Hello my name is Đỗ Đàm Cung
During my childhood, I have always loved playing games like StarCraft, WarCraft and many different adventure games. I also enjoy watching the game when I cannot play it.
When I’ve grown up, I realize that it’s not the game that attracted but it was the story that the game tells the player when they are playing through it.
I like how the games let the player experience the story while playing through it, make the player feel connected with the character and know what the character feels in a situation in the game.
After playing a lot of game, read a lot of books and watch a lot of movies, see how the story affect the audience, how they make them feel sad or happy. How each character was developed, I decided I wanted to write my own story.
But writing… is not my strong point. So I have decided to stared draw my story instead.
I have been very good with drawing, especially redrawing objects
But drawing human beings is very hard for me. So I decided to try to redraw some drawings on the internet with my character in it.
Here is one of the drawing that I made:
And this is the drawing that my drawing was base on:
It’s easier to redraw a drawing then making your own. But this doesn’t help me much in improving my skills.
During my studying at SACE, I have chosen to study the Creative Art subject. In the subject, we were given the assignment to make two products to send to the Head Office, along with a folio that describes our idea step by step to the final product. I have chosen to do character design and illustration drawing for a novel.
Here is some part of the folio that I have made:
I. DECISION AND INTENTION OUTLINE
For my first product, I’m going to create a character with a specific outline and history which will effect the character personality and her style of clothing. This will be a character in a fantasy world which this time would be a good character which use a sword and shield as weapon. To complete my product I need to look though some other character designer or artist’s design and took note since this is my first time design a character. I need to learn how to draw a human body and each part of a body individually.
II. CHARACTER BACKGROUND
The character’s name is Saori.
She isn’t a normal person like everyone else but she was created by the god of a formal world, who have lost most of her power when entering this new world. As a result of lacking power for her creation, Saori is always seems emotionless and lifeless, She almost never talk or smile and will follow every order that her creator give. Though the story, where she met a swordsman, who was a formal royal guard that have quit his role because of guilt and lost, Saori slowly gain her own consciousness, and when the swordsman sacrifices himself for her, she become an independent person with her own will and no longer have to follow order.
In the formal world, Saori was created as thegod’s little sister and best friend. She was always joyful and care for everyone. When the world was destroyed, the god was moved to a new world, she very miss her old world and used every last of her power of creation to recreated her best friend, just to be heartbroken seeing how lifeless she is. The god tried her best to make Saori back to her own self but feel very much pointless.
III. CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT
As the god little sister, Saori is around 15 year old.
She was created as the god best friends and sister, so she is most likely to be smaller then her creator. Because no one want to create a person who close to you to be taller or better then you, especially when it’s your little sister.
But drawing the body of a person is a very hard thing to do, and a lot of artist also struggle to draw it. I look up the internet to find some tutorial for drawing character body, especially female body.
Most of those are all very hard one. But I manage to find the easiest video on You Tube for a beginner artist to follow by ‘Learn2DrawManga’ on YouTube.
Following the instruction, I start my first body drawing. And it’s one of the worst thing I ever saw in my life. The body is too lime and doesn’t have any curve. The arms are not the same and the legs is too big. I decided to stop and start again.
This is my second try. This time I focus on the curve of the body. Just to end up making the hip way bigger then the breast. The thigh is also too thick and the arms and hand need a lot of improvement.
On my third try, I realize that the hip and the breast should have the same side. But end up making the body a little fat. I also realize that I draw the legs a little too long and the neck doesn’t have the curve it need.
I try again and again a lot more time. It’s very hard for me to make the body with acceptable shape. Sometime the head is too big, other is when the arms and hand are too small, a lot of thing can go wrong. At last I draw something I can almost proud of. Although the arms are little two small, but compare it to my ever other tries, this is the best one. So I decided to move on with the next part and might come back to this if I have more time to spare.
2. Hair, Eyes
Before I started, I look up some example on the internet. Because Saori is always emotionless and lifeless, she can be refer to a type of girl which is called “Kuudere” refers to a type of character that is cool, aloof, and introverted but usually very confident – at least on the outside. This contrasts with what is actually a very ‘deredere’ – or sweet and loving – interior. Here are some example:
There are two main hair style for this kind of girl. Either they will have short hair which is neatly cut, or very long hair. The same about his two hair style is how simple they are, and it’s make sense since this girl hardly ever care about their appearance.
After that, I found a video on YouTube that teach me how to draw all types of hairstyle through some simple step.
