Julio Cesar is a character designer and illustrator from Fortaleza, Brazil. His abilities as an illustrator have gained him quite a following with hundreds of thousands of followers on social media. When you see his work, the answer as to why is immediately clear in his style; the way that it lends itself to doing female centric character design.
Cesar’s portfolio is filled with tasteful, fun and vibrant illustrations of female characters, many of them being original creations of his own. It is however, his real-life references which give us the best introductory point of contrast to see what sets Cesar apart from the rest.
In particular, I’m talking about his awesome illustration of Ronda Rousey. The piece, posted as a photograph from his sketchbook, shows us the former UFC turned WWE Superstar in two very different modes. On one side we see her in the act of punching somebody’s lights out and on the other we get her laughing, in a moment of pure joy. Seen in the photograph, above the illustration, Cesar used traditional line-sketch and paint methods to bring Rousey to life. What I love about his work is the overall, animation feel to all of his design. We see from later posts how Cesar often uses photographic reference for his pieces, recreating them in his signature smile. It’s all bursting, simple color palettes with exaggerated eyes and pointy chins. It reminds me of some of my favorite Saturday morning cartoons or a more modern feeling take on the style of the late, great, Darwyn Cooke which always made me feel the same way. It just makes you want to smile.