Coloring With Photoshop: From Sketch to Fully Colored Illustration | Art with Mr. Noel | Skillshare

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Coloring With Photoshop: From Sketch to Fully Colored Illustration

teacher avatar Art with Mr. Noel, Keep on Creating!

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

    • 1.

      Class Preview


    • 2.

      Image Preparation


    • 3.

      Transfer Drawing


    • 4.

      Base Colors


    • 5.

      Shadows and Highlights


    • 6.

      Colored Outlines


    • 7.

      Inserting New Drawings


    • 8.

      Extra Elements


    • 9.

      Adding a Background Image


    • 10.

      Finishing Up


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About This Class

Discover how to transform your original pencil drawings into digitally colored works of art with Photoshop!  

This course is perfect for any artist interested in combining traditional and digital workflows.  All skill levels are encouraged to check it out!  By the end you will have the knowledge and confidence to create polished and professional digital works of art that retain the energy and flow of your original drawings.

The project consists of uploading an original drawing or using one that I have provided, applying colored outlines, shadows and highlights, and a background image.

If you are ready to learn a new skill . . . let’s get started!


Meet Your Teacher

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Art with Mr. Noel

Keep on Creating!


About the instructor:

Hello Art Friends!

My passion is animation and I love to draw! While I have pursued computer animation I am finding a renewed passion for drawing and other physical art.