Follow all the step, I have made some of my own hairstyle. Some of them are just me trying new idea, and I mostly interest in the simple hairstle. But then something came through my mind, Saori doesn’t completely refer to those Kuudere character. Because those character are human, they know about human basic, not like Saori. She is more like a doll, who only following order. If no one take care of her appearance, she most likely to leave her be the same forever. But overall, physically she is human, so her hair still grow, if she leave is like that, the hair will grow too long to the point where it cover her eyes and make it hard to see. Long hair will also very inconviniance when it come to fighting. So she will have to deal with this.
For one to see, they will only need one eye, atleast that what Saori think. So instead of cutting her heir once in a while, she just need something like a hair clip to reveal one of her eyes. And the other eye will be covered by hair. Same can be done with the back with a simple hair band. Which mean Saori will have a low pony tail for the back of her hair. But the pony tail doesn’t take all the hair from her bang and fang, as a result, her hair will solfly hug her face. That is when her hairstyle start to complete.
From all the hair style above, I chose the one in the right bottom corner. Following the step I learn before, I recreate the hairstyle and add some more detail to it. The hair is a little mess up because she rarely brush is. Because I planing only to deside the front view so I didn’t draw the tail.
At first I though of letting Saori wear casual cloth like a casual person of that world.
But when I think of it, her creator won’t want anyone to know about her identity, and it will be really weird if a normal person have another person who always follow every order she give. So the best way to hide that fact, as the creator though, is to disguise Saori as her butler. Why butler when Saori is a girl? Just because she doesn’t like maids.
So as the first step, I look up some butler uniform on the internet. It very rare for girls to wear butler uniform so it’s very hard for me to find any.
So firstly I found some butler uniform in anime wear the guys are wearing. Then I’m lucky enough to find some girls in butler uniform. But then I realize it doesn’t have much different then the boy’s since butler are for boys. It also made the girl look a lot like boy.
I don’t want that. I need to do something to this uniform so that Saori actually look like a girl. What things does girl wear and boy (mostly) don’t. Then it hit me. It’s a dress.
I started to design my own butler outfit for girls. This is my first draft. I use a simple dress, short sleeve vest, and a little bowtie.
This design make me think about those guys who work in a bar. The dress very make this outfit ‘for girl’. But I think the bowtie is a thing for gentlemen. And all the butler above all have a jacket.
So I start again. This time with a jacket outside. I use the same design as all the picture I found on the internet for the jacket. And though about replacing the bowtie with something like a necklace or charm, which is something for a girl.
This is the final design. First is the outfit without the jacket and one is with the jacket. I replaced the bow tie with a charm and adding some minor detail like the laurel around the inside vest, the bottom in the spade of a little star and some decorate to the dress.
4. Full Character Design
This is my first quick draft of Saori
There is a lot of problem in this design. First of all is the legs and shoes. I need a lot of improvement on that but there is not tutorial for that. Secondly is that the hand is a little too shape. The hair seems fine, but I want more detail. And add a hairclip. The glasses seem a bit off and unnecessary.
She doesn’t smile but that because it’s how Saori is as a soulless ‘doll’
This is my final design of Saori, where I have carefully merge all of the design together slowly.
In my opinion, compere it to the draft, it have improve a lot. But I still cannot draw the shoes. The hand is a little small. The cloth design is something I really like, but in this design, the vest is a little too long, and the dress still doesn’t like I imagined.
Despite all that, I’m still proud of this design, this is the best one I have ever made. Next I need to focus on her weapon, post and a lot of minor detail.
That was my folio for character design.
After finishing the Creative Art subject in the SACE course, I have learned a lot more than I ever did and have grown even more attached to the concept of drawing and character design. But only with pencils and paper, I still didn’t satisfied with my character. That is why I want to study in the course of digital design in the University so that I could further improve my Character design and from that, made my own story to tell everyone.
IV. REFERENCE LIST
1. The Pet Girl of Sakurasou Season 2: Premiere Date, Characters, Plot, by Dhruv Sharma, 2019, URL:
2. Top 20 Kuudere Girls in Anime: What is a Kuudere?, by ansalin, 2015, URL: https://myanimelist.net/featured/937/Top_20_Kuudere_Girls_in_Ani me__What_is_a_Kuudere
3. ~How to Draw ANY type of Hair!~, by Talard, 2017, URL: https://youtu.be/0lOZtaL_qg8
4. How to Draw Manga: Female Body Proportions, by Love2DrawManga, 2016, URL:
5. Anime Shading Techniques: Manga Face, by Koizu, 2012, URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tUehvpJ0pY
6. Anime’s Visual Language, 2011, URL: https://www.japanpowered.com/japan-culture/animes-visual language?fbclid=IwAR1eS5K8rPr50Gu_nywnaEf70mrxH4jBokOgmig_1xEhU EN9HKhDPYa7D6k