Hey everyone! It’s been a little bit. I’d like to talk about my other main character’s design: Attie. Attie Kline is hands down my favorite character in Titanzer. Basically she’s a swashbuckling knight living in the future, stuffed full of super strength and invincibility. This makes her fun as hell to write.
Because she’s a power character I started with a basic shape in mind: the lightning bolt. From this I figured out her hair shape, which is pointy and sharp to contrast with Johnny’s swoopy hairdo. This helped establish a pretty strong silhouette for her to start with, which I then followed up by giving her more rounded edges in her body. Not only did it look more visually appealing, it made sense that she’d keep a tighter outfit so she doesn’t have a lot of loose edges that could get caught on teeth or claws while she’s punching the crap out of things. However, I didn’t want to put her in a bondage outfit. It’s a big complaint I have with Samus’ Zero Suit look: I can understand why it’s cool but lends itself to pervy weirdness. So I tested tight-fitting outfits until I found Attie’s outfit inspiration: the motorcycle jacket. From there it was a hop, skip, and a few color tests until I found the best combination for her to sport. Since I completed Johnny first I had something to compare colors to, which made figuring Attie’s colors out a much faster process.Before you know it I had a super powered future warrior, ready to beat up my villains.
You can see more of her and her futuristic adventures in Titanzer right now.
Welcome to the second part of “how the hell I made my main character”.
In the last bit I explained how I came up with his head shape. Now it was time to design the most famous of body parts: the body.This made me pretty nervous. I knew the way Johnny looked would end up dictating everyone else. They would either need to contrast or compliment his overall body shape. I also had no idea how to start.
I booted up Illustrator and started stealing various character designs to see which style most closely matched what I was going for. From there I kept narrowing down, eventually settling on a modular tuxedo and tie look that made him look like he was wearing a cravat.
The resulting look came off exactly how I wanted it to, with the bonus of making him look a bit old fashioned, even though the whole thing is set in the distant future. What do you think?
If you haven’t read my comic, why not start reading the comic from the beginning? Need a quick link to it? No problem, I’ve got one for you right here.
Now that Titanzer has a protagonist and we’ve seen how easier designs can look, let’s move onto a hard one - Johnny Yamamoto. As a a playful inventor type, I needed him to look a bit off-kilter but also put together. A dashing hero that got excited by insane ideas. This turned out to be a huge challenge. Making him scruffy didn’t work. Slightly deranged with heavy eyes looked too creepy. So I kept searching, having to try new approaches I never had to before. Finally I read about doing silouhettes first, and after a lot of attempts I found one that worked.
But that was just the beginning. See how many pictures I drew up there? Nobody ever told me you can spend months figuring out a hairline. However, it was worth it: look at that magnificent hair. Now all I needed to do was figure out his body shape, which I’ll get to in the next bit.
If you like what you see, take a stroll over to Titanzer and see him for yourself. Or you can start the whole story from the beginning right here.
Everybody gets a face-full of Chunky Ben today on today’s Titanzer, so it’s time to talk about him. As opposed to everyone else in the story, Ben only took a quick sketch to figure out his design. It was a lucky break, considering every other character took a lot longer. (Wait till we get to Johnny - whooboy).
The design came easy, but figuring out his personality definitely did not. As the main villain, he needed to be distinct in a way that made him interesting but not tediously annoying. In the first draft he was a silent, brooding warrior. But that made him horribly boring as the story went on, the only one being a grump in the corner. Instead I made him a cranky buttwipe with no idea how to swear right.
The idea of making him a hodgepodge of cybernetic parts goes even further back than that. I like the idea of cyborg chop shops existing in the future, a culture of stealing parts to install them in back alley garages. And if you’re already putting stolen machinery in your body, why not install something to boost your ego, like a bunch of AI programs? I know I’d probably do it. It’d make asking for a raise a whole lot easier.
The first full week of Titanzer is over and we’ve met our first character: The Bank Teller. The teller came together pretty fast compared to everyone else you’ll meet in the story. The most difficult part of its design was the head shape. I started with a very normal appearance, then shifted into the round, marble-like head you see above with the built in LCD screen.
Designed by its corporate designers to be friendly, nonthreatening, and completely forgettable, the Bank Teller Robot is a triumph of slightly annoying robotics. Kind, tedious, yet always happy to help, this customer support droid can not only make you glad it could help you, but equally (if not more) happy to finally get away from it.
Did you miss the Titanzer launch? If so, why not start from the beginning by clicking these words.
Titanzer's out now and there's plenty more to come. Here's a sneak peak of what's ahead.
Finally set up my newsletter. I’ve been wanted to do one for a bit, and with Titanzer about to be released, what better time than now? This is not going to be a dumping ground for every little thing going on in my life, but neat little packages of important information: ebook releases, appearances, things of that nature. Useless things will be hunted and destroyed. Sign up if you want to be kept in the loop!