Thursday, January 6, 2011

Team Building and Character Design

I often enjoy working on a set theme when I'm customizing. I often find it far easier to come up with a concept for a second or third figure once the first has been designed.

It dawned on me recently why that probably is, and it's rather basic and obvious storytelling. One custom figure is just that... it's a design, and for all the thought I put into it, no matter how clever a name I come up with for it, it lives in a little vacuum in my mind.

But as soon as I start on that second figure a relationship exists, and because there's a relationship they begin to flesh out as unique characters in my mind. How are they alike, how are they different? How do they regard each other? So many gaps are filled in almost instantly.

As soon as I decided the Mirialan (the gal with the green face) figure's lack of facial tattoos meant she was an untested rookie, I knew the Arconan soldier was a veteran of a few conflicts. She's young and eager to prove herself. He's older and more concerned with simply surviving the next engagement.

This thought process helps me decide on details to add and color schemes to try. Trying to tie all these concepts and visual cues together inevitably inspires a third character, or fourth, and all the while the relationships are connecting and inspiring more ideas to work into new characters... until I grow tired of the initial concept or decide I've "told their story" fully enough in my head.


  1. Wow, very very nice work there my friend! The Mirialan's outfit doesn't feel very much like Star Wars to me, but still I can see her and the Arconan fitting in some sort of EU storyline very well. Paint apps are top notch as always. Love the subtle glow effect around the pair, too. And the parts list with links to the donor figs is a great idea! Gonna steal that, buddy :D

  2. Thanks man! She did come out looking much more "hard sci-fi" like Robotech or Mass Effect, but I think there's a little room for that especially in the Prequel era.