Digital Painting for Beginners in Autodesk Sketchbook - Introduction Class | Pedro Twist | Skillshare

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Digital Painting for Beginners in Autodesk Sketchbook - Introduction Class

teacher avatar Pedro Twist, 3D Artist & Illustrator

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

9 Lessons (40m)
    • 1. Intro

    • 2. Finding Inspiration

    • 3. Sketching - 1

    • 4. Sketching - 2

    • 5. Inking

    • 6. Coloring

    • 7. Shading

    • 8. Details & Composition

    • 9. Class Project

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About This Class

Introduction to Digital Painting on Sketchbook Pro (recently a free software by Autodesk), I'll take you through all the steps from finding inspiration to sketching and coloring your painting. 

It's an easy to follow along tutorial, hope you enjoy! I had a lot of fun doing it.

Meet Your Teacher

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Pedro Twist

3D Artist & Illustrator


I am a 3D artist and illustrator living in Barcelona, Spain.

Working with a strong passion for crafting new worlds and environments, I'll walk you through my thought process, guiding you step by step across my workflow to create beautiful scenes together.


"Put some beauty back into the world, that's what we, as artists, should do!"

                                                                                                         Aaron Blaise

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1. Intro: welcome everyone. This is my digital painting for beginners class. I'll walk you through step by step from the beginning, finding its inspiration to sketching, coloring, shading, adding details of the entire process of digital painting from start to finish. I hope you guys enjoy it. Stick around and, uh, let's paint together. 2. Finding Inspiration: So we're going to start by searching for inspiration. I do that on interest almost every single time. Um, it's the perfect place to find any images you might want. Um, it's a great starting point. Um, so everyone has its process of creation. So mine, basically, it starts with having a mental picture when I want to do. And then I try to find images that will help me build just that. So I need a visual reference every time to start building my sketch. So this is what I do. Basically, I wanted to do a landscape for you guys, and I wanted it to be based on my country. So I'm from Portugal on Originally, I'm from Porto and I live in Lisbon. So I tried to search for elements that would combine both of them and add a fantasy style to it, because that's kind of my It's a signature artwork. Usually. So were you looking at? So I searched. I just typed the name Porto started seeing these houses that are very typical from the city . And next I would try to find a new element that would remind me Elizabeth, um, and for the kids. I thought it would be a perfect idea to use the electric car, which is something that, uh, well, not only tourists, but actually locals really love. Um, and he's very iconic of the city. Once I find a picture that I like, stick to that one. I you see me instead of saving right click and saving, you see me using the snipping to luck, that just something. I got so used to it that I don't think of anything else right now. So it just comes out naturally. I don't think of another way to do it. I use the snipping tool because sometimes I only once in details of the picture so that snippy till allows me to just crop the part that I want any instantly, save it, or even copy it directly into the program we're using to paint. Um, so yeah, I do that. Even if it's just a full picture now, it just comes automatically, and I'll just do it. So always save up your your images on the same folder. Just keeps it easier. Keeps it easier to work down the line. We're going to start by importing them into sketchbook. out of this sketchbook pro and then organizing the way we wanted to and in order to get our end results. Now this sketchbook is a great tool. I mean, since since April or May, from not mistaken in 2018 the pro version, the complete full version has been entirely free. So you don't need a subscription to, um to run the program on. It's still the same quality. So I've been using sketchbooks since maybe 2000. 2012 um, something really 11 4012. And the Childress keeps improving eso. It has a great set of brushes, very simple, very lifelike brushes, and the program itself is very intuitive. There's a great set of brushes that you can download for free layers, layer modes, a lot of coping colors to choose from a lot of alternative tools that you can actually use , like symmetry like shapes the warp tool, for instance, that I use a lot and I'll use that and much more over the course of this class. So follow me the next video and we'll start by building or painting 3. Sketching - 1: So the idea now is to, um let's say rough sketch, um, you're painting and, um, getting ready for the actual sketching to take place, So use the tools of the program to your advantage. For instance, now we're flipping the layer to get the right perspective. Now we want, and then we'll start organizing the picture the best we can. We lower the capacity down of Don Layer, allowing us to still still see the image, you know, but lower the capacity enough so we can sketch on top of it. We create a new layer and we start sketching, and I remember this is a rough sketch. So it's totally fine to change your mind along the way