Check out my drawing tutorials on YouTube : Draw with NONU

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1. Class Preview: Hi, everyone. I'm no I'm a computer animator and freelance artist. And in this class, I show you how to take a simple black and white sketch and transform it into a fully colored illustration. Using for the benefit of my technique is you don't need to redraw trace or vector rising. Original drawing has put together a quick preview of the class. Let's take a look. - Well , that's more accurate than I'd like to admit. This is a simple and straightforward class. It offers a lot for beginners and even experienced traditional illustrators who are looking to color their art in the integrity of the line and take advantage of the versatility of. By the end, students will upload their work to the class project. They'll either use an original sketch of their own or one that I've provided for them. A completed project includes using color color outlines, shadows and highlights, handing back if you're ready to learn a new skill. That's good. Starting 2. Image Preparation: we'll begin by creating are drawing and scanning it into the computer. For this tutorial, I'm using a drawing of a dog dancing meeting. I've provided this image along with others inspired by the previous videos. Montage files are attached in the project description. If you want to draw the dancing dog on your own, I uploaded a drawing tutorial onto my YouTube channel. The link is in the description. After finalizing your design, use a scanner to capture the drawing and import it into your computer. Make sure to align the paper along the appropriate edges to avoid cutting off any part of your drawing. The scanner settings to be set to either color or grey skin, but I leave it set to color to skip a step in. Photo from My scanner has a rather small glass surface, so I usually limit my paper size to 8.5 by 11 which is a regular letter sized sheet of paper. The most important aspect to ensure a quality scan is to set the resolution to 300 DP I or dots per inch. This will allow you to a larger image without a noticeable loss in quality and it's sufficient for sending images out to print with a 300 DP I resolution. The scan will take a little longer than usual. I've sped up the Progress Bar for this example with the file image now scan Save Goto file open. Locate your images folder. Select your image and click open in a single layer will be created in the layers panel. A small lock appears next to the layer to unlock the image. Double click the layer and hit OK. This will need to be done any time. A new images opened for the first time, Renamed the layer by double clicking the text box indicate that it is the original untouched image. We will be making many changes to the drawing, so it is a good idea to stay organized. Early on. The scan picked up all of my pencil smudges and mistakes, and I can reveal some by going to image adjustments, brightness and contrast. Drag the sliders down and you'll see that we have some cleaning up to do before coloring hit way. Don't need the darker image to clean it up. Select the lasso tool carefully go around your character or object you don't need to get very close to the line art once the selection is complete, inverted by selecting shift control I on the keyboard. Now everything around the outside of the dog is selected. Grab your eraser tool and begin wiping away at the selection or hit delete on the keyboard de Select with Control D, as in dog on the keyboard, or go to select D Select on the menu bar. She was a soft edged eraser and get a little closer to the edges of the line drawing. Or you can use a paintbrush tool to paint pure white anywhere. The drawing is too dirty. As I clean up the drawing, you can see that I use a navigator to quickly move around my drawing and zoom in or out. This is one of my favorite tools and photoshopped amongst money. If you make a mistake, you can always go to edit, undo or select all control Z on the keyboard to undo when cleaning up your drawing. The goal is to get rid of any markings that will be distracting to the viewer, but you want to be careful not to get rid of any lines that show the energy of your drawing or clean it up too much, unless that is your ultimate goal. Okay, once you're happy with the cleanup, save your photo shop. Filed in an easy to locate folder, probably in the same folder as your original drawing. Name it appropriately and click OK before moving on to the next step. If you scanned your drawing in grayscale, you can tell Photoshopped that you want to work with color by going to image mode. RGB Color or CME like you will work an RGB if your work will be primarily seen on a computer screen and you'll work and see him like a if you're going to send your workout to print before moving on to the next phase of the project, I want to quickly go over the concept of layers on how to use them. Imagine that each layer is a piece of paper or a clear sheet of acid Tate that get stacked on top of each other. The layer closest to the audience is placed on the top of the pile, just like you can rearrange the order of sheets of paper. You can rearrange layers by dragging them above or below other layers. By having elements of a drawing on different layers, such as a background, middle ground object and foreground image, you can make adjustments toe one layer without affecting the other layers. Next, we'll transfer your drawing onto a new layer that will preserve all of the details but eliminate the background complete, allowing for a fully customizable image. 3. Transfer Drawing: now that we've cleaned up our main drawing by getting rid of any white or unnecessary marks that we don't want, we're ready to transfer our image over to an empty, clear layer, the concept of transferring your drawing toe a nu clear layer. It's similar to transferring the image of a coin by rubbing graphite over a clean sheet of paper. If you rub the pencil too many times over the coin, the image will fill with graphite and get too dark. The same is true. When transferring an image in a photo shop, I'll walk you through the next steps to make sure the transfer goes smoothly with your drawing now cleaned up, go to the layers panel and create a new empty layer and name it clean outlines. Create another empty layer in name it background color. BG is short for background. Click and drag the layer under your clean outlines layer with your background layer Selected. Use the paint book a tool to fill the layer with a solid color. At this point in the process, I recommend a white or gray color. Now the clean outlines will appear over the background. Now we have all the layer set up properly. Hide the background by clicking the I and select the clean outlines layer. Since it is where we'll be transferring the image to, there are two more tabs next to the layers tab one is channels and the other is PATH will be using the channels tab toe. Isolate the pencil lines from the paper background. If you are in RGB mode, you will see four options in the channel box and you'll see five options. If you are in C M. Y. Came in either scenario. We will hit control or command on the keyboard and click on the first option RGB or CME. Like so hit control. RGB. You should see a marquee selection around the image, which to me looks like little marching ends. We actually have everything except the line selected. So to flip this election or inverted hit shift control, I