Are you an aspiring comic artist struggling with basic character design? Do you even know what the basics ARE?
Well, strap in and join me on this live stream! I’ll walk you through what I’ve learned in 8+ years of drawing comics. Plus, I’ll show you some of my favorite character designs in media.
“But I don’t have time to watch an entire archived live stream!” Well, I DO encourage you to set the time aside to watch this. But here are some important bullet points to keep in mind:
The Silhouette Test – this is a tried and true method, and is even used by Disney’s animation team. Basically, does the silhouette of your character stand out in a lineup?
Symbols – what symbology is present in your world? How does that affect the character? Do they wear colors or symbols that resonate with them?
Contrast – If you’re designing multiple characters, how can you make them stand out from each other? Can you have different or complimentary colors to each character? What if one character styles their hair up, but the other lays it down? etc.
Similarity – If you’re designing a team, how can you indicate that – but still have them stand apart from each other? What elements do they have in common? WHY are they in common?
Simplify – when you draw comics, keep the design SIMPLE. You will be drawing these characters repeatedly. Don’t make it complicated or you will hate yourself.
And finally… Be Open-Minded and Be Curious!
I hope this helps you on your creative journey. Thank you for watching and reading!
Join me in this archived live stream as I draw character art for a new project. In this art stream, I’m drawing for The Character Compendium.
The Character Compendium is a new personal project of mine. It will compile as many character designs as I can fit into one book. With this book, I aim to simplify life for game masters and dungeon masters. Just open the book to any page, take a character, and BOOM! Instant NPC for the players to interact with.
Heck, any of these characters could also be a good jumping-off point for players to make their own characters.
In this archived live stream, I show you some Clip Studio Paint tips and tricks!
Clip Studio Paint is my preferred drawing program. I’ve been using this for years, yet it feels like I learn something new every day. And here, I wanted to share with you some Clip Studio Paint tips and tricks I’ve recently learned!
I streamed this back on May 29 on YouTube. Now it can be archived here for your reference.
Here are some timestamps for easy reference:
3:00 for opening and setting up a new document. (Includes how to change canvas color)
4:00 recording timelapses
4:45 hand-lettered effects
7:00 coloring entire layers
8:17 how to change colors of specific elements in a layer using “lock transparent pixels”
10:30 a nifty trick erasing bordered lines
13:00 add outlines to objects already drawn
13:45 add shoelaces and other costume details
25:03 my old method of adding symmetry
26:00 make rulers visible
27:20 add guidelines
28:20 group layers together
31:20 how to make custom brushes
Did I forget something in the live stream? Leave a comment below and let me know!
Do you have questions? Let me know, too. I plan on doing another live stream like this one, showing even more tips and tricks.
Thank you to the fans on the latest livestream for helping to come up with this idea. Coming soon, (like, if all goes well, this should launch on July 2), the Sticker of the Month Club!
See, after that livestream, I had the thought, “Stickers were super popular at the Mini Pop-Up Event. Why not a Sticker of the Month Club?”
I did the math, and once I did, I thought, “HOLY BANANA PANTS, WHY DIDN’T THIS HAPPEN SOONER?”
Here’s what I want to do:
Each month, subscribers get a sticker in their mailboxes, along with a personalized thank-you note.
The cost? $10 a month for subscribers. That $10 will cover the sticker AND shipping/handling. (This price point is for USA patrons. There will be a separate tier for internationals). Subscribers also get access to my Tiny Dinos Discord server and shout-outs in the credits for KickStarter projects.
For fans who already give $10+ per month through Ko-Fi... Well good news! I can add you automatically to the Sticker of the Month Club if you’re interested! No need to go to a separate site to pledge.
My goals with the Sticker of the Month Club are:
to offer something cool and different to subscribers,
to engage with folks in a unique way,
to have new offerings at convention and author appearances,
to have another source of income so I don’t have to do (so many?) DoorDash shifts.
Now, let me answer some other questions:
Some folks had originally pitched a “T-shirt of the month club,” because another artist had some success with it. I want to address that real quick by saying: First, everyone and their brother does a T-shirt business. They’re oversaturated. To the point that a business educator told me once, “Don’t go into T-shirts.” I’d like to do something that stands out instead.
