need suggestions on clothing design (comic character)

DTtheLEGENDDTtheLEGEND Registered User regular
edited March 2011 in Artist's Corner
Greetings...

This is my comic character, lets not dwell on how horrible the art is. i know its all types of wrong. Lets focus on the clothes and how he can look less dull.

i want suggestions/feedback on the colors for the clothes.

He is a detective in a steampunk setting.

DAXDRAFTWM.png

Thank you very much for any input.

DTtheLEGEND on

Posts

  • amateurhouramateurhour One day I'll be professionalhour The woods somewhere in TennesseeRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Honestly it looks like you took a nice suit and then just tossed some brass all over it....

    Steampunk isn't just about "how much elaborate shit can we put on something..." It's an idea, and a philosophy...

    Try doing the same outfit, and just having like two pieces of brass, 1) a pocketwatch and 2) a slimmer version of that shoulder mounted flashlight, or maybe some kind of wrist based device... and just chuck the rest

    amateurhour on

    Arch wrote: »

    I never expected this burn from captain bushmeat
  • WassermeloneWassermelone Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Amateurhour is right on the money.

    Plus, the time period of your clothing feels off. I'm not sure what you are going for but steampunk references mostly victorian and edwardian style clothing. Check out this page:
    http://www.gentlemansemporium.com/mens_victorian_outfits.php

    They feel a bit costumy but that should give you an idea of the cuts of the clothing from the era that inspired steampunk.

    Wassermelone on
  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Less is more when it comes to steampunk. The more random gears and whatnot you throw in makes the setting less and less believable. those who can create a convincing setting have people dressed in usual period clothing and only have the steampunk items where they would be appropriate.

    Would your detective carry that flashlight/camera thing on his shoulder everywhere he goes? If not, cut it and have him bring it along as needed in a bag. If so, Would he carry it oddly on the front of his left clavicle? That would be heavy, and very uncomfortable, not to mention it would lead to the cloth tugging noticeably at all times. Most times folk carry things on their hips, upper thighs, and small of the back to facilitate movement of the arms and legs.

    On colors, it really depends upon what setting you are trying to convey. For a low-fantasy grungy steampunk most folk tend towards browns and earth tones to emphasize the poor environment and poverty (brown is usually the cheapest/default color in most clothing of the time). For something more urban, go with dark blues and blacks to emphasize class and money. The grey outfit would be appropriate for a banker or a middle class shopping clerk, but the striped shirt (especially with blue stripes) conjures a nautical feel (stripes of the time period were generally reserved for naval functions).

    I'd suggest watching a few western or Victorian themed films to get a better feel for how clothing and color are used to create characters. For instance, in most films Sherlock is depicted as wearing a brown tweed whereas Watson is wearing dark grey or black. This is because Sherlock is more "casual" than Watson, and Watson is more "serious." Taking that a step farther, bright color is usually reserved for characters that are either female, rich, or very poor trying to appear otherwise. The pirate wearing a flourishing brightly colored admiral's coat does so to appear more prestigious, whereas an actual admiral rarely wears the brighter dress uniform unless required, etc. In Western settings especially you have to be careful when you use Gray and Blue, as they indicate specific things in relation to the Civil War.

    Hope that helps!

    Enc on
  • squidbunnysquidbunny Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Yeah I'm with Wasser. His gloves and boots seem overly modern. Steampunk is usually set in the aforementioned eras because half the fun of the genre is approximating more modern tech with more primitive tools and materials.

    Also, if he's a detective, any gadgetry you do decide to give him should support that; i.e. give him a brass magnifying glass with layers upon layers of movable lenses to finetune magnification. It needs to be better integrated with his character, not an afterthought.

    EDIT: Enc kind of rendered my post obsolete while i was typing it.

    squidbunny on
    header_image_sm.jpg
  • amateurhouramateurhour One day I'll be professionalhour The woods somewhere in TennesseeRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Also, and this is just my opinion, but never be afraid to cover up some of your character's detail with a long coat.

    The coat is an extension of the character, like the cape on a superhero, or the policeman's belt, and can be used in a subtle way to hide various little gadgets without the need for them to be pinned on the character visibly at all times.

    For instance, your guy is a detective? Well give him a sleek leather wrist guard with his pocket watch firmly implanted in the center, or slightly off center, with maybe a barometer, pencil, and pad of paper, fold out magnifying glass, etc.

    Not all of that stuff has to be shown at all times either, but it's like a swiss army wrist guard he can use to detect clues, calculate time of death, take a sample, etc without the need to carry a large bag of trinkets. One simple instrument that conveys a sharp message.

    In my opinion there's two types of steampunk in traditional media. There's the peacock approach, wherein everything is bold and colorful and adorned with non functioning gears and steam pipes and accessories for the purpose of drawing attention as to say "Hey! This is steampunk, see!"

    The other type is a much more subtle approach that takes traditional styles and compliments them with functional enhancements that call back to the days of the well educated back yard inventor. The kind of guy that would make a device to shave him in the morning while it cooks his breakfast.

