Adding Textures to Illustrations - Skillshare
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Adding Textures to Illustrations

Adding Textures to Illustrations

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Dan Matutina

Dan Matutina

Illustrator and Communication Designer

My illustration work has always been defined by the shapes, colors and textures I use. This tutorial will focus on the on how I apply textures to my illustration work. 

A sample of my work. This was for Qualcomm's Formula E Championship poster series.

Below is the step-by-step guide on how I use textures in my illustration work. I made this particular illustration for the Philippine Aeropress Championship.

1. Finalize the untextured illustrations.

Since I mainly work with shapes, I start my illustration work on a vector-drawing software like Adobe Illustrator. I prefer working on AI first because the layers and elements are easier to manage. I also work with my own set of color swatches to make my illustrations consistent. Once I'm done with the vectors, I import (or copy-paste) them to Adobe Photoshop.

2. Apply textured layer

Once all the vector illustrations are in Photoshop, I put a texture overlay on top of the illustration. I "create" my own texture overlays by scanning textured and airbrushed papers, boards, etc. It’s best to desaturate (Command/Control+ U) the texture so it doesn’t change the hue/tone of the base illustration. The Photoshop layer effect / blending mode I use is either "Overlay" or "Soft Light".

To know more about making textures, you can go to this video I made.

3. Apply color overlays

I also apply a color overlay to my illustrations to give it a certain mood and tone. There's no definitive tutorial in making these color overlays. It's best to experiment with different color combinations.

4. Creating shadows & highlights

To create shadows and highlights on the illustration, I duplicate the layer and select Multiply as the blend mode over the previous layer. I also desaturate the duplicate layer a bit to create a darker image.

I then slowly "reduce" the multiplied layer with textured brushes. Using my own brushes (and downloaded ones), I then mask out the layer to produce some highlights. It’s basically erasing parts of the “multiplied” layer.  

Repeat the highlight & shadow creation process  as needed.

6. Add additional set of brush effects or textures

Once you're done. Feel free to add brush spatters, strokes and wood textures on the illustration.

The final illustration

You can now create a stylized illustration with textures! Enjoy! :)

Dan Matutina

Illustrator and Communication Designer

I'm Dan Matutina, a designer and illustrator based in the Philippines. I love mixing handmade & digital, clean & dirty, old & modern aesthetics. I combine colors with different textures & shapes to tell a story.I was recently awarded the Art Directors Club Young Guns Award for 2013 (Year 11). I am the co-founder of Plus63 Design Co., a design studio that creates brand identities, strategize communications, design and illustrate for print & web. I was born in Tacloban City, Leyte, an island province south of Manila. My province is rich in stories of epic war battles and traditional folklore. Having been born on July 20 -- sharing the same month and day of the first man on the moon -- I also grew up with a keen interest in reading science encyclopedias and works of science fiction, apart from detective novels and comics. Although I studied at a high school geared towards math and science, I still pursued my passion for drawing and painting. My client list includes Fast Co, The Wall Street Journal, GOOD Magazine, WIRED, Popular Mechanics, Jamie Oliver Magazine, Rogue, Walker Books, ESPN, Havaianas, Paypal, Mediatemple, Google, Frog Design, Natural Resources Defense Council, Droga5 (for ID Gum) Giant Ant, IDW Publishing (Cobra Files), Heineken, Nike & Coca-Cola.

Dan Matutina

Illustrator and Communication Designer

I'm Dan Matutina, a designer and illustrator based in the Philippines. I love mixing handmade & digital, clean & dirty, old & modern aesthetics. I combine colors with different textures & shapes to tell a story.I was recently awarded the Art Directors Club Young Guns Award for 2013 (Year 11). I am the co-founder of Plus63 Design Co., a design studio that creates brand identities, strategize communications, design and illustrate for print & web. I was born in Tacloban City, Leyte, an island province south of Manila. My province is rich in stories of epic war battles and traditional folklore. Having been born on July 20 -- sharing the same month and day of the first man on the moon -- I also grew up with a keen interest in reading science encyclopedias and works of science fiction, apart from detective novels and comics. Although I studied at a high school geared towards math and science, I still pursued my passion for drawing and painting. My client list includes Fast Co, The Wall Street Journal, GOOD Magazine, WIRED, Popular Mechanics, Jamie Oliver Magazine, Rogue, Walker Books, ESPN, Havaianas, Paypal, Mediatemple, Google, Frog Design, Natural Resources Defense Council, Droga5 (for ID Gum) Giant Ant, IDW Publishing (Cobra Files), Heineken, Nike & Coca-Cola.

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