Look into my eyes! Advocate's Guide to Drawing Character Eyes Jul 15 2013

Advice and call outs

You're all being treated to a double whammy of words from Kate! Here she is with some tips on the best way to approach illustrating characters' eyes for book publishers:

I am not sure William Blake meant it in this context but he once said, "The eye altering, alters all" and never a truer word was spoken when it comes to drawing your perfect character. It's one of the first features you notice, whether it be human, animal or beast, so it's really important that you get it right. I wanted to write a blog post as so often the eyes are an afterthought; 2 dots added at the end, when they really should be given more consideration. They are the window to the soul, a way of communicating the character's emotion and expression. They are the key to bringing them to life. When we receive a submission here at Advocate Art, an artist's handling of their characters' eyes speaks volumes about their ability and draftsmanship. I know what you're saying, 'really something so small?!'

As an illustration agency, we've noticed past trends of the UK liking dots for eyes, and the USA liking whites to the eyes. There are always exceptions to this rule, but a well-formed eye on a character can be something that makes or breaks your portfolio. Certainly adding a brow and a expression in the mouth helps convey the emotion. But more often that not with a little adaptation to the eyes of your beautiful character, you can transform them to another level, help tell their story and define their personality. As Marcus Tullius Cicero said "The Face is picture of the mind,with eyes as its interpreter".