The exploration of Anime and Manga is an excellent way to learn how to understand the art of caricature. There is no better subject to begin exploring these ideas than with yourself. You can photograph yourself for reference, wear costumes, experiment with makeup and have no undue nerves about embarrassing anyone else if you are unhappy with your first several drawings.
Things You'll Need
- Marker paper
- Tracing paper
- Light box (optional)
- Pencil (non photographic blue lead)
- Pencil (No.3)
- Eemplates (circle and curve)
- Black pen
- Colored markers or colored pencils
Familiarize yourself with the genre; watch Anime and read Mangas. Immerse yourself in different cultural styles of the genre as well as historical styles to help discover your own voice.
Practice drawing several different styles of eyes, mouths and noses separately without the added pressure of matching a specific portrait. This will build your confidence and help you find your own unique style.
Take a photograph of yourself; a portrait shot is best. Print the photo and use it for reference.
Draw an outline of your portrait lightly on a piece of marker paper. You may also use a light box to lightly trace the photo.
Draw an indicator line in the middle of the face both horizontally and vertically.
Place your eyes at the horizontal indicator line made in Step 5. Keep an eye-sized distance between the left and right eye.
Split the space between the eye and bottom of the chin. Draw the bottom of the nose at this mark.
Mark a line at the top of the eyes and the bottom of the nose to place the ears.
Draw a line between the bottom of the chin and the nose; this is where the center of your mouth will be drawn. The width of the mouth depends greatly on the character’s proclivities as well as gender. Experiment with its placement.
Utilize the circle and curve templates to solidify your lines. Erase the indicator lines, and firm up your drawing by committing to the lines you wish to keep--making them darker.
Make several copies of this stage in your drawing or use your light box. It can take several tries to be satisfied with your line style as you ink in the drawing.
Use a black pen to finalize your design. Tracing paper can be used here to perfect the lines before inking them directly to your marker paper.
Color your drawing after your ink line has dried completely.
Tips & Warnings
- Test your markers on the paper you intend to use before you start drawing. Markers have a tendency to bleed on certain papers.
- Check the formulas used in your pens against the formulas in your markers. An alcohol-based marker will do less damage to the paper, but will pick up the black ink of your lines if the pen ink is not waterproof.
- If you are planning on using these drawings for a school entrance portfolio, be sure to include other styles of artwork as well. Manga is often seen in portfolios and still not taken seriously at most college institutions.
- Polykarbon Tutorials
- How to Draw Anime & Game Characters; Tadashi Ozawa; 2001
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/BananaStock/Getty Images
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