How to Create a Tasty Bagel Text Effect in Adobe Illustrator

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

Follow
this tutorial and learn how to create a bagel text effect in Adobe
Illustrator. 

We will start with the text and make a few
adjustments to get the individual letters. After that, you will learn
to create the bagel texture and add shading and highlights to make
this text effect as realistic as possible. 

Next, we will create and
save the Poppy Seeds Scatter Brush and use it to add the seeds on the
letters and around the letters in the background. This sounds fun, so
let’s begin!

If
you are hungry for more text effects or vector foods in general, head
over to GraphicRiver and you will surely find what you are looking
for there. 

Tutorial
Assets

To
complete the tutorial, you will need the following assets:

1. How
to Open a New Document 

Launch
Illustrator
and
go to
File
> New
to
open a blank document. Type a name for your file, set up the
dimensions, and then select
Pixels
as
Units
and
RGB
as
Color
Mode
.
Make sure that
Align
New Objects to Pixel Grid
is
not checked.

Next,
go to
Edit
> Preferences > General
and
set the
Keyboard
Increment
to
1
px
and, while there, go to Units
to
make sure they are set as in the following image. I usually work with
these settings, and they will help you throughout the drawing process.

how to open new illustrator document

2. How
to Prepare the Text

Step
1

Grab
the Type Tool (T) and write “BAGEL” on your artboard using the
font Pleasantly Plump, size of 140 pt (1).

Now,
use the Selection Tool (V) to select the piece of text and drag the
bounding box upwards in order to make the text a little taller (2).

how to type the bagel text

Step
2

While
the text stays selected, choose Expand and Ungroup from the Object
menu to get the individual letter shapes. Select only the letters “B
and “A”, go to Object > Compound Path > Release, and after
that, delete the three small ellipses that make up the holes.

how to modify the bagel text

3. How
to Create the Bagel Texture

Step
1

Fill
the letters with a light shade of brown and then add a New Fill in
the Appearance panel above the first. Use a warm shade of brown for
the second Fill; then go to Effect > Path > Offset Path and
apply an Offset of -10 px.

how to color the bagel letters

Step
2

Keep
the letters selected, and also keep the second Fill attribute selected
in the Appearance panel, and go to Effect > Stylize > Inner
Glow
. Apply the settings shown on the left side for the letters “B
and “A”, and apply the settings shown on the right side for the
letters “G”, “E”, and “L”.

how to apply inner glow to bagel letters

Step
3

With
the letters selected and also the second Fill attribute selected, go to Effect
> Blur > Gaussian Blur
and apply a Radius of 3 px.

how to apply blur to bagel letters

Step
4

With the letters still selected, add a New Fill at the top of the
Appearance panel and use the color indicated. Go to Effect >
Texture > Texturizer
and apply the settings shown; then set the
Blending Mode to Overlay and reduce the Opacity to 30%

how to apply texture to bagel letters

Step
5

Let’s
add some highlights on the edges. Take the Pen Tool (P) and draw two
or three paths on each letter, following the edges. Give them a 3 pt
light yellow Stroke and choose the Width Profile 2 in the Stroke
panel. When you are done, apply a 1.5 px Gaussian Blur for all of
them. 

how to create highlight edges on bagel letters

4. How
to Create the Holes 

Step
1

Take
the Ellipse Tool (L) and draw two small shapes of about 16 x 14
px
on the letter “B” and one shape on the letter “A” as the
holes. Select white as the fill color and a 6 pt Stroke using pale
yellow. Also, press the Align Stroke to Outside option in the Stroke
panel. Next, go to Effect > Blur > Gaussian Blur and apply a
Radius of 4 px for all of them.

how to draw the bagel holes

Step 2

Now, select the existing Stroke attribute
and choose Duplicate Item from the fly-out menu of the
Appearance panel. As a result, you will get a second Fill attribute at
the top. Keep the same settings and just reduce the Stroke Weight
from 6 pt to 3 pt

how to add strokes to bagel holes

5. How
to Mask the Letters

Step
1

Select
the shape of the letter “B” along with the two holes and then
Copy and Paste in Place (Shift-Control-V) in order to get copies of
them. After that, remove all existing appearances for the copies
(stroke-none, fill-none). Just for visual reasons, in the image below
I gave them a simple stroke, but you don’t have to.

While
the copy of the letter “B” and the copies of the holes are
selected, go to Object > Compound Path > Make (Control-8) in
order to get a new “B” shape.

