How I cre­ate… a de­mon stopper

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1 Char­ac­ter de­sign

Be­fore get­ting into the il­lus­tra­tion it­self, I like to start lay­ing out the char­ac­ter de­sign. It’s eas­ier to bal­ance the im­por­tance of the vis­ual el­e­ments if you al­ready know how the com­po­si­tion will take shape. This means you can be sure that an im­por­tant fea­ture won’t be too sub­tle in the fi­nal im­age.

2 Com­po­si­tion

I sketch two ver­sions. But in this one I re­alise the cam­era an­gle isn’t dra­matic enough and the scars would be tiny. A front shot will fea­ture di­rect light and one-point per­spec­tive, which are good for em­pha­sis­ing a char­ac­ter. Some­times clas­sic so­lu­tions are bet­ter than dy­namism.

3 Char­ac­ter de­tails

I start de­tail­ing with large brushes, grad­u­ally pick­ing smaller ones – I find this makes it eas­ier to keep track of the over­all look and feel. There aren’t many se­crets here: set your brushes to smaller sizes and pa­tiently ren­der or­na­ments, freck­les, hair and drap­ery. The deeper the de­tail­ing, the richer the piece.

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