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Unique Features Tutorial: Pt 2 by jeinu Unique Features Tutorial: Pt 2 by jeinu
Hey! I have two webcomics where you can see this in action: Miamaska and Trial of the Sun. If you liked these tutorials give them a shot!

Check out part 1 here! jeinu.deviantart.com/art/Uniqu...
and part 3 here! fav.me/d3a6v8u

Part 2: Lady Faces! Sorry I took more than a week! The next one will be next month sometime, keep an eye out for it. Feel free to pass this along to artists who are struggling with this sort of problem. I hope it helps :)



All those characters up there are copyrighted to their respective owners, I do not claim ownership to any of them.


This tutorial series was inspired in part by an article on the TvTropes website. tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php... Click there to see more examples!
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Daily Deviation

Given 2011-07-14
Unique Features Tutorial: Pt 2 by ~jeinu Suggesters Words: As an inexperienced artist, this really got me thinking about different ways to make my characters look less like clones, even in a less realistic art style. It's short, a little snarky and a good resource to get started thinking and get out of a rut.
Be sure to check out parts 1 and 2 as well. ( Suggested by NotBambi and Featured by shelldevil )
:iconsillyrabbit00:
SillyRabbit00 Featured By Owner Jul 23, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you thank you thank you! As I'm currently picking up drawing again, I nééd this kind of stuff! Because I keep making the same shapes (yes, anime-style Taiga Aisaka (Melt) [V1] ) and I think your tutorials will help me a lot. Have I said 'thank you' already?
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:iconalicesacco:
AliceSacco Featured By Owner Edited Jun 29, 2015
I tend to study my OCs naked and shaved first. Because I believe that they should look complete and alive without any extra stuff.
But I realized that occaionally is also necessary to draw them dressed and with hair, because, if we take the beard in account, if you draw a character with a too big chin, with beard it will look even bigger.

But why even professionals do this mitake?
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:icon1acbr1:
1ACBR1 Featured By Owner Jun 27, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
that's interesting, later I'll try.
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:iconabductionfromabove:
AbductionFromAbove Featured By Owner Dec 18, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I think some good things to add would be freckles, buck teeth, tooth gaps, big ears, glasses, warts, acne, birthmarks, piercings, tattoos, scars, etc. I see a lot of "everyone has perfect skin and teeth"
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:iconjeinu:
jeinu Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That's true, but these tutorials so far have only covered structural differences. Surface details like acne, freckles, tattoos, piercings should be considered after you have your basic shapes down. (Ideally you should be able to tell characters apart from silhouette/profile alone-- no glasses/accessories, specific hairstyles, piercings included). 
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:iconabductionfromabove:
AbductionFromAbove Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Agreed. I just think it's worth mentioning, since I see people struggling with surface representation as well. I had a friend on dA who made an OC that looked too much like a character from a show, and was looking for suggestions. I pretty much gave him a slightly angry masterpost of everything he could do to make the OC different-- make her shorter, give her freckles, cut her hair, make her skinnier, make her old, change her race, change her age. It's like all he could think of was white females with the same body type.

Although...and I know it sounds a little silly, I think you should be able to tell people apart by "structural differences" in their teeth. They add a lot of character!
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:iconjeinu:
jeinu Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yep, pretty true about teeth! However, I rarely see many beginner artists actually draw teeth (besides a sort of row/single ridge). I know I go with a single ridge often since seeing that level of detail just isn't seen at the resolution I export to (though two characters in one of my comics are missing a tooth/have chipped teeth, really only visible when they're really showing them off).

I sort of categorize teeth as a surface level detail since they usually aren't noticeable unless the mouth is quite open... though I suppose it would depend on the style being used (like bugs bunny's super exaggerated teeth). My own style is pretty muted in that regard, so that's probably why I don't consider teeth very important to a silhouette.

If I ever felt comfortable making an advanced series, I'd definitely include teeth among details to consider varying.  Or maybe I'll just add on a final part to this series when it's "done" with the "basics", whenever that is. 
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:iconunicornomics:
unicornomics Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2014   General Artist
I'm making a female character with a square face right now but I'm having trouble with symmetry,any tips would be appreciated
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:iconalphabetsoup314:
alphabetsoup314 Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That triangle face looks like Michael Jackson! D:

Silliness aside, this is a great tutorial and you included lots of different variations.
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:iconzakuro5:
zakuro5 Featured By Owner Aug 30, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
i love this! Really helpful and also very clearly explained
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:iconimaginaryelle:
imaginaryelle Featured By Owner Jul 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Gah! lips and noses. Possibly what i need to practice most. Thanks for this. I'm starting to get into comic-style art and the "everyone has the same face and body shape" thing really really bothers me. These tutorials will definitely come in handy!
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:iconnerptune:
nerptune Featured By Owner Jul 9, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
OMFG I'M FINDING ALL THESE AMAZING TUTORIALS AND REFERENCES AND STUFF IT'S LIKE A FUCKING GOLD MINE

