50th Post!!


Tomorrow because it’s HD and took way to long to process I will annotate. But I used a combination of layer lock and clipping mask to make this digital painting. Most of the blending is a combination of painting with a lighter colour or using the smudge tool with a custom brush that I made. Tomorrow I will further update this post with better info but for now, enjoy what you can of this video.

Photoshop Tip: Pencil Tool


This is just a random thing I thought to mention. Pencil tool isn’t really for sketching. It’s set to basic brushes for a reason. It’s more for making lines. If you hold shift while dragging up or down you get a perfect line but it you click then click a point in another direction all while holding down shift you get a diagonal line. If you do this with the pressure brushes even with a mouse you WON’T get a diagonal line, at least not one that’s very visible. I use to think that feature was excluded from photoshop elements until I actually found the pencil tool.

I watch some youtube videos on drawing now and then and a lot of people seem to use the line shape instead of simple click+shift+drag or shift+click+click with the pencil tool. The disadvantage with the shape tool is rasterizing and merging all of those lines and cutting and pasting. If you go to window>> guide you can then see a ruler along the top and left side. Combine that with using shift instead and you can measure out your lines like you would with a real pen and ruler.

This method also works with GIMP and a few other digital art programs.

Screentoning in PSE 7 With Colour Halftone


Ok so here it is as promised. I will babble on a bit but I’ll do my best to keep it short and sweet. I’ve practically pulled my hair out trying to find a good method and in the end I found a plug-in that does the screentoning better… except it’s in Japanese… anyway moving on. This is a different way other than using the pattern stamp tool. I like this way better but that’s just a personal preference.

So, when you start your new drawing make sure the resolution is either 300, 600 or 1200. Mine is set to a res or dpi of 600. Just like in the GIMP screentoning tutorial I wrote, make sure to change the image mode to greyscale. You can do so by going to Image>> Mode>> Greyscale.

Like in the gimp tutorial, add a new layer under your lineart and colour in greyscale the lighting that you would like your tones to be in. Use gradient to achieve gradient tones. If you want tones of different sizes then you will need to make a separate layer for the other sizes.

When you are ready to create your screentones go to filters>> Pixelate>> Colour Halftone. Use the default settins and adjust the first box to a number like 4 or 8 for small dots and a larger number for larger tones. Some like to change the the other numbers to one number eg 10 others just like to change the angel from 45 to something else but I really don’t know enough about it. You’d be better off looking up more information about how to use the colour halftone filter.

I have mine on the default settings, first box filled with the number 8. Hit ok and you will have screentones.

Your tones should look something like this. Remember if the image is not in greyscale then this will not work properly!

You can make all sorts of tones in photoshop. My personal favourite is grain. I use it in a lot of things. Anyway, go to filters>> Pixilate>> Mezzotint… and you will have a variety of choices from lines to dots and you can get a lot more vareity. Combine this with half tone and you’ll create yet another type of screentone. I like using Mezzotint for clothing textures and wall textures though it can be a bit fiddly.

And that’s it. All I can really say is try combining filters and see what great textures you can make. Diffuse is the other common one to use and make tones. I see a lot of people use custom brushes like stars or strawberry prints and then use the colour halftone like have to create interesting screentones for their backgrounds etc.

Hope this has helped someone!

Happy drawing!

Toning In GIMP


Very sorry I have been away for so long but I’ve been working on things and have found an abandonded baby rat which I am taking care of and nursing. I’m a sucker for baby animals. Anyway I thought that since CamStudio and windows movie maker hate me so much that I could screen cap how to screentone in gimp.

When you have finished and inked your work change the image mode to Greyscale. This step is very important! It’s so the tones will work properly later. The above image is one of my inked works.

Next colour in grey tones in a layer underneath the lineart layer and label it tones. Colour where you’d liked shadows to be. Add patterns to it if you like or pattern stamp in the background. Keep it on the tone layer. If you have to use a sperate layer for some parts, remember to merge them at the end. Later if you want tones of differnt sizes just repeat the process on a new layer.

