Like a good recipe, designing a cool chef drawing requires a lot of talent and patience! Fortunately, you will find all the information you need in this tutorial to illustrate this cartoon character easily.
But before proceeding with this drawing lesson, make sure that you have all the tools needed. A good old pencil, a piece of paper and a vector application are enough to get started. Don't forget to get your hands on a tool to convert your sketch into a digital file.
First, you need to sketch the character using either a pencil and a piece of paper or directly into your vector application. In my case, I prefer to create this part of the tutorial in my software.
Start with the head, the body, the legs and the arms. You can also draw the hat using a couple of curved lines. Once you are finished, you can move on to the next step and add more details on your illustration.
Work on the head and draw the eyes, the pupils, the nose and the mouth. You can also add a small line below the mouth to represent the chin. Complete this part of the cartoon character by adding the ears and the moustache.
Work on the body and draw the line on the shirt. Then, add a few buttons using a few dots on the right side of the middle line.
Finally, draw the hands, the feet and illustrate both legs by sketching a small line in the middle of the rectangle used to form the legs.
It's now time to add a little bit of color on the chef drawing. Create a new layer and draw plain shapes below the lines used for the outlines. Then, color the suit and hat in grey, the moustache, the feet and the pupils in black and the eyes in white.
The buttons on the suit can be colored with a darker version of the grey color already found on the suit. When you are ready, move on to the fourth step.
Every vector application comes with a tool called the "Gradient tool". This tool is perfect to illustrate simple shadows using only two different tones of the same color.
For example, you can apply a dark grey color on the bottom of the hat and a darker version of grey on top to end up with a great effect.
The darkest color is usually placed on the bottom of each shape to illustrate the effect of light. However, for elements like the arms and the hands, the darkest color can be placed on top.
Nice! Shadows create in the last step are great, but we can certainly do better by adding more shadows drawn manually. To do so, simply create a new layer. This one must be placed between the one used for the outlines and the one used for the solid colors.
When you are ready, draw dark shapes on the left side of the hat, the head, the shirt and the ears. You can also draw more shapes below the chin, on the arms and on the legs.
These new shapes are perfect, but probably too dark to illustrate properly subtle shadows (because that's our goal!). Once again, you should find a tool in your application that can create transparency. It can either be an individual tool or part of the gradient tool.
Your goal is to partially hide shapes created on the chef drawing so that you can end up with soft, subtle shadows. It's now time to create another cool effect ...
Reflection! Indeed, lighting is not only creating shadows (darker areas), but also reflection (lighter areas). To illustrate reflection properly, you can start by adding a new layer and duplicate all solid shapes created earlier.
Then, you can change the color of all shapes to white. I also like to keep a small space between all new shapes and the outlines. Make sure that the outlines and the shadows created in the last step are placed over these new elements.
Using transparency, you now must partially hide all white shapes that you created on the chef drawing in the previous step. Unlike shadows, it's a good idea to hide the bottom of each white shapes and leave a white area on the top of the shapes.
Since the light source is probably located on top of the character (and on its right), then this area must be left white. We are almost done! There is one last thing that we can do to improve this illustration even more ...
I like to add a different color for the outlines of the cartoon character. For example, choosing a (dark) grey color for the outline used around the hat can enhance this part of the illustration. Looks more professional to me.
You can repeat this step on all body parts of the chef drawing. The outline used for the pupils can remain black (same thing for the moustache and feet). Good job! Your character is now completed. Have fun and don't hesitate to try more characters below. ;)