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Author Topic: I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)  (Read 166 times)
Desperado
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I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)
« on: January 12, 2009, 02:47:46 AM »

 So I bought a tablet called Bamboo...anyway I need some pointers using Photoshop CS2. I have a few sense in color, but the trick is coloring smoothly like miss Juno and a lot of others do it! Now that I have my tablet I can start my web comic I just need to know a few techniques on coloring with photoshop first.
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Twhit
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Re: I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2009, 01:17:42 PM »

Well, not sure exactly what you're looking for . . .

When you say "smooth" you could be looking for a number of different things. One potential problem is the little white "aura" you can get between your line work and your color. This happens usually when you try to use the Paint Bucket tool to fill in an area bounded by aliased (i.e. fuzzy, not solid black) lines, such as those created by the brush tool. There are a few fixes for this. First, you can just color (or at least color the edges) with the tablet pen manually.

Make sure your lineart is on a separate layer from your colors - if your line art layer is black lines on white space, put your lineart layer at the top and set the layer mode to "multiply" so that any colors beneath that layer will show through the white areas, but not the black ones. If your lineart is solid black on transparent space, "normal" mode is fine. Then go to a layer below that and color.

If you really don't want to do it by hand, you can use the magic wand on your lineart layer to select blank spaces. As mentioned, this can leave fuzzy edges if your lines are aliased. One possible fix is to use the drop-down menu at the top to go to Select->Modify->Expand. Expanding your selection area by a few pixels before using the Paint Bucket on your color layer can eliminate the extra white space.

For shading and highlights, layers are your friend. Have one layer for flat base colors, do your shading on a layer set to "Multiply" or something similar to get darker colors, and do highlights on a layer set to "Screen" or maybe "Linear Dodge (Add)" to create lightness. This is better than using the Dodge or Burn tool, as those can only add black or white to darken or lighten an area, and that just doesn't look as good or rich as shading or highlighting that uses real color.

This is just how I do it. There are, as with any art, any number of different styles of coloring. I think this method here is fairly popular, and I think, based on a panel of hers I saw a little over a year ago, it's somewhat similar to how Juno does her own color work for the comic.

I hope this is helpful - if you have any more specific questions, I'll try to give you better answers.
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Juno
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Re: I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2009, 04:08:54 PM »

Post some examples Des.  That way we can see what you might be doing and we can also help you out from there.  But definitely read through what Twhit has said - lots of good points in there.  Smiley
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Desperado
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Re: I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2009, 11:40:04 AM »

Well this is the first thing I colored, it looks okay but I want to be able to use this program with more potential. http://cloudhanzo.deviantart.com/art/photoshop-noob-109454865

Share your thoughts, there are a few tricks I know you can do with Photoshop the blue orb that she has is one of them, I just happened to find that on the web, cant remember where though.
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Twhit
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Re: I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2009, 05:25:24 PM »

Lineart: looks OK, maybe you want to clean it up a bit and make it a bit darker. My style is very sketchy normally, but when you color something you want to make sure you have strong, solid lines (note this is not necessarily the same thing as thick lines). One thing I've found is that my color work of other people's line art is often better-looking than the color work I do of my own, as others have better lines. Still, not a big issue here, as this is obviously just a quick experimental attempt. Just trying to be constructive.

Color: Base colors are OK as well. You stayed in the lines, no weird fuzzy bits, all good. The one thing I'd suggest you change is the contrast - she has very pale skin, rather dark hair and clothing, on a pure white background. The orb is obviously supposed to be glowing, but it's not nearly as obvious as it could be because the background is just as bright as the brightest parts of the orb! Put some color in your background - even something as simple as a basic gradient will do the trick. But don't just leave it white. That's a mistake I only recently learned to stop making.

Shading: It really looks like you used the dodge and burn tools here. I'm going to comment based on that assumption, correct me if I'm wrong though. First tip: don't do that! Use multiply layers with gradual, lighter-but-more-colorful shading rather than the blobby black look you have going on her hair. You seemed to stay away from the edges - this isn't good, as it really throws everything off. The purpose of shading is to make something look more 3-D, if you shade the center but none of the edges things just look flat. If you're worried about going off of the edges, there's a couple simple fixes. One, you can use the Magic Wand tool to select a particular area of color (say, the hair), then just shade. Your painting can't go outside the selected area, so you can go right up to any edges you wish. Two, you can select a whole layer at once - say, your "color" layer - by holding Ctrl while clicking on the little thumbnail of the layer in the "layers" menu. This will ensure you only shade on the color you already put down, and not on your background.

Keep at it! It's a little rough around the edges, but as a first attempt it's supposed to be. If you want cleaner, smoother lines, here's a tip. Start with a big image, draw and color everything, and then shrink it down to your final size. When working digitally, there's no reason to restrict yourself to a tiny space. Scan big, start big, color big, then shrink down to what you need, and everything will look nice and smooth.

Int he end, Photoshop tricks with filters and the like are OK, but nothing can replace simple practice, effort, and creativity. Don't rely too much on fancy special effects or things like that; first focus on things like using rich color and strong lines.

Now go! We must see more! MORE! 
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Desperado
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Re: I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2009, 03:22:05 AM »

Well I took T's advice and decided to mess around with photoshop here and there. I did this in a couple of hours, it felt like minutes (I was late for work. -_-) while jammin' out to Miles Davis, Stemage, Dream Theater. It's the same character and I got a little bit more comfortable with my tablet and a paintbrush setting in Photoshop! The whole coloring thing I'm still getting used to, I've rarely colored anything before so I had to think a little bit, I think I finally got it sorted a bit. Anyway here you go so far. Oh and share your thoughts!

http://cloudhanzo.deviantart.com/art/Widow-s-Venom-W-I-P-109630869
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Twhit
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Re: I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2009, 11:37:45 AM »

Well, I now see the pale skin thing was intentional. smiley

Definite improvement overall. Stronger lines, more detail, etc. The suggestions I have are mostly art-related rather than photoshop-related. First, her hair. Looking good on her head, but the ponytail not so much - the lines there don't really contribute to the overall shaping of the hair, and draw attention there that ought to be focused on the details like her face. More a compositional thing than anything else - light lines on dark space draw attention. Shade with subtler color differences, use highlights sparingly.

Also, as you're new to coloring, if I can make one point - you seem to be working with very basic shades of gray here, only on the spectrum from white to black. Make full use of your palette by dragging that color slider a little bit to the right and adding in a little hint of color - things are only very rarely a pure gray or black, and almost always have some slight hue of color to them.
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Desperado
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Re: I GOTS A TABLET!!! (Hope I put this in the right place)
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2009, 12:55:20 PM »

Thanks, the flowin pony tail thing always gets me, I can't seem to get it right I'll have to practice more. And the shades of gray, I'm always afraid to go in depth with that because sometimes I think that it's not going to look right. Anyway I'll try fixing the ponytail this weekend and hopefully finish it up! I've also been working on two other ones, different characters plus I'm going to start on the first pages of my comic in the next few days.

PS Juno: I'm going to re-do Amanda "Widow" vs. Juno, only it's going to be more humorous!
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