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2022 Visual Development

2022 Visual Development

Jeanne Cluzeau
by JeanneCluzeau on 23 May 2022 for Rookie Awards 2022

Here are some of by best work of Character Design and Illustrations from the last year. This year, I changed and discoverd a lot as an artist. I tell you more about this below :)

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Character Design

Lila and her snails

Lila is a 5 year old obsessed with snails, but doesn't really understand how they live. Whenever it rains, she goes out to try to find them. She doesn't want them to drown, so she takes them home, gives them some food (mostly cookies crumbles), and keeps them until the rain stops. To recognize them, she paints them.

Cruella redesign

The goal of the exercice was to redesign a villain of a movie. I chose Cruella.

At first, I tried different time periods, characters, from an American mom cliché being sick of synthetic fur (2) to a young and elegant girl seeking the favor of an older man so he could give him as much money as she wanted (4,7).

On the last page, I settled for the 1980's. At first, still trying to develop the sugar baby (1, 4), then trying a "I want to be pretty" but she ends up going toward vulgarity and a lack of elegance (2, 3).

Then, still being in the 1980's, I opted for a teenage Cruella embrassing the fashion of the time but having fun with her mom's and grandma's coats. Of course, she dreams of having a coat made with dalmatien fur and can't wait to win enough money (mostly through baby-sitting) to have one made for her. She will end up realizing that no one is willing to make her one and it costs too much money anyway, so she will have to do it herself.


This one is not a proper illustration, but I'd like to begin this section with it anyway. It gives the tone of what I like to work with:

My main focus is characters. I love the complexity of human beings and adding life to drawings is my main goal. Last July, I got passionate with fashion history, first focusing on the 19th century, now more into the beginning of the 20th. Before last summer, I knew I liked to draw characters, but focusing on different time periods really led me to like my drawings more and more because they felt more like "me".

The drawings and illustrations you will see next is me trying new things and discovering what I like.

During the last year, I tried to focus more on shapes, on how to simplify anatomy, hair, clothes and shading, while still being able to convey a sense of realness.

The simplification led to an important use of the lasso tool or really clean edges based on lineart.

Then, I got bored of to much cleanliness; it gave the images too much stillness. I wanted to add more texture, make things more vibrant, more expressive.

Luke from 'Professor Layton'

I then wanted to add more storytelling by detailling backgrounds, adding light and giving the characters something to do.

On this piece, I had a brushwork I liked a lot, but adding the blur gave the focus on the book and I liked it even more. I found out I like focusing on the intention more than the perfection of every detail.

Frangine, from 'Lettres Perdues', by Jim Bishop

The next step was adding patterns. I discoverd they add so much life to illustrations.

These 3 drawings are the ones I love the most because they merge the focuses I talked about earlier: freedom in the brushwork, simplification of shapes and shading, patterns, texture, and course older fashion :)

I like the mix between a painterly style and lineart. I think doing an underpainting adds a lot and the nervousness in the brush work (and line art) gives the piece life.

That's it, I hope you liked my work and my explanations :) I'm curious to see how I am going to evolve during the next year.

If you have any advice on how I could improve, please tell me!

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