Exercise 7: Character design – Working process

For this exercise I had to research more about character design and main points that make character’s role so important in illustration. I relayed pretty much on Andrew Loomis books where he explained main features, how to start building a character and important changes that follow different expressions. These are some general rules that were helpful in a beginning and can be applied to any character. I was trying to understand structure and perspective of face by drawing his examples.




As i become more confident I started to develop my own expression based on what I learnt so far fro practice. For smiling face the main characteristics are squinting of the eyes and folds under the eyes. Mouth is wide and fits between lines of the cheeks. For the laugh, cheeks are squeezed high against eyes which are tilted at outside corners. Furious faces have popped eyes, distended nostrils, shown teeth while cheeks are pulled downward. Corner of mouth are wide and down.

I found “expression chart”  which helped me to create different moods by following main characteristics of certain expression.

This is one character I developed as an exercise in a form of rough drawings. It is interesting how slight change of tiny line alter the complete appearance. I was drawing and erasing but had troubles with profile and back.



Later I decided to draw my younger brother who is musician and it was much easier since I had a picture of him which can be reference for capturing main features. In the example above I was just drawing based on what learned from Loomis book. I started with a smiling face where he shows teeth and squints his eyes.



I continued with my drawings so I created another smiling character from the profile. Next thing I want to try is creating worried face so i pulled downward his eyebrows ,outside corners of the eyes, as well as lip corners. I wanted to create character from the back but to show a little bit of face like in Ardizzone’s illustrations as I have always liked that.



Next was to create a surprised face so I made popped eyes, lifted eyebrows and open mouth. I made also another profile but this one looks frown as I pointed mouse line, eyebrows and eyes downward.


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