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Fundamentals of Character Design

An 8-week course for building foundational skills necessary for the design of appealing characters in film, games, animation, comics, and more

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Course Categories
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Course Format:
Standard
Duration:
8 weeks
Materials:
Photoshop (or equivalent) and Wacom tablet (or equivalent), sketchbook, pens & pencils, and scanner or camera to scan or photograph homework assignments
Lecture Type:
Pre-recorded
Assignment:
Due each week. Expect to spend 8-10 hrs/wk viewing lectures, q&a, and time on assignments.
Skills Level:
Intermediate
Feedback:
Individual recordings
Q&A:
Once a week
Prerequisites:
Dynamic Sketching 1 & 2 and Analytical Figure Drawing, or drawing portfolio review required
Course Format:
Standard
Duration:
8 weeks
Materials:
Photoshop (or equivalent) and Wacom tablet (or equivalent), sketchbook, pens & pencils, and scanner or camera to scan or photograph homework assignments
Lecture Type:
Pre-recorded
Assignment:
Due each week. Expect to spend 8-10 hrs/wk viewing lectures, q&a, and time on assignments.
Skills Level:
Intermediate
Feedback:
Individual recordings
Q&A:
Once a week
Prerequisites:
Dynamic Sketching 1 & 2 and Analytical Figure Drawing, or drawing portfolio review required
Course Format:
Standard
Duration:
8 weeks
Materials:
Photoshop (or equivalent) and Wacom tablet (or equivalent), sketchbook, pens & pencils, and scanner or camera to scan or photograph homework assignments
Lecture Type:
Pre-recorded
Assignment:
Due each week. Expect to spend 8-10 hrs/wk viewing lectures, q&a, and time on assignments.
Skills Level:
Intermediate
Feedback:
Individual recordings
Q&A:
Once a week
Prerequisites:
Dynamic Sketching 1 & 2 and Analytical Figure Drawing, or drawing portfolio review required
COURSE OVERVIEW
COURSE OVERVIEW
Instructor Demo
Feedback Example
WHAT YOU'LL LEARN
EXPAND ALL COLLAPSE ALL

The more you know, the better.

Week 1 | Creating Volume and a Solid Foundation

Tools for the class: Your Brain, your attitude, and art supplies | Sketchbook as a journal and methodology (look draw) | Brief overview of the keys to drawing with volume. | Foreshortening, placement, shading, surface, size, contour, overlap, density, horizon, shadow, You-nique, Practice, and attitude.

Week 2 | Finding the Character Through Gesture

Character-gesture | What is a gesture, how to go about finding one, and why it’s important to your character.

Week 3 | Design and the Language of Shapes

The idea behind shapes | How shapes define silhouettes | Understanding how the outside shell reflects what’s inside the character.

Week 4 | Balance in Design

Line Weight | Symmetry vs. Asymmetry | Flow of Lines | Busy to Simple | Balance in Contrast | Balance in Color | Actual Balance | Artist Balance

Week 5 | Building Relationships

How design decisions relate to each other. | To story, to self, to shape, to page | Positive negative space, props and cloth, archetypes

Week 6 | Expressive!

Expressing yourself, hands, feet, eyes, and mouth

Week 7 | Tonal Focus

Finding the Values in your Art | When thinking about contrast, visual communication is key | How do you show your design off in the best way possible?

Week 8 | Colors

Color Theory and design decisions for your character | Remaining conscious of your color choices to reflect your characters’ feelings and how you want your audience to react to them | Thinking in Local colors first

Fundamentals of Character Design
WHAT YOU’LL LEARN
Instructor

Bringing out the best in talent

Stefan Hansson
Kathryn Hudson

Stefan is a senior concept artist and illustrator with a strong focus on character design and he excels at drawing and painting stylized characters and animals. He has worked as a concept artist in entertainment industry for over 10 years, primarily working with video games and since he started freelancing in 2015 he has been working with a wide range of clients. Most recently, he had the privilege of working at SPA Animation Studios in Madrid, Spain as Lead Lighting Artist on the animated movie Klaus for Netflix.

As a mostly self-taught artist Stefan continually allocates a big part of his time improving his painting, drawing and design skills. Besides working as a production artist, Stefan spends his time painting traditionally with oils. More specifically, he takes a big interest in plein air painting.

Stefan lives in Stockholm, Sweden and is currently freelancing for a variety of different clients whilst trying to balance freelancing, personal projects and his family life with his wife, 2 kids and 2 dogs.

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As a character designer, Kat Hudson has had clients that include Disney, Dreamworks, and Hasbro, In the past she has been a character designer for Fx Network’s Archer, and is currently a designer for Warner Brothers Animation on the reboot of DC Superhero Girls. Kathryn received her BFA from Belhaven University in Mississippi and went on to complete her MFA in Illustration at the Savannah College of Art and Design. She and her husband moved from Atlanta to Los Angeles in late 2017.
Kat’s work combines the minimalism of mid century aesthetics with hyper focused colors, textures, and patterns.

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SPRING TERM REGISTRATION
Feb 8, 2021 - Apr 26, 2021
ONLY
$699
COURSE BEGINS
April 19th

PRICING SCHEDULE

Even though our courses are the most affordable for the quality of education.

These FINANCE OPTIONS allow you to focus on your goals instead of the barriers that keep you from reaching them.

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Chris Lindstrom

Very good instructor. He provided clear and useful feedback each week and the Q&As were very informative.

Bakari Griffin

I learned so much and finally learned how to put the character into characters! Thank you, thank you, thank you for everything!

Jacob Birmingham

It was helpful to have character design tool sets broken down. The methods Brett introduced us to helped me create characters I probably would not have previously envisioned out of my head, just by creating some space to play with different proportions, and providing some new ways of thinking and/or approaching a design.

Sandra Schwartz

It improves the way I see things around me and the way I draw in general! I ‘m so glade I took this course!

Amanda Zima

I took this class more for fun and to push me a bit out of my comfort zone. I think just having assignments to work on was super helpful to force me to draw. I sometimes suffer from not knowing what to draw, and end up not drawing, or drawing similar things over and over again.

Frank J Montes

This course has really forced me out of my comfort zone and helped me expand the areas my mind usually goes to when I sit down and draw a character.

COMPANIES THAT HIRE OUR STUDENTS
BENEFITS
What makes this learning experience unique?
Personal Feedback

Receive personal individual feedback on all submitted assignments from the industry’s best artist.

1+ Year Access

Enjoy over 365 days of full course access. This includes all lectures, feedback, and Live Q&A recordings.

Certificate of Completion

Earn a Certificate of Completion when you complete and turn in 80% of course assignments.

Flexible Learning

Learn anywhere, anytime, and at your own pace with our online courses.

Fundamentals of Character Design
BENEFITS

Need guidance?

We can help with admissions questions, portfolio review / course recommendations!

SPRING TERM REGISTRATION
Feb 8, 2021 - Apr 26, 2021
ONLY
$699
COURSE BEGINS
April 19th
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