Silver Lining Animation Title

Character Creation – Designing for Purpose

In house creative decisions

Creating any new character, even a simple one, can be challenging. Here at Silver Lining, we believe in the proverb “3 days sharpening the axe, and 2 days cutting down the tree.” In other words, we like to plan out each step and make sure all our work hits the criteria set out by either us or our clients. Let’s take a look at some of the creative decisions behind our in-house character, Rigby!

The Brief

We wanted to create an in-house style that was adaptable and competitively priced for our clients! When we create bespoke work, the first thing we do is define the key objectives it must meet. For our in-house designs, we wanted something:

  • able to appeal to a wide audience
  • Versatile in its range of movement
  • able to be adapted to a range of narratives

Reaching our objectives

To hit our first objective, we began looking at characters that were ambiguous in their age, gender, and ethnicity. We created mood boards of existing characters that we felt hit these objectives and picked out the key details we liked and could effectively bring into our own design. This covered everything from the colour of the character and what that might convey to key details to make each design unique when multiple characters are being used.

We also wanted the character to be able to convey a wide range of emotions and be versatile in its movements. We did this in two main ways: first, we exaggerated the core features of the character, e.g., eyes and mouth, to exaggerate any emotions used; second, we gave our character “rubber hose” limbs, which means it is able to easily bend and stretch, giving us better silhouettes and lines of action when moving and posing our design.

When looking at how to build a diverse style that can be used in a wide range of narratives, we first began by looking at the sets our character would be placed into. We decided on the idea of more abstract backgrounds because it would allow us to effectively drive a narrative by drawing attention to key objects and icons. It also allowed us to jump between abstract and character shots smoothly and effectively.


Designs for both characters and sets enabled us to quickly adapt colour schemes and design elements such as fonts to any brand. If you want to see him in action, check out our YouTube channel, and if you think this style of animation could work for you, then get in touch!


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