Repeat
the same thing for the letter “A”. For the letters “G”, “E”, and “L”, just make a copy of the original letters in front of
everything, and don’t forget to remove the existing appearances.

how to make copies of bagel letters

Step
2

Now,
take the Selection Tool (V) and drag a selection over the letter “B
in order to select everything including the copy from the previous
step that should be in front, and set to stroke-none and fill-none. Go
to Object > Clipping Mask > Make (Control-7).

Repeat
the same thing for the other letters, and you will get clean edges.

how to mask the bagel letters

6. How
to Add Shading and Highlights to the Letters 

Step
1

Use
the Pen Tool (P) to draw a few shapes on each letter as shown in the
following image. Fill them with brown and then apply a 4 px Gaussian
Blur
. Reduce the Opacity to 35%. This will create the appearance of
browned crusts on our bagel letters. 

how to create browned areas on bagel letters

Step
2

To
add some shine, first take the Pen Tool (P) and draw two or three
short curved paths on each letter, mainly on the upper right side.
Stroke these paths with the Black Blend Art Brush 100×3 (info below).
Keep the Stroke Weight at 1 pt and use the color indicated. When you
are done, apply a 1.2 px Gaussian Blur to all of them.

I
have an entire tutorial dedicated to Blend Brushes and how useful
they are: 
How to Create a Set of Multi-Use, Blend Brushes. You can find more information about the Black Blend Art Brush
100×3
used here, how to create it, and how to save it in your Brushes
panel. I use these Blend Brushes all the time in my drawings, and you
should definitely have them in your library, always ready to use.

how to add shine on bagel letters

7. How
to Create the Poppy Seeds Scatter Brush

Step
1

Grab
the Ellipse Tool (L) and draw a 21 x 31 px ellipse filled with gray
(1). Copy and Paste in Front (Control-F) this ellipse and change the
fill color to black and, after that, draw a small ellipse in the
center filled with white (2). 

Now, select the black and white ellipse
and go to Object > Blend > Blend Options. Choose 10 Specified
Steps
, and then go back to Object > Blend > Make
(Alt-Control-B)
. Set the resulting blend group to Blending Mode
Overlay
(3).

how to draw a poppy seed

Step
2

Select
all the shapes that make up the poppy seed and drag them into the
Brushes panel. Choose New Scatter Brush and hit OK. In the Scatter
Brush Options
window, just type a name for your brush and leave the
settings as they are for the moment. 

how to save a poppy seeds scatter brush

8. How
to Use the Poppy Seeds Scatter Brush

Step
1

Take
the Pencil Tool (N) and draw a random spiral path on each letter, as shown in the following image. Stroke these paths with the Poppy Seeds
Scatter Brush
and reduce the Stroke Weight to 0.75 pt. Open the
Stroke Options window from the Appearance panel and play with the
Size, Spacing, Scatter, and Rotation settings in order to get a
realistic look.

how to apply the poppy seeds scatter brush on bagel letters

These
are the settings that I’ve used. Also, change the Rotation relative
to Path

how to change settings for poppy seeds scatter brush

Step
2

When
you are happy with your poppy seeds, select all the paths and choose
Expand Appearance from the Object menu. Now, focus on the letter “A
for example and double click on the group of poppy seeds to enter the
Isolation Mode

At this point you will be able to select the poppy
seeds individually and delete the ones that fall over the edge of the
letter (1). Once the area around the letter is clean, you can press
the Back one level arrow until you exit Isolation Mode (2).

Repeat
the same thing for the rest of the groups of poppy seeds on the other
letters, and you can see the final result in the image below (3).

how to clean up poppy seeds around the bagel letters

Step
3

Select
all the groups of poppy seeds and go to Effect > Stylize > Drop
Shadow
. Apply the settings shown and hit OK.

how to create shadow for poppy seeds

Step
4

If
you want to add more poppy seeds in some areas for a more realistic
look, use the Pencil Tool (N) or the Pen Tool (P) to draw one or two
extra paths on each letter as shown in the following image. Stroke these
paths with the Poppy Seeds Scatter Brush and reduce the Stroke Weight
to 0.75 pt again. 

