Works from Character Design category.

Rika's Collection

My first NFT's Collection at OpenSea.

"Collectibles of this cute parrot in different outfits and situations."

Up Pompeii Poster

Commissioned Poster Illustration

"The play is set in the ancient roman town of Pompeii just before Vesuvius is about to erupt. All the characters have been given latinised names suggestive of their character. Lurcio, is the head slave to the bumbling Senator Ludicrus Sextus, his wife Ammonia, their promiscuous daughter Erotica and virginal son Nausius. At the beginning of the play Lurcio tries to deliver the prologue, but is constantly interrupted by the demands of the household and the other various characters in the play..."

Barn Theatre Website

I WONDER what's above the sky

Commissioned Children's Book Cover and inside illustrations.


"In the first book of the I Wonder series, Join Ben on an adventure to find out what it’s really like above the clouds... Especially when you’re kind to the new people you meet!..."

Look inside:

Flowers

My entry for the 28th International Clip Studio Paint contest "Flowers".

Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible

Time-lapse

Wallpaper version

Skaate Designs

Cute Children T-Shirt Designs for this new clothes brand. You can visit their store on Instagram or their Online Shop.

"The brand that serves the brave. No rules applied!"

Shinning Love

Shining Love Time-lapse Drawing. Illustration for the new contest of Clip Studio Paint "My Time to Shine!". I have to admit that I really enjoy making this illustration, I decided to use a more traditional anime style for this one, Anime styleI've always found it great and fun to draw.

Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible

Time-lapse

Wallpaper Version

Sonna Chronicles


My husband and I decided to create this project last year, but now I took it and decided to start it. The script by him and and illustrations by me, a story that tries to explain what is depression feel like. Hoping you like it and follow it through Webtoons.

"We all have an inner abyss, in which our internal demons try to sink us as much as possible ... Can she be able to get out from the abyss, or will she fall even deeper?" Story by Gabriel B.G. and Drawings by CutyDina."

  • Genres: Drama, Fantasy
  • Status: Updated from time to time

Software alternatives for artists

BlogEntry%2BWallpaper

Hello everyone, I have recently thinking on making a blog entry about the software I use and about the best alternatives to Adobe CS, more than anything because it became very expensive since last decade. So, in the pass of time I have been testing and discovering some programs and I decided to make a blog entry about the best alternatives to some of them, selecting the best cheaper and free ones. Also, I just want to say that's its just my personal opinion, but I hope this small list helps you in your artist journey.


Clip Studio Paint (One time payment)

CliPStudioChibi2
Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible


I will begin with one of my favorites, because is a program that makes drawing a similar way than when you draw in paper. Its a very powerful tool that has a lot of brushes, assets and also a great community, with a lot of contests and extra stuff. I used to paint with Paint Tool Sai when I wanted to draw as the way I do with pencils and paint, but it failed when you want to do something more complex, such as comics or add text and shapes, so I looked for an alternative not as expensive as Photoshop or complicate as GIMP. And that's when discovered Clip Studio Paint, it was easy to learn and a great upgrade at the time to draw, and also with lot of similarities with SAI. It also have an animator timeline tool for a Frame by Frame animation, tools for comics and some useful filters for amazing effects, so if you use Photoshop for drawing, moving to Clip Studio Paint will be your best option

This one isn't free but its price is so affordable that you will not regret the money you invest on it. You can download for a free trial at their website or also buy the PRO version for $50 USD and the EX version for $220 USD, the difference is that the EX version is more focused on animation version and export full comics. For just making single comic pages and digital illustration, or just a quick GIF animation (up to 24 frames), PRO version will be enough. Also you can take advantage of the Black Friday for buying it for the half his price, that's what I did at the time.


Affinity Designer and Photo (One time payment)

This has been a recent find and one of the best I had, I discover this software at the end of 2019, I tried the free month and I get in love with them. It has three amazing software's and extra tools, but for my work I fell in love with Affinity Designer (an alternative to Adobe Illustrator) and Affinity Photo (an alternative to Adobe Photoshop), they also have Affinity Publisher (an alternative to Adobe InDesign) that I know that it has to be great, but its not my industry.

