Illustrating People: Character Design for Storytelling | Karla Alcazar | Skillshare

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Illustrating People: Character Design for Storytelling

teacher avatar Karla Alcazar, Illustrator and Teller of Tiny Stories

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

9 Lessons (44m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. The Class Journey

    • 3. Dangers of Portraiture

    • 4. Visuals Over Narrative

    • 5. Narrative

    • 6. Observation

    • 7. Connection Through Emotions

    • 8. Creating the Class Project

    • 9. Conclusion

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About This Class

Want to learn how to design a character that is able to communicate a story in an efficient and memorable way? Join Mexico-based artist and illustrator Karla Alcazar to learn how!

Stories are a powerful way to communicate ideas, thoughts, and feelings. We all love stories; we all love to tell them and we all love to listen to them.

In this class, we will go through a few general character design concepts and we will understand a bit better what makes a character who they are. We will learn a couple of key elements on narrative illustration and we will learn how to use these to design a character that feels and looks in tune with our narrative. Also, I'll be sharing a few personal tips and tricks that will help you be a better visual storyteller!

Once you complete this class, you will feel that your observational skills have been sharpened which will help you to illustrate with more confidence and using your own voice. I also hope this class will help you to connect with yourself a bit more and to feel more curious about other people around you!.

Feel free to use your favorite choice of media for this class. It doesn’t matter if you prefer to illustrate in an analog or in a digital way. Whichever media makes you more comfortable and whichever media you have more fun with will be perfect for this class!

This class is for anyone who enjoys stories and for anyone who enjoys drawing (especially characters!). No previous knowledge is needed. It really doesn’t matter if you’re an experienced illustrator, if you’re starting out or if you just like to draw for fun. Everyone is welcome to join!

If you would like to feel more confident when telling a story visually, or if you are struggling with designing a character or if you simply enjoy designing characters and would like to expand your knowledge, this class is for you!.

Meet Your Teacher

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Karla Alcazar

Illustrator and Teller of Tiny Stories

Top Teacher

Hi there! my name is Karla. I work and live in Mexico doing editorial work for magazines and books :)

I'm fascinated by people (I have a background in psychology so I'm always curious about human behavior!). This is why I love character design and narratives, and I'm particularly drawn to short ones. I also love botanical illustration!.

I'm a passionate advocate of living a life that inspires you to be your best self :)


