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Art School Boot Camp: Designing Quirky Characters

Christine Nishiyama, Illustrator/Writer at Might Could Studios

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6 Videos (13m)
    • What's Character Design?

    • Speaking with Shape Language

    • Checking Strength with Silhouettes

    • Case Study: Shape Language in Animation

    • The Fine Details

    • Project Assignment


About This Class

What makes a character look like a good guy? A bad guy? The comic relief? The love interest? A character design is different than just a drawing of a person. A “character” must be dynamic enough to tell a story about who that person is. The viewer must be able to connect with the character and understand who they are at a base level just by how they look.

This class will focus on using shape language to draw characters that communicate personality, story, and emotion rather than focusing on drawing perfect anatomy. We’ll be developing unique and expressive characters by speaking visually with shape language.


Shape language is how basic shapes (whether in character design, fine art, or any other application) can communicate aspects of mood, personality, and story. Understanding how shape language works gives you a starting point for drawing characters, as well as depth and meaning to your final character design.

By the end of the class, you’ll have your own new character design for use in whatever you like to create whether it be books, comics, video games, or just random doodles!


247 of 256 students recommendSee All

exactly what you ask for
I've never thought that basics shapes had that much to say
Amazing class! Very helpful! ♥





Christine Nishiyama

Illustrator/Writer at Might Could Studios

Hallo! I'm Christine, illustrator and writer at Might Could Studios.

I make books and comics, and I love to draw! I've worked with over 50 companies, created over 15 courses, and taught over 40,000 aspiring and established artists, helping them learn new skills, grow more confident, and develop their unique artistic styles.

I've been drawing for over 20 years, working independently for 5 years, making books for 3 years, and now I'm finally putting my books out into the wild. My ...

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