Character Illustration for Film

Character Illustration for Film

  • Price: $699 | Pay with installments.
  • Pre-Reqs: Intro to Character & Creature Design and Digital Painting
  • Materials: Photoshop, Wacom tablet or equivalent

Course Description:

This class will cover how to create visually unique characters for film. Films require believability in your character. Keeping in mind Proportion, Physics, and Realism, students will be encouraged to explore different styling methods and techniques for their characters and learn how to take characters from initial thumbnails, all the way to the final painting. Learning how to refine your thumbnails, create clean line-art, and properly light and render your characters will truly bring them to life. You will also learn how to create mood boards for your characters, along with expression sheets and orthographic views. Doing all of these while staying on direction will breathe life into your characters.

  • Week 1: MoodBoards + Thumbnails: Student will create and explore unique designs for their character: Students will gather a variety of reference, to ensure they have a moodboard with multiple directions and explore thumbnails using a standard 3 value system, light/medium/dark, to emphasize the overall read.
  • Week 2: Additional Exploration in MoodBoards + Thumbnails: Students will choose their preferred moodboard images, and create a more focused moodboard. Once a direction has been chosen, students will create a new set of thumbnails, influenced off the ideas and notes of your previous work.
  • Week 3: Line-Art Sketching: Students will create a base pose, and loosely design sketches over this figure. Exploration is key here. Revision of some images on your moodboard to enhance the overall direction will be done (add Call Outs).
  • Week 4: Final Line Art + Value Structure: Students will design their characters based on combinations & improvements from their previous sketches by stitching them together. Students must first complete a line at pass on them, and then further enhance the design with the standard 1-2-3 Value Structure.
  • Week 5: Face & Head Exploration: Students are to complete a set of head explorations in order to further develop their characters.
  • Week 6: Posing Your Character: Student will render their character and include lighting & texture to influence mood.
  • Week 7: Finalizing Your Character: This week will be a continuation from the previous week, utilizing notes on how to improve render.
  • Week 8: Orthographic View: Student will learn to turn their character in space, and provide clear drawings & instructions for a modeler to properly sculpt their character.


Bjorn Hurri is a well respected concept artist, known for his speed and imagination. Bjorn became a senior concept artist in just three years, filling his resume with clients such as NCsoft, Catalyst Game Labs and SEGA whilst working for several years on a number of AAA titles before joining Opus Artz as Lead Artist.

Instructor's gallery:

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