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1. Introduction: I didn't realize that at the end of the day, regardless of what content illustration you are doing, you are trying to communicate a message. Hi I'm Carlo Katherine, I'm illustrator from Mexico and I've always loved stories. I decided that my journey in illustration would have to combine those two. In the last couple of years, I've been very lucky to have worked in the tutorial projects for magazines and children's books. I've also been working on personal commissions, which has really helped me to have a better understanding of character development. In this class, we will learn to design a character that communicates a story in an effective and memorable way. I'm going to be sharing a few tips and tricks on character design that hopefully will make you a better storyteller. I think you will really enjoy this class, if you would like to feel more confident while designing a character that tells a story, or if you're a kind of struggling with designing a character full stop, or if you'd just like to draw characters for fun. We'll also be learning a couple of key elements in narrative illustration, and we will use them to design a character the feels in tune with our narrative. Feel free to use your favorite type of media for this class. It doesn't matter if it's analog or if it's digital, it doesn't matter. What it matters here is you have fun and use something that you feel comfortable with. I also hope this class will help you to connect more with yourself and to film work here as of all the people around me. Once you complete this class, you will feel that your observational skills have been sharpened. Hopefully that will help you to feel more confident while drawing people and narratives. I'm on Instagram alive. Please feel free to share your process with me using this hashtag. I would love to see what you come up with. Thank you so much for joining and hope you enjoy this class. See you in a bit. 2. The Class Journey: For this class, we will be taking a slightly different approach in the sense that we won't be creating things in every lesson. Instead, we will go through a few different key concept in each lesson. We will do a couple tiny little exercises and at the end, I will show you an example of how to bring everything together and we will create a character that conveys a story and fills in tune with the narrative. Now that we know what's to come, get comfy, may be make yourself a cup of coffee and let's dive into our first lesson. 3. Dangers of Portraiture: I would like to start this class with a little personal story about my own journey with character design and with narratives. Everything started back in my first few weeks when I started uni rates. I was a 100 percent convinced that I wanted to do something related to people and to stories. That was the thing I saw myself as this editorial illustrator doing books and getting into this wonderful world and as really lovely and incredibly large spectrum that illustration has to offer. Those were my two things. I didn't even want to explore anything else.I knew that, that's what I wanted to do. I didn't know if all units are more or less the same, but mine was pretty self directed. What would be studying? I don't know how to put in a word. Studying a topic, let's say editorial illustration. You are more than welcome to create your own projects and to explore that subject us you see it fit. Which was actually quite a cool. Every Friday we would have a little feedback sessions with other students and with teachers and we will discuss our projects, seeing if there was anything that we needed to improve on or reward being sidetracked a bit. Those actually useful as well. In my head, I always came with cool narrative projects, like stories. Every Friday without a fail, I would get the same feedback from teachers particularly. They will look at my project and that which is look at it and look at me and be like, "This is a portrait." I would be like, "What. No, this is like a boon story like a plot and everything is like so clear. Obviously, it wasn't clear. I always struggle with that is just like, "Why am I not communicating, why is like the narrative is not coming across this. I want it to, or what am I doing wrong?" I remember this particular harsh session that I have with one of my teachers. I think that changed everything and I'm so glad he broke my heart when it happened. But I remember we had this little exercise that we did when we went to a museum and we're to pick a few objects from the castle. It was a castle museum, so we had to pick a few elements and combine them to create a narrative and like what would draw that narrative. I remember that we had this session and this particular teacher, she was harsh. But she looked at my illustration and then she just said it, she was like, "I'm so tired of seeing pretty illustrations, just for the sake of them being pretty like there's no substance to it. I'm tired of this." As said, my heart broke a little. I harshly was really upset because for many reasons, but I think I was really confused because honestly, my main intention wasn't to draw something pretty just for the sake of it. You know what I mean? My main intention was to do the exercise, combine the elements and draw a narrative. I kid you not. It took me a couple of years to actually understand where I was doing wrong. I think I still make this mistake. I think it's something that it has to be an ongoing process, but I didn't realize that at the end of the day, regardless of what content illustration you are doing. If it's botanical, if its a landscape, or if its narrative, you are trying to communicate a message. My problem was without even trying, I was really prioritizing aesthetics over the narrative Itself. It showed. It showed so much, and I get it. It's really easy to get carried away with colors and shapes and everything. I think that is the main mistake that I personally encounter in my journey. In the next lesson, we are going to talk a little about prioritizing a narrative over visuals and why this is so important to consider before we start drafting your character. 