Make a vector mascot character
This tutorial will show you how to draw a graphic designer mascot using basic shapes, the pen tool and pathfinder operations in Adobe Illustrator.
This tutorial requires an intermediate skill level in Illustrator, you will need to be comfortable with the Pen Tool in particular as there are some sections which require you to draw lines and shapes freely.
Create a new RGB document in Illustrator at least 600 x 600 pixels, and use the Ellipse tool to draw a 208 x 208 pixel circle for the head. Set the fill color to a skin tone of your choice.
To make the head less perfectly circular, select the top vector point and use the arrow keys to nudge it up 12 pixels. Repeat for the bottom point, nudging it down 12 pixels. Then use the Pen or Direct Selection tool to extend the left and right handles slightly as shown below.
Use the Ellipse tool to draw a simple oval shape 17 x 27 pixels for the left eye. Position it as shown below.
Duplicate the oval shape and use it for the right eye.
Tip: Group (Ctrl+G or Cmd+G) both eyes and align them horizontally to the center of the face.
For the mouth, start by drawing a simple 44 pixel line segment and give it a red (#bb4554) 6 pixel stroke with round end caps.
Use the Add Anchor Point Tool (+) and create a new anchor point in the middle of the line segment. Select the middle anchor point with the Direct Selection Tool (A) and use the arrow keys to nudge it down 6 pixels. Then use the Convert Anchor Point Tool (Shift+C) on the middle point to create a smooth arc.
Place the mouth onto the face. Use the X and Y positions in the screenshot below for reference.
Use the Pen Tool (P) to freely draw some long hair. You only need to do the left half, just make sure the line on the right hand side is perfectly straight. The fill color is #000000.
In the Transform window, change the Reference Point to one of the three right hand side points, then click the menu icon and choose Flip Horizontal from the dropdown.
Select both sides of the hair and use the Pathfinder window to Unite them. Then move the hair below all of the other shapes (Ctrl+Shift+[ or Cmd+Shift+[).
Above the other shapes, use the Pen Tool (P) to draw a new section of hair that frames the left side of the face.
Similar to the last step, use the Pen Tool (P) again to create a larger section of hair that swoops over from the left to the right side of the face.
Using the Pen Tool (P) again, draw a highlight on top of the last section of hair and change the fill color to #333333.
For the next step we are going to draw some glasses. This can be very tricky so I recommend using an image search engine to find a reference photo to trace. Similar to how we drew the hair, use the Pen Tool (P) to trace the outline of half of the glasses frame, use the fill color #664F8C. And also draw the outline of the left lens glass using #000000.
Copy the lens shape to the clipboard and then, use the Pathfinder window to Subtract the lens from the frame shape.
Paste in Place (Ctrl+Shift+V or Cmd+Shift+V) the lens shape, make sure the fill color is #000000 and set the Transparency to 10%.
Select both shapes, make and a copy and use the Transform window to Flip Horizontal with a right side Reference Point. Then select both sides of only the frame and use the Pathfinder window to Unite them.
Draw a small 7 x 3 pixel oval shape and set the fill color to #CCCCCC. Then click once on the left and right vector points with the Convert Anchor Point Tool (Shift+C) to clear the handles.
Resize the glasses if needed so that they are approximately 218 x 74 pixels. Then place the light gray shape onto the glasses frame as shown below and repeat for the right hand side.
Place the glasses as shown below onto the girl's face.
Use the Rectangle Tool (M) to draw a 116 x 138 pixel rectangle for the body with 20 pixel rounded top corners. The fill color should be a slightly darker than the face skin tone (#F9CBBB).
Use the Rectangle Tool (M) to draw a 34 x 151 pixel rectangle for the left arm with 17 pixel rounded corners. The fill color should be the same as the body (#F9CBBB).
In the Transform window enter 350° in the Rotate field and position the arm as shown below.
Use the Ellipse Tool (L) to draw an oval that connects the arm and the body (think of it as a shoulder). If you can't quite get this right, just use the values shown below in the Transform window.
Flip the shoulder and arm horizontally, and position them on the right side of the body.
Tip: Group (Ctrl+G or Cmd+G) both sets of arms and shoulders, then align them horizontally to the center of the body.
Select the body shape and both sets of arms and shoulders, then use the Pathfinder to Unite them.
Duplicate the combined body shape in place, and change the fill color to #22B574.
Draw a rectangle shape that covers the lower section of the left arm.
Use the Direct Selection Tool (A) to highlight the top left anchor point and use the arrow keys to nudge it up 20 pixels.
Duplicate the shape and flip it horizontally then move it over to the same position on the right side.
Select the left shape and the green body shape, then use the Pathfinder window to Subtract and create a sleeve. Repeat for the right side.
Draw a 36 x 29 pixel rectangle with 18 pixel rounded bottom corners for the next using the same fill color as the body (#F9CBBB). Move the layer so that it sits below the face but above the body using (Ctrl+[ and Ctrl+] or Cmd+[ and Cmd+]).
Draw a dark gray (#1A1A1A) 116 x 56 pixel rectangle directly below the body for a skirt.
With the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the bottom left and bottom right anchor points and use the arrow keys to nudge them left and right respectively by 10 pixels.
Draw a 42 x 80 pixel rectangle below the skirt for the left leg, use the same fill color as the body (#F9CBBB). And duplicate it for the right leg.
With the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the bottom left and bottom right anchor points and using the arrow keys, nudge them as shown in the screenshot below.
Draw a 60 x 20 pixel rectangle overlapping the bottom of the left leg for the shoe and give it 17 pixel rounded top corners and 3 pixel rounded bottom corners. Set the fill color to #333333.
Draw a 60 x 8 pixel rectangle overlapping the shoe, set the fill color to #4D4D4D and align it to the bottom of the last shape.
Duplicate the larger shoe shape in place and select that copy along with the smaller shape, then use the Pathfinder to Intersect the two shapes.
Duplicate both shoe shapes, group them (Ctrl+G or Cmd+G) and then move the shoe to the same position on the right leg.
Finally, use the Pen Tool (P) to draw a wavy line going from the top of the skirt to the girl's ear and give it a 3 pixel white stroke to emulate an earphone cable. Draw a second line going from the other ear and intersecting with the first line.
I hope you enjoyed following along with tutorial and use the techniques demonstrated here to create your own unique mascots. Thanks for reading, and here is the final result: