Most characters usually has the Medium and
Long lengths though you may go for something different and
try the shorter two versions. Think about it; it would be
pretty bizarre if a knight has a short cape!
Most of the times, characters have the wide cape as opposed
to the thin and medium widths.
(The picture is a back view of a person)
When drawing a cape, you have to consider gravity
and force. Gravity constantly pulls down on a cape
as seen in the middle example. In this case, there is
usually folds near the neck where all the cloth is gathered
in semi-circle type lines and several straight lines going
downwards nearer the shoulders.
It becomes a bit more complicated when more than one force
is pulling on an object. Consider the other two examples
on the left and the right. In the left most picture, the
person is pulling outwards. These two new forces are more
than gravity so as folds now have to be drawn towards
the higher force - the hands.
Meanwhile, the right most example has the person pulling
upwards. Again, folds have to move or be drawn according
to that force. Notice that at the bottom, the cape moves
upwards a bit since the rest of the cape is being pulled
(The picture is a back view of a person)
Another force that you have to consider is the wind.
First thing you have to consider is where is the wind
blowing? Up? Down? Left? Right? ...?
From there, draw the cape accordingly. The right example,
for instance, has the wind blowing from behind the person
which makes the cape "outline" the character's
figure and wrap itself around the person.
The left example, on the other hand, has the cape flapping
upwards. When drawing a cape like this, all you have to
do is draw rounded lines that will in the end roughly
look like a triangle except with curvy edges.
There are several types of capes: Low Collar, High
Collar, Hooded, and Plain.
Low Collars are until just beneath the ear.
High Collars are anything higher than the ear.
Hooded capes have hoods, of course.
Plain capes are just that - plain. Nothing fancy.
As far as drawing the Collared capes, you
just basically draw two lines on the left and right side
of the face which widen as you go upwards. It will look
a bit like a triangle in the end. To finish it off, just
draw a straight line behind the head that connects that
two "triangles" on either side of the face.
capes are nothing fancy - think of the drawing a shirt
except that it opens in the middle.
Drawing hoods are a bit tricky but all you really need
to keep in mind is that:
a. There are two "circles" around the head.
One "circle" near the face and another "circle"
farther from the face.
b. Leave enough room around the head, especially as you
get nearer the neck as gravity makes the hood rest on
the head and the rest hang down.
c. When drawing the hood down, you will have to draw folds
that are slightly above the rest of the cape folds to
show that there is a hood attached.
Another important aspect of a cape is how it is held.
The typical ways are two points, part of armor,
and one point.
Two points have two buttons or something similar on both
sides of the cape which is joined by anything that can
pull the two sides together.
Part of armor is when the cape itself is attached to the
armor -- typically on top of the shoulder guards.
One point is when the cape wraps around the person completely
and is held at one point.
Holders are usually jewelry, cords, metal pieces, and
clasps of some kind.
Now comes the fun part! When it comes to designing your
cape, you can get pretty creative... or not. The following
three are examples; the left drawing being the overall
picture while the right drawing being a select close up.
The left example is a fancier version of the two point
hold with a plate at center with an engraving and two
tassels on either end.
The bottom left is a closer look at a one point hold using
Below is a cape which has some markings on the cape itself.
You can a have a simple design with solid lines or go
crazy with more intricate designs.
All in all, the look of your cape depends on your imagination
but if you get stuck, take a look at some anime fantasy
characters to get you started.