Friday, 18 January 2013

Exercise - Character Development

I searched through magazines and the internet for examples of different characters.

Lovers - couples , wedding

Nurse, housewives, mother, interfering neighbour!

Old man, Scientist

Beggar, hero, wise man, Glasgow drunk!

Foreign business executive/prince


When I read the brief to create characters. I was uncertain what style to adapt - cartoon, life like etc but I began by doing some sketchbook work and brainstorming some ideas.

I produced a variety of different characters including a lady, a bride, a Parisian lady, a girl who was ill, a gran/super gran and as I was reading a book with a small girl in it namely "The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake", I tried to sketch a character of her.
Some of these were more successful than others but I then decided to try focus on one character and had the idea to portray a homeless guy. I tried to think about the scruffiness associated with homeless people and produced some ink and pen sketches trying to show his clothes as rugged / torn and his unruly appearance.

Lovers - a couple

Young fashionable lady - a bit too static - no movement

Bride and lady ideas

Ill girl - weak 

Homeless guy


Super Gran!

Character from book - the particular sadness of lemon cake - girl
These show more movement - as I tried to picture scenes from the book and draw my character acting them out.
Paris lady 

Homeless guys 


I've been looking at the work of Quentin Blake and really love his sketchy and loose work which really gets across the characters yet with quick minimal detailing and tried to bear this in mind when creating my homeless man.

I quite like my character "Pete" and tried drawing him from different viewpoints with different expressions. I can imagine that if I was to take this further and produce a book or multiple pieces with the same character I would become very familiar with how the character would look in different situations and positions. 
I think its a real talent being able to capture the essence of a character in a drawing and for me the ones which I think are most successful are often fairly simplistic drawings but with a few clever pen strokes and features the character comes to life such as those by illustrators including Quentin Blake and Oliver Jeffers. 

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