4. Visuals Over Narrative: In this lesson, we're going to talk about why is it important to not think of character design and something purely visual, and why is it important to understand the message we're trying to convey before we start designing our character. Why is it really important for us to take a step back. Before we get carried away with the actual illustration, to take a minute to actually understand the message that we're trying to convey. Throughout many years, I think that was my main mistake. Now, another thing that I want to make sure that I'm communicating well is that, I do not think that portraits are bad because I said that my teachers would look at and be like, oh, this are portraits and I took it as something bad. They're not bad, a good portrait should convey a narrative. There are so many great examples of really amazing portraiture like this one by Van Gogh. You can tell quite a bit about his mood, and this one tells you a lot about location and time and place. There are other ones that are truly remarkable, this is Las Meninas by Diego Velazquez. There so much context here. The painter, the princess, there's a dog. Again, it is easy to read the narrative in this portrait. If there is an incredible portrait in the history of portraits, Las Meninas is the one but it my favorite one, I'm biased what can I say. But it took me a good few years to actually accept that I was completely disregarding the narrative or that I was not really understanding the narrative, and I was just creating confusion. Have you seen those movies which the visuals are stunning. But you get confused about, what is this movie about, or there is just no connection with actual story even though the visuals are great. Well, I'm not saying that my illustrations were great by any means because I don't think there were. But I think it just can happen. It's just a common mistake that can happen to anyone. [inaudible] want to create a character. Its fan to that you draw something, you have all this colors, you have all of these shapes, and you just get carried away and you want to add something cool, like a long hair, lots of bracelets, all of that and it is fun. That is the fun part of the process, I think or the most part of the process. But I think, that it is important for everyone, as I said, it doesn't matter if you're experienced or not to take a step back, and to realize that narrative are the building blocks of your character. Before we get carried away to signing something, I think that it is important for us to understand the message that we want to say. Another thing is that for me, particularly, I don't think that I was seeing my characters as real people, I think I was just seeing them ask characters, which it doesn't necessarily make sense. If we see characters as real people, I think it is easier for us to understand them more and I guess we're going to be better at communicating the message. I remember when I was younger, I was drawing a graphic novel, let's say, but I remember that I got so carried away with one of the characters, I was like, no, this character has to wear loads and loads of hats and she's going to click hats in like she's just going to be like that hard person. The more I think of it, those hats didn't serve a purpose. There was no need for her to collect hats or to wear hats every day. If there was a reason behind it that would have enrichen the character and though would have give the character a stronger sense of narrative. I don't know, maybe it would have made sense if there was a season in which she was wearing hats because perhaps she got a bad haircut, I don't know, like something really vein. But it just felt hollow, if there's no reason behind it, if fishers pursuing a stylistic thing, the character is just going to feel a bit empty and it's just not going to communicate much or it's going to create confusion, which I think is worse. I personally think that that's what I was doing with my illustrations. I was so preoccupied with drawing things a certain way, stylistically, that the message was being buried under an under and under layers and layers and people wouldn't necessarily were able to read it. Everything that you add to your character has to have a reason. You've seen in much real people, I guess that we're going to be able to understand them more. Let's say that you woke up this morning and perhaps you're not feeling too great. Maybe you're feeling a little bit sick, or maybe you're not necessarily feeling that cheerful and you're just feel a bit down. You'll look outside the window and you said that it's really cold and rainy, maybe it's a weekend, you decide, I'm just going to work that really comfy front piece sweater because I cannot be bothered, and I'm going to warn my pajamas because as I said, it's a weekend. If you have long hair, perhaps you decided to put it up in a bun because, I don't feel well, I just wanted to be cozy and comfortable and I do not want to deal with anything. Perhaps you come up with something like