Saturday, 14 May 2011

Negotiated Brief- Fox Fire

I will post my Inbetween a Fable project and my Let's Blame Dahmer work, but until tomorrow I can't use TVP to get the images or videos I need to upload so it has to wait unfortunately.

After getting massively confused with the difference between the pitch and the negotiated project, I eventually settled on creating a pitch bible for one of my comics, Fox Fire. I'll be honest and say that I'm wary of pitching a personal project especialy one I've worked on periodically for so long because it starts to become a little precious to you, but criticism is meant to open your own viewpoints so I could do with some I imagine.

Anyway, making a pitch bible for Fox Fire. While technically I have the designs done, I thought they could do with a fix. I was never completely happy with how the characters looked back when I first started so I took this as an opportunity to give them more finesse then they had.

First up, Shin.

This is one of the first I ever drew (I think I took it to my interview for this course, so it's at least 3 years by now) and I wasn't exactly confident with drawing digitgrade legs, evidentally.

I had started to adjust his design not long ago, a few of these ones crop up in more detail in my actual work on this project. The main point of Shin's design is that he's meant to look mainly fox-like (in comparison with the foxes in this world) but also slightly off, like he's impersonating a real one. Really he's been put together by people who can't quite remember what one looks like after all this time, so he's had kind of a chinese-whispers effect to his appearance.
I thought his design was too odd clothes-wise and I wanted to make the demon aspect a bit more obvious without making him look really villainous.

Ok, the mask. It was a full mask, then just the face and ears before I just made it a facial one. Shin is meant to be hard to read, but I seriously had nothing with the mask as it was so I decided having real ears meant I could use some canine expressions for things like fear, alertness etc.

Something I wanted to change was the gauntlets. Thinking in terms of animation, an 8 segmented gauntlet isn't necessary and is more complicated than it needs to be, so I limited myself to the 4 part one. It's less likely to end up off model too, hopefully.
I tried out different ways of adding claws to the fingers, trying to avoid something like a Disney villain and more like real claws. I settled on drawing them coming out of the place human fingernails grow from. It's a little Pei Mei, but eh. FUN FACT- Shin has 4 fingers and a thumb while everyone else who hasn't had an agricultural accident has 3 and a thumb. He only has 3 toes compared to everyone elses 4. His feet must be lonely :'(

Speaking of feet, these types of legs are a real pain in the arse to get right and it's not often a style that gets used for 2D anthro characters (any examples? I'm stumped). I would swap them for human legs but then it gets into the complicated debate of whether or not you can even refer to it being an animal if it's entire body is obviously human shaped with a human personality, and I quite like the challenge of trying to work out how they'd move. 3D seems to be a better medium for moving these things, I'll try and find some examples for reference.
Otherwise, the legs have been shortened considerably. It's closer to someone standing on tip-toes now which makes working them out for balance a lot easier. Dew claws don't exist. The claws on the feet are based on a ukiyo-e print of an evil kitsune, with the toes and claws very pronounced.

There's a couple of armour sketches to work out how it would attach at the side in a really easy-to-draw way. I ended up going with a basic wrap effect for the sword hilt. The normal kind which criss crosses would get me too wound up so I'm taking the easier route again. How the sword is carried around got a vague scribble down too.

There's a few of the sketches I've been up to, I'll start posting some other character art and some colour stuff.

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