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November 29, 2020


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Color Struggles

Twisight Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2020  Professional Digital Artist
I'm struggling on how to shade my OC to make it look like a anime character. Any Advice. you give me would be helpful.

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Devious Comments

beebrushes Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2020  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'd advice using references, but from photos and artist's drawings that look similar to what you're trying to accomplish, that might help a little.
Dingbat1991 Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2020  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I don't know how relevant it is to what you're looking for but rather to repeat what has been said, check out this site for color combinations that work well with each other:
Riger44 Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2020  Student General Artist
There's a ton of tutorials online on shading anime characters, try watching those and speedpaints. Anime shading is mainly cel shading, then further enhanced with soft brushes, gradients and layer effects.
barananduen Featured By Owner Edited Nov 30, 2020   General Artist
OK, I made a color map for you. Since you didn't indicate otherwise, I assumed you wanted to continue cel-shading.
I'll walk you through the process.

Goal: To use colors and shading to indicate:
1. volume
2. lighting

For this, right now, we're not going to worry about bounce and ambient lighting. Those are things to think about later on, not now.

1. STEP 1 - determine light source.
Your first (pre-edit) comment said the light was coming "from the face." Since that's what I had read before I got to work on it, I assume you wanted a light source between the face and the snake. I indicated that with a yellow blob.

I also assumed a warm light temperature.
1 Light Source by barananduen
Your new comment/edit makes it sound like you wanted the light source up and center, but I only saw that once I'd already finished. So let's go with the first one for this explanation, since a different light source would place lights and shadows in different places.

2. STEP 2 - color palette
Your original image shows basically flat-shading (the shadows are very, very minimal) except for on the hair. For cel-shading, try to use at least three colors:
1. base color
2. shadow color
3. highlights color

Here, it's important to take into account the temperature of the light source. To keep things SUPER simple, a warm light casts cool shadows (this depends on a lot of factors, but let's keep it simple and go with that right now) and a cool light casts warm shadows. (This is a generalization I don't particularly like, but it will keep things simple for us.)
2 Palettes by barananduen
I expanded your original color palette like this:
HAIR - kept the base and shadow color, added highlight color and accent color. Your shadow color could actually go a little colder (more towards blue, but very subtly), but I kept it like you had it.
COLLAR - kept base color, added shadow color
SKIN - kept base color, replaced original shadow color with 2 shadows that tend more to purple-ish
ARMOR LIGHT PARTS - kept base color, added shadow and highlight colors
ARMOR DARK PARTS - kept base color, added shadow and highlight colors
CHAIN MAIL - kept base color, added shadow color only*
SNAKE - kept base colors, added shadow and highlight colors

*This looked like some sort of wire webbing against fabric; if so, it wouldn't reflect light (as a whole) that much, so I skipped the highlight color.

Alright, now, let's goooo!!!

I've marked areas to be highlighted with this light blue. I've marked the corresponding color in the palette with the same color.
The area markings I've done for this walkthrough are rough and jagged bc I was trying to work quickly; you make them as smooth as you need to.
3 Lights by barananduen
OK, so now we look at the light source again, so our yellow blob is back.
Take the color indicated by the light blue marks and highlight the areas of your drawing that are directly hit by the light source.
Take shape into account (see how I indicated part of the cheek here).

In anime, skin usually has more than one shadow color going at once, so that's why we have two shadow colors here. This is the lighter of the two, indicated by this blue-ish color.
4 Skin 1st Shadow by barananduen
Take the first shadow color and shade the skin in the areas indicated, taking into account shape (see: nose) and cast shadows (shadows cast by the hair).

See color and areas indicated by this deeper blue-ish color.
5 Skin Deep Shadow by barananduen
The chin/jaw will cast a darker shadow, so we're using this color here, as well as on the back of the neck (area farthest away from the light source). You had originally done the shadow cast by the jaw in black; I replaced that with this darker skin color to make the shading more harmonious/cohesive.

This adds interest. It's optional, but looks cool.
6 Hair Accent by barananduen
I indicated the color and the areas to use it on, there, in blue. It's purple-ish because of that warm light / cool shadows thing.

Now that we've taken care of the skin and hair, let's look at everything else.
The highlights were already indicated in Step 3.
7 Shadows by barananduen
I've indicated the color in the palettes and the areas to apply it to with this teal color.
On the snake, I used that dark red bc the teal was too much like the snake's color.
When applying shadows, once again take into account SHAPE as well as light source placement. This is what Cicakkia meant by needing to know the form of your character; you need to understand the "topography" of the thing you're shading.

Also be mindful of shadows cast by other parts of the drawing (like the plates of the armor, and the shadow cast by the snake). I've indicated the shadow cast by the snake in red, but you'd use the shadow color of the surface it's cast on (so, the armor shadow colors)

Metals are extremely reflective, so that the lightest parts are basically white.
Add thin white lines to the armor following the areas indicated in red here:
8 Armor White by barananduen

OK, that took longer than I anticipated ^^; I hope it helps. If you have any questions, let me know.
Xr4p1d Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2020  New Deviant Hobbyist Digital Artist
i suggest you pick an anime scenes/artwork you like and pick the colour from said work.
Back then i do that too and overtime i became familliar with the colour and started using my own colour from the pallete(not colour picking)
barananduen Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2020   General Artist
Do you have any attempts you can show us so we can better guide you?

Also, "shade to make it look like an anime character" can go many ways... What kind of "anime" type of art do you have in mind as a goal for this?

But what Cicakkia said is true - By understanding how to use shading to represent volume and lighting, you'll be able to do this. That's the underlying skill. It will take a while to perfect this, but if you post a picture of where you're at right now, as well as describe (or provide visuals) of what you're trying to achieve, we can give you more targeted advice. :)
Twisight Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2020  Professional Digital Artist
I'm struggling with this artwork but each time I shade it it doesn't seem all that right
Knights Temptation
barananduen Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2020   General Artist
Based on this, do you want to do cel-shading?

Also, do you want the light source to be coming from the top, or the top-right? (based on the shadows on the hair) I can give you some "red-line" (visual) suggestions on that pic, but I'd kind of need to know the light source for sure first ^^;
Twisight Featured By Owner Edited Nov 30, 2020  Professional Digital Artist
light is coming to the face. I'm also struggling with the snake
barananduen Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2020   General Artist
Ack! my reply landed as a new comment, sorry! Please see original thread.
cicakkia Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2020  Professional Digital Artist
You need to know the form of your character in order to shade it right. Study how light and shadow works is the best way. And do lots study about basic form
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