Exploration of Character Design

I’m sharing with you today, some actual animation character design work I created a while back. Thought it might be interesting to give you a little taste of the process.

The assignment in this case was to create a little brother character for an already designed big sister. The only stipulation is that he needed to be wearing a hoodie, jeans, and sneakers, and the script called for him to be mischievous. Hoo boy, what a task it turned out to be! You see before you about 20 or so exploratory sketches, but I did about 60 different versions in all.


Just a few of the many options explored for this character.


The client just couldn’t decide which way he wanted to go. Every time I presented a few versions, there would be comments and suggestions on how to change it whether it was the weight of the kid, his hair – whatever! Two other designers eventually got involved, too, and they experienced the same indecision from the client. It was certainly frustrating, because we wanted to please the client.

Eventually a design was chosen (one conceived by one of my colleagues), and then I created the turns (that’s the view of the character from all sides), and continued with some personality sketches, mouth charts, etc. I never would have thought a little boy would have been my toughest character design assignment, but it was.

So there you have it – some of the glitz and glamour of being an artist for hire.