Eyes are Important! - Designing a Character for a New Story

I am starting some concept work for a new story.  This is my favorite part of the creative process (I have strong suspicions that this is the favorite part for most creators.)  It is easy to get lost in world building, character design, and style concepts.  It is possible to stay at this stage indefinitely -  refining, adding, and style-jumping to "get it just right".  This is why there are millions of unfinished projects out there.  I have a few dozen myself.

It is important to take the time to plan out a good story and work on the art style, but I have also started giving myself deadlines.  (See my previous post on the importance of finishing personal projects here.)  I am in the early stages of writing and concepting my new story called "Stacks".  I will have it finished this year (hopefully in time for the holiday season so you can buy a copy for your favorite rugrat).

There are a ton of details to play with at this stage.  I've posted some pictures of the hamster character from "Stacks".  All six pictures are exactly the same, except for the size, color, and placement of the eyes.  Here are some questions that I am asking myself.
  • Do I use a consistent eye style for all of the characters in the book?
  • Do the eyes change style to show emotion or reaction?
  • Do the pupils move, or does the whole head move when the character is looking at something?
Not sure what the answers are, but  I do know that I'm leaning towards #3, #5, or #6 for this character.

You can click on the image for a larger view.  Any opinions?


Anonymous said...

yeah i think i like 2 or 6...really good, cant wait to see the final project.


Anonymous said...

Ditto to Heidi... but I think I like 2 the most! Hard to decide!

Good work, D! Love ya!

Shane Smith said...

I would say somewhere between 3 and 4. Pupils are a must though; The characters I draw for my day job all have eyes like your No.6 and it can be insanely frustrating trying to convey emotion or viewing direction!

Muellberg said...

Gotta run with #5, although #3 is a close second.
Love the new website, very easy to navigate...excellent