Question & Answer

Q: Quick question: I like making characters but hate doing backgrounds. Any tips on how to make them more enjoyable? (Also your stuff is amazing by the way)

asked by Anonymous

Hi!  Thanks!  And yes, I have tips.  First of all (and I’m not saying you do this) but backgrounds are never going to be fun if you try drawing them AFTER you’ve already drawn your characters.  It’s really the FIRST thing you need to consider because it’s like 70-90% of your entire composition!

Second - if you like drawing characters, look at the background as if it’s a character!  Everything in there can help tell the story of your characters.  What kind of environments would your characters inhabit?  What sort of props would they surround themselves with?  If they’re in a building, what is the style of the architecture?  Also, you can draw environments just as dynamically as you draw characters - with motion, emotion, personality, all of that!  The background is also one of your biggest tools for directing the viewer’s eye in your composition - it can point them exactly where they need to look!

Third - the same as you would when you’re drawing a character, don’t rely on stereotypes or icons!  Not every tree is an oak tree.  There are so many types of trees.  But you have to look for them, and study them.  Be as specific as you possibly can with everything in the environment, otherwise it will look boring and generic.

Most importantly, keep drawing and challenging yourself to try new things!  Good luck!

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