Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Illustration 2: Animal Illustrations

For this assignment, we had to choose an animal to first paint realistically and then turn into a character. I chose to illustrate a Muscovy duck.

I saw this duck at a park near Lake Merritt in Oakland last year with my family. It had so much personality and I took a ton of photos of it. I went back to the park to take more photos for my project and it was still there!

Before I knew the that it was a Muscovy duck, I thought that it was some kind of weird chicken-duck hybrid, so I called him Chuck the Chicken-Duck.

Here is the realistic rendering of the Muscovy duck painted with watercolors:

When it came time to turn the duck into a character, I made him into a nerd. The duck at the park seemed like a nerd with the way he waddled and wheezed, and the other ducks picked on him and stole his food.

Here is my finished watercolor illustration of Chuck the Duck:

Lesson Learned: Use references when creating animal characters. It is so much easier to create a character if you have an image to start from. I took over 100 photos of the Muscovy duck in the park and spent some time observing it so that I could have a starting point to create this character. I was able to develop a character with a personality based on the real duck's mannerisms and a characterized look based on the real anatomy of the duck.

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