When we are doing Character design, we have to consider what we are designing a character for. You already said that you want to model him, so we know its going to be a 3D application. So you can pose and illustrate him there. There is no need to illustrate him cool and render him here if we are going to have some software power to design light sources later. So we can do all of our mental heavy lifting with our line work here.
Okay we are going to start there. If you add some more on how the weapon works it might be redundant, but that's okay if you feel like it. As an art director I can tell its a revolver with stopping power and a brutal axe bayonet, and brass knuckles. I don't need to be shown how any of those things work. Unless they break into nunchakku or something weird, I can see how they look, that's the important thing. But I would like to explore more ideas for weaponry. And if you are going to add more inserts do it on the hood and cloak and things that change the way the character looks. That's what I need to see to be convinced its cool enough to spend more time on, or not.
So the idea that this equipment is passed down means it is going to need to be retro fitted with new tech in order to meet modern infantry warfare. Otherwise if the youth reaches fighting age while his patriarch is still battle ready his armor is going to be new standard issue kit. I see that you are doing that. I also saw your old shock trooper sketch in your blog entry. This character here has developed more and you have influences from historical/geographical highlights. And here we are.
So lets start with the helmet.
We are going to try to use the helmet shape language as our guide to the rest of the design process. It can help you make design choices much easier because it is limiting them to the cultures shape language choices and history. Think about Samurai or the Medieval knight. These cultures vary greatly and their designs for battle tech influenced their shapes. We however have the choice to let shapes influence our design.
I apologize for my hand writing.
As we use the shape language influence of the helmet we can rough out a drawing over a basic ass mannequin. Think of the shapes overall in the proportion. I lasso'd, shrank, blew up distorted, re sketched, erased and re-did whole areas until I liked it. I tried to stick to the father shape of the helmet to influence my shape and armor choices while still trying to adhere to your design. I tried some masculine square shapes against the swerving feminine lines of the helmet to push the masculine feel of a heavy soldier.
Regarding the Lower body comment area, I meant to say "the design in yours" * . Veteran designers can see you didn't research or lack knowledge of anatomy and historical armor or materials.
Okay, for someone with fighting culture lineage who trains kids to fight since they were in kindergarten, this looks slapped together at the last minute from parts in a junk sale.
From the description this is a “rifle” , but the preferred method of fighting is “up close and bloody”. This is a contrasting design thought here.
However it looks like your design tried to incorporate a master of none strategy to give the user an extremely versatile weapon. Its a melee weapon last, because the axe bayonet is clearly an accessory to a fire arm. It has range for mid range fire fights because of its barrel size but no scope for far away. Stopping power with its ammo size up close, but when you run out of your 6 bullets, you brought an axe to a gun fight. Both axe and armor are in a heavy combat style. This guy with this armor is definitely a heavy.
If he faces someone with long range advantage, or up close speed and power, or someone with larger ammo capacity its going to be a disadvantageous fight, depending on the game type we are going to be putting this character into.
One of my favorite quotes is from Gran Torino, "How many bullets you got!?" As a gangster holds up a mac ten in response to another gangsters snub nose.
But does your design look cool as shit? Hell yea it does. But it doesn’t seem like the type of weapon a warrior centered culture would rely on for an elite infantry unit. Maybe they are more brutal and primal in their weaponry culture. But it needs to be shown throughout the design if that's the case. You dont want to have to tell me that, I need to be able to tell that on my own.
I would say go all the way with short range power, or all the way with short-mid range advantages.
Like a combo shotgun/double sided axe.
Or a Bayonetted assault rifle with more ammo per magazine. Double axe grenade launcher might be OP.
AND lets try to make it look like your design.
Or here’s a question, what style of game is this character going to be in and how fun is the gameplay? FPS Doom? Overwatch? Third person Shooter Gears? Starcraft? Total-War? All of those answers will definitly give you food for thought on what kind of weapon you would prefer to play, and when you pitch the character to your art director it seems thought out.
I would say, he’s a heavy, or a general, or elite rare unit. Push the stopping power/fun factor for his weapon, cool factor last. Any more on size and we are pushing 40k sizes. Consider that we are already at blizzard sizes for armor.
In reality I need to be able to tell whats going on without any mixup. I should be able to tell you put a lot of thought into this and you made your communication clearly. Can a 5 year old tell whats going on? You did it right.
You want to figure everything out before you hand it off to someone else because if you leave any design short comings in pieces you are basically saying, "here you figure this out I dont really care, or didn't make time." When you hand designs to people you want them to think "Wow, I cant wait to see what else they come up with and I cant believe I get to direct/sculpt/animate/interpret what they draws! So cool."
Here are some notes on your current sheet.
[edit placement] I am trying to be funny and not mean. Really, you are doing great by posting in here and asking stuff to be torn apart. Design is super fun and can fill up a sketchbook and you can become a great problem solver.
A lot of the stuff that you see online will show you, something I want you to hear very clearly.
Example. Example. Example. Example.
[edit added] I just went to the front page of artstation and found that stuff in seconds. These are some clear designs, that didn't have a lot of time spent on them.
I think you are getting distracted by painting form right now.
I suggest staying with line, line weight and ONE value for all shadow for now and watch some more videos on rendering. The long boring ones you have to pay for.
[edit-reworded] But for progress right now work on your perspective and refining your drawings. Don't get so excited that you are digitally painting and let it get off the rails from your intent. Have intent when you sit down.
And for gosh sakes. Be one of the handful that comes back and keeps working hard on themselves and their design's and their painting skills.
Thanks for posting. See ya' round.