select your brush tool and make sure it's a solid brush without a feather edge around it . Pick a darker color in your swatches. Make sure the empty, clean outlines layer is currently selected and turn on your background layer. Expand your brush and swipe across the image without unq looking your mouth, I recommend one or two solid swipes. Tow. Avoid flooding the selection, which will make the image to dark just like in the coin. Example. If we turn off the background layer and the original Scan Lear, you can see that the clean outlines layer has a transparent background while retaining the original pencil marks. This is the key to creating clean images that can later be manipulated or adjusted anyway. You can imagine with the background now transparent, we can add a new layer under the outlines and paint without affecting or erasing the lines . The color scribbles are just, in example, so I'll delete them. I want to show you what will happen if you do not invert the selection when transferring. So after control, clicking the RGB layer and creating a layer for the image transfer. When I swiped the mouse across the screen, everything except the lines gets filled. And while that may have some practical application, it's not what we need for this project. Let's go ahead and delete that example, all right, we're done transferring the drawing onto a clean layered with a transparent background. This leads us to the next step, which is adding solid blocks of color underneath the drawing 4. Base Colors: Now we're ready to start bringing our illustration to life with color. The first thing I want to do is change the main background color from white to a great color. This is a trick I learned from Animator Aaron, please. He explains that the gray background allows us to see white and black colors more accurately than if you had a pure white or black background with the background now filled . Create a brand new layer. You'll use this layer for the area of the drawing. You're gonna be coloring first. In this example, I want to color the main body. Make sure to name the layers appropriately to stay organized When selecting a color. I usually go to the swatches and pick a base color that is similar to what I have in mind. And then I move over to the color selector and find, too. In the selection for the golden retriever, I pick a base color of yellow, and I adjusted a little closer toe orange or brown. Since we're just blocking the base colors in, select a solid brush without a feather around the edges and keep the opacity and fill at 100 clean outlines layer will not be affected as long as it is above the color image layer and not currently selected. You can start coloring just like you wouldn't a coloring book only this time you don't have to worry about going outside the lines. Since the colors and the lines are separate elements, you can always use the eraser tool to clean up any mistakes. When using the eraser, I recommend using a solid brush without a feather around the edge. You'll find the layers are your friend and Photoshopped, and as long as everything is organized, they will go a long way to making your illustration clean and easy to adjust with the main body. Now colored make a new layer above it for any parts that are seeing above the for. In this case, I'm painting the I make the color selection and adjusted until you're satisfied. I don't create a new layer for the people because I'm comfortable working on the same layer . But if I was to add more detail, such as a pattern on the iris and reflections, it would be beneficial to separate it from the white of the eye once again when working with the layers. The closer an object is to the viewer, the higher it will be on the layer pile. I is above the for, and if you drag it behind the main body layer, it will be covered for the mouth. I like to work in multiple layers with the inside of the mouth separate from the teeth and the tongue easy guide to determine when to create a new layer is to keep Areas there require very different colors separate from each other. The bow will actually be placed behind the main body color while the caller is placed above . The for skirt has three main layers, and I begin coloring the lowest without worrying about affecting the upper two. You'll see that once I fill in the second and first layers that they hide any overruns. I should have created a separate layer for the rim of each skirt. Since I didn't, I'll have to be more careful when I get to the shadow and highlight phase of the project. At this point elect, you learn by watching as I fill in the rest of the colors. Patience is important when creating art, so don't get frustrated If you make a mistake, remember Old Control Z is your friend. Plus, you learn faster by making mistakes. That being said, I'm still learning something new every day. Next we'll make your drawing pop with shadows and highlights. 5. Shadows and Highlights: with our base colors established, we could start adding shadows, highlights and textures. Let's get started. As you prepare to add your highlights and shadows, it might benefit you to create a visual reminder of where the light is coming from. You can create a new empty layer for the highlights, but I'm going to work directly on top of the base colors. Select the main body layer and select the lock transparent pixels. But this will allow you to Onley paint on top of what has already been painted in that specific layer. That means that with the lock turned on, I will only affect the yellow for on the main body layer. Now you can select any brush style that you want. But if you are new to photo shop, I recommend the soft edged brush with feather, and I also recommend lowering the opacity to about 40 or 30%. Sample your main color with the eyedropper tool. You will see that the color changes in the foreground color box. Grab the color and select a brighter version of it. As I paint, you'll see that the brush can run off the edge without spilling paint onto the background or other layers. If I turn off the transparency lock, you'll see that the color is now free to go wherever it wants. Build up your color slowly and don't worry about being too precise at this point. If I hide the Clean Line Lear, you'll see how our main colors look. It's a pretty cool visual, and if you decide to experiment, try making an image without any outlines. It's a process that I want to try myself. I hid the outlines to sample a clean reference of the main color. I'm going to adjust it and create my shadow. Once again. Think about the source of the light and its direction. Another option to create shadows and highlights is to use the dodge and burn tools. Burn Tool does just what its name suggests. It makes the color look darker or burn. But it is also a tool I use sparingly because I like to have more control over the final coat. Dodge Tool does the opposite, and Brian's your color up. Once again. The undo button is your friend, and I use it plenty. Sometimes I like to zoom out to see how the colors are meshing together and to see if the image is a whole is working with the highlights, and shadows added, you can experiment with other brushes to add texture to the colors. Another way to add shadows to the image is by creating a new empty layer and setting the blending boat to multiply. In this example, I chose a cooler, colder. There's no lock on the layer, so I tried to stay in the lines. - Ultimately , I didn't like the look so you won't see the blue in the final piece. - Once you're happy with your highlights, shadows and textures save the file. We're now ready to move on to the next phase, which will really showcase the quality of your drawing and push it to a whole new visual level. 