Also, T-shirts are not as environmentally sound as folks think they are. It takes a LOT of resources to make T-shirts, and despite the best efforts of lots of folks, most of them end up in landfills.
Not to mention, I live in a small apartment. I don’t have room to store extra shirts. And to folks who say, “Well, you could get a print-on-demand service to do it,” I’d rather not this time, for reasons I’ll get into in a second.
If you’re wondering, “Are you going to do the art AND the logistics?” Yes. I’ll make the art and mail these out to subscribers. I already have a printer for these stickers, because I’ve printed with them before and REALLY liked their quality and pricing. I also already track inventory for my convention appearances, so I’m comfortable with that step already. (Not to mention that I’m used to tracking customers – things that sound creepy, but aren’t – because of KickStarter reward fulfillment).
Plus, if I print extra stickers each month, I can post the remainder for sale on Ko-Fi and take them with me to conventions.
Should this idea EXPLODE, I’ll revisit this arrangement. But I’m comfortable with this idea. Right now, I don’t expect this Sticker of the Month Club to overtake The Legend of Jamie Roberts in popularity. I have the bandwidth to do both (especially since I don’t work at NeverEnding).
Excited? I hope so!
I’m announcing the official launch of the Sticker of the Month Club on my email newsletter when it’s ready, so if you want on board, go sign up to get the news first.
Like I said before, if you already give $10+ per month through Ko-Fi, I can add you to the Sticker of the Month Club automatically. Hit me up at email@example.com if you want to sign up.
Broke? Share this news with your sticker-loving friends!
This past Saturday, I showcased my work at the Genghis Con Mini Pop Up Event. Being surrounded by comics readers and fans…talking to other creators…it gave me so many ideas, all at once.
It just felt GOOD to be back in the comics scene at a live event.
But How Was the Show?
We got a bigger turnout than expected! I sold out of a handful of small things, like stickers. And The Case of the Wendigo was the most popular book on my table!
I want to give a quick shout-out to my friend Deci Belfry. They designed, printed, AND cut my new business cards. Plus they printed and cut new Mr. Dino postcards for the table! (This reminds me: I’ll be sending a portion of proceeds to Margie’s Hope. They’re a local nonprofit serving the trans and nonbinary community).
What Kind of Ideas Did I Get?
I’ve mentioned on Instagram that I have a personal project, called the Character Compendium. I’ve decided that the first batch of compendiums will be zines. They’ll be easier to assemble, print, and share that way (instead of making one large book. The book was the original idea, but zines are faster).
Speaking of zines, I need to give a shout-out to Matt, aka haberfish on Instagram. His perzine inspired me with the idea of a Mr. Dino “anthology” zine. He also makes delightful cartoons, and you should follow his work.
Not only am I thinking of a Mr. Dino perzine…but Matt and Deci gave me another idea…
My personal project, Kitties By Kelci? What if there’s a comic strip with those witch kitties? I will say: if I move forward on a Kitties By Kelci comic strip, they’ll post once a week on my email newsletter. That’s how I first published Thoughtful Dinosaur and Charlie & Clow: The Bonus Arc. I think it’s high-time that another email comic strip happens. Don’t you?
Cool! But Don’t I Have a Lot Going On?
Honestly? Yeah. That’s why I’m going to make some of these new ideas small projects, like zines. (Actually, this ties in nicely to one of my 2021 goals: make more minicomics). Small projects are easier and faster to finish.
When it comes to making and finishing things, I just need to remember: One Thing At A Time. It’s been my mantra for a while now, and I find it helpful in times like this.
That’s all I have for now. Be sure to stay up-to-date by hopping on my email newsletter, where I talk about current and upcoming projects. Like new books.
And be sure to check out Deci and Matt online! I also want to give a shout-out to a few other artists from the pop-up event: Caleb from Village Comics (he has a KickStarter next month!). Lindsey J Bryan. And Quill. (I know I’m forgetting other cool peeps, so tag yourself in the comments).