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Animation Character Sheet/Character Breakdown Basics

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The 3/4 View
Animation Character Sheet/Character Breakdown Basics
Most of the time you won’t be drawing your character straight-on, either from the front or from the side. A 3/4 view is one of the most common angles that you’ll draw your character at, so you’ll definitely need to include one of these in your character sheet. You can be a bit more free with the pose here; try to capture your character’s expression and attitude.

Along with the 3/4 shot, you should also draw some action shots – various poses caught mid-motion, detailing how clothing or hair might move.

You’ll see that the various key reference points don’t perfectly line up with the guidelines anymore, because of the angle. Instead they should cross right at the midsection of the point being measured - for instance, the one shoulder would be above the line marking the default height for them, while the other shoulder would be below. The hollow of the throat, a midpoint for the shoulders, should rest almost exactly on the guideline.

I like to color my 3/4 view, just to get a look at how my character will look in color – and so I’ll have those colors available later, as I prefer to color my animations digitally and my character sheet now has all the default character colors I need, just an eyedropper selection away. I try to keep my colors to as few as possible - mostly just a solid color and a shadow color for each section, although in some cases I will include a highlight color. Shadows and highlights can be difficult to animate because they don't have solidly drawn boundaries that carry over to the final artwork, so they should be done as simply as possible.

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