Japanese Cell Shading (part 2 of 3): Intermediate Techniques | Yazuki Wolf | Skillshare

Japanese Cell Shading (part 2 of 3): Intermediate Techniques

Yazuki Wolf

Japanese Cell Shading (part 2 of 3): Intermediate Techniques

Yazuki Wolf

Play Speed
  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x
7 Lessons (29m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Establishing Base Colors

    • 3. Adding Gradients

    • 4. Shadows

    • 5. Secondary Shadows and Highlights

    • 6. Gradient Highlights

    • 7. Closing

  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels
  • Beg/Int level
  • Int/Adv level

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.





About This Class

This is the second in a series of classes covering Japanese Cell Shading. 
I'm an artist living and working in Japan, and in these videos I aim to share the knowledge I've gained doing art in various Japanese gaming studios.

Although I stress professional standards in this lesson, it is open for all skill levels. I recommend watching "Basic Japanese Cell Shading" before starting this class.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Yazuki Wolf


Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
  • Exceeded!
  • Yes
  • Somewhat
  • Not really
Reviews Archive

In October 2018, we updated our review system to improve the way we collect feedback. Below are the reviews written before that update.

Your creative journey starts here.

  • Unlimited access to every class
  • Supportive online creative community
  • Learn offline with Skillshare’s app

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.



1. Introduction: Hey, it sounds good, wolf and welcome to welcome to another episode in our Japanese cell shading a Siri's last time we did this basic nudie or basic Japanese coloring method in which we have basic color layer. And we do this all in one layer to be to be good for low spec PC's because it keeps the file aside. Over also file size more manageable, you have less layers to deal with. So for low spec, PC is this is the method that I recommended and then above that we have our shade or shadow one shadow, too, Um, highlight and the Shia gay or brush up layer. We also add blush for a little extra measure. Now, today we're going to be doing a slightly more advanced method For doing this. We're gonna do the, um, nudie Plus, I got a version which is a basic coloring plus Greg radiation layers. And we're also gonna do this as if we have a high spec PC more conducive to how you would it actually work for a professional studio. So we're not going to limit our layer. Our colors toe one layer. We're gonna make each layer each color a different layer, and let's go ahead and show you more or less how we would do that 2. Establishing Base Colors: So starting back from the first step, I'm gonna make a new layer. And, um, this is going to be our color, our basic based color layer, And this is basically point here is to separate the character from the background. So I'm going to select my line, my line work and under used the selection magic selection tool. And I'm gonna select outside of my character, so outside, here and also in between her arm here, that's like that area. So now we have everything outside the character selected. Then I'm gonna go down to the base color there has named this, So it's easy to understand. I often don't name things when I'm working by myself. But if you're working on other people, it's a good idea to keep things named, So there's gonna be our base colors. We'll face color is more like the base at all, but we get to the later so now we're just gonna fill us in with you could feeling pretty much any color you want. This is just sort of like a frame for all the other cars toe to fill it to fill into. But since probably the very back color is going to be the skin tone. I'm gonna go ahead and use a skin told for this color up. So I made a mistake. Hit control shift I to inverse your selection. And then that way you will be able to select the opposite of what you selected. So there you go. Now we have everything filled in. The character is separate from the background. And if you take the the line work away, you see that you still have a very crisp outline of your character. So now put the light work battle back on. So next we want do the other colors we have since what we have here. Let's go ahead and do her blouse color and you could do anybody want I'm just got for the sake of time going. Just got select what we did last last time and letting up here. So I'm gonna make another layer. So this is gonna be a layer, a separate letter from your base color. They're a little bit different than what we did last time, but there's gonna be for her blouse. I'm just going to use the bucket tool to build this in like so do you. The other thing you have to keep in mind when you're feeling this and is that the bucket tool is not always going to be perfect like right here? I don't know if you could see this, but there's an area in between these two lines that isn't filled in all the way. And I believe maybe you could measure the settings to get your bucket to look, to get t fill in everything for the way that you have your drawing done. I never been able to get that to work perfectly for me. So a lot of time I would just kind of fill it in. And I actually go in afterwards with um with a brush and just picks up the other areas that have not filled in all the way just to make sure everything is neat and tidy. I don't think I did that last week, but if I was working professionally on a project, I would definitely make sure that I double check to make sure that everything is crisp and clean. Um, all right, and I went outside there for that's not issue because I could just select there and then do the delete here to get rid of that outside layer. I think we got all our main areas and I just got do the same thing with the with the other , the other colors as well. So once again, we're gonna just another layer and use my bucket tool to fill these in you and I'm go go ahead and polish the recorder so that you could skip time a little bit and you can see the finished project stuff waiting inside and says I can as I fill in every part, every one of these, like small parts here, give us Okay, So now we have all our basic colors are based colors. I guess I should say filled in and given my your base color. You don't want it to be too bright or too dark. And you also don't want to have too much saturation. You want kind of very, very mid range Matt colors and also you see that I did go ahead and ah, paint outside the lines again. So to clean that up again, you could with particularly with some clips, did your paint. I'm not sure this functionalities and you in not YouTube in a photo shop, but I can hold shift and select all of all of the colors out outside my base layer and then hold control. It's like my base layer to select just the base there and then delete outside of that, and it will delete everything that's not within that frame of the base layer on all of the other layers. For photo shop, you may have to do it layer by layer. I don't remember exactly. Okay, there we go. Now we are more based colors and everyone's in separate layer. 