Digital Illustration: Creating Beautiful Eyes | Sydney H. | Skillshare

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Digital Illustration: Creating Beautiful Eyes

teacher avatar Sydney H., Digital 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

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Anatomy of the Eye


    • 3.

      The Eye and Personality


    • 4.

      Adding Color


    • 5.



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About This Class

In this class, we will focus on painting several different eye shapes that your characters may have. We’ll go over personality of each eye and how to create different styles. Then we’ll finish it off by coloring the eyes and show different ways to paint the iris.

For this class it will require you to have a graphics tablet and a basic knowledge of drawing since we will focus primarily on shading and form. I will use Clip Studio Paint but you are welcome to use a drawing software of your choice!

Meet Your Teacher

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Sydney H.

Digital Illustrator



A freelance artist creating artwork that strives to engage and generate pieces that everyone can enjoy. I love exploring multiple fields of the art some of which is digital, traditional, design! I'm highly influenced by old illustrators (like J.C Leyendecker), anime, and video games.


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Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction: Hi, my name is Sydney and I've been creating exclusively character art for my entire career for awhile. Now, I'm here to help you with the most important part of your character design. Eyes. You want the eyes to stand out and reveal the personality of your character. One long line can best all up, but don't worry, I'm here to show you a couple of steps, so make sure that you nailed this. Every time. In this class we will focus on painting several eye shapes that your characters may have. We'll go over the personality of each eye and how to create different styles. Then we'll finish it by coloring the eyes and show different ways of painting the iris. For this class, it will require you to have a graphics tablet and the basic knowledge of drawing, as we will be focusing primarily on form and shading. I will be using Clip Studio Paint. You're welcome to use any drawing software of your choice. Now let's dive in. 2. Anatomy of the Eye: Now there's a lot you need to know about the eye before you can start drawing it. Just because we're joining and animate I doesn't mean that it isn't based on reality itself. Look at this picture of the eyeball. These are the things you should know when drawing the I don't let it intimidate. You were only going to focus on the most important parts of the eye to get started. First, you have the eyelid, which goes above the eye, or the white of the eye. The tear duct, thorax, Volcker uncle, also known as the pink and eye, the iris and the pupil. These parts make up the entire eye which we will be drawing. Now let's you know what parts you'll be drawing. Let's start by drawing the eye itself. 3. The Eye and Personality: Before we look at different shapes of the enemy I can be in, Let's look at real-life images. As you see here, the I can take many forms to convey the personality of the person. Take number one, for example, with how it's formed along with the makeup that accompanies it. It looks seductive. Or number two is rounder to give a software and younger feel. Just by drawing the outline of each eye, you can tell that they were all composed of different shapes. Let's focus on the teardrop, which is what I would consider the default, ie. If you notice here I'm drawing the upper eyelid first. This is important. So you give yourself a starting place for the eye. From there I'll draw the bottom eyelid. This is where I usually add in some extra lines underneath the eye. It's a personal preference, but I've noticed that helps really set the eye in place. Which is important because we don't want the eye to just be sitting on top of the face. Next, I'll draw the bottom eyelashes, which I will draw in a crescent fashion around the bottom of the eye. But this gives me the framework for the actual eyelashes, which we will fill in here. Then I add in the top lashes. As you'll see as I draw them, I'm going below the eyelid a bit and as whooping the stroke upwards to create the lash. And with that the eye is complete after I add in the iris and the eyebrow real quick. This is how I normally draw eyes from my characters. Now I'm going to go over some different shapes as you can draw the eye in. I would consider that I just drew it the default, I have a few different shapes you can draw. First we have the oval, circle, triangle, triangle to chi and chi two. This is what it would look like with the drawing methods that we just applied before. Just like I mentioned before, the eyes can really make the personality of your character. The oval looks innocent. Circle looks bubbly. Triangle looks tired. Triangle to look sultry. Looks mischievous, and the chi two looks evil. The shapes here just if you can draw the eyes and there's no limit to how creative you can get with this. 4. Adding Color: Okay, now that we figured out the shapes of the eyes is time to add color. Here I'm going to add a little bit more detail to the eye abroad just so it suits the style more. To start off, we always start by adding the base color of the skin, light tan color. Then we add an off white for the Celera. You never want to go completely white for this, since our eyes are more naturally tended towards an off-white and photographs Covalent coloring in the iris and the eyebrow here to finish off the base colors made a mistake here by making the IRS and the same layer as the skin and the sclera. Quick adjustment here. Now it's tend to work on the iris. I created an extra layer above virus and clip mask it to the layer below it. This is where I put the first shade of the iris down. The next thing I do is take the complimentary color of the iris and paint the area and the pupil with an airbrush, adding a complimentary color into the eye like this, live and die. And I'll keeping a silver recognizable blue. Not take that complimentary color and darker for the pupil. Adding a lighter shade inside of the pupil is simply a stylistic choice, but I think it adds a lot to the eye. Next, take this darker shade of the complimentary color and add some lines around top half of the iris. This adds another shade to the iris that it didn't have before. Then we wanted to take the base color and add some lines in the middle of the iris. And to top it off, we wanted to make it even lighter shade of blue and make the lines near the bottom of the iris. That way we have an array of sheets of an iris. I'm going through and fixing some mistakes that I made while painting that I like the shape inside the people and the direction of little darker lines. To finish the pupil, I add the highlight or the eyes make it stand out. Now it's time for me to shade and define the rest of the I. Start by switching the line art to multiply any recoloring it. This is important to do if you want the colors to blend well. The next thing I do is to find the bottom eyelashes. We do that by color picking the darkest value on the eyelid and tracing the triangle shapes that are formed. From there. We work on the shadows around the eye by creating an additional layer and setting it to multiply. Remember to use desaturated violet to start off with. We will be sharing this into a different color later. To share it around the eye, I personally use this brush called a bog pen. I find it in grades, the colors well, I will add it in the downloads for this class. Once you finish the shadows of the eye, I want you to UPC lock the layer and recolor the shadows to fit the parts that they are on, respectively. Just like adding a light blue for the eye and then the orange for the skin. After you do this, you will notice them areas needs some darkening. I will add another layer of multiply with a desaturated purple. I added an uncle and last, since I forgot about it before. Data a little bit more blending to the eye and merge the layers down and blur on the iris and the bottom of the eye. And there is the rendered I. Now not all eyes have to look like this. For example, I'm going to take a couple of steps back and make a completely new Iris to show you. This is actually how I used to paint my iris and my older work would use multiply layers to add in the second shape of the pupil. I always enjoyed adding in an extra line around the pupil to add a little definition to the eye. Now the thing that I do differently from the other eyes that I added in an ad layer that adds highlights instead of manually picking the colors, this really brightens up the eye, it makes its time. But remember when you use the Add Layer Mode, use a darker color or the shine will be too intense. Let's not forget about the eye shine and little color dodge to accident it. Looking back on both styles, I honestly prefer the look of my old style over the new one. In this case, it looks much brighter and look at the new style. So it has its own charm to it. But this just shows how trying out different iris styles can change how your character looks. 5. Conclusion: Now that we've learned how to draw the eye, looked at different shapes to draw the eye in, and how to color the eye is time for you to try it yourself. For your assignment, I want you to draw your very own eye. And one of the two styles that I demonstrated. If you're feeling particularly adventurous, you can create your very own iris style and have fun with it. Thank you very much for checking out this class and be sure to take a look at my other classes. As you may find something that you are particularly interested in. Have a good one.