Many people have asked me why I draw my character designs in Photoshop and my animated characters in Illustrator and Flash. The very simple explanation is that Illustrator and Flash are vector-based whereas Photoshop is pixel-based. So for a simple animation, I will choose the mathematically-backed lines of Flash and for a highly detailed illustration, I prefer the pixels of Photoshop. When I want my drawing to look more painterly, I like using Photoshop because I have more freedom when it comes to choosing my brushes. I can easily achieve any look I want. If I want something to look like it was drawn with charcoal for example, I can achieve that effect in Photoshop. With this program, it’s like I’m spraying color out of a can. On the flip side with Illustrator and Flash, I’m drawing with more math-based hard lines. Using these two programs for me is like filling in a solid shape with solid colors. Photoshop however, is like filling in the color of an entire field.
With that as a background, it is easy to figure out why I decided to draw my Gloria character for my animation in Flash CS5. I want the character to have a strong graphic design with dynamic, solid shapes and stylized graphic elements. Flash is perfect for this. Right now, I am making more symbols for my Gloria animation. The symbols I have completed as of today are the legs. By the end of the week, I am going to complete the head and the torso.
I’m teaching myself how to use Flash CS5 right now and it’s been a fun, challenging experience so far. I’m hoping to complete this animation by the end of the summer. Stay tuned!