Entry 15: The Concept of Character
I have mentioned this before many times, but I shall repeat myself: I love characters. A great character has personalty in his/her speech and gestures. As an introvert, I like to people watch, but in a completely normal fashion. By being observant, I am able to pick up on character qualities really quick. And because of my unique and odd personality, I tend to enjoy watching unique and odd characters.
My favorite film characters are played by Johnny Depp, Robert Downey, Jr., and Jim Carrey. Aside from their light-hearted and comedic roles, each of these actors have a unique spin on portraying their characters.
Depp's most interesting role (in my opinion) is Captain Jack Sparrow from Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean. Not only does he walk and talk like a drunkard, but his craftiness/wit is narrated beautifully on screen.
And then there's Carrey, who undoubtably reminds me of my younger brother, Chris, in which they both can make annoying sounds and overdramatized movements, in a good way. I will sometimes press enter on a keyboard just like Carrey did in Bruce Almighty.
Some of my favorite video game characters are the inseparable duo: Banjo and Kazooie. This bear and bird combo are not only family-friendly and fun, but their opposite personalities are just as quirky. While Banjo tries to be kind and optimistic when he approaches friends and foes, Kazooie will often retort his efforts with her cynical yet comedic jabs. It's a wonder in itself that these two are best of friends.
One of my favorite cartoon characters is Korra from Nickelodeon's TV series, The Legend of Korra. Unlike her previous incarnation, Aang, Korra is a competitive and rash tomboy who will often trip over herself when she tries to learn the ways of young love. She is as bold as she is beautiful, but her bark can be just as bad as her bite if you choose not to side with her.
My favorite musical characters are from the band Steam Powered Giraffe, which they act as musical automatons. Their mime-gestures alone are enough to follow them, but their vibrant personalities on stage are filled with pop-culture references and humor.
Lately I have been trying to develop my own character concepts, mostly fictional, but I don't have that much confidence in my drawing ability, predominantly in the human form. That being said, all great artists started from somewhere, right?
While in college I was required to take art history courses for my art degree, and one of the annoyances of that course was the text book, Art History 3rd Edition by Stokstad. Not only was it ginormous and debt-inducing, the newest edition came out during that time and I couldn't even sell mine for $10.
Aside from the obvious grievances toward that book, I have recently flipped through the book and started drawing on the human images I find, outlining their stances and form. I gained inspiration for this technique while cataloging sketchbooks from John Tuska, a Kentuckian art professor who passed away a few decades ago.
Next week I'll show my progress; I intend on designing futuristic armor and such, but I'm not fixated on what his face will look like just yet. Anyways, thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed the gifs as much as I did! Feel free to let me know what other great characters you enjoy in the comment section below.