    Think less like an iron man suit and more like Johnny Depp in Sleepy Hollow. He's got all these cool gadgets he made, but he doesn't wear them on his person at all times. Too see him walking around you'd think he's just another guy on the street.

    edit: whether or not they're period appropriate, I like those boots...

    amateurhour on

    Arch wrote: »

    I never expected this burn from captain bushmeat
  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Another thing is that costume is a great way to establish character history. For example, if your detective was a former soldier you could have him retain his now-outdated standard winter parka in cold settings or keep his service revolver in the military imprinted holster. A man with children might wear odd colored ties or shirts fondly as a gift from their child, something you can use for both exposition as well as to mark the character as distinct. If he traveled to odd places and seen different cultures he might keep bits and pieces of other clothing styles from his journey, like a peruvian poncho or a silk handkerchief with an asian dragon on it.

    Enc on
  • DTtheLEGENDDTtheLEGEND Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    thank you everyone for all of your input. and thank you wass for that link, it will help alot.

    i feel i should elaborate on setting and attire more as it may have caused some confusion.

    This is the main character in his field attire. when he is not openly working on a case, he doesnt not wear all of this stuff. and not ALL of that is brass, it was actually supposed to be leather. this is a failing on my part, but i assure you, all of these things have a purpose. if they didnt, they would be gone.

    as for gadgets, this is a sort of bare-bones picture. i didnt include his hand-tool (like a swiss army knife), his gun, his sample kit and his magnifying glasses.that flashlight will be much smaller in a later version and it should be noted that it merely sits there for convenience sake. (keeps the hands open, leg movement is not impeded, light is emitted at almost eye level)

    what i wanted ultimately from his attire was something that would assist his movement (everything is securely fastened to his person and not flapping around hitting his legs as he chases someone) while allowing for ease of access to all of his equipment (bullets on the right shoulder, flashlight and handi tool on the left).

    as for the boots and gloves, i took some liberties on his attire because i felt his character needed it.
    he will be chasing people down and running in mud. he will be climbing up fences and grabbing onto sharp things. while i will 100% most likely change the gloves to fit the period, i feel strongly about his boots.


    As for setting, i think this needs some elaboration as well. its somewhere between 1900 and 1920.
    the first world war has a great deal to do with the style (or dramatic shift in style). i want this to be a
    "subtle steampunk" type of story.i want the most consideration put towards functionality with the least consideration for fashion while still looking reasonable.

    as for mood, im going for what Enc said would be an urban tone.

    thanks again everyone.

    DTtheLEGEND on
  • amateurhouramateurhour One day I'll be professionalhour The woods somewhere in TennesseeRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I definitely see what you're going for, and after doing a little google image searching for "ww1 military lights" and finding a lot of other stuff you've added there I can even see the authenticity, so props for that.

    regardless, it's still WAY to busy. Even if he's on a case that's a LOT of shit to be carrying around, no matter how easily he can run with all of it. Even if it's mostly leather that's got to be an extra 30-40 lbs of gear and no one with the build you've created for your protagonist could just run around carrying all of that.

    Steampunk carries a lot of "what if" so maybe have him invent the first flashlight mounted on his service pistol, or have him invent one of the earliest designs of the WW2 flashlight which is a far greater design than the WW1 model.

    Point is, use some of the aspects of design from those antiques and make them your own to make them lighter. As it is now, it looks like he's got all of his already existing military gear left over from the war, and he's found a way to strap it all down on some nice clothes. He hasn't really added form or function.

    Now if he's not an inventor and it's just the stuff he was given by his superior officer, that's fine, but there's so much potential there to take it a step further, using a lot of what ENC just recently said.

    amateurhour on

    Arch wrote: »

    I never expected this burn from captain bushmeat
  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    ww1-soldiers.jpg

    I totally dig the setting, it's not used often enough I think. I would call your attention to the above image. This is a recreation of WW1 soldiers, note that while they have a TON of stuff they carry with them, none of it is on their shoulders of upper chest, only their waists and small of back. Having things located on your shoulders hurts, clothes pull down digging whatever metal items are up there into your skin.

    Some uniforms had rifle casing able to be slid over the breast. This can be practical, but was generally phased out due to being rather dangerous should you be hit there (your spare bullets could become flack to puncture your chest by a bullet or explosion).

    Enc on
  • DTtheLEGENDDTtheLEGEND Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    thanks guys.

    im going to make revisions and hopefully ill have something up later.

    DTtheLEGEND on
  • DTtheLEGENDDTtheLEGEND Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    sorry for double post (if it counts as one), but ive updated what could be his final form.
    it will be a belt that he just clasps on when hes running out the door which has all of his stuff on it.
    DAXIDEAWM.png

    unfortunately, it looks too wild west for my taste, but ill mess around with it a bit more.

    any more feedback is welcomed.

    DTtheLEGEND on
  • squidbunnysquidbunny Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    My western bias is hardly a secret but I actually like that quite a bit better.

    One thing, though: it makes no sense to me to have that tie-down on the his left rather than on the gun holster side of that rig which A) extends further down, B) is more shifting-around-prone, and C) would normally have one.

    squidbunny on
    header_image_sm.jpg
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    That looks way more functional and the styling is more subtle.

    I don't think it looks too "Western" and I think it fits more with the detective theme. Definitely looks more accurate to the period.

    tapeslinger on
  • meowmixmeowmix Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Men's hairstyles between 1900 to 1920 were cut fairly close to the head, and slicked back. Even if it was longer on top, it was combed off the forehead, and trimmed short around ears and neck. Men with thick, curly hair wore it smoothed back in waves.

    I know you only asked about clothing design, but something to think about. :D Could help the viewer "get" the historical period.

    meowmix on
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