Character turnaround sheets are predominately used in game production, comic book creation and within animation studios to create a visual style reference or a blueprint of a character as seen from various angles. They are usually sketched out by an artist in a 2 dimensional format at varying levels of detail, depending on how the finished style sheet will be used.
Character turnaround sheets are incredibly useful to 3D artists as they allow you to build a three dimensional figure with the correct proportions, using the front, side and back views as a guide. If you have the necessary drawing skills you can create your own character turnarounds but if your skillset is predominately in 3D design or you are learning how to create 3D characters from scratch then there are a plethora of amazing character turnarounds available on the World Wide Web for free which will help you create incredible three-dimensional characters in the software of your choice.
Create a 3D Low Poly Anime Girl from a 2D Style Sheet
If you have downloaded the latest version of Blender the amazing and free 3D modelling software for your PC or Mac and you are hoping to learn how to create low poly characters for games, comics or just for fun then this easy to follow Blender Course by Blender legend Grant Abbit will get you up to speed fast.
Starting with a free character style sheet showing front and side views of a stylised looking anime female, you will learn how to import this reference sheet into Blender and use it as the basis for a low poly three-dimensional female model.
Grant has split this free Blender mini-course into nine easy to digest segments covering how to build the head, torso and limbs, through to hair modelling, clothing and even how to rig and animate your finished anime character.
Base Male and Female Character Reference
front, side and back views
If you are modelling a 3D character from scratch your character reference sheet doesn’t need to be extremely detailed, it just needs to be proportioned correctly to allow you to model the character in a 3D environment.
A front, back and side view is usually enough to allow you to trace the base shape of the male or female figure and to block out the three-dimensional attributes.
From this base mesh, you can add as much, or as little detail as you would like including clothing and accessories until you get a fully rounded figure that you can pose and animate as you see fit.
Superhero Character Sheets
model a 3D superhero from a 2D style template
When you first begin to learn 3D modelling, especially figure design it can be extremely useful to practise with characters you are already familiar with, such as your friendly neighbourhood superhero types.
There are tons of superhero character style sheets available for you to hone your character modelling skills and we have published some of our favourites here to get you started.
Cartoon Character Sheets
Turn your favourite 2D cartoon characters into impressive looking 3D models
How to Draw a Character Turnaround in Blender Grease Pencil
Blender Drawing Tutorial
Blender is a great tool for creating impressive 3D character designs and models but it also has an incredible 2D drawing tool built into its ever-expanding arsenal of creative tools, the Grease Pencil.
Drawing in Grease Pencil is very similar to creating an image in a vector drawing app such as Adobe Illustrator or Affinity Designer but with the added bonus of having a 3D environment to work in.
In this absorbing Blender tutorial, Paul Caggegi walks you through the basics of utilising Blenders Grease Pencil to create a turnaround template for Carl an imaginary character from Pauls popular webcomic Homebased.
A great introduction to using Blender for 2D design and illustration, from creating your first Grease Pencil object to making the most of Blenders lesser-known drawing capabilities.
The benefits of utilising style sheets for modelling 3D characters cannot be overstated, having one or more reference images available when you start your next project will save you a lot of time and frustration in the long run, whether you are an experienced 3D artist or have just started learning 3D modelling and sculpting a good character turnaround sheet can be a real life saver.
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