That happened to lock to me, especially when you're doing a painting that might take, for instance, let's say, four hours, even eight hours doing it's normal that that you can change your your mind along the way. I definitely definitely changed mind a bunch of times on. That doesn't mean at all that you're a better or worse artist. It just means that you evolve in the painting involves with you. That's just the course of the things. Take you know. So we're starting to get a rough idea on even myself. I was I was trying to starting to have ah, visual visual picture of what I had in mind. And I didn't like the bridge that I was doing, So the the the initial did initial wooden bridge wasn't working for me. Eso I I started trying and see if I could come up with We're different ways to do it s o trying to get the perspective right. The direction I wanted the bridge to take on didn't take it from there because I wanted to add another You know, another set of elements around around the bridge. So that wasn't cutting it. Once I was happy, I could start working on the another element. For instance, the houses and the same principle. We pick up the picture of the houses and we lower the capacity of that layer at another layer on top. And we started sketching in that one. Now, remember, this is very loose strokes. We just want to get the idea of the houses down, and we'll start refining later. So at this point, we just want to see everything. A sketch in front of our eyes and see if it works. So I'm quite happy with the way it's looking so far. But it's only half of the painting would say covered. I wanted to add some some environmental elements. So trying to look for trees and the same process going Pinterest find a picture that I like and trying to see if he works. And this was the moment when I started seeing it really as the first, the first image, the first mental image I had, right? So the first time I visualized the painting I wanted to do this was the point when I started really seen it. So the house is in the middle of the trees with a wooden bridge crossing in the middle of it with an electric car passing by. Um, this was really starting to shape up, and I finished the step by adding some color tones today image. So I got an idea of the darker elements in the foreground, lighter elements in the background, and it's starting to shape up. So in the next video will continue this this process and refining her sketch 4. Sketching - 2: Welcome back, guys. We continue to add bass tones to her painting, refining our sketch. Just one tip here. Maybe it's obvious, but I forgot. For instance, this time that I was creating, I just You just saw me painting this bridge in the same layer that the trees were painted. And that's horrible because then if you want to get details in, you'll end up damaging other elements, and that's not what you want to be doing. So the goal here is to always work as non destructively as you can. So just for any any element might might be a lot of work in the beginning, and it might cost you just a little bit more time. But Indiana is totally worth it. You know, you're gonna find a lot of you can end up painting with 12 15 20 layers, but in the end you avoid what I'm doing. At this moment you can see on the screen, so I just duplicated the previous layer and erase the bridge so I can separate the element . So now I want to the forest to be a little bit more crowded, so I just duplicated the layer the trees scale them a little bit down and put him in the background. I'm just testing some some Grady and levels for the background. See if I would like to work with it and kind of light coming from a specific direction or not. And I continue this process to complete my my full setting, adding more values to it again, the darker tones in the background. Sorry, I'm in the foreground. Eso the doctor in the foreground, the lighter in the background. And I'm just gonna look for one more element to add to or painting. So back to Pinteresque, find a picture that we like. Andi added to the painting. So we're looking for houses again this time to add it to the left side of the painting. We do the same process important into into sketchbook. Um, lower the capacity of the layer, creating new layer for the sketch sketch on top of it again, the roofs catching us, you know that we were trying to do throughout the whole process. Thesis makes the progress faster just to get to the end of it s so we can get a full visual picture of the painting. And so decide if we want, Oh, go through with it or not. You know, after this stage is not that easy to make changes, or, I mean, you can always make them, of course, but they will take a lot of work. Eso any changes that we might consider doing. It's good if it's still into sketching face. So from now on is all about evaluating your your overall sketch and just see if if you're pleased with every single element, for instance, now I have the placing ride. I see that I'm going to start with four trees in front of it, so probably I'll just put one behind it. This will help kind of include the houses in the middle of the forest. So it just a matter setting your elements right and combining them between them on make make them actually feel like they belong together. Once that's done, I think it's it's a perfect time to move on to the next stage, and this is where we'll start to find line or sketch for perfectly happy with everything. We can start adding details and fine and do just fine lining on our her painting 5. Inking: