This person creates a settei or model pack with drawings of each character from different angles, specifying details such eyes, clothes, and accessories.
One of my favorite character designers is Nobuteru Yuki (Gunnm, Escaflowne, Record of Lodoss War).
Escaflowne Character Design:
Although Character Design sounds like a very fun and creative specialty, the final look of the characters may be influenced by other members of the production team. For example, Yoshitoshi Abe complained that Lain (Serial Experiements Lain) didn’t turn out as he intended because he had to change the design to meet the demands.
However, he was given complete creative freedom in Haibane Renmei 🙂
The design may evolve from concept art. Here is an example of Original Character Design by Yutaka Izubuchi from Lodoss:
Anime Character Design by Nobuteru Yuki looks somewhat different:
Of the recent anime examples, Shangri-La provides a nice contrast:
Kenichi Yoshida (novel)
Range Murata (Anime Original Character Design)
Kumi Ishii (Anime Character Design)
Artists rarely create character design only – many work in other roles of anime production. Although exceptions, such as Akemi Takada (Kimagure Orange Road, Maison Ikkoku, Patlabor, Urusei Yatsura) who worked almost exclusively on character design, do exist.