Creature Design: Arachnomorphette

Designing Creatures With Consideration to Function & Environment 

In today’s comic book creature design tutorial we’ll be drawing the Arachomorphette, the female counterpart to the Arachnomorph Alpha. Would you believe she’s even fiercer?

If you missed the previous two videos where we designed the creature concept for the Arachnomorph Alpha you can watch them by clicking the links below.

Comic Book Creature Design: Arachnomorph | Balancing Contrast, Using Rendering to Describe Form

Comic Book Creature Design: Arachnomorph Headshot | High Detail Rendering & Texture Details

Designing a creature that looks convincing comes down to more than just the drawing itself. We’re communicating an idea through a visual representation of course – but within that we must convey what they are, how they move, they’re social hierarchy, the ramifications of their environmental living conditions, their physical structure and attire. All of these variables contribute to their design and we must effectively implement them so that they make sense.

Making these considerations first also makes the design process easier on us as the artist, because we’re able to use them to direct our design choices. That way we’re able to structure our approach rather than relying purely on trial and error.

Everything we incorporate into the design still needs to come together in an aesthetically pleasing way that results in a cool looking creature. 

So once we have some idea of the puzzle pieces at play, the next challenge is figuring out how they all fit together. But it’s a fun challenge, where we’re able to hang all the costume elements, design details, textures and materials off of the underlying foundation established in the earlier stages of the drawing.

This runs much smoother if we’ve got a good foundation to begin with. And the foundation itself starts off as nothing more than a simple, loose, lightly drawn sketch. We want to keep it light and loose for a few reasons. 

Firstly it allows us room to experiment with the pose, placement, positioning and overall structure of the character without investing too much time and energy up front. We’ve got more freedom to sketch away and erase as needed to develop a promising prototype that can be developed further.

More important than that though is we’re able to emphasize the final design over the top of the foundational sketch by keeping them light to start off with. In a sense we carve the finished drawing out of the rough draft by simply defining the lines we want to keep with a harder contour and erasing the loose lines back.

Either way, because that initial sketch is so lightly drawn in, it’ll drop back in contrast to the heavier line work which will bring the final presentation into focus.

When it comes to creating a compelling creature design that’s memorable, we want to try to bring it to life in the eye of our mind first before projecting it down onto paper. We want to animate it, and watch how it moves. By doing so, this will allow us to breathe an added amount of life into our creatures that make them feel more real.

I hope that you enjoy today’s creature design tutorial and that you take away a ton of insight from what you’re about to learn here. 

Try applying some of the techniques and methods demonstrated in this video to your own work and see what a difference it makes!


Thanks so much for watching. Until next time, keep on creating, keep on practicing and I’ll see you in the next video.

-Clayton

 

Software Used: Manga Studio

 

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