When you’re done with your lighting and shading and are ready to tone go to, Filter >> Distort >> Newsprint. (Just a little note, using gradient tool will give you gradient tones which is what I did to the character to the left as an example.)

This control panel type of thing (I forget the term) will pop up. Play with Input and cell size to get the tones you want. You will have to go by the preview box. If the preview is blank don’t worry, click hold and drag in the preview area until you find your coloured area which will show it as tones. Leave the angel at 45 for now. When you have the size you think it right, click ok and you will have digital screentones. (also you can choose more than just dots, you can have lines or diamonds, it’s up to you with what you use. You can do this by looking through the spot function.)

It’s that simple. After you get use to it and judging the dot sizes, play around with the angel and dots to get other effects. When in a small view the tones will look distorted so be sure to check them with the image zoomed in at actual size or actual pixels. Also printing them out can often be the best test. You can do similar in photoshop. I’ll post a new post on how to do it in ps7. It’s almost the same process but slightly more complicated.

SPECIAL NOTE:

In GIMP it doesn’t seem to matter as much if you chose a paper size. The newsprint feature seems to be unaffected and works the same way in most resolutions. Photoshop on the other hand, if you choose to screentone in photoshop with the colour halftone feature then your image MUST be AT LEAST 300 resolution (or dpi). You can work from either 300, 600 or 1200 in any paper size eg A4, A5, A6, B4 etc. These are the main used resolutions or dpi for manga/comic’s and in order for colour halftone to work best you MUST have your image set to greyscale when you are ready to tone and you will find similar controls to what GIMP uses. Halftone doesn’t work as well so you’ll have to use the colour halftone filter in greyscale mode for the best results. I’ve found paper size B4 set to a resolution of 600 works quite well.

CLICK THIS LINK TO SEE A COLOUR HALF TONE SCREENTONED WORK DONE IN PHOTOSHOP.

Next post I will give screen caps on how to do it along with a small repeat of the previous paragraph.

Screentoning with Pattern Stamp Tool PS7


Ok so quite sometime ago someone asked me how I was able to tone so nicely in photoshop. My first answer is usually the worst because I don’t think it through even though it was true. I went through Deviant Art and found some great tutorials on it but without thinking that was really only half of the details. Now a few days ago I wrote a blog update about installing these patterns because I had planned to make a video about toning with the pattern stamp tool in photoshop. I know a lot of people prefer bucket fill. But to be honest, you limit yourself if you don’t at least try the various brush shapes in pattern stamp set to a nice tone… if any of that made sense. So, as always, watch the video first, then read on ^w^

Firstly, find and install some screentones that you have made or found and make sure they are PAT. files. Go HERE for a breif tutoiral on how to install and make them. Or go find a better tutorial on installing PAT files. Select the pattern stamp tool! Not the clone tool, it must be Pattern Stamp tool! This is very important. After you have done that select a hard edge brush and set the size to something nice to work with. Then select the patterns you’ve made or installed. Test them out and see how they are. Now, before I go on there is one issue I’d like to address before anyone asks.

If your tones aren’t coming out at the size you thought they would, it’s probably because your resolution and paper size is too small. I work at either A5,A4 or B4 and have a resolution of either 300 or 600 and in some cases 1200. The resolution effects the size of the dots and if you’ve ever used Manga Studio or Deleter Comic Works then you probably already know a bit about this already. I won’t go into a big explanation because frankly there’s tonnes of tutorials and explanations on this already. Everywhere from wiki to Deviant Art. Usually though working from 300 res or 600 would do for most of us. The picture in the video is A5 at 300 res or dpi.

For most of you, testing out the stamp tool like this, it’s probably all the information you need. I bet you can happily tone now as well as make hundreds of new tones and textures to use. There’s nothing extra I have to say about screentoning this way. Except to try out other brush shapes while toning and check out the amazing backgrounds you can make in a matter of seconds. This video is only double speed. This took me under 10 minutes to tone using the Pattern Stamp Tool. All I really want to say is play with adding white dots and highlights and using light tones for light shadows, over lapping tones and experimenting with the layer blend modes and the tones. You can make some amazing new tones with layer blend mode colour dodge and colour burn.

