Learn to Design Hybrid Characters using CSP!




#HybridDesigns #MonthlyTIPS202403

Hello everyone, my name is Nany and in this tutorial I am going to show you the creative process behind the design of hybrid characters, also known as OC's or original characters, all starting from a humanoid base with increasingly animalistic characteristics.


From a girl with fox tails! even a Dragon and a Mermaid! All with their unique designs but with features that belong exclusively to each species!

Steps to Design a Hybrid Character:

To simplify things, we can imagine the process on a 6-step scale; where the first step would be the Sketch, and what is the sketch and why is it important? Here I explain:

1. The Sketch

This step is where we let our imagination flow, if we already have something in mind we can capture the idea quickly before it leaves us! Don't worry if it doesn't look pretty or tidy, this is just a guide to be clear about the concept that we are going to refine later.


For example, in this tutorial we will see 3 hybrid characters, with different levels of animal traits. From a girl with fox tails! even a Lava Dragon Girl and a Mermaid! There are no limits!

Now, something very important before continuing is to look for references that help us understand the complexity of each animal we are drawing.


For this we can help ourselves with the search engine to find references that we will use when defining the animal traits of our characters.

Reference images

Thanks to this search, in addition to serving as inspiration, we can take advantage of the beautiful color palettes that animals have in nature, as well as learn to draw specific characteristics such as the fins of fish, the wings of dragons, the tails of foxes, among many other things.

Parts that make up a hybrid:

Depending on the level of hybridization, we can see few animal parts, as in the Kemonomimi or The fox/cat/dog girls, where we only add:



Or many more animal parts as in the case of the dragon girl, which we could draw even the skin completely like the dragon color, but in this case to maintain a more human appearance, we only added:





With the mermaid already having half the body of a fish, we chose not to add more animal features and better use the color palette of the betta fish to maintain the similarities.

2. LineArt

This is where everyone will wonder; How do we go from an ugly Sketch to a beautiful drawing, with good lines and colors?


And the answer is: with the help of the sketch and the reference images we are going to continue taking the time to perfect the lines and add any detail we want, lowering the opacity of the sketch and drawing on another layer over it.

One of the most important steps is the LineArt! Don't spare time!



3. Color Base

In this step we focus only on coloring the drawing with a base tone. Landing on a layer below the Lineart, we add color to each character part: Skin, hair, clothes, wings, tail, etc...

4. Shadows & Highlights

With our base colors ready, in this step we can focus on first adding shadows to the character and then brightness or ambient lights.


In the case of Dragon Girl, since her hair is made of lava and her tail has lava inside, I chose to add many layers of glitter in the overexpose or add (brightness) option, with a spray brush to achieve the desired effects.



This step is very important to use reference images to achieve more beautiful results, especially if you have a hard time understanding how to draw shadows on people.


In this step I only used the colors of the fire to guide me, and achieve a lava effect.

5. Details

Last but not least! Add details that give life to your character, such as a simple background that we will make with the help of some brushes that we found for free in CSP, such as some bubbles and glitter:



6. Save and Export as .png

We are already in the last step, and it is as simple as saving your .csp file and exporting a .png image so that we can have our illustration of our Hybrid Character to share wherever we want!



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