Give Character Designs a Fun Color Scheme

Brian Shepard, 2D Game Artist and Illustrator.

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9 Videos (38m)
    • Introduction

    • Your Assignment

    • Everything Is Relative

    • The Color Map Method

    • Light and Color

    • Color Palettes

    • Color Ensembles

    • Color Expectations

    • Color Swaps


About This Class

Do you ever think about how your favorite fantasy characters decide what they're going to wear when they get up in the morning? Does red make them feel more empowered? Do blue characters want the world to know just how sad they are?

This course is about figuring out the "why" of color in regards to character design. We'll begin by exploring some basic ideas on color theory, and transition into how those colors are integrated purposefully into characters from video games, movies, cartoons, comics, and any other fantasy medium you can think of. Color can be a scary, complicated thing to learn at a glance, but the idea is to make it not so complicated, so that anyone can be confident in the palettes they choose for their own made up characters.

This class requires no specific software, but I'll be doing most of my demonstrations in Adobe Photoshop CS4 and Adobe Illustrator CS4. The way colors interact is something that people have studied before these programs even existed, so you're encouraged to follow along with whatever tools you feel most comfortable with. All I ask of you is a little of your time and a willingness to makeĀ mistakes!

This class is the second in a series about the components of an art style. Be sure to check out the previous course onĀ shape language in character design!

54 of 54 students recommendSee All

It's one of the most useful courses about color I've ever seen. It's full of examples and excellent explanations. Highly recommendable.
I think I learned more about color from this class than any other lesson I've seen about colors combined! Real practical too using the game examples. Many things I didn't realize :D
Michelle Co

Designing my Dreams

Good advice on choosing color palette for characters.





Brian Shepard

2D Game Artist and Illustrator.

A slightly-above-average illustrator and character designer for video games. Trying to improve my understanding of character design, storytelling, and how we culturally respond to visual cues like shape and color in everyday situations. Making an effort to help anyone else who wants to learn the same things!

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