Elf is one of my favourite Christmas movies. Here is a quick time Lapse of a drawing I did of will Ferrell's character 'Buddy'.
I have been using my Wacom intous 3 tablet with Photoshop.
Using a broad photoshop brush (aprox. 14px) I roughly marking out the position of the head, features and shoulders.
Using a separate Photoshop layer I begin begin to refine the features and face shape with a thinner photoshop brush (aprox. 2px)
Once I am happy with the refined outlines I begin to add colour. By using the Magic wand tool I can select specific areas and then apply a fill of a block colour using the paint bucket tool.
Once the block/solid colours were added I used a soft rounded headed brush to apply shading and tonal contrast. This is particular evident on the face. Using the soft brushes can be very challenging and does require a bit of practice. Once you get the hang of the soft brushes they can be an excellent tool for very quick tonal results
Once I'm happy with the over all look of Elf, I type his name 'Buddy' behind his head using Langdon font and add a graduated polka dot pattern to contrast the strong blocky structure of the font.
Using Photoshop can be a very quick and easy to produce convincing looking artwork. My advice is get comfortable with all the tools, experiment with different brushed and practice as much as possible