Monday, 29 November 2010

The End of Character Design

A project with its positives and negatives. Starting with the positive outcomes for this project, i have learnt allot about how to design/create/draw a character, it was an eye opening experience in terms of project management, and i created three resolved characters based on a project which was driven with little inspiration. As all projects there are some negatives, the negatives for this project, the lack of enthusiasm towards the themes given to me at briefing, the struggle of working on multiple projects (a part of work flow which i will need to improve on), and the fact that i did not get to finish the character bible to a standard which i would be most pleased with.

Throughout the 10 weeks of this project, everyday spent working on character design i learnt something new, not only during all 9 workshops with Justin, but also whilst working out side of the lessons on our actual projects. It was interesting to learn the process in which someone must undergo to design a character, as well as all the techniques used to create a recognisable character which fits the description in the brief. Even though i may have not achieved this in the view of other people, but to myself i believe i created characters which fit the description of the Hero, Villain, and Sidekick based on the two themes 'Secret Agent' and 'Dinosaur'.

It was eye opening in terms of project management and dedication to the course and the brief itself. I can safely say that for this project, as well as projects before this, my project as well as myself have suffered due too poor project management. But it is only now that i have realised that this poor management needs to change quite drastically in order to achieve a high level of work which is set out for. As negative as this may sound in some ways it is a blessing, this project has shown me that to achieve a high level of work, a high level of project management is needed to allow it to happen.

I believe my final three characters 'Agent I' the hero, 'Dr.Aptor' the villain, and 'Tyron' the sidekick matched the idea which was somewhere in my mind on paper quite well. They could have been better portrayed, for example an actual colour painting of each of them as well as some action poses(an outcome which would have been different if there was better project man0agement and more inspiration). But relating them to the brief and the two themes 'Secret Agent' and 'Dinosaur' i don't think i was too far off from achieving 100% satisfaction. I believe they matched well in comparison to each other, relation to the dinosaurs i based them on, and relation to the style of secret agent characters which i was going for, in this case a more James bond style of characters.

For the character project i found myself falling drastically behind in keeping up to date on posting development on the blog, a process which looking back on should have been changed as the project went on, even if i posted up each sketch page as they were being packed full of sketches. So to recap the full project, here it is...

These are the influence maps used to help develop my characters. In my opinion each of the characters i created matched there influences quite well.

Here's some development sketches which were produced whilst trying to work out exactly what i wanted my hero to look like. The idea stayed the same throughout as i new early on what i wanted the hero to look like, but through out  his development there where some changes in detailing on the characters. When i eventually worked out how i wanted combine the secret agent dinosaurs with the dinosaur as well as the more human form, at first it was going to be a human body with dinosaur features such as a dinosaur head, hands, feet and tail. But as time went on i decided that the final out come should be more influenced by the human form, so i settled by giving the character an overall humanoid body, with a dinosaur head, no tail, human feet and a mixture between dinosaur and human cartoon hands.

Here's the final outcome of the hero character, the turnarounds and facial expressions.

Here's some development sketches which were produced whilst creating the villain for the project. In a way the villain ended up being the hardest to design but in the end proved to be the easiest. At first i wanted the villain of the project to be a T-Rex, due to this being the most recognizable villain within the dinosaur world. But taking the shape and size of the T-Rex into account it proved difficult to match it with all the lessons we learnt in the character workshops, for example the classic villain would be slim, elongated, and would feature triangular forms. So taking this into account, as well as key influences such as Dr.No and Blofeld from James Bond, i realised i needed to change the Dinosaur and base my villain on the Velociraptor, a more sly evil looking dinosaur.

Here's the final outcome of the villain character, the turnarounds and facial expressions. As you can see i focused the villain character on more slim/small in size character constructed using triangular forms which helped bring across the idea that this character will be the villain.

Here's some development sketches which were produced whilst creating the sidekick for the project. I didn't spend as much time developing this character, which is a shame because i feel as though hes about 80% there, and the finishing 20% would really help to sell this character as a sidekick. At first this character was going to be a more classic sidekick, i.e quite small in size with a great personality to match its role. But as time went on the character changed to be what he is now, a henchman for the villain. The sidekick was always going to be on the villains side but would be more of a lap cat for him, similar to that in Blofeld and Dr.Evil, of course this was before when the villain would feature as a T-Rex. So now with the sidekick being a henchman, it only seemed appropriate that i gave the character the form of the T-Rex, a large predator looking creature playing on the idea that he had a small brain.
Here's the final outcome of the sidekick character, the turnarounds and facial expressions.

So finally here's the final outcome of the project, the character bible. Overall i would say that i have enjoyed this project very much, but perhaps with some more invested time instead of working on it like a back burner project under the narrative one, then my final outcome would have been to a higher standard and would have enjoyed the project more.

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