When designing a character's appearance, we want to come up with cool, original elements that make an impression and distinguish that character from all others. So it's tempting to give them a gazillion cool belts with buckles running up their legs and arms, chains hanging off them, high lace boots or corsets, intricate hairdos, whole sleeve tattoos, fancy hats, or patterns.
We love it as we design it. The character looks SO COOL!
…and then we need to do it again. And again. And again. For ever.
Suddenly, we hate every chain link, every belt buckle, every bit of lace, all of the tattoos. The character takes forever to draw, we need to be constantly looking back to the design for reference, and perspective can be challenging when drawing the character from different angles.
Nowadays with the various paint programs, there are ways to go around this, by creating special brushes that paint chain links, or tattoo patterns, or lacing. Still, that can't always be a solution or even feasible with every intricate design. So some strategizing during the character design phase should be done in order to create a character that is fun to draw innumerable times.
The sense of elaborate clothing can be given with strategically placed, easy-to-sketch elements on the character's outfit: a line of buttons, a frill around the cuffs and from under a jacket, pleats, buckles on the shoes, and so on. The point in a character design for a comic is to give the right impression as minimally as possible.
Jafar is “the best dressed man in Agrabah” but his design is deliciously minimal and simple for drawing multiple times. He still looks like he wears expensive, intricate clothing.
Same for Anastasia in her princess outfit. The glitter does most of the job, as well as the large swirly design on the tresses down her skirt's front. Everything else is almost abstracted.
On the other hand, this would be a nightmare if it weren't computer generated:
Which is why it's so simplified when it is designed for 2D.
The impression is the same, though!
Have you ever designed a character outfit that was a pain to draw multiple times?
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Tantz_Aerine at 12:00AM, July 30, 2022
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