33) Character Design

Create unique illustrated characters. You may be: a novice drawer, a writer with a story in mind, a café dweller who enjoys urban sketching, or a creative professional seeking to invigorate your drawing practice.

This imaginative, energetic, yet structured class will guide you to develop characters propelled by observational drawing. Each session will begin with simple activities to generate explorative marks with vigor. We’ll transition the techniques into observational drawing and then further sink into the creative process, utilizing illustration techniques along the way. Each participant’s individual and authentic style will be encouraged and supported via one-to-one and group discussion. Each session will be informed by a select number of contemporary illustrators.

* Participants will be asked to bring clothing items: a coat, a cozy hat, rain items, sunglasses, and random accessories.





Class Outline

1. London Hats; Extreme Marks, Masking & Limited Palettes

2. Parisian Café: Anthropomorphism, Keyline, & Analogous Colours

3. Strolling Doha’s Souq (still at VCU!): Contrast vs. Repetition, and Visual-Verbal Interplay

4. REM’s Dream State: Dissonance and Non-Local Colour

Please note: VCUQatar reserves the right to cancel classes for which not enough participants are registered. Already paid fees will be refunded.

Please do not purchase materials until VCUQatar has sent final course confirmation.

Items to buy for this class

Participants are required to buy their own materials beforehand and bring them to every class

- Designers Gouache tubes (Winsor & Newton: About 4 colours that inspire you!)

- Paper (smooth, heavy weight = 300 g/m2)

- Sketchbook

- Pencil crayons pack OR individual light and dark colours

- Range of brushes (small flat tip, small round tip, medium round, medium flat brush)

- Palette (or flat plastic lid)

- Masking tape (wide)

- Container for water

- Art smock or apron

- Solid board, A3 size to fix work onto

- Participants are asked to bring picture books that inspire them

On occasions, there may be some more materials to be bought and brought in if and when advised by the instructor.

Where to buy your materials

Most of the materials are available from any art supply shop, for example:

  • Cass Art (Fire station): Community Classes students get a 15% discount upon presenting the registration ticket
  • Jarir Bookstore: on Rayyan Road or Salwa Road
  • Color Note: on Al Nasser Street
  • Ibn Al Qayyim: at Markhiya Roundabout
  • Al Rawnaq

Sold Out

Sat, 23 Mar, 2019
Sat, 13 Apr, 2019
9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
VCU Arts


Charlene Kasdorf

MEd, BFA, Dipl. Graphic Design

Charlene is an advocate for visual literacy and builds creative confidence in children and adults. She is an observer, thinker, maker, and sharer. Her formal labels include that of Visual Artist, Illustrator, and Art Educator. 

Charlene was born and raised in central Canada to a family who works with paper. She has lived in Qatar for 7 years and increasingly sees commonalities between these two homes of polar opposite climates…and understands each a unique perspective because of the other. 

She is grateful for the collaborative and supportive relationships she has experienced with museums, schools, authors, and institutions, some of which include the MIA, QM Family Programmes, VCU-Q Community Classes, U.K. publishers, and Maktaba Children’s Library. Charlene contributes and gains perspective in her work from The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and The Association of Illustrators.