Bring the real out of your brushes...

Introduction to realism in digital painting

Hi everyone !

Last article was about the different drawing styles we mastered. Today's subject will put an end to these two weeks of creativity.

Let's deal with a brand new tutorial : realism !

Step 1 : Sketching

Here are the basics of any drawing you want to do ; the starting block of your blank page : the sketch.

I advise you to divide it into 3 parts :

  • the pose sketch : a very rough drawing of your mannequin with the main forms of your character and how you want it to look like. Use a pencil brush, a light color and very low opacity.
  • the morphological sketch : you start to contour your character and bring out the traits and clothes. Use a thicker pencil brush, a darker color and a bit more opacity.
  • the detailed sketch : the final version of your sketch. Here you draw every detail you want to appear on your final drawing like the hairstyle, the facial expression, the pleats,... Use an inking brush, a black color and a medium opacity. Use a bright color for your light zones and a dark color for your shading zones.

Once it's done, group your sketches, and let's move to the next step !


Step 2 : Patches

The first phase of colorization.

Fill every zone with a base color and create a color palette out of it by including your shading tints. To make a color chart, draw a full circle with your base color with the Fill_circle brush. Then, choose the color of your light source and make a few growing stripes of color from the top of your circle with the Covering tool. Finally, pick your shading tint and reiterate the previous step from the bottom of your circle using the Burn tool.

There you have every color tone at your disposal !


Step 3 : Skin texture

All the following steps don't need to be done in that order. Just start with what you feel more comfortable with !

I'll start with the skin and, more precisely, the face. If you start with the light, use the tone over your base color to create a patch defining where your light zone extend to. Then, use all other colors over to make them gradually meet where your light source is acting over your character. Finally, blend your colors using Blender_Blur starting from the inside of your light zone.

Use the same method for the shading. To make skin look more realistic, play with brushes to create freckles, rednesses and many other blemishes.

Skin texture

Step 4 : Hair texture

The most time-consuming step in my opinion ! ^^

I drew every hair one by one with the base color and painting brush called Bristles_hairy. Then, I redraw them with every nuance tint where I wanted to add lights and shadows. This method is quite similar to the one I used for the skin but more meticulous. Then, blend them by following the movement of the hairs using Smudge_block_tilt, it will give dynamics to your hairstyle. Finally, add a patch beow the hair with your base color to create a scalp.

Hair texture

Step 5 : Clothes texture

The same technic used for previous steps but slightly different.

First use the Airbrush_pressure tool to create rough shading tint. Then simply repeat the previous method used for the skin and hair, and blend your colors following the movement of the pleat.

If you wish to create a different texture like leather or any other material, here's a tip : change the point of your blending brushes ! ;)

Clothes texture

That's it for today !

Don't forget that these advices are purely subjective and that you will test many tools and find your very own technics !

Thanks for your reading and see you next week !

 26 janv. 2018 -  Fabian MOSAKOWSKI - game art,   realism painting drawing