Draw a cute, but sad cartoon character using a few basic tips and a more challenging posture. Life is not always about fun, parties and joy. Sometimes, people are sad, angry or lonely. In this lesson, I will show you how to depict a sad character using a simple facial expression that is easy to create. You will also learn how to use a few basic effects to create shadows and highlights into the drawing to add more emphasis to this emotion. Ready? Let's draw this fun character now ...
This illustration is entirely made from straight and curved lines. No basic shapes are used for now. The hair, the face, the eyes, the nose, the mouth, the body, the legs, the arms and the shoes are all created with lines made from sharp ends. Notice the posture of the body (the knees are slightly bent) and the sadness on the face of the character. The head is also lower and the shoulder is almost near the level of the eyes.
On top of the head, you can draw some hair using two (or more) lines. Another simple line is strategically added below the mouth. The left eye of the character is also filled with tears near the bottom. Another tear is visible on top of the shirt of the character.
Near the knees, two small lines are added behind the front leg. Finally, a long straight line is drawn on the bottom of the shoes and three shorter ones are placed on top.
It's now time to add plain colors inside this sad cartoon character. The man comes with blond hair, a blue shirt and green pants. Both the pupils and the eyebrows are filled with a light brown color. Shoes are orange. You can also notice that all lines inside this drawing are filled with colors now. Usually, a darker version of the color found inside the shape near a line is used.
Plain colors are nice, but working with color gradients is even better. Inside each shape found inside this illustration, simply add color gradients so that the bottom of each shape becomes darker and the top brighter. This simple tip can add a lot of depth to an image and it's quite easy to implement. As you can see below, the shirt of the man is much darker on the bottom. Hair are much brighter on top. Once all shapes are affected, you can proceed with the next step.
Color gradients are nice, but there is nothing more effective than drawing more shapes manually. You can see all additions in the image below (with purple outlines). All these new shapes are usually darker, so if you need to draw a shadow on the shirt, simply use a darker version on the color found on this part of the body. Also, please note that all shapes are slightly transparent to give more realism to this sad cartoon character. Indeed, shadows that are too dark would create a dramatic effect that is not necessarily needed.
Now that we have drawn darker shapes to create shadows, let's sketch brighter ones to form highlights. These new elements are usually placed on top of the shapes they are enhancing. Once again, transparency is used so that we can end up with a believable and subtle result. These new shapes are added on top of the head, inside the pupils, on the visible shoulder, on the bottom of the shirt, on the hand, near the knees and on top of the shoes.
Below you can see the final illustration when all shapes, lines, colors, shadows and reflections are added. Feel free to use all these tips to create more adorable cartoon characters like this one. Be creative! Try new emotions, new postures and new themes. Simply unleash your imagination! ;)