Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Character Design - Week 8

I think today was the most successful (for me that is) weekly mini project. I was certainly more confident in my designs.

Today we were divided into small groups of three or four. We were given the brief to design six characters between us for a cartoon show. (This was all done very officially) The character names and personality descriptions were all provided. Including a basic synopsis of of the show. The show was called Jet pack something or other. OK, so I forgot the title, and all the names of the characters. (except the one I designed!)

I decided that I wanted to design the character Boltz. His description read as follows.

Boltz is JJs trusty medical droid.
Due to several data core meltdowns, Boltz has developed certain personality quirks and is prone to bouts of 'odd' behaviour.

I started of with the basics. I looked at the robots in the film Robots. I looked at medical droids in Star Wars and a few other random robots and droids. Actually although I didn't specifically look at the robot in the first Wallace and Gromit, I think it may have subconsciously influenced my design. You'll see what I mean in a moment.

I started by drawing out some rough designs.

If you look at the drawing in the bottom left corner you can see clearly what drawings came before it. When designing, I was thinking of how WallE in Pixars WallE looks so much like it's falling apart and how it rattles when in moves. I came up with the idea that if Boltz ever hears about the slightest injury, he would suddenly burst into life. The light (an ambulances siren light) would frantically start flashing and it would zoom full speed, rattling away, almost as if saying Don't Panic!

So I focused on that one particular design and came up with this refined version.
He has a draw to keep things in. He likes things very tidy, which is kind of a problem when he leaves a trail of screws behind him! The light on top, is only held on by one screw! The other is in his hand! He has a little heart monitor hanging half on by his chest! Clean rubber gloves!

We then receive a pretend phone call, saying some last minute changes that need to be made to the characters. This is before they've even seen the first. We all in a mad rush, were left with just half an hour to alter the designs before the deadline.

Luckily they said that for Boltz, they wanted him to have changeable arms with different medical instruments. This kind of already worked with the design I already had.

All these spare arms (including a pair for cleaning himself with spray and a cloth) are all stored in the draw on the front of him.

Anyway, that's enough about Boltz.


I spent some time today refining my three characters for the main project. Remember it's a mythical space opera.

I really wanted to focus on the hero so I experimented with a few different poses.

I then drew my character over the top. and looked further into the clothes he wears.

Instead of wearing those traditional sandals, I've changed it into a boot with the sandal lines over the top. The 'brush' on top of the helmet is now a solar panel. This is what makes it work and also powers the rest of the suit. The suit needs powering? Well his arm needs powering. He can throw energy discs or power up a shield that temporally protects him. The sword he caries now unfold like one of those light sabre toys.

In this drawing I've added extra lines on the characters clothing. They kind of match the sandal lines. This is how the energy travels from the helmet to the rest of the suit.
The cape only goes over half the character. That way I can still have the cape, but the silhouette still works on one side. I think it is reading much better than in previous drawings.

I did a few more sketches of the sidekick and the villain. Although I didn't focus too much on them today.

That's it for now. bye.


  1. Can we have boltz in our animation, he is so cool, new Wall-e !!! add him on the logo !!!

  2. Of course!

    That'll be something for the christmas holydays.