As I said before Affinity Designer is like Adobe Illustrator, it has amazing vector tools for doing great works. With Illustrator I usually get lost and not comfortable when I need to draw, so when I switched to  Affinity Designer I really got in love for the intuitive menus and his way of work, also I remember when I drew the first time in it with my drawing tablet that I felt this software a lot smoother and better visually.

Changing now to Affinity Photo, I have to say that is pretty the same as Adobe Photoshop. After 8 years using Photoshop, I thought that the learning curve would be difficult when I started using this software, but the truth has seemed even easier to learn and find all their tools. As Affinity Designer, has a great interface and I must admit that I did not miss anything from Adobe tools. 

Also is a lot affordable than Adobe, for only $50 USD each one of their programs, you can have a great software not having to pay the highly monthly rates of Adobe. Also you can take advantage of the Black Friday for buying this tool for the half of their price.

AffinityChibis
Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible



Blender (Open Source)

BenderChibi
Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible

Now we are entering to the free zone. And we going to start with one of the bests, Blender. It begun as just a 3D modeling tool, but  since Blender 2.8 this software has begun playing with 2D animation. I have to admit that it's not the best alternative for 2D animation right now, it still lacks many tools to match other software such as Animate or After Effects, as drawing tools and symbols,  but I think this will become the future for 2D and 3D animation, because it can combine both and also is an Open Source software, and has a lot of tools and its always growing. If you are interested in test this software, you can see my tutorial of how to animate a character in this program, so you can begin playing with it. 


Blender Download


Open Toonz (Open Source)


2D Animation software Winner on this list. This software became famous a few years ago because it is what Studio Ghibli uses, and in 2016 it was given away so that anyone could use it for free. I've gone through a lot of tutorials and reviews, and I see that it has a lot of similarities to Toon Boom, except for the price, because Open Toonz is totally free.

The learning curve is a little messy, but once you understand the main concept and its way of working, working with it begin to be more easy. 

If I compare with Adobe Suite, I see that it has similar tools to Adobe Animate and After Effects, so its a good choice to leave for good this tools if you are just looking for a 2D animation software. 


OpenToonz Download

OpenToonz
Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible

Kdenlive (Open Source)

KdenliveChibi
Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible

I have tested many versions of free software for leaving Adobe Premiere for good. And after been fighting with a lot of them I finally felt comfortable with KdenLive. It has the basics for making a good video composition, and also has a lot of extra features and plugins for advance video edition that you can download from their page. A good choice for start migrating from Adobe Premiere. Perhaps somewhat different distribution, but it's all a matter of watching a tutorial to adapt to their visual environment. 


Kdenlive Download


Handbrake (Open Source)

I don't have much to say for this tool , its just a powerful tool similar Media Encoder, works for almost the same. Convert files ready for production, with a lot of options and it really works for professional purposes. An easy tool for an easy task.


Handbrake Website

HandbrakeChibi
Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible

Audacity (Open Source)

Audacity
Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible
Really no much difference between Audacity and Adobe Audition. Quite similar I would say... Well, different menus and keyboard shortcuts, so maybe you should have to look at the manual first, but just to get used to it, the software has very powerful tools and you just can change the interface so it doesn't look so outdated. No much to say, I really use it for some audio modifications, so for more complicate stuff I really  can't comment so deeply.

Audacity Website


Unity(Different plans, including free one)

I have played recently with videogames programming, as a illustrator and animator I have been looking for a game software that is more visual than coding, so that's when I discovered Unity. At first sight it was a very different software as the ones I had used before, but after watching some online tutorials, I really felt comfortable using it, maybe is complicate at the beginning, but after working with it some time,  it starts to make sense and you discover that this software has great tools.

The 2D Animation tool is really amazing in this software, you can work with bones and loops, so maybe is a good tool to start migrating from Adobe Animate, but not as simple to use, because you have to combine timelines with animation and you suffer a lot at the beginning, I'm still not get fully use to it, but for videogames is great not having to use another software when making games, so I'm really happy with their animation tool. I'm really exited to know what new tools will bring Unity for 2D in the future .


