I just wanted to share a really cute character design concept I came up with for some woodland animals!
You’ll recognize some of the animals in this group from my recent Christmas ornaments illustration.
This artwork is the first drawing I made of those characters hanging out all together. The project ended as ornament design concepts, but I couldn’t leave this happy fun sketch alone.
I love taking character design sketches to the light table. There’s something so cool about the way the light shines through the paper, and you can see both the starting linework and the cleaned up ink drawing layered together. Fat and thin markers together is my jam, man.
It’s the best.
But also, I really like cleaning up that ink work in Photoshop – it covers up a multitude of sins like slightly smeared lines and arms that don’t hit juuuuust where you wanted them to.
I’ve been working on my technique to bring a more handmade feel to the color stage of my artwork, kind of like how I put together this outfit of the day editorial illustration. That particular piece took close to 10 hours start to finish. Which is an insane amount of time.
But truly, a lot of that was trial and error, seeing how different things worked out. This piece took maybe three hours to color up, because I was using techniques I had already discovered. I’ve got three editorial pieces I’ll be working on this weekend for a client, and I’m honing the process even more so I can make it a bit more streamlined, a tad less work intensive to create something really special.
Tight deadlines have a way of inspiring you to work smarter, not harder, you know?
The one thing I wonder with this character design piece – is it kids art enough? A lot of my kid specific artwork has typically been really bright happy fun colors. That changed with this group, because it’s a more woodsy theme… but does that bother you? Do you wish the colors were more saturated?
Do you miss my flat color kids art? I’m wondering what this art would look like if I try another version of it, with flat colors and maybe a little texture thrown in with some shading…
At this point, I’m kind of just thinking out loud.
What do you think about this character design concept?
Don’t forget – if you’ve got a project you’re working on that could use some illustration, I wanna talk to you!