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Character Reference Sheet-ness

Basically this reference sheet covers pretty much everything a person would ever need to know about your character.. and then some.

Let’s face it. If somebody were to just glance over the reference sheet, at least you can feel some reassurance in knowing that they got the bare minimum

Name (Nickname):

Please if you’re going to give your character some ungodly, few centuries old, age, make sure to include what age they looks like. Otherwise all shall assume they appear to be a rumpled piece of leather, ran over by some sort of moving vehicle, after being regurgitated by a cat. Obviously, this is a little pet peeve of mine.



List three to five most important things about your character.
If nothing else, people will know this much. This section can also be moved to another part of sheet if preferable.

-Physical Details-
Next most important part, next to personality. Really essential if you’re using your character in a tournament or in some other way in which other people need to understand said character.
Everybody hates it when they have to work with some under-described character. Facts, people! Descriptions, we need ‘em.
Even if you’re not using your character for a competition, but for personal writing instead, a solid physical description helps wonderfully for your writing. It’s nice to have a clear picture in your head.

Build/Body Type/Physical Frame:



Or fur, scales, whatnot. Just make sure you describe it.

Hair: color/texture/length/cut


Other defining features/extra anatomy:
ears, teeth, tails, wings, scars, deformities, disabilities

Good (smiles a lot) or bad (smoking, drinking)

animated, none, sweeping, small

How does he/she carry himself/herself?

slang, aristocratic tone, any speech patters

elegant, shabby, normal, etc.

Make sure to not just focus on style or simple descriptions, but also include any accessories (jewelry, glasses, piercings, tattoos, make-up)

On a side note: If the character has alternate forms, make sure to clearly describe/differentiate them. If they are strongly different and/or very important to the whole story, think about creating different sections for each form.

Really, I believe that personality is the key to making your character original, stand out, or just overall complete and well-rounded. I want to see the depth of his/her personality, want it to be believable. Nobody likes a character that is far less interesting than a wet mop.
If you are anything like me, at times you may struggle with fully explaining the personality of the character that you have so nicely visioned. It’s okay, you’re not alone in the feeling that you need to explain (in horrid and absolute detail) so that the character floating around in your mind makes sense on paper.
Because of this, the personality section, at least for me, tends to be quite long. I find that this process not only helps me expand and understand my character better, but also further develop him/her past the image in my head.

Part One: Basic Info
Plain ol’ makes ‘em happy.

And other things he/she tries to avoid.

What does he/she do in his/her spare time?

What is he/she good at? Doesn’t even have to be super relevant.



Best Quality:
Only one. Come on, this is no bragging fest. Maybe two if they’re closely related.

Greatest Flaw:
Don’t you even dare say he/she doesn’t have one, because everybody does. Maybe his/her flaw is that they think they don’t have any. D<

Character Strengths:

And the coinciding weaknesses:

List a number of them. They can be funny, or possibly used to further divulge the characters behavior.

One thing he/she is and one thing he/she is not.
For example: smart, but not wise; nice, but not friendly; pessimistic, but not an asshole/jerk; fast, but not strong.. etc.

What he/she wants (ex: move towards) and doesn’t want (ex: move away from, avoid)
This part can go a couple different ways, depending on your take.. but I think you all can deal with it.

Part Two: In-depth Analysis (If you really want, this part can be omitted.)</i>

How does the character picture himself/herself?
Strengths and weaknesses, upon other qualities, they may think they have.

How do others see him/her?
Behavior that is actually shown, and which others have interpreted.

Five adjectives that he/she would use to describe his/herself.

Five adjectives others would use to describe him/her.

Most valued possession:

Darkest secret and/or treasured memory:

Most proud accomplishment and or greatest failure:

Is he/she motivated by possibility or necessity?
This question dwells upon the character’s life. Is it hard and he/she does things because he/she needs to, is he/she comfortable, doing only things that please them? A bit of both?

Current motivation:
Greed, power, love, lust, revenge, money, to win/come out on top, hate, freedom, survival?

How does he/she view the future and/or the past?
aspirations, goals, objectives, regrets

What is his/her philosophy on life and death?