:iconscreamsplz:
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:icontheshadowempress:
TheShadowEmpress Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
This is really helpful. My OC's look different in my mind, but can't draw them that differently...
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:iconyokonakajima:
YokoNakajima Featured By Owner Apr 6, 2014  Student
I have a question does different shape of the face appear in profile
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:iconjeinu:
jeinu Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Excuse the late reply but yes. Though you won't get much of the cheekbones informing the shape of the face, you should still see differences between noses, chins, slope and weight of the brow, etc. 
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:iconreyray:
ReyRay Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks so much! These really a lot for amateurs on people hehe :D
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:iconreyray:
ReyRay Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
These really *help a lot :iconfacepalmplz: ughhhh I fail
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:icondannpainappuru:
DANNPAINAPPURU Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
:iconmnrthumbsupplz: .... 
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:iconcapensis:
capensis Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2014   General Artist
Thank you for this tutorial!
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:iconbantico:
Bantico Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I've never really understood why people use the same face shape + features because they really open up a good way to give a first impression about a character. Want your 13 year old to look more mature? Give her a longer face and fuller lips. Want your 15 year old to look younger? Give her a round face and a button nose.
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:iconchill13:
chill13 Featured By Owner Dec 15, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
This is such a wonderful tutorial!  I absolutely love the way you've put this together.  Every artist should read this, especially Anime artists.  I don't use Anime/Manga style myself but I like the big eyes and the way they do hair.  However it kind of annoys me that even artists who are extremely talented and obviously do this professionally have characters with identical faces.  I mean even within the confines of the style (big eyes, tiny nose, smallish mouth) there is at least SOME space for variation.  You've done a very good job explaining this and your art is great!  And that you've chosen to do your examples in monochrome with hair streight back and no real pupils forces people to see the differences.  

I may have commented on this before.  I kinda pop in and look at it now and then.
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:iconnuei:
Nuei Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2013  Student Digital Artist
OMG I'm an inverted triangle abuser! xD Thank you so much for this tutorial! I really want to get variety into my facetypes! :)
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:iconsaeun:
SaEun Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
for reals how are you gunna ask old pros not to make fun of YOU, and then immediately make fun of less skilled artists than yourself with that whole parody section. the amount of unnecessary that is is just mindblowing.
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:iconnuei:
Nuei Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2013  Student Digital Artist
He/she didn't make fun of noobs, but rather people who don't make any effort to improve their art (and have a bad typing). 
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:iconsaeun:
SaEun Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
that particular way of typing (and drawing) is common only among teenagers you dumbass. its someone whos obviously an adult making fun of artists who are around 14 years old.... while asking artists older than themselves not to do the exact same thing to them.
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:iconssmwsox:
ssmwsox Featured By Owner Oct 26, 2013  Student Filmographer
Gather round friends, its storytime with Mathieu!

Once upon a time, my friends and I were 10-12 year olds. I had a very close friend who for the purpose of this story I shall call Moon. I was already good with my words. I could express myself feeling sad in over 80 words, all that a sophomore would be forced to use in an essay. Moon was an artist. She could replicate a professionally done manga scene, without tracing. Impressive for 10-12 year olds, eh? Why were we so impressive? We tried! Moon made it her mission to be a manga artist. I made it my mission to be an author. 

I had other friends. One of these girls I shall call Sabena. Sabena did not try to be a literary prodigy like I did. She tried to be a manga artist, yes, yes, but her literary skills lacked because she took the easy way of writing. She didn't understand proper grammar because she never made the attempt to learn proper grammar. I found one of our old chat logs and dug up this gem:

'liek omg ull nevr guess wat just happen'

Please note, we were all 10-12 years old. It doesn't matter if they are 14. It really doesn't. As well, its a matter of her telling these kids, "Yo, time to learn something new! You can better your art! Come on and learn~!" not, "GROW THE FUCK UP KIDS YOU ALL NEED TO SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LEARN SOME FUCKIN NEW SHIT BECAUSE YOUR OLD SHIT IS TERRIBLE. YO GUYS LOOK AT THIS OLD ASS ART THAT LOOKS LIKE BS COME OOOOONNNN LETS BURN IT!"