I know this is a terrible not-quite-a-tutorial, but it really is that simple. After you install the PAT file the hard part is over. All you have to do is carry on toning like you normally would and remember to use them where you want either shadow or emotion displayed and that’s it. Screentoning is only as complicated as you want to make it. I usually like to keep it simple because I like to focus on mood and emotion more than I do lighting so usually I just shade the eyes and under the nose and under the lip but that’s my personal preference. The main reason for this video was to show that it is possible to tone in photoshop and to get it to look nice. I’ve seen some of the WORST tutorials with the wrong tones used in photoshop and that’s where all the negatives on the stamp tool come from. Because people do judge the end results on these tutorials made by very beginner artists. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to help but if you don’t fully know the in’s and out’s then you really shouldn’t be making a tutorial. I’ve seen bad drawings in some tutorials but the explanations and examples were amazing, it sort of cancelled out the presentation factor so I guess what I am trying to say is, read thoroughly and try it yourself before deeming it a bad way to make art.

Anyway, if you want in depth tutorials on toning and where and what’s effective and what not then search youtube and deviant art and you will turn up hundreds of results. You can try google but turning up a good tutorial is pretty hard because of page ranks etc.

Here’s my list of favourite screentoning, colour and other art tutorials. These are way more helpful than anything I could ever write up:

  1. Prisma Marker tutorial
  2. Toning in GIMP
  3. Screentoning
  4. One of the best screentoning Tutorials
  5. Screentone/Halftone
  6. Colouring skin/noses
  7. Digital Painting Tutorial
  8. Bitmap Comic+Manga Halftoning
  9. Drawing Realistic lace
  10. Hair tutorial
  11. Sky Tutorial
  12. Nifty Digital Painting Tutorial
  13. Mini Tutorial About Everything
  14. Pen Tool Tutorial
  15. IFX- Strike A Pose
  16. A heap of manga tutorials
  17. Anatomy

Upcoming Video Tutorial: Tegaki E


Saphira on Tegaki EThis is just a little shameless promotion of my latest picture that I made on Tegaki E ^____________^
I know there are a few video’s on this already but to often I see people making tutorials without explaining anything, as if by merely seeing it in super high speed the audience is just expected to instantly understand the way you think and do things and why you chose that method as opposed to other ones. This is why I am making one, because I plan to talk out my whole thought process and reasoning behind my techniques. The lack of tutorials has motivated me to try my best to show and explain other ways you can make art with this unique blogging site. But I am going to do one using a different technique to the majority of users are using. Seasoned digital artists use the same technique I do but in saying that, it doesn’t mean your work will suddenly become epic in a matter of moments. It takes a lot of time and patience to reach the aesthetically pleasing look on Tegaki E. And even though it is slow process it truly does produce the best results.

Just remember to save often whenever use use Tegaki E. It’s the best tip anyone can give you, especially if you have a slow connection or one that drops out a lot. Also, remember to always keep your Flash Player and java updated otherwise you will face a lot of drawing problems and window crashing. One other thing which I will do my best to remember to mention in the upcoming post, if you are using a tablet/graphic’s pad and everytime you put your pen to the blank canvas and this stupid right click happens and screws everything up no matter where you go to draw online whether it be DeviantArt.com, RateMyDrawings.com, TegakiE or where ever, if this is happening and it is pissing you off to the max, go to:

Control Panel>> Tablet PC settings>> Disable right click for one tap

That should fix that annoying feature. MAKE SURE YOUR TABLET IS PLUGGED IN BEFORE TRYING TO CHANGE THESE SETTINGS! Otherwise it won’t work.

All that being said, good luck with your art and I hope I’ve helped in someway. Also don’t be afraid to share your work in the comments below and more importantly DON’T BE SHY!! I’d love to see you’re work no matter what skill level you are ^___^