What kind of energy level do they usually have?
perky, somber, tired, aggressive, pumped, mood swings?

How does he/she show and/or handle: love, affection, grief, pain, anger, sadness, conflict, change, loss?

Does he/she have a temper?
If so, displayed actively or more passive aggressively?

How does he/she respond to the surrounding world, the ‘unfamiliar,’ and other people in general?
Empathetic, judgmental?

Polite or rude?

Stingy or generous?
Your choice to decide of what.

What kind of ‘public’ face does he/she display?
Put up a front, open emotions, two faced

Leader or a follower?

More happy by themselves or in a group?

Does he/she have any addictions/dependencies/fixations/fetishes/ or other strange behavior?

What is his/her sexual preference/experience/values?
Of course, couldn’t leave this one off the list. It’s just so darn fun. xD

Now, we move onto the background of the character. What’s a person without their past? Our history makes us who we are today. Blah blah, inspirational mumbo jumbo.
There might not be a lot of sub-headings is this one, but the ‘backstory’ part is usually a mini story in itself. So, have fun. ^^

Time period, current residence, any other basic descriptions needed

If eligible.. and if not, explain why.

Educational background/other learning experiences:

Intelligence Level:

Short Term Goals:

Long Term Goals:

Make sure to describe the family life and the relationships.

Same goes.. make sure to describe the relationship.

Birth order, major events in his/her life. This part can be very detailed or really vague.

This is more of an ‘if applicable’ section. It’s really only important if you plan to use your character in a tournament or competition. But then again, sometimes it’s just good to  know these things about your character for personal interest.

Physical Strength:


Fighting Style:
technique, talents, skills, predictability

Unusual Abilities/Powers:
rate these on some sort of scale

Weapons/Other Gear:

And if you are entering a tournament, please make sure to include an actual reason why.
This all started because of some characters and basic plot ideas I’ve had floating around in my head as of lately. These simple daydreams slowly progressed into something more structured, and soon I found myself wanting to elaborate on them. But of course, with all of these random facts circling in my mind, I felt the need to figure out some semi organized way to write them down or otherwise forget everything.

Soon though, I realized what I had been writing out was completely scrambled and that I still wanted to develop the characters more. So, I searched around for a reference sheet to fill out. Not finding one that fit all of my needs/wants as far as character development. I decided to mash together the important parts of a few, adding my own insight as I went along.. and wah-la!