3. Adding Gradients: So now for coloring, we're gonna go layer by layer, and we're going to add another layer, and we're gonna use a mask, a mass, a mass killer to make that confined to that layer with Christy O pro. You just click this icon here or also with right click. It should be an option. I think with a photo shop also, you could right click, and you have an option to make it into a mass killer. And now So we want radiation. And so normally, I would start with the start with the bottom layer, which is her. Her skin tone. But I think for this lesson, it'll be easier for to see if I start from the blouse. Since that's where the most color is, someone gonna make a lair here. Must call this, uh, radiation. Um, go ahead and call it radiation shuttle, and I'm going to select the base color of her blouse and we're going to then dark in that up. And you used to do that by moving down into the right, which is going to be making the color darker and also, um, a little bit more saturated. You can also kind of change the color a little bit if you want. Ah, lot times what I do. Well, I'll go into that maybe afterwards. But it's here. Here we go. So now that we selected that new color I there's a couple ways you can do this if you're in . Ah, photo shop 11 Easy way to do it might be to use your radiation fill tool and just kind of drag from the bottom up to the top a little bit. Oh, sorry. I have this wrong sitting there we go. When I was like a okay was selecting my my background color rest on my base color. So just use the gradation tool and dragged from the bottom to the top. And there you go. You have a radiation made for the right side because I assume that's being lit from the the top left. So do something like that, and that's a really simple way to get a nice clean with radiation. What? I tend to do it because I like to have a little bit more control over how the color ends up . Is I actually just in and clips to your paint I use of a pen or a brush or something. I just put like a kind of area, that dark color on the bottom. And then I switched to the, um, water court tool, which is the setting here within the brush, it rushes. And with the work color, I'll make a very large brush and then kind of just spread out evenly. Her? However, I want Teoh, whoever effect I want to have, and it's basically the same thing. But this is if I feel like I have a little bit more control over what's going on with this . So there you go. So now we have a nice radiation there, and we're gonna go ahead and do that with all the other colors as well. All right, so there we have the general great radiation for every color layer. And so you may around the things like like this where you have kind radiation going in areas where you don't really want it. Like I don't really want the gradation going into her chin like that. So then just afterwards, go ahead and use the eraser tool or or the anti color like you know, and eclipse to your pro. You have like your to quality else. I have, like a un color selection so I could go ahead and use that Teoh. Take away areas where you don't really want the the radiation to be interfering. So it's clean this up a little bit a little farther. There you go, and I want her face to be fairly bright. So guys, go ahead and use my home watercolor, too. Kind of give, like a writer area around the center of her face. Just fade out towards the edges. Way to go. All right. Um e I could mess with this a little bit more, but the most part that's good enough. We have kind. Was show Is that for real? Reflect refractive, light, reflective light. I guess you can go to your edges and just kind of a race along the edge like so, and that gives you a nice, reflect, reflective light kind of, ah thing happening because it is a highlight in a way that it's it shows up in like a highlight, but it's not. You're actually not using a highlight color using your base color, so that's perfect for reflective life. Don't want refractive light to be Teoh too bright. That's a mistake. A lot I see a lot people make. Sometimes they they would make that they would make the reflective light highlight here with with an actual highlight color so they would take like, white or something. And go go along here with white. And you know, it's not that bright, reflective, like, not gonna be that right. So you want your effective like to be about the same as your base color. So this is a very simple way to do that. Instead of actually painting a reflective light color, you just delete the radiation and that gives you your reflective light. It's very nice Go around here. Another possible way that this could be done is if you're planning to get rid of your line layer at the end. You could actually just, uh, uhm filling that color into your line there. So mess that base color back into my into my line line of work. So you go something like this and now you get your lines gone completely and you and you have the base color there as a reflective, respective reflective light. And once again, this is more than what I wanted to go to in this video. So I will show you more specifically how to do that in future video. But just a sneak peek that that's how you could kind of get rid of your get rid of your your line and at the same time, established. You're reflective light and the top, maybe you just use the regular color but anyways doesn't up. That's not this episode to lead that. Go away. Go back. Okay. Anyways, um, there's our basic radiation, You know, I might I kind of want to get rid of a little bit of the edges for the for the hair as well . Can we get more reflective light stuff going on there as well? So good. Do something like that. Reflectively is gonna be the opposite side of where the lights coming from. So should be on this left side, actually. Bottom left sides. I'm imagining the light coming from the top top left, so I mean, the bottom right is the area where I'm making the reflective light coming there we go to do you want to do? That's whatever. Where am I seeing Spider Man? Who knows? All right, like I've gone a long time with this. So you get you get the idea how you kind of clean it up. It's to kind of make it pop a little bit more, Especially if I fight. If I made some reflective light here that would make this pop a lot more You the bangs of her hair. Yeah, that does kind of hope. 4. Shadows: But anyways, um, don't you have radiation? The next thing is the same as our last episode. Basically, you just go through and add another layer. And this is guarantee you're gonna put this above the radiation there, and this is gonna be the shadow shadow one layer and says we did this last week. I am going to actually just steal it from last week and actually, once again toe to show you to begin with, I may use the her blouse to be a little bit more clear, easy to see. And I want my shadow to be a little bit darker than than my gradations. And it's like my creation and then bring that down just a little bit and used the bucket tool to fill in my selection