Today I’ll be taking you behind-the-scenes of my usual portrait illustration process. This will be a loose guide so it’s totally fine if you’d be more interested to use your own art style for the base lineart.
For those of you who have no experience in art, I urge you to give this a go as well! It’s a great way to unwind and to unleash that inner child in you. Don’t worry about things being imperfect- my illustration process is very raw. The more flaws, the edgier it looks! And that’s a good thing.
1. I open up Adobe Photoshop CC and set my canvas to A4 size. I then do a lineart of a girl. I’m currently using a Wacom Bamboo Splash CTL471 Pen Tablet (which I highly recommend).
When it comes to many of my illustrations- especially basic portraits, I prefer doing them directly on my chosen software without doing draft sketches beforehand. I’m a big fan of the raw, non-symmetrical look. Gives the illustrations a bit of an edge.
I am using a default Photoshop Brush, as I often do.
Brush Size: 60
Color: #000000 (Black)
Take note of the Gray flecks on her eyes.
This is my color palette.
The result is this illustration below. I left out some white bits on purpose to make it look like it was hand-colored.
3. Using the first Default Brush again, I add in some highlights to the hair and the lips. I then add in some shading to the silver piercings and darker lines to the hair.
4. I then add in a solid background using the Paint Bucket Tool (press G), and draw squiggly white lines after (Opacity: 20%). I also decide to change the lineart to a darker brown to make it less overpowering.
There you go! If you’d like to see more tutorials, do let me know as I’d be happy to make some more.