July 21st, 2010


Illustrating Techniques of the ‘Toaster’ Part 3

Creating reference drawings for your characters is crucial for any illustrator/cartoonist. These drawings will help identify the relative shape and size of your characters to others you wish to add to the scene. When you construct your cartoon character with specific proportions it makes it easier when you start giving your illustrations a dimension of depth. You’ll be able to quickly identify how tall your character stands in the scene, this is very important when you are trying to create a perspective and foreshortening within your scene/background. Without the simple cartoon construction of specific proportions to your characters you might never know how tall or short your characters actually are in relation to each other and the background!

A lot of cartoon studios take their cartoon characters and size them in height based on ‘head size’. Beany Barfalamue which is the main character of my comic strips would typically stand 6 and ½ heads tall, where as Ralf Highmenhighmer (shown above) would only stand 5 ¾ heads. Using the head size of the main character, you will be able to quickly size other characters in the scene based on this proportion method.

These fundamental are very important should you wish to have other individuals/artists assist you with your work. When you have proper guidelines and relation to size reference drawings for your main characters the job of your fellow illustrator/animator becomes that much easier!

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