this. Even if it's like just a random thing that just putting on clothes in the morning, it has a reason. There is even tiny little things, if you decided to wear earrings, I'm wearing earrings right now because I'm filming the class, but perhaps I would've not wore them if I wasn't filming this. There is always a reason to add things to your character. I think that is the most basic thing that we need to consider. We need to take a step back and ask ourselves, why we're drawing the things that we're drawing, or even we want to address something desperately like why is that we want to do that? I think it's really important to not just dive into illustrating, but understand our personal motivations in what we want to communicate. At the end of the day, the narrative would be the building blocks of the whole world you're trying to create, of the whole narrative or the whole story. If you don't have a right, if you don't have those foundations, your character is not going to communicate things well, it's not going to feel genuine. The first thing that I would advice, you have my tragic journeys there's of anything, is before you be carried away with designing the character, just take a step back and keep in mind that narrative illustration, when it comes to characters, it has to be 50-50, there's going to be a feedback to some degree. But you're there as an illustrator to enhance the narrative, not the other way round. Is the thing like, think of it, let's say that you would get hired by this writer, and you draw this character that is perhaps looks like the character is described in the book, but you add a lot into it, the writer is going to be like, "I do not think that this is my character, I would like you to make some changes." It doesn't work like that, even if it's a personal project. I even think it's more dangerous, if it's a personal approach because you are more than vested in it. It is your baby and you want it to look pretty and you want it to look nice and all of that. But it is important for us to understand that were drawing characters for a narrative and not the other way round. Also a little note here, I think it is important for us to, start from really simple elements as well and building up from there rather than the other way round. In order to communicate something, not just really illustration, I think with everything, we need to understand it well. I think that is the first thing when we're designing characters, simplicity. Now that we have talked about the importance of narrative and character design, in the next lesson, we're going to talk about a few important narrative elements that will help us to support our character visually. 5. Narrative: [MUSIC] In this lesson, we're going to go through a few key elements that could help to make a narrative visually engaging. We're also going to be doing our first warm up exercise. Just to be like really cliche about it, we're going to define narrative. A narrative is basically a story, and a story could be also defined as a few actions being carried out by characters. Behind an action there's always a motivation, we just do not [inaudible]. We do not do things just for the sake of it. There's always an underlying reason why we're doing certain things. I think if we understand our narrative better, it would pick it up apart. We're going to be able to support our narrative visually. It's going to be easier to convey the message, and we're going to be feeling more confident in delivering that message. It's no secret that we humans have loved stories from the dawn of time. We have used them for entertainment as cautionary tales, or to communicate emotions. I think humans like narratives so much, because we also, as a species, we love to solve puzzles. I think narratives are partly that. We get invested in things when we don't have all the answers. That magically gets our attention and we want to collect all the information to know what's happening. We either love a certain character, or hate a certain character based on that information we have collected. But your trying to collect all of this information because that's what humans do. We like a challenge, and I think that is a first thing that I would like to point out about stories and something that perhaps we need to consider while we're designing a character. It is to, do not give everything away right away, give enough away for the person to be interested, but not enough for the person to know all the answers. You want to be clear and you want to convey a clear message. But you also want to live a toy little [inaudible] mystery. I would like you to show you a few illustrations that I consider are pretty amazing. This is by Isabelle Arsenault, and I'm so sorry if I'm pronouncing her name wrong, and it's from her book, Captain Rosalie. This illustration work so well because you can read its message really easily. It also gives you a vague idea of what's happening here, but it makes you want to know what exactly happened. This illustration is from a page of Cabbage Moon by Jan Wahl, and illustrated by Adrienne Adams. Again, you can read the character's mood and who she is. But why is she out there, and why the moon is a cabbage is a mystery. This is by Robert Hunter, the sense of adventure is highly palpable. Why is she see on the journey? We don't know. To understand this a little bit better, I came up with a quick warm-up exercise. As with a final class project, we're just going to be doing sketches, you're more than welcome to come up with something more final and more polished and finished. But we are, because we're just