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Character Design 2

Advanced level.

Prerequisite: Character Design 1.

Character Design 2 is advanced character design, students should have completed at least two semesters of Character Design 1 before attempting this course. Portfolio entry.

A char­ac­ter design­er cre­ates the look and feel of char­ac­ters for video games, film, ani­ma­tion and illus­tra­tion. Strong draw­ing skills and fun­da­men­tals are required to cre­ate any type of real­is­tic or stylised char­ac­ters. At CDW Stu­dios there are many workshops that use the principles taught in char­ac­ter design. Top­ics will include per­spec­tive, anato­my, draw­ing con­struc­tion, draw­ing advanced forms in 3D space, colour, design prin­ci­ples, sto­ry­telling and draw­ing in Photoshop.

Each week you will watch a demo of the instruc­tor drawing and paint­ing live, you are wel­come to draw/paint along with the instruc­tor and ask ques­tions. After each class you will receive your home­work assign­ment for the week, and at the begin­ning of each class you will receive feed­back on your work.

Topics that will be covered throughout the 12 week workshop:

  • Developing an idea
  • Redesigning characters
  • Keyshot/Keyframe – Visualising a story moment for production (film, games etc), communicating an idea
  • Designing a world for your character
  • Creating a visual hierarchy
  • Adapting/adjusting your work from feedback
  • Creating different characters
  • Character construction
  • Creating personality, proportion, gesture and expression
  • Creating an illustration
  • Thumbnails and story development

The hardware requirements for the workshop are:

  • Laptop (MacBook Pro or i7 PC laptop with 16GB RAM are recommended).
  • Wacom tablet. Any size is good.
  • Notepad and pens/pencils for note-taking.

Software requirements:

  • Photoshop
Additional Semesters TBA

Essential Information

Semester Dates

Course Dates TBA

Class Delivery

In Person

Class Times



CDW Studios


D.M. Cornish



Instructor Bio: D.M. Cornish

D. M. Cornish is a award winning fantasy author and illustrator from Adelaide, South Australia. His first book was Foundling, the first part of the Monster Blood Tattoo trilogy. The second book named Lamplighter was released in May 2008. The third in the series; The Foundling's Tale, Part Three: Factotum. He spent most of his childhood drawing, as well as most of his teenage and adult years as well. And by age eleven he had made his first book, called "Attack from Mars." It featured Jupitans and lots and lots of drawings of space battles.

He studied illustration at the University of South Australia, where he began to compile a series of notebooks, beginning with #1 in 1993. Over the next ten years he filled 23 journals with his pictures, definitions, ideas and histories of his world, the Half-Continent.

David now has illustrated numerous children’s books and worked as an illustrator within the advertising industry for the past 20 years. David teaches our instructed figure drawing workshop and also teaches, Character Design, Illustration and Bootcamp workshops.