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WolfNightV4X1
08-21-2015, 02:46 PM
Heyo! Yeah...I've been scraping up any digital art tools and tutorials I can find and applying them at an annoyingly slow snail pace for about three years counting. It's come to my attention that I could possibly get help and tips more directly rather than indirectly...don't know why I haven't before (except once on a more specific piece)

So I just drew an extremely generic red fox anthro to show my process (or a variation of it)

I know there's no hard-and-fast way to do art and there could be a number of ways to do each part, and I have done those ways but if you have any that work better than what I'm doing that would be incredibly helpful.

I've normally been using Photoshop...CS6? Probably. Except I have to redownload it now, so now I've been on GIMP and Paint.net (mostly gimp, I've been disliking Paint.net)

The process (a rather shoddy doodle as an example):

https://cdn.weasyl.com/static/media/b2/eb/62/b2eb62f4ad6783d90f1a0b44d56018d6710584b218b3e8145b 90a4c75e1df9ab.png

Beginning sketch...when I first started I did it on paper first which I like a lot better, something about drawing on paper makes it look better, maybe my brain?

But stealing the method from other artists I've often used lower opacity black or bright, light color on a sketch layer.

As you can see the line is rather shaky (you can see on the left side of the face), in the past I've just free-lined it this way and my linearts were always terrible because of this.

https://cdn.weasyl.com/static/media/e8/b9/22/e8b9224b493664314227e5387c6e5529947b0f912f60326af8 5967ae45e1fad1.png

Now I've went to 'the lineart'...in the past it would look like a slightly cleaner version of above. Recently this has nagged at me so I've tried branching out. I found Gimp has this really neat 'smooth stroke' checkbox option (and Paint.net has line tool). This allows for cleaner, less shaky lines.

Downside you can see (I was apparently lazy), it didnt connect in some places...I could have benefitted from fixing up the piece by erasing extra parts of lines and adding extra parts of lines. Overally though this lineart technique is better than my past (still needs refining)

https://cdn.weasyl.com/static/media/29/24/db/2924dbfad6d16eaa02f51fa9600178c6b1d68cab43f6395e90 f20ed60826a9c4.jpg

Colorings kind of the hard part. I could color it manually (trying to stay inside the lines like a coloring book), which would take awhile. In photoshop I would select the background outside of the lineart and hit 'select inverse' to have only the lineart space selected so that I could color within the boundaries.

In this one I duplicated the lineart layer and used the fill bucket tool (drawing in extra boundaries where I didn't want color to spill into the white). Obviously with this method alone there's some white lines still showing the visible drawn-in separated parts.


https://cdn.weasyl.com/static/media/fc/42/ae/fc42ae578c6ddb94b607957bf169bdfe31ff7466d25ac17e24 fc2a457e2d44b6.jpg

I fixed it up a little bit...coloring some of the white parts more (ech, otherwise the anatomy on the leg and other places is bad, I can see that)

https://cdn.weasyl.com/static/media/90/f6/42/90f6421266e1f01a51776360ea3de8cd4a25b0defbb78bbd48 4bfbf388e095ac.jpg

This is typically how I shade, taking black and trying to pay attention where the lighting would hit. I did a terrible job on this. The 'fur texture' I attempted is not something i normally do...and it sucks on here, haha. Added white on low opacity for 'highlight'

https://cdn.weasyl.com/static/media/f2/6d/14/f26d14d23658ad3c3143ce09bc51e80fcaf1d96a4d52583b02 5e4ff95b8ca389.jpg

Throw in a little background and done! (the white 'glow' was actually me filling in the transparent inside part of the fox with white and it spilling over the outline)...idek what happened to the leg on the right I think I tried to select it and change the size. Didnt work. (and now I realize I hadnt colored in enough of the white lines xP)

https://cdn.weasyl.com/static/media/df/e5/c0/dfe5c078dabbc893736d09169e89f8d4a4092ce689a01695d2 d8a58ad0553278.jpg

:3 hehehe...so yeah, any tips better artists?

Tiamat
08-21-2015, 04:25 PM
There are tried and tested methods for improving your technique. No matter the medium or subject matter.

It would be better not to use digital tools exclusively as a way to improve, but rather go back to pencil and paper and begin sketching shapes and people and objects around you. This is not only a beginners exercise but something we all must do throughout our lives as artists.

Your lines are quite shaky, which will improve with confidence. Are you using a stylus?

Your fills are very inconsistent at the moment, with lots of background pixels still showing through or areas where its leaked, I'd imagine you are looking to get the clean toon look?

Studying from life will provide you with more knowledge of weight and poses the fundamental rules which will allow you to have greater control and expression over your anthro artwork.

There are ways to improve your methodology with digital tools, but they would not be beneficial to you as much as basic studies. I will say that when you are doing fills, ensure your selection crosses into your ink lines to avoid gaps. You can do this by modifying the selection and either increasing or decreasing it at a pixel ratio.

maugryph
08-23-2015, 02:53 AM
Ctrlpaint.com has 2 entire sections on traditional drawing techniques and foundation concepts because they are important. I would recommend watching them. http://www.ctrlpaint.com/library

WolfNightV4X1
08-30-2015, 10:36 AM
There are tried and tested methods for improving your technique. No matter the medium or subject matter.

It would be better not to use digital tools exclusively as a way to improve, but rather go back to pencil and paper and begin sketching shapes and people and objects around you. This is not only a beginners exercise but something we all must do throughout our lives as artists.

Your lines are quite shaky, which will improve with confidence. Are you using a stylus?

Your fills are very inconsistent at the moment, with lots of background pixels still showing through or areas where its leaked, I'd imagine you are looking to get the clean toon look?

Studying from life will provide you with more knowledge of weight and poses the fundamental rules which will allow you to have greater control and expression over your anthro artwork.

There are ways to improve your methodology with digital tools, but they would not be beneficial to you as much as basic studies. I will say that when you are doing fills, ensure your selection crosses into your ink lines to avoid gaps. You can do this by modifying the selection and either increasing or decreasing it at a pixel ratio.

I have sketchbooks and I'm not exclusive on digital, granted, I could benefit from more applied studies my method usually involves just drawing, I may occasionally focus on specifics but that's about it. I just like working on both whenever I can, as doing some digital seems better than none at all

Thanks for the tip on the fills though, that may help. And otherwise I was going for a simple 'cel shade' i guess it's called, though I think the term is more used for 3D graphics, Im probably wrong.


Ctrlpaint.com has 2 entire sections on traditional drawing techniques and foundation concepts because they are important. I would recommend watching them. http://www.ctrlpaint.com/library

this is actually a very cool website...Im pretty eager to go through all the videos. Thanks for sharing!

Antumbra
08-30-2015, 11:34 AM
I would suggest going a bit slower on the lines part if you want them to look clean and connect with GIMP or any other program's smoothing feature. That way it doesn't look choppy and clean.

Also a neat trick I've learned if you want to use the magic wand tool to color the base: after you select "select inverse" to select the inside of the lines, go to Select>Modify>Expand and do it by 1 pixel. That will keep it from having that little gap of white on the inside of your lineart. I usually fill the entire character with a color and then lock the transparency so I don't have to bother with the stupid flashing dotted lines of the selection/magic wand tool.

GlaringFeline
08-30-2015, 05:45 PM
With sketching, I'd suggest sketching different things in different colors(like the body in one color, facial features another, clothes another, etc) If the program you're using doesn't have a stabilizer, I agree with what Antumbra said with slowing down on the lines.

Looking at anatomy diagrams helps out a lot too since you'll know where all the muscles are supposed to go. Study from life like others have said too.