designing the character, a draft, a quick sketch will be fine. You're more than welcome to share your process here in a project gallery or in the discussion tab. Or you can also share it on Instagram, like I'm going to live my username down here. I'll be really happy if you would like to share your process with me. My main goal with this exercise, is for us to be a little bit more observant. Perhaps is not going to require a lot of effort, a lot of time. But I think as an illustrator, or if you just like to draw, especially if you like people, it is very important to observe. The whole point of this class is for us to have fun and to hopefully to give you a different perspective on character design, or maybe to add on things that you already knew, or something that you would like to explore a bit further. I've made a Pinterest board for this class, this board has a few different folders. I would like you to go to the narrative one. This folder contains a few quotes or short narratives. What I would like you to do is to pick whichever you want, whichever. Just read them, pick the one that catches your eye a bit more. I would like you to think, what is the main message that this quote is trying to convey? It could be sadness, it could be confusion, it could be heartbreak, it could be joy. Just think of a word, or a few words that you, but something simple like don't get carried away. Because it's a whole thing that we're trying to start from something really simple. As we saw in the clothing example, there was a quick story behind this person, but I think it is important to keep in mind when we're designing our character, that we need to simmer down that motivation to its very basics. In this particular case, our motivation here was comfort. I'm going to live the the link in the resources tab, is not a tab, I don't know. I'm going to leave it there for you to check it out. Yeah, we'll come back to it. In our next lesson, we're going to talk about how observation is key to run official language, and how we can use it to communicate our narrative visually. See you in a bit. 6. Observation: In this lesson, we're going to talk about the important of observation and illustration. We're also going to talk about a handy shortcut that can help us to make our characters feel and look more complete. We're also going to be doing our second warm-up exercise. Another thing that we humans are really good at is that being really observant. We're really good at picking up on tiny little things of information. We're just an incredible species I'm telling you. As an illustrator, I think is very important for us to sharpen that skill a little bit more. By the end of the day, and as I said, it doesn't matter what illustration you do. You are a messenger and you are saying illustration as a tool to communicate something. As we've seen it, in order to communicate something, we have to understand it well. The way to understand it well is to observe and to be aware of what's actually happening either in the narrative, or even in the world around you because you can use at your own advantage. There is this little exercise that I like to do every now and then when I go out, and I like to eavesdrop on people. What I do is I go out and I don't draw on my sketchbook because I like to remember this things. Usually, sometimes are more successfully than others. But I eavesdrop on people. I remember something that they've said that has caught my attention, and I try to remember the person. I try to remember what wearing, their mood, the way they moved. I do find it particularly insightful. I think that has helped me to get a better understanding not just on how I perceive things, but in how other things around me work and that enriches, I think the way I depict characters that are not necessarily just about me, if that makes sense. There's an example of I think the first times that I did this, I think it was five years ago. I think it was in 2014, I went out and I was walking to the post office and I saw this to girls, I don't know what they were talking about, but I just remember the line. I like to stay at home and it was really cold and one of them was really cheerful and the other one didn't look particularly cheerfully. Actually, she looks actually confused. At the end of the day, what you observe is going to be translated into your own voice as well. What you like? What you find interesting? Why you find that interesting? Those observations are your favor as well. If we really pay attention to things around us and the narrative, we're going to be able to create a very rich character. I would like to show you a few examples of good observational illustration if that makes sense, in a sense that we're going to be observing this characters, and we're going to try and understand why they work. We're going to be talking about this character, Homer Simpson. Again, I think this is a very good character because it's so simple but conveys so much information. Perhaps you know who he is and you know what things is into. But that is the thing, those things that he is into, you can see it in the character. We know how he is, we know that he is into beer. We know that his into donuts. We know that he likes to sit and watch TV. We know that he doesn't like to complicate things in like, you can see it in his outfit. He's just wearing blue jeans and a white shirt, his five o'clock beer. The fact that he has little to no hair also tells you so much, and it makes sense. This character is really coherent with the story behind it. Also, the simplicity is when he wants to be fancy, you just