Unity Website

Unity
Aviable as a NFT at OpenSea and Rarible



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Animate your drawings in AfterEffects


Hello! A long time since my last tutorial. I have been very busy lately with much work and projects. Anyway, I wanted to write this tutorial a time ago, so here it is. I really enjoyed learning Adobe After Effects, and it took more time to get used to use it, specially when I came from Adobe Animate, but at the end it's nothing more that to get use to a new tool, and final result is a lot better.;

1. Preparing your drawing for animation

The first step for this is preparing your drawing/character/logo etc... for animation. In this case I will use this illustration so you can see the structure you need it, if you are using another drawing program instead of Adobe Photoshop, you have to export it to PSD, so After Effects can read all the layers. Also, if parts are in individual folders, is better to save as a new PSD version with all layers rasterized, there are many ways to import to After Effects, but I will show here the easier one for me.

Also, If you don´t want to use a PSD file,  you can also export each part separately in PNG and arrange them manually, but its a little more tedious.

2. Importing our character to After Effects

Now you can close your character in PSD and open After Effects, and when its open, just create a new project. Then we go to File Import and select our PSD File. For this Tutorial we are gonna select Composition  → Preserve layers size, also select Editable Layers.

When the file is imported correctly, you will see that After Effects created one folder with all layers and a new composition. If you double click on it you will see our composition open (don't pay attention at the fact that my software is in Spanish, tools are the same).

3. Preparing Layers for Animation

Now is time to link our body parts. At the right of the Spiral icon, we just select the body part where each layer will be attached to. So when you move or rotate, elements will move with it. If you have rigged a character in the past, this will see you very familiar, in this character we are gonna use the hip as main layer. You can also link layers with the spiral icon, just dragging the spiral to the attached body part, its your choice.


You can test if all links work well selecting the main layer (in this case the hip) and trying to move or rotate it. If it works well, all character will be moving with it, if this is ok, you can continue to fix pivot points and add puppets points.

4. Puppet points VS Pivot Point movements

Ok, now we are gonna fix our layers one by one so they will be ready for animation. This is the last step for rigging our character. For selecting each one of the layers we just have to double click on the layer name we want to modify. 

For default we have a black background for our file, and in some cases (as the one in this tutorial) our characters contains a lot of black and we need another color for background. That's very easy to change, you just need to enter in Composition → Composition settings, and at the bottom you just select background color to one is better for you.

Now we have to select the pan tool so when we moved our pivot points our character don't move from their original position. In this case, the wing come from the back so the point it stick the wing to the body is the perfect point for our pivot. This wing will not have puppet points because we just need to rotate them, so we just fix the pivot point in this layer.



We just need to adjust pivot points to layers we just need to rotate or move. In other hand, the puppet points will deform our drawing and in some cases they help to give more life and flexibility to our character. For example, in my case I will just add puppet points to the hair, mouth and antennae's. Sometimes we get exited with this new tool, but you will see you will not need this for every movement. Anyway, you can add more puppet points later if you want to give more movement in the future.

For adding puppets points you just need to select the puppet selection tool and start adding puppet points, yes, just like that. You can also test them in the layer preview, so you can see if the movement in correctly for this body part. Test and add as many puppet points as you need, but not too many, because animating can became a mess in our timeline. When this is done, we are ready to start animating.

5. Animating our character

If we want to make a loop animation, we just need to make one time loop. After I will tell you how to maintain the looping as long as you want. But for now, we are just gonna make our butterfly flapping her wings. So we are gonna set our time for this movement. Now we go back to timeline settings and decide the duration for this loop, in my case I want one second duration.


If you have animated before, you will just know that animation came first from outside movements and then we make inside movements. In my case, we are gonna animate the wings and body and then we will add all the details, such as head, hair, and legs. 

For wings and body we are just gonna use Rotation and Position movements. Keyboard Shortcuts are P for position, and R for rotation. So now we select our main layer (hip layer) and just press P with the keyboard so we can change the position of our character.


