Coursera: Character Design for Video Games

coursera 2

It’s official now. I completed my first online Coursera course. I wouldn’t call it an achievement; it wasn’t really so difficult. I think the only potential obstacle to breezing through the course was (is) having snobby peers who review your work. But my peers seemed to have enjoyed the characters I came up with (or perhaps they were just being easy on me!); hence the full score of 100.0% was obtained. Anyway, let me tell you what I think of this course.

Do you get your money’s worth? — Well, enrollment is free. Only if you want an official certificate is it necessary to pay some sum in money.

Would you get your time’s worth? — For those, like me initially, who look around for a course to hone their character design skills, let me say this: This particular course wasn’t so much theory-rich as it was inspiring. It probably most definitely won’t help you get better at drawing and designing (video game) characters per se. But, you will get to see some industry figureheads, like e.g. one of the Adventure Time character artists, doing their thing on video, from sketching to line drawing to coloring. And through “homework” assignments, it will help you, exhort you, out of your comfort zone and make you draw some characters in ways perhaps different from how you usually draw your characters. Of course, all this takes time. All in all, if you want to successfully complete the course, you’re looking at only an hour to a few hours a week, for four weeks — though less if you’re okay with just submitting simple pencil-sketches. So, I’d say it’s worth it!




I did it! I just finished my last homework assignment for the course I’m taking on video game character design. The assignment being, “Draw a character, inspired by a real object, in three ways.” But I misread the assignment as “Draw three different characters, all based on (the same) one object.” Oh well, whatever. Anyway, I based these characters on a yucca(?) (Fuck if I know. I mean, do I look like a botanist?) plant I have had for years — and still have, for that matter. 

cartoon, illustration, gorgon, medusa, tiki, cannibal, headhunter, greek, mythology, islander, character design, video game



Dino Warriors (2016)

First of all: Happy New Year! It’s only the fourth of January — it’s within the cut-off time right? Right?!

Then, here’s this week’s homework assignment for that character design course I’m taking. The assignment was: Draw two characters that are opposites, each having a congruent pose, et cetera, with their own “visual language.”

I already had some sketches toward two opposite dinosaur-like characters. With the assignment in mind I started fleshing them out, making little changes on the way, and this is how it turned out. On the left you can see the pretend-video game protagonist, one little brave and timid soul, on the right an enemy guard, stout build, strong, sluggish.

dinosaur, dino, cartoon, illustration, character design, concept art

Perhaps I could’ve, should’ve, done better on the poses… But hey, I’m still learning.


So, what’s cooking? Well uh, I started doing a course on video game character design. For my first homework assignment, I had to draw some variations of a character design. I chose to do a character I was already working on for a webcomic — which I hope to publish sometime… well, sometime next year.

Cartoon, illustration, characterdesign, character design, video game, Bumstein, webcomic, conceptart, concept art, Gerrit Rijken, Iosua

Also, I’m currently laying out the plans for a collaborative art project together with my sister who, by the way, is well on her way of becoming an airbrush master. I’m really excited about that!

And uh… of course there are still some commissioned pieces I need to finish soon.


The making of: Bomber

Ik ben weer bezig geweest met het ontwerpen van ruimtescheepjes voor Deadly Orbit. Voor degenen die het niet weten, dat is een 2D, top-down, shooter game waar ik samen met een indie-gamemaker aan werk. Hieronder kun je zien hoe ik daarbij te werk ga in.

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