add a tight. Now, the next character is Charlie Brown. I love Charlie Brown because, well, I don't know how old he is, but he is a kid. If we're going to be really observant, I love the little squiggly bit because it looks like he's frowning. You know that he worries a lot about things. He's constantly in his head and I think that's brilliant design a simple and it just tells you so much of who he is. He's wearing this shirt, to me it reminds me so much of a gram posture. It's something that an older person would wear, not necessarily a kid. It makes sense. It tells you so much with so little. Again, simplicity. Also, makes you feel curiously with Charlie Brown, why is he wearing that? But also he's a kid. He's wearing shorts. Because that is a stereotypical thing that kids where he's wearing shorts, but he's wearing formal shoes as well, so he's like a grown-up in a child's body somehow it's a great combination and I loved this as sign of character. You know that it works, it's memorable and it works because it is playing with perhaps tropes. We're going to be talking about this in a minute. Let's talk about this other character, [inaudible] She walked out that morning, and she knew that she was going to be on a car ride with her parents, she's not wearing something uncomfortable. She's wearing shorts, sneakers. She just wants to be comfortable for the car ride. Her hair is up in a ponytail and this little pieces of hair in front of her hair is just, well, I want to be comfortable, but I do not care much about my appearance right now. I would like to show you another example, this is by another of my favorite illustrators. This is by Emily Hughes. This is from her book Wild. I would like you to see what's happening here because I think it's brilliantly, I think this is a great example of good narrative illustration. Look at the little girl. If you don't know the story, it's lovely, get the book it's great. The little girl, she clearly looks uncomfortable with having her hair being brushed. She doesn't look happy with the dress she's wearing. She's obviously not okay with that. Now, the scientist guy, he's wearing stereotypical clothes for someone perhaps who is formal, like a doctor, a scholar. The lady, I'm going to be talking about this in a minute, but she reminds me so much of the school teacher that I had when I was in primary school. The hair, the little earrings, the little tiny shoes, she seems so strict, but she cares about her appearance. It tells you so much, Now, that have said this lady reminds me of an old teacher that I had in primary school. I would like to talk really quickly about something that I think it is important to consider when we're designing a character in this art tropes. Tropes are this narrative tool or resource. They're not stereotypes or cliches, but they are basically a shortcut to something that we know well, if that makes sense. For example, this guy looks, as I said, like a scholar because perhaps said What we know the certain type of professors like to teach in a formal attire and as well some of them wear it, formal shirts and formal trousers, railing the shoes, the glasses that as another trope, if you are a scholar, you're going to be wearing glasses because you've been reading a lot. We can also use this tropes to help us design a character because we want to communicate something in a simple way and tropes do help us doing that. Perhaps it's something that you would like to consider. The thing is, I would like you to see tropes not as cliches, or we could turn them into cliches. For example, I think if she had drawn the scientist guy with a lab coat, I don't think it would've looked as good as it does right now because that would have been a cliche. Why would he be wearing a lab coat? He's at his home. It wouldn't make sense. It wouldn't be coherent with the story or the characters. Tropes can be useful, but we have to make sure that we're not turn them into cliches over doing them or just stating something obvious that doesn't go well with the story. Now, we're going to be doing another exercise. It is going to be very quick. We're going to go onto the Pinterest board and there is one that's called observation. The point of this exercise is to notice specific things and to not see an image as a whole, but as a some of its parts. Also the things you pick say a lot about you as a person. It is important to be aware of that because as we said, that enriches your own visual language. You're going to see a bunch of photographs like characters, so I would like you to pick one, whichever picture catches your eye more, it doesn't matter. I would like you to observe the character. I would like you to pick either two or three elements that just catches your eye. Just three of them, whichever they are. It could be what they are wearing, it could be, I don't know, how they are posing, it could be perhaps the hairstyle. Now, ask yourself, why is this character doing this? Maybe create a tiny little narrative. The elements I like are her shoes. I really like her skirt, and I really like the fact that she's listening to music. Those are my three things. Perhaps my little short narrative would be that, perhaps, she's got to run a lot of errants in the city, that's why she decided to wear cool comfy shoes. Of course, she's into function because she looks really fashionable. I love her outfit. Maybe, she is a blogger of some sort. In our next lesson, we're going to talk about emotion as another essential key element in designing a character for narrative. Stay tuned. 