from last week. So there you go. Now we have our shadows that we had from last week. Um, to do this manually, Um, you just look at my the last video to kind of get an idea how I did that manually. But the other thing to keep in mind is that we're doing radiation, maybe depend on your project, but so this one has very sharp edges teas to the shadows, and that is pretty standard for a lot of illustrations. And you just have the kind of radiation there underneath it to give the the idea of shading . But they may actually want you to shade the shadows to Grady ate the shadows as well. It may not want this the sharp edges. And there's a couple things you could do. Their one is Go ahead and clear this clear with this one. Um, one thing you can do is you can use your radiation tool again and actually pulling radiation into here as well. So something like something like that, Right. So I think I did too much creation there. There you go. So now we have a slight radiation in our in our ships. Shadows as well. Everything could do is you could actually, if you were to do this one by one, you could take your You're a selection tool. And this is something I've seen a lot of. Ah, Japanese illustrators do. I'm not particularly good at it because I had come from a traditional painting background. So I'm not regular. This like I mechanical like planning your shadow ahead of time type of thing. But so you can just select the area that you want your shadow to be something like that, right? And you know, actually, I want this area here to be shadows. Well, may put like shadows now something like something that and then you use your gration tool to cool the shadow into that. So you see how that kind of worked. So I create a shadow there. It's not perfect, but I'm not taking my time If I take my time to take a whole hunger, but yeah, and then you could come here and say, Okay, I want a shadow underneath here and use our selection tool again And the UK select the area of your shadow like so, and use your tool again from here. Drag it out and you just do that shadowed by shadow and create your grated shadows. I don't have the I don't are not particularly good at that method. But just so you know, that's another method that you can do. Um, other thing is, say, let me take the shadows that I have it from last week again going back to the layer that I made last week so the recorders can getting in my way of selecting layers. Present us. All right. So I selected my letter from last week again. And let's go ahead. Just put, uh, a dark color and there that's a little too dark public that's getting darker control. Is that Yes. Great. And so the other things you could do is you got to start with your like this and what I tend to do is I once again use up clip studio. And I use Thea, um, watercolor brush. And are you going here manually and just kind of get a feel good? And I like this myth of the best for myself. Just because I feel like it gives me the most control my kind of experimental shuttle while I'm making it and kind of see what I like to be like, Yes, I kind of like I want, like, the top here to kind of blend out. But then I want the bottom to be a Chris bad. So use my razor to kind of do that, you know? Then maybe I want to take away from the edge. So I a race a little bit off the edge, you know? And it is just a very controlled way, Teoh, to do things for me. Another thing you could do is since you have is already here, you can use your filters up here in Filter. We have Takashi because she got God's, because she and that's just mix a blend. I'm sorry in Japanese, because she would be blur. I guess I'm not thinking I think is blur. And so now we have Ah, everything blurred out. And the only issue with that is that sometimes you're gonna have it blur into areas we really didn't want to blur into, like, you see here I was kind blurring outside the line there. So you just want go in afterwards and clean it up again? Say okay. I don't want I don't want you to blur outside of this line. So I'm gonna erase the stuff outside that line. Yeah. Anyways, that's just a way you can get, like, a softer edge to your to your shadows. I'm not gonna worry about that too much for this for this illustration. I think I was gonna keep the hard shadows for now, huh? Yeah. I don't have time to do all this. I'm just gonna keep the hard shadows for right now. But if you depend on your project, you may have to smooth them out. Like like that as well. 5. Secondary Shadows and Highlights: All right. So just put my heart shuttles back. And so once again, just gonna do that same thing. Well, actually, this do 11 color the time. So now we have our shadow. One next thing, Why have our shadow to once again? I'm just gonna take that from my ride last week. And shadow to is gonna be a little bit darker than shadowed one. Right? So select this and go a little bit darker and fill that in. There we go. So that we ever shadow to there and then after show to we want to have another layer for what was the next one? Uh, highlights, Right. So to do by light one. And once again, I'm just gonna steal that from last week. There you go. At highlight is going to be a little bit brighter than your base color taking based coloring. I moved that push that a little bit brighter. I'm calling Hollywood. I think this is just our highlight from last time. That's a little That's wait. I have a pain in your style. That's probably too bright. So I'm just got lower the color, the intensity of that. Not intensity. The opacity of that layer to what I like. Maybe something like that would be okay. All right. And then the last thing we had from last time was that she og a layer or the brush up player, but that can actually kind of go over everything. So I'm going to take the brush up there and do that afterwards. So for right now, we just want to do what we just did. A shadow one shadow to in the highlight to all the the other layers as well. So I'm gonna polish the video and go ahead and do that. All right? There are just added the shadows and highlights to all the other colors. And you could see on my right hand side that I have a separate Delaire for each one. So you see, here we have the base color here with the radiation and a shadow One shadow, too. And I also added the blush from less from last video to