[image description: a black-and-white photo of a tabby cat with white paws laying down. the cat is wearing black headphones that rest on the sides of its face]

How to create OCs based on songs by Cloudypaw

Image from Collective Evolution

Cloudypaw explains their methods for creating characters based on songs.

Hey there everyone, Cloudy here! Today I’m here to help you on how to build an original character, basing it on songs!
So, there are plenty of steps in this, and you don’t have to follow them exactly as I do, but I always feel that this works best for me.
So let’s start, shall we?

Step one:
Find a song to base your OC around. Make sure that the song you’ve chosen has a clear “personality” to it. I’d suggest listening to it a lot, searching up the lyrics and lyrics meaning, anything that can inspire you.

Step two:
The thing that your OC needs the most as of now is a backstory. Put the song that you’ve chosen on a loop in the background, and close your eyes. To me, the thing that helps come with a backstory based on a song is imagining that there’s a MAP with this song, and trying to understand what scenes people will place and where. It can be a little confusing, but as of now, try just to come with one “plot twist” in your character’s life. I sometimes use lyrics from the song as things that the characters say. Remember that your story can be very similar to the story that the song’s telling, very different, or anything. Have fun with it!

Step three:
Now that the idea of your character’s backstory is still clear on your mind, listen to the song again, but this time (if possible) watch the music video. Try to find some key colors, and remember them. If you truly want your OC inspired by the song, I think that also inspiring your design around it is a nice touch. Scribble down a drawing with your key colors, which you can later use as inspiration for your character’s design.

Step four:
You might think that this is the end, but we’re still far from it. Our lives usually don’t revolve around one thing we need to overcome. There are so many of those, some easier and some harder, but we have plenty of challenges in front of us. What I’m trying to say, is that usually, one song is not enough for your character. Take another song! It doesn’t need to have anything in common with the former one! Repeat on the first two steps, and then try to merge the stories together, and to make your character more developed, you can also try giving them the personality of both songs! Now it’s your choice if to repeat this again with another song or not. I usually use two or three songs for my characters, but just do whatever works best for you!

Step five:
We’re really nearing the edge of this article! But now, your character’s design could probably still use some work on. The first time I draw the cat, I usually make the design simply as if I tried to make the song into a cat. And I usually forget to add the design things from the other songs. But it can be so useful! For example, I once created an OC that one of its theme songs was the song Roi (King in French). I had a last minute idea and gave the OC tabby markings on their head, and said that they’re carrying it like a crown.
Just the little things that can make a huge difference. Don’t be afraid if your second attempt at designing the cat looks nothing like the first one; it always happens to me!

Step six:
You can do this step at anytime, really. This step is naming. Your names can be linked to your theme songs, or unrelated. It’s your call!

Ahhhhhh, I really hope I helped you! If you’re going to try this, please share your results in the comments!!

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