So now we get ready to start thinking for decide lefties, the panda calligraphy pen that that sketchbook has. It's It's an amazing tool. It's pressure sensitive eso. It gives you a great results. So if you if you have that ray that habit of releasing your pan at the end of at the end of the strokes, it gives a nice feel to it. A nice finish to do to the overall look, look of the painting. So it's prequels now, just, you know, choose the pen or any other brush that you might like and just fine line the lines that you had a sketch previously. And just relax, Have fun. You know? Just take your time, Andi. Try to have fun with it. So you see me doing my strokes all at the same time in the same direction? Meaning? You saw me doing all the vertical strokes I have to do. And now I'm doing the horizontal one, too. This is just for practicality when im sketching. I don't really pay attention to this, so I just tried toe work, um, with a little bit more flow to it. But when I'm inking Andi using the pen. So I want simple, simple strokes, very clean strokes. Eso I try to do this, do all the vertical ones and then I flip my campus and like clockwise, for instance, people prefer or anti clockwise like I did in this case. And I'll do all my resentful once you're just a matter of preference. Now again, it's thinking. So I like long clean strokes s Oh, the same goes for the trees will start thinking them now and do the entire background along with bridge eso remember, any time you can just one clean, uh, smooth stroke and that will make the painting look way, way, way better. - Now , this is really starting to look pretty cool. I'm going to start now inking the electric car. Um, honestly, it's my favorite element of the painting. Eso It's really, really good fun to to to painted from start to finish. So I hope you guys enjoyed this and I'll just speed up this till the end. So we finished the income process and try to have fun and keep up with it. - So now, once you think you're done with the the inking and the final lining that take a good look at your full sketch. Without the colors, anything looks perfect. It's time to move on to the next video. 6. Coloring: All right, everyone, welcome back in. This video will start covering. We'll just start adding based colors. Teoh, Every single one of the element in your painting. I start I start doing this by basically the new layer. Just do an outline of the element I'm trying to color down. Basically, tell the software that I'm building a shape in the Nike. I can use the bucket, the bucket feeler to feel the inside of that outline that I created that will quickly a color to every single element, even painting. So we finished. The buildings on this side will do the same on the other side, so I'll just speed up the video a little bit more. And it's exactly the same process, just, ah, blocking Inc and try to do some some different tones in all in all the elements and see if they were called together until this point. We were working very loosely, right? I mean, we were just trying to come up as quickly as we could come up with them with a full idea what we wanted to accomplish in the end, so that lettuce to work a little bit more loosely, but at this point, we really want to start to get into detail ing and just be careful with those outlines so way really want to start to work more refined that face. You can see that as a result of my loose work in the previous steps, I need to start refining, especially around the trees that I just blocked some some some color tones on them for me to understand the depth of my painting when I was working on the on the difference between the background in the foreground elements but But he had that really takes work, cause you can t now interest to try to fix it What you saw me doing in the trees, I basically locked the transparency of that layer on that allows me to just quickly, you know, each was a brush. You, um you take you take the size up of the brush as much as you can. Eso you can feel almost the entire the entire campus with one broad brush stroke. And, um, well, basically, I just like the transparency on that layer and it allows me, allows me only to paint insider on top of what's already painted on screen. So this allows me to change colors as many times as I, as I want in a specific element. And more than that, it allows me to try just Teoh try as much as I can, and I as much as I want. You know, another thing I'm realizing. I say element a lot, but I really don't know what else to call the individual, you know, items that I put in the painting anyway, So you just zoom out. Then you see the overall picture, see if it works, and if so, we're ready to advance to the next video. 