In my case as it will be a loop we will need that the animation begin and end in same position, so before animating we settle first position and then select the keyframe and press Ctrl+C and go to the last frame position and paste your frame with Ctrl+V. Now we make the movements we want in the middle of them, in my case, I will just add one more keyframe in the middle.

Now for wings, we just need to press R in keyboard so we can just rotate them. Also select rotation tool in the tool panel. I will do the movement in the same keyframe so our boucle works fine with wings movement, but you can animate your loop as you wish. You can continue with all simple movements with this tools.


Now we are gonna detail our animation. You will see that your timeline will be a little messy in the next steps. But no worries, you can use the shy tool to clean up a little. When shy tool is activated all layers selected as shy layers will be hidden in our timeline, so its just switch on an off for having control in our timeline.


Now we are gonna animate the hair, so we need to animate all the puppet points we have. For this we will select the layer we want to modify and then we are gonna press U in keyboard, that will open all puppet layers. I recommend animate layer one by one, so it won't be too messy.


Now is time to set up all details for our loop animation. And when we finished we can make it longer as we need need and also add some effects.

6. Making loops and adding more details to our animation

Ok, now we are gonna make a new composition so we can manage our animation better. So just click on Composition  New Composition. This new composition will have same configuration as last one, but now I want that the composition will be ready for YouTube, so I will select the HDV 1080 25 Preset and give it a duration of 10 seconds, but if you want another settings feel free to test them. 

Now I will add a background to my animation. In this case I will use a solid background. So I right click in my timeline and select New Solid. That will add a solid color to our background. I want to be a gradient background so I add an effect for that. I will add it by selecting Effect  Generate Ramp (Spanish will be GradaciĆ³n de Degradado), there we select our colors and can play with the effect options.


Ok, now the loop part is a little complicated, but once you have done it for the first time, next ones will be easier. For the animation became looping all the time we have to go to Layer → Time → Enable Time Remapping, that will create two keyframes at the beginning and at the end, now you just have to create a new keyframe before last one. Now on the last keyframe we are gonna change the time to zero.


Now we delete our last keyframe. Now we are gonna select the Time remapping layer and open in main menu Animation → Add Expression. You will see that can add expressions now. Click on the menu Expression language and open and select  Property → LoopOut(Type="Cycle", numKeyframes = 0), and now it will be shown in the text box. Now is ready, you just have to make your layer longer, in this case, as long as the composition.


Now its all settle here. You can now take a look to your loop and see if you want to add more compositions, details or effects to it. You can always enter to the other compositions and modify them, and all this changes will be shown in your final composition. You cad add as many sub compositions you want. In this case, we are just gonna add some effects and then export the animation. 

7.Adding some effects

For adding extra effects we are just gonna right click on our composition and then select New Settings Layer. And now as easy to test and select the effect that work better in our animation. In my case I'm gonna select Noise and Grain → Add Grain, so animation has some texture on it.

8. Exporting your animation

Now that our animation is ready is time to export for our Social media. That's an easy step, just click on File → Export → Add to render queue. In this case everything is correct, but you can modify the extension and folder options in the Exit Mode.


And that all for this tutorial, hoping this help you to start animating your illustrations. If you want to support me for making more tutorials and stuff, you can became my Patreon.

One hundred jumping beans


Commissioned Children's Book Cover and inside illustrations.


"A collection of children's stories supporting military families living with PTSD, injury and upheaval."

Look inside:

Halyn Simone Engineer Kidd

Children's illustrations for Halyn SimoneChildren's book. Illustrations based on an already designed character. Copying the same style as the original illustrations for their first children's book, I've working doing some holidays and special illustrations for their social networks.

"Technology is knowledge learned and applied to make all your dreams turn BLOO...
What is so special about Halyn-Simone is not the fact she is considered a genius, it is her desire to use her imagination and knowledge to create technology to make the world a better place, especially for her family."

Latest Thanksgiving illustration:



Contact me

Hello!

If you want to get an estimate or talk about your project, you can write me to my email or contact me in any of my social networks.

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