:) Hope you enjoyed my story~! *Shuts book*
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:iconnuei:
Nuei Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2013  Student Digital Artist
1. "Dumbass"? Just who do you think you are!? 
2. I was a teen and I never mistyped, even not being english native.
3. I know adults who mistype and they are usually dumbasses like you.
4. She's talking about drawing skill, not typing skill.
5. Just look at the retarded answer you gave me. I was polite to you, gave a simple opinion even. 
6. Oh and go get some skill instead of being butthurt for little things.
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:iconsaeun:
SaEun Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
i just wish people could make tutorials like this without feeling the need to slam comic/manga art (even internationally successful artists like CLAMP who do draw a variety of facial shapes and can work in more styles than most artists can fathom) and make fun of young artists who are starting out in those styles. like wow way to be an asshole when you could have just been straight to the point :|
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:iconjeinu:
jeinu Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
i see that section as being more "hey! don't panic, it happens to professionals too, in fact, that's where you probably picked it up from". That doesn't mean your'e going to fail as an artist, because obviously these guys made it while still struggling with it. Skill level doesn't really factor into it. Hell, even my personal idol Hayao Miyazaki's designs fall into that category. Does that completely illegitimize all his other aspects of creativity? No. 

If you think this is a "slam" on comic/manga art, I think you're taking it a little too personally. Some poking fun and light criticism is not a condemnation of a genre, that'd just be silly.
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:iconsaeun:
SaEun Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
really, its possible to be like "hey heres how to make a variety of facial shapes" without first mocking young artists who are just starting to learn stylized art tho. the parody dialogue you used made it very clear you were mocking young folk and you know it. it's so unnecessary and people do it ALL the time.
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:iconcheesepuff25:
CheesePuff25 Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2013
You're taking things way too seriously... if you call that mocking then you should avoid book and movie reviews where they not only discuss positive stuff but also things that are negative. While learning new stuff you should not only look at good stuff but also be able to tell what might be wring about a picture. I would be really happy if someone took their time and told me what I could improve on.
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:iconjeinu:
jeinu Featured By Owner Oct 20, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Alright dudicon, I'll keep that in mind for the next one.
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:icondyingmarshmallows:
DyingMarshmallows Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2013
These are very helpful as expressions, emotions and features ect are what got me into art and design.
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:iconjaymeefox:
jaymeefox Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2013
If a Pro jumps at you for your skills  THEY ARE JEALOUS!!  Your tutorial is very helpful and I fave to pass it along  ^^  

What I learn in the past was to make sure your lip edges are always equal to the iris of the eyes.  Oddly it is true.    I paid attention to people's face and noticed that a lot.  
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:iconjeinu:
jeinu Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That lip width tip will work for the average face I think, but it is possible for that 'rule' to be broken, so don't feel constrained by it!
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:iconjaymeefox:
jaymeefox Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2013
I won't    Like puckering up or  duck face  --- those won't line up lol :D 
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:iconpthinkerer:
PThinkerer Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Ah, thank you so, so much for this.  No more clones for this artist!  :D
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:iconmoonbladethebook:
moonbladethebook Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2013  Student General Artist
Thank you, thank you, thank you! Everyone compliment's me on my well developed OCs but frown at their similarities. I wanted to draw them different but I didn't know how, now I do!  
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:iconsweetenedvenom:
SweetenedVenom Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
OMG I've been searching for a guide like this for awhile now! Thank you so much!!
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:iconjeinu:
jeinu Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Glad it could help you out :--)
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:icondunoid:
Dunoid Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I love noses.  They're my favorite part of the face to draw.
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:iconleira15:
Leira15 Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2013  Student General Artist
Awesome!! :iconpinkballoonplz:
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:iconwooded-wolf:
Wooded-Wolf Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2013
I found this while looking for something on body types and I'm glad I did. Great resource :clap:
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:iconhissingraven:
HissingRaven Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Professional Interface Designer
THIS IS FREAKING AWESOME helped me and much more people.
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:iconjollygolightly:
JollyGolightly Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Oh god, I have nightmares about the dreaded "Only 6 faces" trope :fear:
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:iconrein-chan:
Rein-chan Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013
I usually draw very similar body and face types for my characters, I used to draw them all the same, but ive slowly been crawling out of that habit.

anyways, ty for your tutorial, it'll really help me since i'm going to try and draw my guild so I want to make sure I can make them look a bit unique and special =)
Reply
:iconsky-lily:
Sky-Lily Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
YOUR 5 OC'S ARE SO UNIQUE! :iconcryforeverplz:
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:icontheblueberrycat:
TheBlueberryCat Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
YAY FOR AWESOME TUTORILAS!
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:iconmerrowsong:
Merrowsong Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is so helpful! I've been trawling through all of my characters and making their facial features varied, but I sometimes need a reminder of all the nose types and faces that exist. Thanks so much!
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:iconbriannamermaid:
BriannaMermaid Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
your tutorials are SO HELPFUL.

i always have problems with drawing faces too similar, so hopefully this will help :D
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