her face. And we have the highlight, right? And it just repeats for every color. So with the actually have the blouse, radiation and shadow one highlights. You get the idea. So it is every color. So you have all these layers. That's why this for high spec PCs, I don't nowadays. Most pieces of pride handle this. Back when I was in school, they you had some PC's, would have trouble with something of this male heirs, but nowadays provide not as big of a deal as it used to be. 6. Gradient Highlights: the only other thing. So this is with one radiation, and so this could be a completely finished piece. But you may also have certain projects where they might wanna have ah, highlight graduate radiation as well. And for that it's Ah, go back into the to the blouse. I suppose we're gonna add another layer, Move this up to the top above the highlight. And you probably gonna want either us either to make that layer a stream lair or, um, what is this in English? I don't know. Uh, like a Yaqui Huckle. Japanese. It's a hot cold there. I'm not sure what, That being English crap? I don't know. Well, I guess screen there would be Okay, you can experiment to see what else works, but so let's go ahead and take. Probably used to try out different things trying the base color or the or the highlight color wherever you want. I think that the highlight might be a little too strong, so I'm gonna take the base color, and I'm going to paint over with with a very soft brush or, in my case, the watercolor brush and just kind of at an area here and I'm using this as a screen. They're so I mean, I'm coloring with the base color. So really, what? I'm coloring. It looks like this. But when you turn into a screen layer, it kind of ah, lightens it up. So I'm just gonna put, like, areas here that I want to have, Um, a lighter color showing up right. And then I'm going to go ahead and smooth that out, like so. And this is kind of similar to what you do but be with your original radiation layer in that initially you're gonna just have, like, a a fairly overall radiation, like so And then you probably want come in afterwards and clean up areas that you that you didn't want to seep into, like maybe I didn't want to come underneath year. So get rid of that. Everyone else was like a faster way to do that without having to clean up like go ahead and feel for you, Let me know. But yeah, that s o. That was with with a stream layer screen layer gives a pretty soft effect. And I think lately people, at least a worker here in Japan, is kind of liking the softer effect more. But sometimes you also might want to use the haka layer, which I'm not sure what is going to be in English. I apologize for that. If it's in your interest to do approach like to two selections underneath screen. And so now this one, as you can see, it, gives a much more radiant kind of feel to it. Like you see, if you consider this a screen and this hot so screen Huckle and so this one depend on the project. They may want this kind of vibrant cup type of coloring. And I kind of like this, you know? I don't know. I don't some of some of the project they may not want this, but for me, I kind of like this kind of vibrant color, especially. You're doing something metallic like like gold or like a silver or something. Having that sort of vibrancy to color is really nice. And the fact that I can't really get very well without using that type of color layer. So there we go. So that was without that was the original. It all this is with it. So you see how that kind of, but it brings it up to like another another level again. So you go from here and, like, kind pushes. It pushes a little bit more than more and every type of coloring there, the just going to keep pushing it a little bit more. So it's not a question of when is it's officially done so much as when how much cost you want to to put into this particular illustration. Cost basic cost performance. And, uh, once again you could go ahead and do this to all the other layers as well. So let's see what we can come up with. 7. Closing: especially for these areas where you want more saturation. It helps to have another under their here to kind of bring up the saturation, especially for, like, this this ribbon, you know, without the river. It's kind of kind of doll looking, but with saturation. Okay, ads a little bit more. That punch to it, I suppose. With the hair, we could definitely do some kind cool things here. So I have to turn into a uncle there. Yeah, especially You go over there. Your highlight there. Get that really nice kind of like radio radiating highlight, which is pretty cool. Don't overdo it too much. Those guys calm it down a little bit, but yes, that's from their into their just gives you that extra punch. And once again, these are just your basic steps. If you really want to spend more time on it, of course, you go in after you could go in, like do your own like, what's the word? Do detailed parts as well, like get like little strands and stuff. But once again, it's all about how much time you want to spend with this one illustration. Gently. When you work professionally here, they're gonna want you to finish illustration like a day or two. So you're not gonna have, like, a whole week to do illustration very often that you're doing, like a full on like background and everything, but so I could never think it. It's, um probably it's not too hard to do professional style. A professional quality illustration, I guess Productions of quality prevent, like a professional illustrator, maybe a bit or difficulty like productions. Quality is not too difficult difficulties in doing it fast enough to be to be, uh, um, productive at all to be part of the workflow. This the last one is the eyes. I was probably a pretty nice difference to adding this. Let's see mellis kind acting weird. But now you go give it a little bit of a puncher on the middle there, and I'm going to get rid of the take it away from the peoples. Of course, go hospital. So there to there It's a little too strong, in my opinion. So I'm gonna tone it down a bit by lowering the capacity of the layer. Yes, and like, that's why. Good off. All right. So that was a lot of stuff that I can just cram packed into this in this episode. Yep. So that's all for this week until next time you're secure.