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Skillshare – Animal Character Design for Picture Book Illustrators

Skillshare - Animal Character Design for Picture Book IllustratorsAnimal Character Design


Animal Character Design for Picture Book Illustrators : Techniques and tips for designing characters with a narrative.

In this class, award-winning picture book illustrator Nina Rycroft shares techniques, tips and tutorials for effective story-driven animal character design. Inspired by Nina’s latest picture book This Is The Dog and her Draw-a-Dog-a-Day 100-Day Project, Nina will walk you through the fundamentals of animal character design.

Nina will be demonstrating techniques with the help of her chihuahua Valentino, but you’re more than welcome to use your own four-legged friend. With a focus on dogs, our besties will help shed light on the fundamentals of animal character design.

In this class, you will …

  • Learn how to move away from reference and closer to your unique style.
  • Explore, experiment and design animal characters.
  • Sharpen your observation skills.
  • Learn how to ‘build’ animals characters using shape, proportion and placement.
  • Learn the art of caricature design.
  • Learn how to develop and apply a narrative to your animal characters.

In this class, Nina will walk you through…

  • How to distance yourself from ‘copying’ reference by using a three-phase blind drawing exercise.
  • An observational drawing exercise, drawing the front view and ¾ view.
  • The essentials in caricature design
  • A mind-mapping process – brainstorming ideas for an animal character design with a narrative
  • Sketching ideas – in a series of thumbnails sketches
  • Designing and drawing your final animal character illustrations
  • Adding colour, texture and shadow

Whether you’re creating character design concepts for a book, a comic or a series of greeting cards, what you learn in this class can be applied to any animal character.

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