In part one we learned to design the head of a Ahoodie/Pharrell/Bape style avatar. In part two we’ll learn how to illustrate the rest of the body and learn how drawing an arm can surprisingly look a lot like a male genitalia.
2. DRAWING (The body)
2.1 Layers (very important)
You’ve already drawn your head on one layer. Now you need to add a second layer to which you will be placing the body. You want the body layer (or t-shirt layer) to be UNDER your head layer. If you don’t see your “layer” window go to the windows tab and select “Layers”, the layer window will appear. At the bottom of that window there are 4 icons, the one next to the trash can is the “create new layer” button. Click it to make a new layer.
Now that you have a new layer that you named “Body”, start with an ellipse to make the basic structure of the body:
Make a second ellipse to make the belly of your avatar, it will give depth to your character making him more detailed and dynamic:
The “align” tab allows you to align shapes automatically without you having to make guides, zoom in zoom out and drag shapes to align them manually. You can choose to use this tool to save some time and make your shapes perfectly positioned. To do so, select both shapes with the black cursor and click the “horizontal align center” sub button.
2.3 Pathfinder > Add to shape area (blend shapes together)
Take the white cursor and select the bottom part/the anchor point of your vertical ellipse and drag it up (you can hold shift to go straight up without bifurcating one way or the other) until that anchor point is inside your second ellipse as so:
Select both shapes using the black cursor and open the Pathfinder tab and click on add to shape area and then click on “expand”. You should get something like this:
2.4 Pathfinder > Intersect shape areas
Now you want to get working on a second shape that will make the sleeves of the t-shirt you’re building. What I did, and I recommend you do the same, is again I made two ellipse, one for the shoulder slope and one to split the end of the sleeves. It should look something like this:
Once again, select both shapes and in your pathfinder tab select “intersect shape areas” and expand it.
Now you want to align center both shapes horizontally (you can do it manually). Then take the new shape you have just created, right click and send it to the back by going to “arrange > send to back”.
Without the outline (CTRL + Y) it should looks like this:
*Note that you can change the stroke weight and colour of your shapes to make it look however desired but keep in mind that most of your cartoon’s strokes should have the same weight.*
You’ll now want to break the shape you have in front by adding 2 anchor points with the pen “add anchor points” tool. I used a line guide in order add the two anchor points at the same height.
Next, delete the top part of it by selecting the top of the ellipse with the white cursor.
This is what you should get:
If the end of your lines finish with an edge cut instead of being rounded, go to your stroke window and click on round cap button.
2.6 The arms (Free transform tool)
This is a really simple design of an arm. I’ll present another one next week for those of you that don’t like arms that look like male organs. I made it real quick using only ellipses, the white cursor to modify the anchor points and using the “Free transform tool” (shortcut E) to change it’s angle. And at the end I did a “add to shape area” to blend the two shapes together. You can make a nice arm using the pen tool with some practice but you might need to send elements to front/back and lock some elements and unlock them (we’ll see how to do that in PART III).
Now make sure the arm is on a new layer that is under your t-shirt layer. Also be certain that the stroke weight and inside colour of your arm matches the face.
Flip the arm using your vertical guide and the reflect tool (click copy).
2.7 The pants
Create a new layer and name it “pants. On that layer make an ellipse and angle it with the free transform tool.
Bring the ellipse under your t-shirt. Once it is in the desired position flip it using the reflect tool.
Make another ellipse over the two previous ellipses that make the legs. This circle will define the crotch (you can make it smaller or bigger depending on what you’re rocking).
Add some little lines for the pockets by just drawing one with the pen tool and flipping it with the reflect tool for the second pocket.
Bring your head over your body to see how it looks. (Here’s what mine looks with the outline only)
Now click on your t-shirt layer and make a circle using the ellipse tool that has the same stroke weight and skin colour as the face. This will make the collar of your t-shirt. It’s important that this shape is over your t-shirt and under the head.
Your body is done! Next week, in PART III, we’ll add some kicks on that guy to make him look like this: