Posts Tagged ‘Drawing’

Digital matte painting is just good painting!

Published by | Friday, March 28th, 2014

Matte painting is just good painting!

Matte painting is meant to fool the viewer’s eye. It is a special effects technique that combines live-action footage with painted imagery that dates back to 1907— the very dawn of filmmaking. Mattes were originally painted on a sheet of glass, which was suspended in front of the camera. Today, with digital imaging, artists can work in Photoshop, and combine their paintings with a live-action plate in programs such as After Effects, Maya, or Nuke.

The tools and techniques I advocate aren’t just helpful for matte painting, but form the building blocks of all good paintings. If you want to learn the tools and techniques I use for creating a strong digital matte painting, here are five artistic principles to set you on the right path:

Using perspective to draw in Illustrator: Pixel Playground

Published by | Friday, January 31st, 2014

Using perspective to draw in Illustrator

Explore Pixel Playground at lynda.com.


This week Bert kicks off a short series of tutorials showing how he created an illustrated magazine cover. Today’s technique is all about how to create a two-point perspective system in Adobe Illustrator so you can draw your artwork.

Bert begins by finding the left edge vanishing point based on a few elements of the artwork on his page. With the first vanishing point established, he can then determine a horizon line and eventually create a second point of perspective. Bert finishes up the lesson by showing how he used these lines to create his final illustration.

Photoshop for fashion illustration: It’s easier than you think

Published by | Thursday, January 9th, 2014

Experimenting with color choices

Explore this course at lynda.com.


If you learned to draw with a pencil, it can be scary to make the switch to digital illustration. I’m old school and learned to draw the traditional way: with pencils, T-squares, ruling pens, and an airbrush. I fought the move to digital for a long time—until I realized the computer isn’t the evil thing I made it out to be, but a new tool to add to my box of tricks. And not just any tool, but a power tool.

The good news is that you don’t need to master Adobe Photoshop to benefit from it. Learning just a few tricks has made a huge difference in my workflow: I can accomplish tasks in Photoshop that once took hours if not days to complete. I still draw my initial sketches by hand but scan them into the computer to color. Don’t worry if you don’t have access to a scanner; you can take a photo with your smart phone and email it to yourself instead.

Use a Wacom tablet to improve your designs

Published by | Wednesday, August 21st, 2013
Use a tablet to improve your designs

Explore this course at lynda.com.

Whether you’re designing a website, a logo, a product, a building, or an app, it’s valuable to begin that design process with a drawing. Drawing enables us to focus on the overall vision without getting distracted by details like color, font, or texture—which at this early stage are not important, and can actually hinder the development. The beginning is about the broad strokes, which is why drawing is such a perfect medium. Drawing on a Wacom is even more perfect, for a couple of reasons:

Greater accessibility
We live in a world where the majority of the content we create (text, designs, messages, etc.) is digital, so having your initial drawings in digital form lets you share them more easily, and import them to other programs where they can be further refined.

Add shading to a drawing with Photoshop: Deke’s Techniques

Published by | Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

Last week Deke showed you how to transform his father-son drawing into a monster of serious proportions with some volumetric layer effects. Now learn how to add shading around his mouth to give him more expression. This technique uses a combination of shape layers and layer masks in Adobe Photoshop.

lynda.com members will have access to the exercise file, which includes a number of predrawn layer comps, or you can follow along and apply the lessons to your own artwork.