Mycks Design: Character Design flow

Hello! Today we’ll look at the flow of the character design job our Mycks graphic designer took on recently. Those who are interested in the whole process of designing a character for a client might enjoy this.

Client: We want a samurai-ish turtley seal (or seal-ish turtle) for a party boat that also operates a Okonomiyaki (Japanese style pancakes) Restaurant.

If you didn’t know our whole family is a VERY fishing oriented family, so needless to say, we were pretty intrigued by this client. Fishing is a hobby that can be enjoyed by all ages, not to mention you catch yummy fish to take home (provided you do catch them…) and on top of that they have an Okonomiyaki place? Totally yummy. Now I want to eat one. Too bad I have never seen an Okonomiyaki place here in the US…so far (I don’t get out much..sad but true).

The steps:

  1. Rough Sketch
  2. Trace using Illustrator
  3. Color


This is the most important step. Designer has to get enough information from the client while in this stage to come up with something close to what they want. When there isn’t enough communication between the designer and client in this stage, it could cause a misunderstanding right from the start and that’s not too efficient.

First rough sketch considering the keywords such as: turtle, head wrap, samurai, Okonomiyaki spatula, ship.

Once sent to client, some corrections will be requested. There probably never is an OK from a client on the first try. Our designer did a clean and fairly detailed sketch there, but it also is okay to be bit more loose at this stage, considering the possibility of an overhaul at this early stage.

After getting a feedback or two from the client, a sketch that is more tuned to what the client wants can be created.


Once an OKAY comes out from the client, scan in the sketch, import into illustrator and start tracing. Use the pen tool to close up all areas for later coloring.


Checking with the client, start the coloring process. Client wanted light colored skin, and some other coloring preferences. At the end, she took the outline and made it bold to make the character seem more in one piece.

At this point we send the end product to the client as a completed piece. This particular design job had us correcting it couple times while it was still in the rough stage, but once we were in the coloring stage, no other corrections came in and it went smoothly. The clients were happy with the end result :)

Below is how the client used the characters that were designed this time:

Client site:

Client Blog:

I say the site and the blog look pretty sweet :)

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: