Animation Mini brief, Clank, Weaver and Mort

Do so research on character development, marketing, and design. Creating characters for popular animation and designing popular characters.

I am to choose one of the following names and design a character to be used in a mainstream 3D stop motion animation that reflects that character’s given name;

1 – Clank

2 – Weaver

3 – Mort

Characters can be figurative, abstract or anywhere inbetween. Things to include would be sketches, final design, different designs and final presentation sheets. Possibly quick storyboards to show movement/interaction and/or concept development work. Infuences/artists/animations to be included in submission.




I went to Chris Oatley’s site and listened to the podcasts with the character designers… educational and funny. I learned that characters with appeal tend to be relatable in one way or another. Such as captain hook and bambi, one’s an antagonist and ones a protagonist but both are likable, because they are relatable in to real life in one way or another. Alright we’re not all pirates on the hunt for that aligator that ate our hand, but we still have goals, dreams, aspirations and fears.

With this in mind, I began hashing out character ideas for the three names given, primarily what relates to the names and what sort of equipment they might have and clothes they might wear.

Clank Weaver MortClank Weaver

I even did basic mock-ups as I wrote up the character item lists. Though I like the idea of a spy character, I wanted to go for a character I wouldn’t normally do. I mean gruff, tough and packing tools isn’t exactly unorthadox for me, but it’s a step in that direction. I looked at Mike Mignola and more importantly, his design of the hellboy character for inspiration, I liked the idea of a beefier character with a jutting lower jaw and an unimpressed appearance, hellboy sprung to mind. Clank equipmentI sketched out a few bits and pieces with more of a focus on equipment and clothes, Clank is a fixer, a junker a future era tinkerer. He’s gruff, tough and constantly covered in oil stains and soot. He doesn’t socialise much, his passion is his life and it’s all he really cares about.Clank Colour psI drew him up in Flash and gave him block colours before transferring him over to photoshop for the final details. I attempted to load him into Photoshop and colour him in completely there, but the colour transfer didn’t sit to well, showing up too much unnatural colouring.

With consideration to his design for a childrens cartoon, he could do with perhaps some brighter colours and perhaps a personality change, a bit less gruff and a lot more friendlier, although one part that I axed out that can be seen in the development sketches is the Blowtorch mask… or Arclight helmet? Is that what they’re called? It had teeth painted on it’s mouth area, but I thought that would’ve made it look a bit too aggressive.

Animation Mini brief, Clank, Weaver and Mort

Pixel art

I’m hoping to be collaborating with a fellow games designer and creating a Streets of Rage style game. Something I’ve never been able to accomplish on my own, as I simply lack the programming know-how. But I can animate something like that reasonably straight forward. So I threw together a test image in paint, it was surprisingly easy, but a little bit time consuming to get the pixel style across. The good news is, you can increase it’s size in paint as long as the vertical and horizontal increase stay in line with each other, then the pixel art effect stays in place without breaking apart. The protagonists of this beat-em-up game will consist of;

Justice Fist – A mullet-hawk sporting, bare-knuckle boxing vigilante, that punches justice into evil-doers far and wide.

Lady Mace of Mercy – A tower shield/mace wielding woman trapped in the wrong time.

The Busking Bruiser – An overweight, flat cap wearing yorkshire man, that wields a three stringed oak guitar. He can’t play it, he just bludgeons people with it.

First up, a pixelised Lady Mace.

Pixely lady mace resizePixelly Justice fist Large


Pixel art

Character design et al.

So, with Perseus and Medusa taking place in a wild west environment, I need to research the time period. Though I can give it a degree of the fanatical, I still need to adhere to the over-arching time period. My memory is guided back to the dark tower book series, we are initially led to believe it’s a spaghetti western, however, as more details of the book are revealed we find it’s an entirely different world with advance but failing technology.

Found this, an interesting character design, the woman gives us more of the appearance of an indian or cherokee gun fighter because of the tassles and the design.

More real life pieces (1) (2), these look more like cosplayers than actual period people.

Reasonable background designs; (1) (2)

Things to think about and consider… The gang leader and his compatriots, lesser educated individuals, but older and more experienced, cunning bullies and coercive individuals. The leader will be a rotten toothed, tobacco chewing, ratty individual. Attributes to consider would be cocky, cunning and ruthless. ┬áSecond in command is probably the big lout, no criminal gang would be complete without one. I’ll probably make him air headed and easily influenced, maybe not dumb, just lacking in any will of his own. Perhaps he might turn on the leader at some point due to mistreatment.
Then another generic bad guy to complete the trio. Something I need to think about, perhaps a corrupt lawman of some sort.

Perseus, the protagonist himself, he’s young and naive. His skill with the gun is almost fantastical, but he’s not experienced and outright refuses to kill the gang members, opting instead to disarm them with gun shots or embarrass them with shooting their hats off. He carries his fathers gun and his mothers mirror. Don’t know whether to give him a desert duster or not. Hmm.

Danae, Perseus’ mother. Was once a lady of leisure turned working woman when she was exiled, thought she won’t be looking nearly as spotless in her working state, she won’t be looking like skag den dweller either. I need to find the right balance between noble dress, and commoner dress, the ornate mirror was kept as a reminder of her past but she gave that to Perseus when he went to hunt the medusa that terrorised the mining town. She could have various other knickknacks, perhaps she still wears her noble woman’s dress, but it’s so haggard and faded it simply looks like a commoners dress instead.

