"Life is too short to make bad art."

Monday, January 16, 2017

Character design - some tips and tricks

I just had a friend send me his inkscape character design and asking for my opinion.
Hadjoudj Mohamed did a good job for an initial design but there are a few easy to avoid beginner problems.

This tutorial is based on showing him how to improve, alter and easily modify his character. A lot of the hints work with pretty much any character you create for an illustration or a game. 




I hope you enjoyed this quick (and out of the planned order) tutorial and can take something from it for your own creation.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Animation - setting up a character in spine

I just recorded the first video tutorial on cutout animation. Due to the complexity of the subject I will split it into 3 or 4 parts. The first one is about the basic setup of the character, creating the skeleton and assigning the art as well as a first animation. 

 
This video is an introduction to using spine to get started with game art animation. The video is aimed at beginners and users familar with the software or cutout animation might find it a little slow.
I am using spine from esoteric software for this video (currently in version 3.5.46). Even though I prefer to cover free tools on my blog, I am making an exception as the tool is a great help for game art creation. Spine is available in the essential version (without some of the more advanced features like IK and mesh deformation) for $69. 

I used the robot from the ealier 'complete game art tutorial' series and uploaded the art here. The archive includes the exported .png files, the inkscape source file as .svg and .png and the current spine project (with the setup and two idle animation).



The robot character seemed ideal for a starter as he has less joints, making it easier to set up and animate. There are neither the knee nor ankle joints, the hands and arms are combined to cut out the elbow joint and there is no hair or mouth to animate either. 


I hope you enjoyed the tutorial as I plan continue this series of video tutorials on character animation in spine (and Spriter and DragonBones).