Life drawing has been one of my favourite parts of the animation course so far. Coming from a background of very traditional art, it has been great to be able to continue working with my hands on the page rather than staring at a computer screen all day long. Practicing gesture drawing and learning about the techniques behind drawing well has made me really question and change my own approach to drawing.

I feel that every theory and practice covered in class has been presented in a way that I could easily understand. It kept it interesting not knowing exactly what the next topic of interest would be or what we would be doing! Yes a lot of the research had to be done independently which was sometimes challenging but it forced me to really study and learn.

Everything we have covered both inside and outside of life drawing class has made me more confident in my ability to draw. I remember the first few classes were extremely challenging as I already had my own approach to drawing which was hard to push myself out of. There were lots of incorrect techniques I had picked up along the way in my artistic journey. However, I have picked up new techniques and have already begun to implement them into my work and I can see how much my work has benefited from this. In a way, I am learning the key rules in order to “break” them in my own way! Well, put my own spin on them I should say! Lol sorry Michael haha

I feel that, everything I have learnt since day one of life drawing class has made it possible for me to be able to achieve the character design I have to submit for final submission. “Benard” the Koala may never have come into being or look the way he did if I hadn’t have learnt the things I have from life drawing class.

My character design, “Benard” the Koala.

With Benard, I took my time researching real Koalas and what they get up to in the wild. I watched videos, took notes, studied science books and bounced ideas off others. After having talked about the importance of researching before creating a character design in class with Michael, I felt that this was a vital step in the design process. I wanted to know the facts before I could use my creative license to add personality and individuality to my Koala character design.

KOALA - early concept 1

The reasoning behind his design can be seen above in the picture

Looking closer at the reasoning behind his design, I tried my best to focus when creating the initial design, on creating a solid drawing. This took several attempts haha.

I then thought more deeply about how his body shapes could reflect his role and personality as a character. I knew he was a young male Koala who was headstrong about not sleeping his life away like the rest of his kind; a coffee barista, a free thinker who wasn’t afraid to step out and be different (a Koala usually sleeps 18-20 hours a day)!


Life drawing classes have enabled me to not just imagine a character, but be able to physically draw it down with more confidence in my ability.

The classes have also made me think deeply about the what and why of what I want to create, and not just the how.

I am immensely thankful for having the opportunity to learn skills and approaches that I would never have come across otherwise. I am excited for where my new skills gained will take me in my future sketching projects in the world of animation and beyond!


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