7. Connection Through Emotions: In this lesson, we're going to go over the importance of emotion in narratives and how emotions can help us to connect with others and with a character we're trying to design. I will also be sharing a couple of tips. Now, I would like to talk about something that I think it's essential to think about if we're going to be working with characters and with narratives and that is emotion. Because we humans are highly emotional beings and that's how we bond. That's how we just understand to some degree, the world around us and I find that fascinating. When you go watch a movie, you connect without emotion, perhaps because it is something that you have lived or experienced before and it resonates with you and that is going to be my next tip. Try to communicate things that you know well. I think we all have experienced the basic emotions like anger, sadness, happiness. We've full experienced those kind of basic emotions and again, perhaps you haven't experienced something that the story is telling you, perhaps like if you're working in a story that is talking about losing a best friend and perhaps that is not your experience, that's okay. But we've experienced loss perhaps in many ways or we have experienced sadness in many other ways. So I would encourage you again to try and connect with the emotion that your character is going to be conveying. There's this wheel that is used for therapy at times, it's the wheel of emotions and I love that because it goes from really simple, basic emotions and it branches out on to more complex ones. I think this has helped me, not just in my personal life, but it also has helped me to understand character design a little bit better because perhaps I do understand that the underlying sentiment or emotion of the narrative is sadness. But perhaps I don't fully understand that this character needs to feel discouraged and that's going to give me another layer of understanding. Last year, was it last year? Yeah, last year, I did this Instagram challenge that I think I came up with it, I want to believe that I came up with it and it was called the Hundred Days of memories. What I tried to do there was to draw a 100 illustrations of my memories. I was really surprised and moved by the amount of people who were connecting through my stories or the amount of comments that I got. It was very interesting and the thing is, I'm just communicating emotions that I experienced and I had the clarity because I knew them well. I knew them well because there were my personal experiences and when I started illustration, I really used to think that emotion was something that was purely based on facial expression. Whereas a character can be displaying emotion like any other human being, in their posture and their attitudes, in what they're wearing again. It is a holistic combination of factors. I don't rely only on face, rely on everything your character is. See your character as a holistic entity. Tell the story as if you knew the character well and of you don't know your character well, I will encourage you to go back to the drafting board and actually try know your character better, motivations, emotions, taste in clothes even. For example here in this illustration, from Whatever Happened to my Sister by Simona Ciraolo, this girl was on the phone and she feels more annoyed rather than angry. The cat is showing a different shade of angry, so the emotions are perfectly depicted. This illustration is by Helena Bryksenkova, again, sorry for the mispronunciations, I'm trying. This girl is in her head and not engaging with the world around her and I think her posture says more about her emotions than her face. From then onward, you can add things to it, like simplicity doesn't mean that a character has to be plain. But whatever you add to it has to have a purpose. Just don't add things just for the sake of it because I promise you, it will create confusion. So those are my tips and tricks, I hope you'll find them useful. All right, so in the next segment we're going to finally design our character. So stay tuned for that. 8. Creating the Class Project: The time has finally come, and we're going to design our character. Without any further ado, let's get started. Now, if you're ready for it, let's go for the final class project, which hopefully, you'll find it fun. For the class project, we're going to consider the elements that we have discussed in this class. Simplicity, and that everything in your character must have a reason to be there. Using a narrative to create the character, observe and lookout for things that can help to support the narrative and consider the underlying emotion that the character will show. We are going to go to our board and click on the one that says location. Now, pick whichever catches your eye more. Use a scenario to imagine a short story and the person that would be in that place. Remember, it needs to make sense, and the character must look like it belongs there. If you're in for a challenge, you can use one or both of the warm-up exercises to design your character. For example, if I pick this quote, which underlying emotion I think his peace, or maybe blissfulness. Then I like the shoes, skirt, and earphones from the observation in warm-up exercise. I'll pick this laundromat. Maybe my character will be happily listening to music, feeling relaxed, and maybe she has some products to do her laundry with in her fashionable bag. I think she looks quite fashionable. Also she seems to take good care of her clothes. Now, try not to copy the person in the photo you picked, only use those three elements to create a character