7. Shading: All right, everyone. Now we're all set to start adding some Some details to your painting will start with trees here. I'm just testing out some some brushes. But basically what I really love to do with just pick a brush Any standard brush will do block in some some dabs of color that I that I want to use on basically, just keep just choose Ah, smooth brush basically a smudge er on Mix it in so really smooth in all the blocks of death we're adding on top now again, a Z I mentioned earlier on other steps the painting thigh the ideal situation years agreed a new layer again just so we don't destruct the base color. And if we in case in any case, we want to change it, we can still go back to that layer and change that just that specific object. You know, um so remember, always non destructively. So applying the same technique here to world trees just adding blocks of of lighter and darker shades of brown on just with this much brush, uh, just smoothing that in and effect looks so it looks really beautiful and we'll follow basically the same principle for all other objects in the in. The paintings will go from the trees to the bridge on, then follow on through to the houses on always keeping the same idea. I think he's looking pretty good. We can advance onto the bridge now. Just a side note. I mentioned blocking with a standard brush and just go in with this much to our smudge brush. Um, you know, to go in and smooth that in now. You can use if you pick one of the from the brush set that it comes by default. If you pick one of the oil brushes that says, like realistic artistic painting or you know something like that, I think it comes by default with the program. Now I have all settings personalized, but if you picked that brush, you can do basically both of them at the same a same time. So when you're lifting, depend um, touching it again. Tablet. It's like adding paint, but if you don't lift it and you just move it from side to side, it starts smoothing that color in. So basically you can just tap several times. You can do some strokes to to keep Adding Inc. And then, when you're satisfied, you can just keep the pen down and just much it in and split it in again, using exactly the same brush for the entire, in this case, the entire painting, actually, So for trees now for the bridge, the only difference is the size of the brush it smaller so you can achieve the same results and keep it consistent. Now for the houses. I'll try something different. I wanted a different effect. I wanted to really separate this. Let's say non natural environment there from the natural ones. And instead of using the same brush, I wanted to try and achieve a style, especially because of the light. I'll try to work most of the shades by using the airbrush, so I'll just use the same techniques that he was previously to block in the lights coming from the windows. But then, from the shades of the building itself, I'll use I'll definitely use the airbrush. No, I want you guys to notice something. So in this video you'll see me doing some some shading. Some highlights in the houses, you know, amplifying the light coming out of the windows. I want you guys to notice the the look on it and how it will look by the end of it. So I ended this class, you'll see it. I wanted to keep every single detail, every back and forth, every changes, every change that I'm making just because this is not meant to be perfect. Meaning I'm not making a YouTube video here. So making a class on it's supposed to be complete, and it's supposed to keep to keep every decision making that we have to do, you know, while the painting, its eyes on the go I as I said in the beginning, you know, it's OK just took me It took me nearly five hours to do, and it's okay to change your mind s Oh, yeah, I started. I started doing some highlights in this painting, and then I realized that that's not at all the way I wanted to go by the end of it, because he was really, really, um let's say it was too much, so I needed to tone down that just a little bit. So I kept everything for you guys to see instead of cutting down and just show you a perfect painting while you're at it. Another tip just because Part of my mistake when I was doing exactly this that you're seeing on screen, part of the take away is you should always zoom out more often than you think. So I didn't do it often and I was working, zoomed in a locked and then I I failed to see immediately, you know, because your eyes also get addicted to the painting. Let's say so. You kind of need to step back for a bit and then just move away from your desk. And just when you come back, you can try and look for for some details with the new set of ice. Just that at this point, when I start adding the shading Onda highlights coming out of the windows, it really became too much so that there was definitely some adjustments that needed to be made. But at this point, I was I was still sitting on a desk after, I don't know, maybe three hours. Um, so yeah, it just at the end of this video, I Just when I was done with this section, I really needed to step away and come back and just well, work on it some more now shading the car a little bit. Try to give it a notion Enough of the light hitting the front, the front part of the card and decide to shade working to give it some volume Just dealing in all the small crests. Still using the same technique in the house is so I'm working with the airbrush a lot here , but I think it really makes it pop. You know, it's really cool when you work with logic. You start with the base color and then you go win. Just add some some darker tones and and lighter tones to make to make shading all with the airbrushing Look, supercool s so I think we're ready to move on to the next video. 