Now I have an overly detailed reference sheet that I can fill out. :D

Like I said, feel free to use it for your own needs, and any more suggestions or additions as to what other topics can be included, please share!
Add a Comment:
WorthAShot1234 Featured By Owner 8 hours ago  New Deviant Student General Artist
Thanks for this but, how can I credit you? Please help. I'm about to make my OC.
shookie-melana Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2018  New Deviant Student Digital Artist
im using it! tysm
franimatic Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2018  New Deviant Hobbyist Digital Artist
quirks <3
Goldenwolfmidna Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2018
Corona341 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2018  Student Writer
Just sending a message to say that I'm using this template for my OCs as it has beem the most helpful and best template ever!![Bunny Emote] Closed Eye Smile Smile fella (Smileys) 
SparkLux Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2018  Student General Artist
XStarMoonFoxX Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2018
This is really Helpful ! 
beadygiraffe Featured By Owner May 13, 2018
how do i download it to edit it?
AnAverageWolf Featured By Owner Apr 26, 2018
This is helpful ^^
SilverLion1999 Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2018  Student Writer
Would this be good for those who can't draw that well?
ShellyStrawBerry Featured By Owner Feb 23, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you! <3
ArtOf-ASlytherin Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2018
I’m going to use this! Thank you!
Shiva-Diva Featured By Owner Jan 14, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
What does the Demeanor/Carriage/Gait mean?
AuriJB Featured By Owner 6 days ago  New Deviant Hobbyist General Artist
I know this comment was almost a year ago now, but if you still need to know, it basically means how they walk and their posture. Ex: slouch, stiff
hjt0728 Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
using :3
OceanSwimmer101 Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Gah! This is amazing. I'll definitely be using this in the future, thank you!
BlazeKnightDT Featured By Owner Oct 14, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
Now THIS is good. I think I'll do not one, but TWO for my superhero Kineto: one for the first book he's featured in, and one for the last. Kind of a "before-and-after" concept.
Mister-Maniac Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh my gosh! This is so incredibly useful! Most of the templates I see for OC design are just like 'Okay, favorite food, blah blah, now put everything about him in a single paragraph'. This is much better written. Thank you, and I'll absolutely use this for my OCs in the future! <3
itslage-adopts Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
totally using, thank you!
RoartheCat Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'll use it, but I probably will never post it. This seems like something I'd use for my more personal characters.
AyumiMei Featured By Owner May 17, 2017  Student General Artist
Used thx 
MetalHeartsRejik Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
shal use! XD and when I do, I shall share it here, or you'll find it in your mentions!
savanahfirefox Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2016  Student Digital Artist
kc-andre Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2016   General Artist
kc-andre Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2016   General Artist
PrinceApoIIo Featured By Owner Jun 8, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
aa i love this! im gonna use parts of this for my blank oc template, but il be sure to reference you!
WD-DeathStar-Morty Featured By Owner May 7, 2016  Student Digital Artist
using for me skele bab 
Beta-mei03 Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2016
oh thank you!!!!! i am using this probably a lot ^^'
CrazyMoonPowerZZZZ Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This is so helpful :D 
keiku Featured By Owner Jan 5, 2016  Professional General Artist
Very helpful.  Thanks much for posting this. "Otherwise all shall assume they appear to be a rumpled piece of leather, ran over by some sort of moving vehicle, after being regurgitated by a cat" LOL
corviq Featured By Owner Edited Oct 26, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is brill! Totally using this as a guide for Toxy's info~ Thanks for the shamazing ref.

A (Alphabets) M Alphabets (Words) A (Alphabets) Z (Alphabets) I (Alphabets) N Alphabets (Words) G (Alphabets) 
fallenangelgirl56 Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
very very helpful!!! thanks!
Ind3p3nd3ntW0man Featured By Owner Aug 10, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks a lot! Very helpful
Roosk Featured By Owner Jul 8, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This is so helpful!! Thank you for creating it!!
artestami Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Haha, is the person smoked and/or drank, I would definitely not want them to smile!
emtries Featured By Owner Jun 28, 2015   General Artist
I'll be using this ;w; Thank you! 
Willowfyre Featured By Owner Jun 26, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
Using this for my characters!!! I works really well. :)
LadyMonoceros Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for this!
Eriakit Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2015
Wow, this is amazing! My RP and writing partner and I will be using this to keep our characters in order :D

Thank you!
PencilHydra Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist…
Used :D thank you for making such amazing help!!!
MEG4LOVANIA Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Not using to the last detail, but this was helpful for updating my own character reference sheet to make it more detailed! Thanks!
fallpanda Featured By Owner Edited Dec 31, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist… there's mine(possibly may go over and re-do some things as I changed my mind of some  parts part way through doing it XD) :happybounce:  thanks for making this haha. I was needing one that had good detail and things on it ^^
BryanTheBomb Featured By Owner Oct 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Lokipers Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2014  Student General Artist
Thank you for this! I love the comment on age. I agree wholeheartedly! Definitely going to use this to help form my OC. 
CRYSTALESP Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm going to use this some day :D (Big Grin) 
Maerorem-Caligo Featured By Owner May 3, 2014  Professional Writer
This is so good, thanks.
yourweirdostalker Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you so much for this, I'm still having trouble forming my own character and this will definitely help.
Y'see, my character is going to be a part of this fan fiction I'm writing about Percy and Annabeth (from the olympian series by Rick Riordian) where they have two kids but actually the daughter's adopted and... Well...oh I'm getting carried away here
Anyway, I'm having a bit of trouble trying to formulate a personality for their daughter.
After all, the personal background forms the character right?
Any way, thank you a lot for this, it's really helpful
InsuredInsanity Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2014
I'll definitely use this! Thanks!
icyninjakitty1245 Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2014
This helped me make a new oc ^w^
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