Vector Hipster Character Illustrator Tutorial

Hello everyone Chris from Spoon Graphics back with another video tutorial Today we're going to have some fun in Adobe Illustrator constructing a cool Hipster character out of simple vector shapes

Using basic shapes not only makes the process much easier, but it also gives your artwork that trendy stylized look that's popular with pro Illustrators Open up Adobe Illustrator and create a new document The size doesn't really matter at all because we're working in vectors, so you can resize your artwork to suit any uses at a later date To give yourself plenty of space to work with, go to View > Hide Artboard Select the Rectangle tool and draw a shape on the artboard to represent the main body of our character

Go to View and turn on Smart Guides These little green tooltips will make it easy to snap and align your elements Draw longer and thinner rectangle as an arm Use the Smart Guides to snap the starting point from the corner of the existing rectangle Use the Direct selection tool to select the top left point of the arm shape, then use corner widgets in CS6 and CC versions of Illustrator to round the corner

Users of the older version of Illustrator will have a lot more work cut out for them by starting with a Rounded Rectangle and using other shapes to trim pieces away using the Pathfinder or Shape Builder tool These little widgets alone are definitely worth the upgrade to the latest version! Go to Edit > Copy then Edit > Paste in Front, followed by Object > Transform > Reflect Select the vertical option then position the flipped arm on opposite side Draw a rectangle for legs, then add smaller rectangle inside it Align this smaller rectangle centrally using the Smart Guides

Select the top two points of the inner rectangle with the Direct Selection tool and use the corner widgets to round the corners off Select both the shapes and hold the ALT key while using the Shape Builder tool to clip away the unwanted areas, leaving a custom shape to represent the two legs Zoom in and position a small rectangle to represent turned up jeans Then draw a slightly thinner rectangle to represent the lower leg or ankle Draw small rectangle as a foot and round off the top left corner

Select all three of these lower leg shapes then ALT drag the shapes and position them under the other leg Add some small rectangles to represent the hands and round off the corner just like we did for the feet Draw a circle for the head, holding Shift to keep it perfectly round Align this shape centrally with the body, floating roughly where a head would be Copy and paste in front a duplicate of the head circle then hold the ALT key to stretch the shape to form oval

Pay attention to the overall shape of the lower half, which will represent the hipster beard Paste in another copy of the circle and enlarge it to cover the unwanted top half of the oval, then select both shapes and remove the unwanted portions with shape builder, holding the ALT key while you click to delete the areas Select the top two points with the Direct Selection tool and adjust the corner widgets to round them off slightly Elsewhere on the artboard draw a large and a small circle side by side Select them both, then go to Object > Blend > Make, followed by Object > Blend > Blend options

Change the dropdown menu to specified steps and enter a super high value like 2000 Select the Arc tool, then hold Shift to draw a curved line Position this line over the blended circles then go to Object > Blend > Replace Spine to form a moustache shape Go to Object > Expand then click the Unite option from the Pathfinder Panel to merge the thousands of blended shapes together Go to Object > Path > Simply and enter 99% to clean up some of those unnecessary points

Drag out a duplicate of the moustache by holding ALT while moving the shape and scale it into position on the face Make a copy and reflect it vertically, then position the second half in place and merge the two sides with the Shape Builder tool Draw circle somewhere on the artboard and intersect it with a rectangle Use the shape builder to trim away the excess to create a semi circle shape Position the semi circle to form a mouth, then use the shortcut CMD + [ to send the shape back in the stacking order until it sits underneath the moustache

Make a copy of one of original moustache shapes then reflect, scale and position it onto the head to form some hair Position another moustache shape to make a side parting hair style Draw a small rectangle with just a black stroke on the face to represent the frame of some glasses Select and round off the two bottom corners with the Direct Selection tool then increase the stroke weight to 3pt Drag a duplicate frame across for the other eye

Add a straight line to join the frames aligned with the top edge Make this line 4pt in weight stroke with round cap ends Draw a small circle somewhere on the artbaord, which should have the same 4pt, round cap stroke Select and delete the lowermost point with the Direct Selection tool to form a semi circle Scale and position copies of this shape as smiley eyes

Hold Shift while selecting all the shapes that make up the glasses and eyes with the normal selection tool, then right click and select Group Use the Pen tool to draw a triangle to represent the collar Give it the default white fill and black stroke, then copy, paste and reflect it to form a duplicate for the other side Move it into position then merge them together with the Shape Builder or Pathfinder Position the collar centrally then hold the CMD+[ shortcut to until the collar sits underneath the beard

Press CMD+] to go back up a level if it goes too far The main character construction is now complete, so let's add some colour to bring it to life Select the hair and beard shapes and change the fill to a brown such as #724c31 Give the moustache and shoes a darker brown fill like #51331b Add a skin colour for the hands and face, such as #f9e0c7

Use a colour such as #ce431a for the collar and socks, then a blue #4689ff for the jeans Give the turn ups a lighter blue fill using #5fb9ff No hipster character would be complete without a plaid or chequered shirt, so let's create a pattern than we can apply to these leftover shapes Draw large orange square using #ff7936 as the fill Clear out the stroke to leave only the fill colour

Deselect the shape, then change the fill colour to #9d0d00 Grab the rectangle tool again and draw a few randomly sized stripes over the square Change the fill colour to #ecff1b and add some more stripes, this time filling in any gaps and overlapping the other shapes Draw a selection around all the shapes that form this pattern and hold the AlT key while dragging the shape builder tool to clear out any overlaps beyond the edge of the main square Go to Edit > Copy and Edit > Paste in Front, then rotate the duplicate by 90 degrees and reduce opacity to 50%

Draw a new selection to capture all the shapes, then scale down the pattern so it's relative to the size of the character's shirt, then drag the pattern into swatches panel Apply this new pattern swatch as fill to the body and arm shapes Select all the shapes that form the character and change the stroke colour to a dark blue like #2a3049 Shift click to minus the glasses group from the selection then increase the stroke weight to 2pt Copy and paste in front all the shapes then press the Unite button in the Pathfinder panel

Clear out the resulting fill colour and change stroke settings to 3pt and align outside to form a slightly thicker border This little trick is an effective illustration technique that works particularly well with vector character designs to add some definition to the line work All that's left is to Group all the shapes together so you don't lose an arm or anything when moving your character around! So if you enjoyed this Adobe Illustrator tutorial, or if you learnt any new techniques I'd really appreciate a link or share to help spread the word If you want to see more be sure to check my main YouTube channel for all the video tutorials I've posted so far, or you can subscribe directly to my website to receive cool design stuff every week So thank you very much for watching and I'll catch you all in the next one

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