Welcome ones again to another part of my illustration tutorial. My name is Danny, I will be illustrating they Method to creating of different generational characters.
And this Illustration will show the ways that can enable you to create profile for both male & female characters in their different ages & how to draw key poses from scratch;
So let me start by asking, "What if we want to create a story?" And we are compelled to create different character from scratch, maybe a antagonist or a protagonist character for either a comic like [manga] or animation like [anime]; what are we to do?
First things first,if we are ever confronted with something like this is to,
Do some research!...on (i) Advantages of shape psychology,
As we do know, audience often relate and understand the things which they have come across/have knowledge of in the past, than they things which they have no recollection of, Because people naturally feel the sensation of "Familiarity" to they things which they have knowledge of and best understand them if used. So in order for our art to be easy understandable and bear good meaning to the audience, we are resorts to the use of Shape Psychology as the basic foundation in what ever we draw. Especially, during characters design to give audience that sense of Familiarity and best understood.
When we draw characters, It is easy to neglect the basic foundation for draw a good character design that gives good meaning. But I do advice
when we draw to use "Shape psychology", To show the audience they different characters role and function in the story by their design.
( Squares, Circles, and Triangles)Above are some of the basic/regular shapes which are use in design character, So what are this shapes good for, let's get to know.
•Square Shape Language,
Firstly, a Square ) is a shape commonly used by artist around the world to draw the frameworks of different characters, and this Because, square like shapes relate straight vertical and horizontal lines that communicate to the audience the strength, stability, confidence and the clumsiness of the characters.
To draw a character face square, we are to first of all look at the things that frame the face, one of them is the skull, then follow by the skin. Our characters skull should relate to a square like shape, then we draw the skin on top of the skulls.
And if you are trying to create a strong, confident and stable character, I advice you try out drawing your character, Using the square shape.
•Circle Shape Language,
As for Circle ) let's take the earth for an instant, which we are all living on as we all know, it is semi circle[spherical] in shape, and 71% of it is cover by water, nature must softest substance. For this, What I am trying to say in essence is that, if our God understand the usefulness of shape psychology in the creation of the world, why shouldn't we as an artists do same.
And what I'm briefly trying to say above is that Circle has soft appearance, if we draw our character to have a round frame,the audience is going to see the characters, for their softness, friendly and completeness.
For our characters to look and have cute, cuddly and loving face, we will draw the skulls of our characters to have a round like shape , and lastly we draw the skin on top of the skull to have a chubby cheeks and because of this, the characters chin will not pop out more,
If you want your character to be approachable, fun or jolly. Circles is the idea shape to use.
•Triangle Shape Language,
While that of Triangle) This are shape which are often different and opposite to that of square & circle, Because their characters are often given a evil or villain expression and therefore characters created with triangle shape a believe to belong to bad guys. But also, if we can just take a closer look at things, we will notice that characters with a triangular shape are smart, intelligent and are genius.
If we are to draw evil characters with cunning attitude, triangle for now is the sure shape to use.
To draw them, We first draw the top of our characters skull to have a straight vertical line and two horizontal line from the top, both meeting at the bottom making the character Chin pointy and pop out more,
So if you are looking to create a evil, smart, or a protective warrior character. I recommend, you use the Triangle as the idea shape choice.
(ii) Understanding of Human anatomy(the real thing)
Now at this point, Regardless of the genre of the character facial shape language, the characters should look like a real person in real-life situations who make mistakes, have regrets, and grow emotionally or spiritually throughout the story, To add realize to the character. So, the character body appear should have the actual mass and volume to that of a real person or a body that relate meaning of the characters durability to the audience. Fail to do so, and it shows.
They are three contrast in human shape, and we can adjust in different ways to create our desire character: They are the Head, Body & Limbs(Hand & legs).
•1st contrast: The Head,
They are two portion involve when Drawing a Head which is the Face & Hair. But first I will like us to start with the Facial aspect of the head; The Face) is one portion of the head which is complicated & an important part of a character design. Although learning the method is easy, Drawing it isn't. This is because there are lots of different individual factors that must go right which are the perspective, the proportions, the structure of the individual features, their placement, and a lots more. They are two ways we can frame the head; The first is to use square, & the second is to use circle.
For the square [using the male], we draw a boxes, divide them into four equal parts by driving a line through the center vertically and horizontally, thereby creating a cross while identifying with a dash where all the basic feature will be. Use the cross to place features.
While for that of Circle [using the female], we draw Circle in shape of a sphere, then divide the circle by drawing a straight line in the middle horizontally. Then we draw another line separating the ball vertically into two halves. Given the direction of a cross that has formed, slice off the excess on each side and begin to place features: brows at the cross, hairline half way to the top, and the tip of the nose half way down.
And following that, we will be drawing three perspective [ front, profile & 3/4 view ]of our characters But I will be using circle in this part for better understanding,
For male & female characters,
Note: For you to be about to draw the face of your character well, I advice you frequently practice, challenge yourself and use references.
