Some time ago I began working on an original character to draw whenever I don’t have a subject in mind (something to replace Rei Ayanami from Neon Genesis Evangelion, who’s my current default), and it’s proving more difficult than I thought it would be!
I’ve watched all kinds of tutorials on character creation, many of which include imagining a backstory for context, and proceeding from there on appearances and physical characteristics.
On my other social platforms I detailed the comedic exchange between my boyfriend and myself (he’s the one I bounce ideas off of, and gives me the most sound advice however much I may fight it)….
Me: I need to create an original character so I can draw her instead of other people’s characters.
James: Okay, it’s important she has a backstory… and a purpose.
Me: She is sassy and has a pep in her step.
James: That’s not a backstory or a purpose, those are descriptions… what’s her purpose?
Me: And her eyes are orange.
James: Again, description. She needs a weapon.
Me: She’s a pacifist, her brain is her weapon.
Me: And she has a pep in her step.
James: You’re being extremely difficult.
Me: That’s not a purpose, that’s a description
As you can see, I’m struggling a bit with this. Fortunately, despite being stubbornly resistant to anything being suggested to me straight away, as my significant other described my personality in the most kind way possible, he’s extremely patient.
A few weeks ago I did some initial sketches on this new character, and then the other night I did a few more. Both sets are quite different, and I’m still not satisfied. For instance, I can’t decide on the length of her hair. I quite prefer short hair over long hair, however, with long hair you are given more opportunity to create interesting changes to the style.
Anyways, for now I’m playing with a medium-length.
For the sake of avoiding an even lengthier explanation than I already have found myself in the midst of, I’ll just post these progress photos.
Clearly still very much a creation in progress. I definitely want dinosaurs to play some sort of a role in the backstory of this character. However, her Victorian-style dress in my latter drafts seems out of place. It’s a start, though, right?
The only thing I’m certain of is her name. Maya, a name from a dinosaur picture book I loved as a child spelled in a different way.
It is both fun and frustrating to go through this process.