So I tried a bit of an exercise I saw done by illustrator Will Terry in a video he put out on designing characters for children’s books, and you should try it too! Will shows a neat trick that works well when drawing animals, no matter what the shape, size, or animal type.
He says that while drawing if you are able to pick out important characteristics of an animal, (a cat for example has whiskers, a tail, a set of round lips, pointy eats, etc) then you can draw those characteristics on any shape and your drawing will be recognizable as that animal. If you press play below the video will jump to the relevant section.
After watching him, I decided to give it a shot on my own, but instead of using the characteristics of a cat, I would use those of a shrew. I pulled up some images on google to get an idea of what I was looking for, and came of with these traits:
I then sketched out a series of different head and body shapes on to a large piece of paper, and added the shrew characteristics afterwards. Pretty fun!
Please excuse the poor quality of the images below. I captured the work-in-progress pictures on my cell phone, rather than scanning them in, so the colour is quite off.
I found it really interesting that even shapes I was sure wouldn’t look like a shrew, did after all the characteristics were added. (Although some maybe were a little shaky.)
So, a neat exercise to try on your own! Choose an animal you find interesting, give it a shot and let me know how it goes. If you actually try it out, send me a photo and I will upload them!
Oh also, I have some more dinosaur work to put up here in a little bit, maybe around this time next week, so stay tuned!