As we draw our characters, we should not forget that the head don't just only comprise of the face but also the hair, and this aspect mostly relate to the female character because they are the ones who do different hairstyles,
While the hairs for the male.
• 2nd contrast: The Body,
The body is another contrast that can give our character a realistic look, We need to understand how to use shapes and things around us as a reference frame draw the body of our character. There are two ways to draw our body frame: Square and Circle.
To draw the body frame of a character, we draw two boxes, divide them into four equal parts by driving a line through the center vertically and horizontally,
After we understand how to frame body, lastly what I would like us to understand is that, the human body can take different form, especially in that of the female character and their reference thing around us. So, let's say you are having problem understanding the ways to uses shape to draw, while don't you try use things that reference the human body,such as the pillow which can reference the twist of a person body or the local vegetable around us like apple🍎, pear🍐, mango🥭, tomato🍅, groundnut🥜, Bamboo stick🎋which reference the shape.
While for that of the limbs, which is both the hands and the legs is also a contrast that can change the character posture and show the energy of the our characters.
And we can frame and draw the skin of the Hands by using different shapes like the square, circle & cylinder.
And also we can use those same shape to frame and draw the skin of the Legs.
And the limbs help in giving our characters different expression.
Now that we are done researching and practicing,we can now
Start drawing, experimenting & sketching(but, don't get hangup on one idea)
First we start our experimenting by rough sketching the face of our characters and choosing the kinds of shape language we would want to give our characters. After we have gotten a face to be circle, we draw the different perspective of our characters. Base on the story you want to tell, you can use the appropriate character age. But for the purpose of this tutorial, I will be drawing my character in their teenager age.
Experimenting with color (character color)
Next we move to the choosing our character color. I will advice you keep it simple and avoid making it complex, In order not to get hang up on one part and waste more time than you need to.
The number 1) is for the lineart & skin color.
2) is for the shadow & cloth.
3) is for the eyes color & hairs color.
4) is for the shadow to the hairs & red color to the skin.
5) is for the band color & highlights on the hairs.
After we are done drawing the faces of our characters and coloring them we move to the next part.
(iii) The understanding of the story (and how your character fits)
At this point, It don't just only mean that one should just imaging and giving his/her character a face; No, it is more than that, because for our characters to be understand by we are to create a character, all we need do is to create our character profile by the detailing of the character description, Like [ Name & basic life stat, physical description, background, personal relationships, psychological description, story importance ], And also we are to just Keep everything simple.
The character profile is not set in stone. If you end up not liking the profile you made initially, you can still change it. Just remember to keep your character consistent throughout to till the final story.
Proportionality of the characters different ages
Creating a Human character, do not just only mean giving the character human looks but also means giving some human trait like growing up stages or making sure that our characters have a life cycle from infancy to senility in the story.
As people grow they add height and we can represent that with numbers of head at the Left, and when a person is growing from adult to senior, he/she lows height as the blue chart clearly express.
Below is the different height of the character to represent the different age.
As we grow older, our faces change and develop, making our overall appearance change too. In order for we to be able to create a good character, we need to understand how human appearance changes over time and ways we can apply them on our characters Baby, child, young girl, teenager, adult woman and old senior characters,
But for our better understanding, I will briefly run through Four Important life cycle of a character and they different touch that implement changes in the character appearance when we draw their different ages.
we start by drawing the shape of the head circle, with little round ears with little nose, big eyes, big forehead and the neck don't show
Finish baby stage of the character, the color use are bright and eyes catch, To show that the character is very, very young.
•For the Child
We draw the face circle, But now having a little form of shape, the forehead starts to shrink, the eyes also reduce a little, the nose starts to get big, the mouth moving up further from the chin and lastly the the neck is now showing.
Finish child stage of the character,
The color nature of character is now reducing in brightness, showing that the character is growing up and the skin is changing due to the environment climate.
• For the Adult
We draw the face using shape psychology with forms, the forehead is now big due to the increase in head size and hair reducing, the eyes are now small, the ears add in size, the nose form a shape base on the gender, the mouth move further away from the chin and the neck get more long.
Finish adult stage of the character, The color of this sage of the character reduce the more, showing that the character has live for a long while and the nature of the skin reduce in brightness
• For the Senior
We draw the face showing the shape of the skull of the character because the character is old now and the skin are drying up with wrinkles on the forehead, eyes, cheeks and neck. The hair on top of the head dry up also and the ear gets more longer.
Finish senior stage of the character, the character color is darken, the character reduce in height because the bones starts to shrink and bend.
Draw expression, create model & key poses
Now to round this all up, we need to Create key poses of our characters, because they are important and they briefly express our characters role and shows their different emotional expression,
Like when the character is angry, sad, stun, bored, shouting and shy face.
Thanks guys, for reading through this illustration, I hope for the beginning artist, this was helpful and if anyone still don't understand you can reach out to me by leaving his/her comments below or reach me on any of my social handles