Secondary Characters: Sketching Philippa

10 Mar

Phillipa is a hoopoe bird that Green Bean encounters during her adventures. Creating this character was a challenge for me because I didn’t actually know what a hoopoe looks like. I did some research and found that the hoopoe’s most distinct feature is a crown of feathers on its head that extend and contract, which give it a lot of character. At first I just did some sketches of the actual birds.hoopoe 1

After a few sketches, I began to loosen up and try to make Philippa look as though she belongs in the land of Green Bean.

hoopoe 2

These were still too hard edge for me so I tried to soften them up. I wanted her to look cartoon-like but still have the essence of the original bird. One thing I tried to focus on was the different states of her crown of feathers. Her crown should rise when she gets excited or angry, tilt back when she is calm or serious, but most of all she needed to look like the same bird in either state.

hoopoe 3

I like the direction these sketches were going, but I wanted to emphasize that Philippa was a female so I added some eye lashes.

hoopoe 4

In next weeks post I will go from sketch, to inking the image, and through the process of coloring to show what I came up with for the final design for Philippa.

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