Steve Lenze
Steve Lenze
Colorado
Professional artist from the animation industry. traditional 2D animation. storyboard. character design.
Steve Lenze
Character design is all about story- the colors, costume, pose, etc. Your designs are nice, they have a romantic feel about them. It's hard to judge character design without knowing what their story is, so I wanted to talk a little about your drawings. In general, you draw really well, faces and hands look really nice. The one thing you need to watch is your poses. Sometimes they look out of proportion and they tend to be kind of stiff. I did some quick sketches to show you how you can maybe add some gesture and attitude to your poses, I hope it helps :)
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Steve Lenze
For such a difficult angle of the head, you should try lining up the top and bottom of the head as well as the features. Be mindful of the angles of the head by lining up your pencil to the angle, then transfer that angle to the drawing. I did a quick sketch to show you how to do this, I hope it helps :)
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Steve Lenze
This is a good start, keep practicing this egg exercise using different lighting and angles. I think the bottom one looks pretty good and probably looks more successful because you added some background value, thus making the values of the egg look less dark, which is the problem you ran into with the first egg. The white of the paper makes us think everything looks too dark, but if you compare the two eggs, the values look pretty much the same.
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Steve Lenze
Hey Joey, I dig your monster, it looks like something from Scooby Doo :) The issue I see is that the left hand is getting lost and is unclear. By pulling it out to the side a bit will make it much more effective. Also, leaning the character over a bit will give it more of a dynamic pose. I did a quick sketch to show you what I mean, I hope it helps :)
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Steve Lenze
Hey toph, Your proportions look pretty good and your poses are good. The issue I am seeing is that you need to focus more on the gesture of the pose. You do this by finding a gestural "S" or "C" curve that describes the pose from top to bottom as well as the limbs. I did a quick sketch to show you what I mean, I hope it helps :)
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Vanessa
Follow Up: I saw the following image online and thought maybe I'd try with a brown shadow instead. I turned the photo black and white to check Values as Steve had mentioned them. I think the values aren't too off? Though I'm partial to soft watercolour and pastel art, and this lighting might call for a very high contrast. The problem is I've gone from a purple shadow which was corpse-like to a brown shadow which seems monkey-like or something - it still isn't feeling like skin. (ie. darkening the brown shadows to make them higher contrast would likely look muddy - not skin-like) I'm closer to putting this one down (will probably do some blending, glazing, and add a few details to the cloak - but don't plan to finish the glove on her hand at all), but once again, any input, critique, or insight is welcomed. I'm thinking still that maybe the transitional colour HAS to be red/pink (not yellow/orange) due to the subsurface scattering on the skin.
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Steve Lenze
I agree with Martha, try doing some thumbnails to work out your color scheme. I also think you need to work on your drawing and creating form with your values. You are never going to make it look right if your values are not correct. I did a quick drawing and value study to show you what I mean.
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Steve Lenze
Your style is marketable, but you need to really pay attention to details in some of your drawings. Also, it would probably look better if you colored your lines instead of keeping them black. I did an example of how you could focus on some of the details of your characters, I hope it helps :)
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Steve Lenze
That's great Anubhav Saini, all that hard work paid off :)
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Steve Lenze
Hey michael legassie, These are cool ideas, and in order to get them across, you must use gesture, anatomy and poses. Think about how the pose can give attitude to your characters. Character design is all about story, and the costume, pose and facial expression tells the story of who the character is. I did a sketch to show you the process of starting with gesture, then anatomy, then costume and details. I hope this helps :)
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Steve Lenze
The simplest answer is: its all about value. If the value is correct, then technically you could use any color and it would work. In the reference you have, the colors were chosen by the artist, even the screenshot at the end was colored in post editing. Now, I'm going to give you a generalization: warm light= cool shadows. At golden hour, when the sun is setting, the light is very orange/red so the shadows tend to be purple. Skin is a desaturated orange, so when in shadow it starts to look purple because the shadow is cool, but the warmth of the skin takes it from a blue to a purple. Again, this is a generalization! My suggestion is, if you work digitally, then create the lighting and values in gray scale first- then color over it with different colors and see what happens. Hope that helps :)
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Steve Lenze
Here are a couple of ideas :)
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Steve Lenze
You did a good job describing the perspective of the limbs. What you want to do is add the torso, pelvis, shoulder and head/neck shapes.
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Steve Lenze
Hey scrappypumpkin, You did a pretty good job separating the values, but they are very far apart. If you squint you'll notice the shadow values are much closer together. I did a quick sketch to show you what I mean, I hope it helps :)
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@tinyart
I redid the portrait after watching the demo. It felt really "schematic" and simplified before adding the darks, so hopefully this can be considered a good solution of the exercise. It's cool how those few details make it feel so alive, but it kinda feels too realistic now. Also, the nose is too big as always. :-D Other than that I'm quite happy with it. I'm using CSP and I still have trouble with the pencil tool, lol. Its feel just doesn't make sense to me. I'm curious about any feedback! Thank you.
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Steve Lenze
These look good, your values relate to each other pretty well and your dark accents make it pop. Good work :)
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Steve Lenze
Hey @petewisdom, Nice job on this drawing. You captured the likeness pretty well, but because your photo of he drawing is at an angle, the drawing is a little distorted. As far as the rendering goes, you did what a lot of people who are just starting out do- you made the reflective light too light. One of the things we have to do as we render is always be comparing the values to other values in the reference. For example: are the highlights in the hair the same value as the skin? nope. are the "whites of the eyes" white? nope. are there highlights in the hair on the shadow side of the hair? nope. Make sure you are always comparing values with other values to get the correct relationships. I did a quick sketch to show you what I'm talking about, I hope it helps :)
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Steve Lenze
Hey Felix, When doing gesture, you want to look for an "S" or "C" curve that describes the pose from top to bottom. I did a quick sketch to show you what I mean :)
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Steve Lenze
If your talking about comic book style lighting, you can do both. Pick a single light source and direction and let that determine how to do your shadows. Also, looking how other comic artists do their lighting can be very helpful for learning.
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Steve Lenze
Your proportions are a little off- the distance from the top of the hip to the bottom is too long the ribcage on the left side is too long This is causing the whole torso to look too long and out of proportion. You did capture the gesture pretty nice, so the body has a nice flow. As far as the shading is concerned, you are not comparing your values before you are placing them. For example: you have the butt as light as the upper back- is that true? NO I did a quick sketch to show you what I mean, I hope it helps :)
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Steve Lenze
If you line up certain body parts, you will see why your drawing is off. I created a diagram to show you what I mean, I hope it helps :)
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Steve Lenze
I think before getting too caught up in anatomy, you should focus on gesture and structure. These will help you think about the rhythms of the body and the 3 dimensional aspect of the different parts of the figure. This will set you up to then start adding anatomy. I did a quick sketch to show you what I mean, I hope it helps :)
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