This sketch in our possession, we can trace the line art.
For that, I just use a G-Pen brush size 5.0 on a vector layer to correct my lines more easily.
This is not a tutorial about line art so I will not go into details, feed you many tutorials if you want to train.
Just keep in mind that you need to increase the thickness of your lines at intersections, and that the details will be represented by finer lines.

Coloring and finishes

We have now reached the final stage of our tutorial.
For coloring, as in the real character sheets of anime, we will remain very basic. This is not a coloring tutorial either, but you are free to add more details to the coloring according to your style :)

First, the choice of colors is required. Take care to select colors that are in tune with each other and with the chosen character. Especially do not choose too many different colors, favor 3 to 4 colors if possible, so that the coloring is harmonious and does not make the drawing messy. I advise you to look for palettes of colors which agree between them on the Internet and to choose a combination according to the features of your character, so that one limits the missteps;)

As you can see, my choice was mostly green and brown in reference to its attraction to nature.

We end the shadows and voila!
As I said above, prefer to use pictures of yourself if you do not master the folds well, or if you just want to be sure of their positions.
Do not forget to practice with tutorials, the shadows are very important to adequately represent the movements of the character and the action that this produces on the fabrics!
You can note that I have only detailed the eyes, and this because the eyes are the most captivating part in my opinion ^^

Conclusion !

And now, we're done with this first tutorial ^ o ^
This kind of concept art requires a lot of time, both upstream with the creation process of the character used, but also in this part dedicated to the character sheet that will ask you for reflection and a good dose of patience.

Fortunately, 3D models facilitate this process and save us valuable time. This method is suitable for both beginners and experienced, but as a beginner I can assure you that you will not always have to rely on 3D models. In fact, by reproducing the poses of the models, we gradually retain the humanoid anatomy without realizing it. Do not skimp on the use of tutorials and references in parallel because they are valuable resources that will give you advice, automation and techniques to facilitate the control of anatomy!

I hope this tutorial has provided you with some help and inspiration, and that you will enjoy playing with the tons of possibilities that 3D models offer!

I hope with all my heart that you will follow this tutorial and that you will give free rein to your imagination to create fantastic characters. And I also hope that my tutorial is understandable for everyone!

If you have questions or suggestions for tutorials do not hesitate in the comments;)

And if you want to chat with me, come talk to me about Medibang Paint (now called Art Street) which is a drawing site a bit like Deviantart but more user-friendly: D
My name there is @Sorasama

Thank you for reading and see you soon!


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