that makes sense to you, and location, and the story. You don't need to draw the location, just a character, but consider your character's posture. I have this little PDF with all the key points of the class. You can go to it and have a quick look through it. If you feel a little bit stuck, you are more than welcome to use the previous warm-up exercises to complete this. Or you can only use the last prompt, I will call it. Please don't forget to upload your character to the Project gallery section. I'm really looking forward to seeing your project and hope you have fun designing your character. Now, it is time to go to the conclusion for this class. I really hope you're having a good time so far. 9. Conclusion: Okay, now we're going to be doing a quick recap of things that we've talked about, plus a few extra thoughts that I hope you'll find useful. Okay, we're basically at the end of this class. Hope you have enjoyed the process. I'm really hoping that this class would have given you a little bit more of an insight of how to create a character. The whole point of the class project was for us to see how narrative and how visuals fit back each other. You need to do that to find your own voice as well. See what you like, what you like to draw, find the commonalities. As I said before, if you see strangers and there's something that you find interesting about them, why is it that you find it interesting? Asking ourselves these questions, the whys of everything that we do or find the purpose behind them sounds exhausting. But this tiny little things at the end are going to give us so much insight on who we are and what our voice is. Again, as people who communicate, we're not only going to be communicating someone else's message, right? If you're hired by, let's say, a magazine, they want you because you have your own voice or your own way to communicate a certain message. As an illustrator, it is important for you to have your own voice because as much as you're hired by, let's say, a magazine and there's an author and as the narrative they want you to illustrate. They want you because you have a particular way of telling things visually. You are this person with tastes, dislikes, likes. That also translates into your own visual language. The only way to discover those things is to be really observant. The only way to do that is to be really simple with things not getting confused. Have you heard that quote that says, I don't remember the quote right well. I'm going to perhaps leave it somewhere here in case I'm saying it incorrectly. But it has this quote that says, "My thoughts are like stars, but they're not arranged into constellations." I think that that is something that happens to humans because we are busy people. We have lots of things going on, but simplify what you feel. If you were feeling an emotion, Why? Find the patterns like, perhaps, you're drawn to solitude and I find it so much in my illustrations in the past. I used to draw girls being alone. That was something that was going through in my life and I was reflecting it and it was my voice and at points and I did get work that had to do with girls in solitude. I remember I got this particular editorial piece in which it was a girl who did a walk on her own and it fit my own personal voice. Again, it was something that I understood well because it's something that I experienced. Now, going back to the warm up exercise and the quote you picked, perhaps you picked it because that's what you're going through in your life right now and it resonated with you so the emotion is there. You will be able to simplify that emotion because you know it well. But it is simple and in order to get to the emotion, you had to be observant so you did all of those things almost automatically in a way perhaps you didn't have to think much about it and you were able to communicate that in your final character. I think my conclusion for this class, yeah, try to understand your character, trying to understand the narrative, trying to simplify things and try to be observant, but also trying to do it with yourself in order for you to understand your own visual language and in order for you to feel more confident while telling a story. That's another thing, try not to worry too much about style because sometimes I do get questions about how do I get my own personal style? Don't worry about it. Just keep drawing. It is already there. I promise you it is already there. But perhaps same with the narrative, it's buried on the layers and layers of perhaps things that you haven't really analyzed or think about. But that will be my final advice. If you want to know more about how you infused a character with your own personal voice think about your likes, your dislikes and your emotions. I'm pretty sure you're going to feel more confident designing a character, if it's Klein work of it's a personal one. Anyway, thank you so much for joining this class. I've had so much fun and hope you did too. Again I'm really looking forward to seeing the characters you're going to come up with. This is exciting. I'm going to live again my Instagram here if you would like to stay in touch. Of course, if you have any questions, any doubts, anything you want to share, please share with me here too. There's not an entire blog in a discussion bit. I'm going to be here. I'm really excited. Thank you so much for joining again. Hope you have a very lovely day and hope this helped you and you are feeling a little bit more excited about throwing different types of characters. Anyway, thank you again. Hope you have fun and see you around.