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Cartoon Creation 101 - Chapter 1

By Max Kostenko

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Date Added: 23rd May 2014
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The very first step in creating a character for me is to find material on the internet. Since I got the theme of “70’s porn star”, I put this into Google. Initially, I singled out a few things that symbolize a porn star of the 1970’s to me:

1. Porn â€" a naked or half-naked man
2. The star â€" a man with a majestic, perhaps haughty look, with film awards
3. 70’s â€" a moustache and hair, which were popular in those years

Based on these ideas, I saved a few favorite photos. A sitting posture seemed to be very suitable to me, and therefore I imagined the future character sitting in a chair with a haughty air. Also, I liked the idea of him having a moustache, big hair and tights.

Several years ago, when I first started working as an illustrator, I paid little time and attention to searching for photographs of the project, although it is a very important part. Now I can confidently say that the more detailed the image and the more detailed the design you think about before you start working, the easier the process will be.
I have often lacked the patience to think about the image at the sketching stage. I wanted to quickly move on to coloring and focusing on the details so much that I missed the overall composition. So now I spend a lot of time on reference sketches.

For this project, I’m starting to work with a rough outline of the silhouette, for which I usually use a brush with a large radius. I call this stage “playing with your imagination,” because in the subconscious the mind draws the missing parts and as a result interesting images can be born. I’m not specifically trying to draw a head and shoulders; I just relax and paint, and in the process some suitable options emerge. Incidentally, the picture size is around 3000 pixels and 300 dpi, which is an average size I feel comfortable enough to work with for a detailed drawing (Fig.01).

Fig. 01

Next, I lower the opacity of the first layer to a translucent silhouette and create a new layer, where I am trying to find a successful line (Fig.02).

Fig. 02

Then I create a new layer and render a more accurate silhouette. Now that I am satisfied with the contours of the body and head, I think about working in more detail. The first and second stage, I repeat until I reach the desired result (Fig.03).

Fig. 03

Again, in a new layer, I try to find interesting facial lines. It seems to me that the actor has a very suitable refined chin and nose (Fig.04).

Fig. 04

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