Jonathan is an extremely talented motion designer, illustrator and visual artist from France. He specialises in fantasy and science-fiction concept art, ultilising his 2d and 3d skillsets to achieve fantastic illustrations.
Let’s focus our sketches this time on the face of our characters. Having correct facial proportion and anatomy understanding is essential when it comes to animation.
Although you might have a great performance animated, if the audience is questioning the actual structure and placement of the facial features they are no longer paying attention to your story.
Work from constructing basic 3d shapes to ensure correct volume, and draw multiple views of the face from may angles. Also try to sketch from life as much as possible, if you can capture it quickly out in the world you can elaborate on the sketch later.
Progress to working with extreme shapes, with various styles. This exercise should produce some very interesting characters quickly, but remember the placement and proportions are key.
Cartoons follow their own guidelines on proportions based on what personality, age or style the character is being portrayed.
Drawing a Head From Imagination
Facial Proportions for Cartooning with Peter Emslie Parts 1 & 2
Davies is a game designer, artist and the co-founder of Southampton based games studio Massive Monster, and has over 11 years of experience in the games industry.
He primarily works with pixel art, but also has experience with 3d modelling, animation and digital art.
His client list includes Disney XD, Nickelodeon, Adult Swim and Namco-Bandai. In 2012 Massive Monster one of their most popular games to date, ‘Super House of Dead Ninjas’
Promotional Art for ‘Super House of Dead Ninjas’
‘Super House of Dead Ninjas’ Gameplay Video
Massive Monster Art
Cheung is a concept artist and illustrator from the UK and is currently working in Germany for Goodgame Studios.
As a side project Cheung has taken to creating speedart cinematic storyboards for popular video games such as Final Fantasy VII & VIII, Metal Gear Solid & is currently working his way through the entire Mass Effect trilogy.
Baldasseroni is a Lead Character Artist at Riot Games. His fantastic work features in many video game cinematics and film such as Batman Arkham Origins, The Elder Scrolls Online, Thor: The Dark World, Star Wars: The Old Republic & FarCry 3.
Baldasseroni spent 8 years working at Blur Studios and his work has also been featured in highly regarded digital publications and art book such as Ballistic Publishing Expose, d’Atiste & Elemental.
Personal website: http://www.eklettica.com/
Riot Games: http://www.riotgames.com/
Blur Studios: http://www.blur.com/
Ballistic Publishing: http://www.ballisticpublishing.com/
Gorman is a digital artist who runs a popular webcomic Magical Game Time, a collection of stand-alone pieces and one-shot comic strips exploring the thought-provoking side of videogames.
To add life to the comics themselves, he animates the frames and posts them online in gifs.
Gorman has also exhibited his work and has contributed to various art projects.
Robertson is an Australian animator who is renowned for his pixel art animations.
Robertson has been working in the games industry since 2002, and has recently produced animations for Adult Swim, and Disney’s Gravity Falls.
He was the lead animator for the video game “Scott Pilgrim vs the World: The Video Game”, and more recently “Mercenary Kings” for Tribute Games
Cornish is a storyboard artist with a wealth of cinematic releases to his name. He has over 18 years experience in the film industry, working with many acclaimed directors to bring to life some of the most popular films ever released.
He has produced storyboards for films such as, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
Gesture drawing should be a constant source of study for animators, as having strong poses that describe the personality of the character or the action itself is the key to a great performance.
When studying a life subject you can range the amount of time that you spend on each drawing, however you want to be able to describe a pose quickly allowing the motion to flow from your pencil.
Having good gesture drawing skills is also essential for 3d animators, as when it is all completely rendered and shown on the cinema screen you still are left with a 2D image (unless you are watching in 3d).
The principles still apply, and strong poses bring your characters to life.
Carefully observe the pose, but then think of what the motion of the action is and the emotion of the character. Then think how can the limitations of life be enhanced in my pose to better reflect and describe what I want to show the audience.
Feel, as well as see the gesture.
Ryan Woodward, who we have featured previously on this blog, has a book dedicated to gesture and figure drawing which you can find here.
You can also check out our previous blog post on his animation “Thought of You” here
Another book to consider reading is “The Art & Feel of Making it Real: Gesture Drawing for the Animation and Entertainment Industry” by Mark McDonnel, which you can buy here