Monday, 16 November 2009

Visual Language Research: Charater Design influences & Inspirations

Before I start to design my character I should outline the kind of elements I want to include in my character. I know I want my character to be female, quite commanding with an element of sex appeal, I also want the setting to be a futuristic one and since I'm a fan of the sci-fi genre it shouldn't be too hard to develop something. To get creative juices flowing I'm going to take a look at various artists' designs that I want to try incorperate into my own.

(Designs for characters of the animated series Burst Angels)

First I took at some character designs by Japanese artist Hakua Ugetsu, more specifically the ones he developed for the tv-series Burst Angel. Looking at these designs gave me a great understanding of how to develop a character and a character sheet, whilst Ugetsu's style isn't one I want to replicate it is one that I find very interesting especially the line quality and colour jobs. His ability to combine unqiue character designs with sex appeal is something I do want to try incorperate into my character to try make it appear as interesting and as appealing as possible.

(Artwork by Hakua Ugetsu)

What I looked at specifically with Ugetsu's designs were the clothing and hair styles as it seems to be something that makes his characters seem truly interesting, I will have to think about how I would translate Ugetsu's style into something more suiting for myself. This is because the type of style I have in-mind is something a little more reflective of realisitic illustrations. One thing should be noted here about the way Ugetsu's work has been laid out is that it can tell you alot about the character before the character has even been animated or even coloured, such as a character's personality. In the above picture there is a design of a female in a track suit and from the design I can tell that the character is surly and anti-social when compared to other characters.

(Art by Yoshiyuki Sadamoto)

I want to include a type of close fitting type of space suit in my character design to show that space travel has reached to a certain point but it's quite like hoping into a car to go to the supermarket. I was reminded by the character designs for the animated series Neon Genesis Evangelion and how it contain something very similar to what I want to try include. Sadamoto's design work on the "Plug-Suit"s were something that really stood out amougst all the other different types of space suits so I took a closer look at the designs to see how he designed them. When it comes to my character I want to try add a more practical look which suggests that it's more based in reality.

(I actually own this book, it's reet good)

For extra inspiration I also looked at the art of Star Wars to just get a further understanding of how to design a character, I found using this book was helpful when I got stuck with ideas aswell as just general brainstorming with what to include or what kind of things to include. I found that looking at other people's work really helped with coming up with ideas for my own character design and because of it I feel I have a good bearing on my character and will start to sketch down my concepts and develop them from there.

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