8. Details & Composition: now for the last part of this class. Vertebral. Thank you so much for for keeping up with me. It's been a bit long, I guess. Hopefully not too boring. Just, you know, I really basically for if we're disgusting and trying to achieve something, we're tryingto build a painting from scratch. I just really wanted to try and make it class for considering the absolute beginner. So try to show every single step, the best I could find the best I know how to, um somebody, I guess this is it. Now we're finally starting to get some details in theme purpose. In this one, it just talk a little bit more about the composition of the entire painting. You know how to try to give more of, ah, highlight to the things that we wanna highlighting the painting. So in the previous video is referring to, you know, making mistakes. So basically, you know, the painting is Aziz other things in life. I mean, it's just just a trial and error, and just you just got to see what works and what You're lucky enough to work with the medium like this. Like a medium like digital painting that allows you to, you know, just controls the most of most of the party. You can just go back to whatever you were doing the first place or even, you know, just you hide a layer or you delete the layer and you start over. It allows you for, you know, gives you so many opportunities to just do mistakes and not ruin anything. That is incredible. So just try out things. And I was mentioning, uh, in the painting video or does the shading video. Actually, um, I kept it on purpose to show you that I was redoing something by the end of it. And we're coming to that point now. I just I'm working on them like environmental fog to the entire painting, so I just I thought it would be a good idea. And at this point that I was painting, I didn't No idea. Obviously, Now you can see that it looks horrible. I But I had to try it, right? I mean, different colors, different ways to do fog. You know, I did a mistake that a lot of people do just we don't observe enough. Basically, I try to do stuff from from memory and the way we think we believe things so way. Sorry. The way we believe we remember things. That's the way I want. Because it's really like that, right? For instance, Delight on a building or in a house? I thought I knew what he looked like. And I completely forgot to look at the my reference pictures while I was painting on address. Ruined it. So this is me now undoing what I was doing. Previous video s I'm room removing all the excess of highlights on the light of the windows . I just try to make everything a little bit more cohesive. Think about it. You know, the excess was really killing. My goal here was to highlight an electric car. So that's my main subject of the painting, right that when I give evidence to it, I was working with a way to light of a background. The houses has had way too much light on them, and, um, there was nothing that would set the car apart. Eso My idea was Let's dark in the background. Uh, you know, let's really give it a sense of depth to it. Had some add some some shades and bridge at some highlights to the windows in the car and really work on the buildings around it on tryto, you know, just even things out a little bit. So if you work with the fog also, I was coming to a point that I was starting to like in it, and, uh, the far would help me also, by the end of it, to frame the the electric car and a centered picture a little bit. So now I'm just again trying to perfect those those windows. Michigan, I thought. Why are all the lights on? I mean, for sure some will be off. I mean this. Obviously, this is not an attempt to a realistic painting whatsoever. It's not my style at all on, and I don't think it will ever be. But when we see something that are more natural to us, we find a painting more appealing subconsciously way. Just look at it, and if something's makes sense, you know it makes you more appealing. So I thought he would makes institute to turn some lights off lights takes on. Just add a little bit more for in the bottom of it. But try toe. Decrease the opacity of it. So you can also, when you're adding elements like that on did you and use a specific individual layer for it . It allows you to work a little bit on Dad so you can paint even using a hard brush to paint something and then lowering the capacity will probably add some cool, nice effect to it. So, yeah. Now, I just thought it would be a good idea to add a moon, a moon to the painting. And obviously I realized pretty quickly that it wasn't, uh so just adding a little bit of more detailed to the houses. And I think the painting is looking now finally pretty cool. A two least is looking like it's, ah, a little bit more cohesive, all of it now just adding the final details to it way. Need a little bit more. A little bit more, you know, Highlights a little bit more shadows on the painting, so the bridge definitely need needs a little bit more brightness because the car, if the car is lights inside, it makes sense to add a little bit of that, reflecting light in the elements around it. So the tree on the left to treat under right? The bridge under itself. I think it really, uh, completes it and just Teoh to end and finalize our composition. I'll just add a little bit more shade under the bridge on will complete the painting. And this is it. I'm quite happy with it. This is the end result. So always left to do is to sign it, make it your own on DATs it. Guys, This concludes our class. Thank you so much for sticking with me on hope you liked it. I'll try to make more in the future. Thanks. 9. Class Project: So, guys, Now for the class project, I really I just want you guys to follow along and be creative. You can do another theme completely, but I really want to see all the steps. So show me how you went from this into this. So the sketching phase and then finally into this. So what? I really want us to see all the three steps it took. What inspired you? How you created the sketching the composition and then you finalize it. Have fun.