A Cartoon Character Goldmine on my Doorstep

In an effort to get away from the computer and my desk and out of the house occasionally, I’ve been getting myself in to the habit of taking my sketchbook with me everywhere I go and I’ve discovered a goldmine of local characters in the process.

sketches003So far the best places I’ve discovered, are the car park of my local convenience store, motels and shopping mall food courts. I’ve really been having a blast, going out in the morning doing maybe 40 minutes of sketches, bringing them home and cleaning them up a little bit in Sketchbook Pro before posting them on Facebook for some instant feedback.

It’s been so much fun that I’m going to make this a regular thing from now on. These are the sketches from my most popular Facebook posts of last month. To get more posts like these in your Facebook or Twitter feed, like me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter.

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Creating a cartoon dog character in Sketchbook Pro and Adobe Illustrator

This video illustrates the 3 stages that I go through when creating a finished cartoon character design in this case a friendly dog character based on my client’s black and white Border Collie. The 3 stages are loose sketch in Sketchbook Pro, tight sketch using construction and colouring in Adobe Illustrator.

Drawing a Pterodactyl cartoon character in Sketchbook Pro x 8 speed

This video shows me in the process of creating a colour comp of a Pterodactyl character for a client, false starts and all. The video is speeded up for clarity and you also get to see the final coloured version at the end.

Designing a cave girl pinup girl for a T-Shirt

In my latest YouTube video I go through my process of creating this piece of pinup style art for a Zazzle Tshirt. In order to do this I start off by sketching in Sketchbook Pro and refine it, then bring it into Illustrator for digital inking and flat colouring and finally some digital painting in Photoshop. cavegirl

Character Concept Sketches for an Alien Bar

The title speaks for itself really. Here are some recent concept sketches that I did in Sketchbook Pro for Space Trash. This panel that required a bunch of different alien type characters in a bar. I suppose you could call it my story’s, Star Wars “Cantina Bar” moment that happens in when the two main characters enter a bar for a meeting with their client. The planet they are on is a tough mining colony and this scene takes place in a rough bar near a spaceport where there would be a lot of off-worlders and shady characters of all kinds mingling together, for fun, relaxation and often more nefarious activities.alien-bar-concept-sketches

Caricature Sketch of the day: Martin Freeman as The Hobbit

I’m looking forward to the forthcoming Peter Jackson movie of The Hobbit, it’ll be interesting to see how they managed to make three movies out of it though I seem to recall that it wasn’t a very long book. Oh well, in anticipation of the event here’s a caricature sketch of Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins

Caricature Sketch of the Day: Matt Smith-Doctor Who

Doctor_Who-Matt_Smith_caricatureI’ve been a fan of Doctor Who for a looooong time.  I can still vividly remember Jon Pertwee, and I may have even wept a little when he was killed by those giant rubber spiders (O.K. I admit it , I bawled) which kind of gives away my age doesn’t it?  If you have no idea what I’m talking about take a look at this link. I can’t think of any other TV program that I used to watch as a seven year old that I still watch just as avidly. I really like Matt Smith’s portrayal of the Doctor. In fact since the series has been revived each doctor has been better than the last. So here’s my tribute to Matt with my latest caricature of the day.

 

 

Caricature sketch of the day: Keith Richards

keith-richards006I’m really enjoying doing these quick character sketches/caricatures as a way of warming up and giving the cartooning muscles a workout. Todays sketch is of a youthful and significantly less gnarly, though not exactly fresh faced Keith Richards circa 1974.

Tommy Lee Jones Sketch

Tommy-Lee-Jones-001I have tended to avoid calling myself a caricaturist or to offer this as a service in the past. But I’ve come to the conclusion that a character designer who is any good should really be able to produce a half decent caricature. so with this in mind I’ve been working on a caricature a day as a warm up exercise, from time to time I’ll post the ones I like up here. The previous one I posted was Lemmy and here’s one I did today, Tommy Lee Jones.

Rise of the Mirrorbots

Sketchbook Pro has a great function which allows you to split the drawing area vertically or horizontally and mirror on one side what is drawn on the other. Generally speaking it’s considered to be a bad thing in comics and animation to create poses which are symmetrical but for character creation this mirror tool really helps me to break out of the box.

I needed a robot character for the webcomic that I’ve been working on and using the mirror tool helped me come up with some surprisingly Japanese looking designs, well it surprised me anyway.

Here are some of the results of this experiment. I really liked the guy on the top right so I took him and developed him some more and he’s made it into the webcomic which I hope to start posting on a regular basis on this site later this year.