6. Colored Outlines: ATTN. This point, we're gonna put the cherry on top of our drawing by coloring in her outlines with our drawing. Select the clean outlines layer and select the lock transparency, but watches. We quickly change the color of the outline before moving any further. Create a folder to group all of the color layers together. This will help us avoid clutter and keep everything organized. Select the first layer. Hold the shift button on your keyboard and don't let go. Scroll down to the last color layer and click. Now all of your color layers are selected. Let go of shift to click drag and drop the layers into your folder group. Click the little triangle to close the folder. Going back to the outlines layer. Select a color for the drawing. I like to fill the outline completely with the most dominant color and then begin coloring the individual areas on top of it. Since the individual components are on one layer, you'll have to be more precise in your coloring. But the process of making corrections is relatively easy. Just paint over your mistakes. - If you find a line or marking that you want to race, make sure to de select the transparency lock, or it will just color the line. The same is your set background color. Weird. I know when you're done, don't forget to save your files. In the next lesson, I show you how to add more drawings and elements to your file. 7. Inserting New Drawings: Well, now you know how to create one character in photo shop. But what if you want to add somebody else or another object to the drawing? That's what we'll cover in this next section. Let's take a look at where we were and how the small adjustments we've made have affected the quality of our illustration. Pretty cool, right? Let's say we want to add another element or drawing toe our project. Go to file open, select your desired file and click open. A new tab will appear at the top of photo shop next to your first drawing. Use the move tool by clicking on the image and holding the mouse down as you drag the image to your first project tab on the top drag and don't release the left mouse button until you see a plus sign next to the move to now the images thrown amongst your layers, just like in the beginning of this tutorial named the Layer. I want to keep the dog drawing completely separate from the pant so I'll make a master folder for all of the dog drawing elements. Canvas is now too small for both images. You can change this by going to image campus eyes. There are a few measurements standards, but I'm using inches. The box with arrows lets you determine where your original drawings will be placed. Once the canvas opens up and expands, I want my drawings to stay on the middle right hand side, you'll need to refill the background layer with the paint bucket tool that's easy enough to do. Move your new drawing into position and prepare the document for clean outline. Hide your first drawing to avoid selecting its pixels when you transfer the image. - If you'd like to make an adjustment to your image, select the layer goto edit, transform and you'll see a few options. In this case, I want to scale the dog and make it a little bit smaller to fit in with the rest of the image, click shift on the keyboard and drag the image so that it scales down. Even as I color the panda, you'll notice that I don't use pure black or white and try to keep the colors complimentary . - His panda drawing has a lot of extra pencil marks and mistakes, so cleanup was required. But the eraser Okay, now that we have more elements in the same project, we can save the file 8. Extra Elements: what If you want to add an element, make a photographed object first. Open the file and unlocking for editing by double clicking the layer it. Okay, I like to duplicate the images by right clicking and selecting duplicate player. Name it so we know it's a copy. That way, if I mess up really bad on the edited layer, I'll have the untouched original to fall back on before moving the image over to the drawing project. I want to create a transparent background. Photo shop has a magic wand tool that it's good for selecting big chunks of similar colors but should not be relied on for more detailed green with your background elements. Selected hit Delete on the keyboard to give you a head start in cleaning of the image, you can use the eraser tool to clean up the drawing more. But since this is a blocky object, I'll be using the polygon a last one use. You'll know when the selection is complete. When a circle appears next to the last it shift control by toe. Invert the selection it delete on the keyboard. The object is now clean and free to move around. Dragon drop it into the appropriate project on make any adjustments necessary. In this case, I want the glass toe. Have a transparency, so I'll have to perform surgery by selecting the glass, cutting it and pasting it into its own layer. Unfortunately, it paste away from the original position. This all have to move back, but the glass layer selected I can adjust the opacity separate when I'm happy with the result will merge with two elements and save the file. Our next step is to add a background image. 9. Adding a Background Image: now to complete our illustration. Let's add a background image when you open your background image, it will create a new tab at the top of the page. Click drag and drop your image to the original file. Move the new layer behind your drawn elements. No rearranged to your heart's desire. The benefit of using photo shopped for your illustrations is that it is extremely versatile and allows for so many variations and adjustments of your work. You can scale your image is up or down with horizontally or vertically. Just brightness and contrast color. Apply effects such as blurring and use the library of brushes for different textures. - Next , we'll go over the class project to solidify your new skills. 10. Finishing Up: all right now it's time for you to have some fun by creating your own project and sharing it on the Skill Share Project Gallery, I challenge you to create a fully colored illustration from either your own skin artwork or from the attached images that I provided. Feel free to modify my drawings or combine them with your own designs for the project. Completed illustration includes five elements. First is at least one drawing of either a character or not. The second element is a flat fill color. Third is adding highlights and shadows for color outlines. Five at a background image as an added challenge. User illustration. To present a narrative in a single image. When you're finished, remember to post your final image along with any production drawings in the Skill Share Project gallery. Also, I urge you to show support for your fellow artists by leaving comments and constructive criticism in the project gallery. I look forward to seeing what you come up with, and I hope you found value in this tutorial. You can connect with me through Instagram or Twitter and have a YouTube channel with simple drawing tutorials. If you need some inspiration for the project. Thanks for watching, everyone. Hope you had a good time and you learn a skill or two. Remember, Keep on creating. See you soon.