For today’s post, I’ve reached way back to my earliest microstock and put up my first cartoon Christmas tree. Christmas is an enormously popular microstock category that sells surprisingly well year round. This 2D Christmas tree was designed to be a multi-version character, which means I have a variety of similar trees with different moods available for sale. These typically include, happy, grumpy and angry. The design of the tree remains the same, but the position of the arms and expression change from one version to the next. This use of the multi-version character can be a great time saver when designing. Happy Christmas!
Cartoon birds are an excellent subject matter for microstock. They come in such a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, the options for character development are virtually limitless. This frantic bluebird is one my earliest microstock characters and one of my favorites, in spite of his low sales numbers. I have a couple of microstock chickens that share the same frantic design, and by contrast, those chickens have been consistent sellers. This taught me that having some microstock that can be edited to make several different unique characters not only reduces your overall workload but it increases your chance of making a sale. There may be a higher demand for cartoon chickens than cartoon bluebirds, but I still like this bit of flapping fury.
Sometimes a cartoon cat can also be silly holiday fun. I enjoy drawing cats and their quizzical expressions. Cats make great jesters and this holiday kitty is ready to make us laugh.
‘Tis the season for Cartoon Santa Claus. The lights are up, decorating has begun, and with that, there’s a need for Santa Claus cartoons. I haven’t drawn many people characters for sale as microstock but Santa Claus seemed like a must do for the holiday season. Recreating a character that is already so well known presents unique challenges. On the one hand, Santa Claus is a guaranteed sale at least once a year. On the other hand, everyone knows that so the market is already saturated with high-quality Santa Claus microstock. The challenge is to create a Santa that hasn’t been seen before. It can be something simple that sets him apart. This Santa Claus is sporting suspenders, not a typical look for Santa but one that I think suits him well.
This is one of the few cartoon fish I’ve drawn for sale as microstock. In my experience cartoon fish have never really been big sellers. Cats and dogs always do well, but fish seem to have far less mass appeal. I get it, not everyone has a use for a cartoon fish. Still, they’re fun to draw and the sheer variety to choose from means that the creative options are virtually limitless. I like to think that this blue-fish is dealing with a nasty bout of hiccups.
Cartoon Santa Dog is a semi-rare breed. I have a varied set of cartoon dogs available for sale in the microstock communities, among them are a few dogs wearing Santa hats. I’ve always enjoyed drawing cartoon dogs, and this cartoon Santa dog was no exception. His prominent, goofy expression, was inspired by the campy and colorful, Banana Splits, a 1970’s live-action/cartoon series. Cartoon Santa Dog’s design is meant to be exaggerated, verging on ridiculous. A look he carries off very well.
Cartoon pigs have always been favorite microstock images. They have a sympathetic vibe and a beautiful abstract shape that leaves the door open for lots of comic relief. This round little piggy is one of my first microstock pigs. I tried to capture a sweet but confused expression on this pigs face. Even though the original image is a few years old now, this pig still makes me smile.
North American football is going strong at this time of year. There are crispy fall days and plenty of games on TV to keep us engaged as the days get shorter. I have a small collection of cartoon football players available for sale in the microstock community. Capturing just the right moment or expression in the pose or on the face of a player can really make or break a character.
Cartoon birds, especially cartoon chickens are among my best sellers in the microstock community. There’s something about a chicken that makes a great character. I don’t know if it’s the scruffy bodies or the floppy head bits, but for whatever reason, they lend themselves well to pen and tablet.
This chicken is one of the taller breeds of barnyard fowl. With stripey legs and scruffy feathers, I can’t help but smile when I see that blank expression.
When it comes to drawing cartoons, cats are a common subject. This is especially true in the microstock communities. I’ve always enjoyed drawing cats, they have a unique take on life and capturing just the right expression can make a drawing come to life. This feline is a recent addition to my already well-stocked collection of cartoon cats. His unimpressed expression makes him one of my favorites.