The medusa herself, shrouded in mystery, we might only ever see her silhouette. Their aren’t that many designs that I’ve noticed, but perhaps she could have her appearance crossed with a cherokee woman. Maybe she dwells within the mining town as a bandana wearing commoner. The legend states that medusa’s appearance is so horrid that it turns people to stone. Perhaps she could dwell within the mines and the miners happen by her lair accidentally. That might rid Perseus of the epic journey he has to undertake before he is ready to take her on. However, these are story devices and plot elements which aren’t the main focus.

As an underground dwelling creature, Medusa may not have any eyes, or at least, underdeveloped ocular nerves. Her skin would be pale and whatever ever other features are prevalent within underground dwelling creatures. All though due to the setting, her snake hair would be rattle snakes.

Character design et al.

Photoshop with a drawing pad

Okay, so today in class, I took advantage of the three WACOM drawing pads they have stacked away and tried to create an image in photoshop pretty much the same way I would draw it on paper…

stylus testSooooo… yeaaaahhh… it’s not bad for a first go, but it DEFINITELY isn’t like drawing on paper, no matter how close you might come to the experience. It’s more organic than drawing with a mouse, that much is certain, but I part of me misses the precise edges you can get with a line tool. I won’t be getting anything realistic done any time soon, but I feel it definitely gives off a specific art style. I may have to reinvent how I draw on the pad, as I did guidelines and what not, but the image came off quite hairy still. I like to think it adds to the character.

Photoshop with a drawing pad

Hand drawn, number 2.

Designs I’ve been working on, here we have the cyber punk girl just grabbing some food with the rest of her team. The lizardman laments about how hard it is to find armour that fits. The sniper disagrees. I ended up making the characters look far more sad and contemplative then they should’ve been.
Saw this woman’s dress in Rear Window and thought… “That’s nice…. let’s do that.” And that is pretty much the extent of my thought process on his character. Her neck is too long and her face is kind of weird.
A mecha knight laments over the frailty of life on the battlefield as he spends his last moments watching a bird that landed on his hand. Perhaps I should’ve drawn a corpse strewn battlefield in the background to reinforce this point… oopsie.
Idea taken from saints row the third, made a character look really freaky by changing the eyes and adding this black ink stain face detail. Looked pretty good I thought.

Maybe I should explore that within myself.

Designs for the Cyberpunk girl, front and back, I’ve begun to notice recently just HOW BIG I draw heads, so I’m trying to readjust my style and do it properly. Should work out in the end but it’ll be hard I have no doubt.20131118_015101

Cyber punk girl from the front, tinkering on her wrist comp while she’s jacked in somewhere. A background would’ve really helped identify where she is and what she’s doing.

Hand drawn, number 2.

A journey through photoshop

So… today in our spare class time I composed a drawing using the tools of photoshop. I primarily used the straightline technique I developed in Paint all those years ago, and found I miss the copy paste and flip accuracy of flash… until a fellow student pointed out that all of those things are possible. So, I’ll remember that for next time. However, I’m reasonably pleased with the outcome. Although we learnt the dodge and burn tool for shading. I discovered you can adjust the opacity of the layers, so one of the top layers is just black with opacity at about 60% which is how I was able to achieve the shading effect. I would have liked to have gotten a more washed out look, as the light from the gunfire can be quite harsh. Instead I just made the shading very sharp rather than blurry.CP girl

A journey through photoshop

Hand drawn

Loaded up some drawn images I’ve made over the months, they’ve been photoed rather than scanned in so quality is a bit poor.

cyber girl shot

The Cyber punk girl character concept. Here she is in action, the initial drawing I tried featuring this perspective went a bit weird but I’ve stuck it up on my wall so I didn’t take a picture of it. Nevermind, this one’s better anyway. I’m not happy with the mouth though.

easy table

A bit blurry this one, but perspective is alright. Although the shapes are a little out, the big box was bigger than that, but I drew it smaller by accident. Thankfully, everything else matched it in size so there is that.

heads and emotions

Cyber girl’s various expressions and angles.

rachel powering up

Drawn fellow animation student Rachel powering up before a big… sketch, I guess. I got her head and shoulders before she moved and then I took artistic license with the rest. Everyone was talking about DragonBall Z as well… I think that’s where the idea came from.

Lone knight

I drew this at work when I was bored one day, it takes most of it’s influence from Dark Souls and NWN. I wanted to make an enemy that can seen as intimidating but also sentient enough to be reasoned with.

Little knight

Character design of the Little Knight, an armoured small man that makes up for his small stature by being enthusiastic.

Female Z fighter

Another bored at work one, I was reading about a lot of dragon ball Z and then this happened. I was quite happy with the turn-out, I feel the proportions are good enough and so is the hand detail

Drawn Tala

Bored at work again, but this was a hand drawn design of Tala, that NWN character I made in flash.

Dark souls inspired

I showed this to my friends and they said one thing in response; “Dark Souls”. They’re correct of course. Although the helmet is a bit big and the bonfire is a bit lacking in detail I’m happy with the limb interaction. Maybe the lower leg is a bit off. Also he’s left his sword on the ground… but without any way of determining the proportions it looks like a diglet in a sombrero, as my girlfriend pointed out.

Cyberpunk girl relaxing

The Cyber Punk Girl… I character concept I’ve been toying with, this is her when she’s not hacking into corporate systems and government matrices. Instead she’s unloaded the handgun for maintenance, taken off a wrist computer to browse post-apocalyptic facebook or whatever, taken off her pants and boots, smoking a cigarette and eating a pot of… noodles… or beans…. or chow, or whatever. One side of her head is bald where she has all the plugs for data-jacking, this was done so I could practise head drawing without all the hair blocking the way.

Cleric and fatman

I began drawing one of the models on my desk… then I did that and drew a cleric and a fat mercenary instead. Their outfits are both influenced from Dragon’s Dogma.

Hand drawn