After that, open the Stroke Options window and play
mainly with the Scatter settings because the poppy seeds should be
closer to the path this time.

how to add more poppy seeds on bagel letters

These
are the settings that I’ve used:

how to change settings for poppy seeds Scatter brush

Step
5

Here
is a before (1) and after (2) image. Now we have more poppy seeds on
the bagel letters. 

before and after image of bagel letters with poppy seeds

9. How
to Create the Shadow

In this step, you need the shapes that you used to mask the letters
earlier in the tutorial, so select those shapes and Copy and Paste in
Place (Shift-Control-V)
in order to get copies of them. Move these
copies of the letters in a new layer behind the text effect. Now, go
to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow and apply this effect four
times.

how to create shadow for bagel letters

Here
are the settings for the four Drop Shadow effects in order:

how to apply drop shadow effects for bagel letters

10. How
to Add Extra Poppy Seeds

Step
1

You
can add extra poppy seeds around the letters, but this is optional and
part of the background. Use the Pencil Tool (N) to draw a random path
over the letters as shown in the following image, and move it to a new
layer behind the shadows. Stroke it with the Poppy Seeds Scatter
Brush
, reduce the Stroke Weight to 0.75 pt, and change the brush
settings as you did before.

how to add extra poppy seeds behind bagel letters

Step
2

When
you are happy with the result, select this path and choose Expand
Appearance
from the Object menu. Now, enter Isolation Mode and
clean up some of the areas where there are too many poppy seeds
overlapping or you just don’t like where they sit. Exit Isolation
Mode
when you are done. 

how to clean up extra poppy seeds around bagel letters

Step
3

The
final thing is to select the group of poppy seeds in the background
and apply a Drop Shadow effect. 

how to create shadow for extra poppy seeds around bagel letters

Congratulations!
You’re Done

This
is the final image of the bagel text effect. I hope this tutorial was
fun, and if you decide to recreate this text effect, don’t forget to
share an image with us. I would love to see it. 

bagel text effect final image

How to Create a Colored Pencil Sketch Effect Action in Adobe Photoshop

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

In this tutorial you will learn how to turn your photos into amazing and advanced, unfinished colored pencil sketches.

I will explain everything in so much detail that everyone can create it, even those who have just opened Photoshop for the first time.

The effect shown above is the one I will show you how to create here in this tutorial. If you would like to create the effects shown below, a sketch with a wet dripping oil paint and 3D pop-out effect, just using a single click and in just a few minutes, then check out my Wet Paint Photoshop Action.

Action final results

What You’ll Need

To recreate the design above, you will need the following photo:

1. How to Get Started

First, open the photo that you want to work with. To open your photo, go to File > Open, choose your photo, and click Open. Now, before we get started, just check a couple of things:

  1. Your photo should be in RGB Color mode, 8 Bits/Channel. To check this, go to Image > Mode.
  2. For best results, your photo size should be 1500–3500 px wide/high. To check this, go to Image > Image Size.
  3. Your photo should be the Background layer. If it is not, go to Layer > New > Background from Layer.
Checking image mode and image size

2. How to Create Brushes

Step 1

In this section, we are going to create a few sketch brushes we’ll need.
Take a pencil and paper and draw one shading scribble and three basic
scribbles. Then scan the scribbles that you drew. 

If you have drawn each
scribble on a separate sheet of paper then you should have four scanned scribble
files now. If not, then using some of the selection tools in Photoshop,
select each scribble, and move it to a separate file so you have four
files. Here are the scribbles that I drew.

Creating scribbles

Step 2

You don’t have to replicate my scribbles of course—draw them uniquely. But
what is important is that you have one shading scribble, and three basic scribbles. Also, the basic scribbles should be drawn sharply and have similar
density to the scribbles I drew. As you’ll draw unique scribbles there
will be density difference, but if you draw them so they are noticeably
drawn much thicker or sparsely, your sketch effect may appear too thick
or the reverse. Now open the shading scribble scan first, go to Edit > Define Brush to define this scribble as a brush, and name it Temp Brush 1.

Defining the brush named Temp Brush 1

Step 3

Open the first basic scribble scan, go to Edit > Define Brush to define this scribble as a brush, and name it Temp Brush 2.

Defining the brush named Temp Brush 2

Step 4

Now open the second basic scribble scan, go to Edit > Define Brush to define this scribble as a brush, and name it Temp Brush 3.

Defining the brush named Temp Brush 3

Step 5

Open the latest scribble scan, go to Edit > Define Brush to define this scribble as a brush, and name it Temp Brush 4.

Defining the brush named Temp Brush 4

Step 6

Now that we have defined our brushes, we need to adjust their settings and then define them again as new brushes. Press B on your keyboard, Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, select the Temp Brush 1 brush, and hit Enter. Then go to Window > Brush and inside the Brush window use the settings below:

Changing the settings of Temp Brush 1

Step 7

To define this brush with new settings as a new brush, click on the top right icon in the bottom right corner of the Brush panel, and name it Sketch_Brush_1.

Defining the brush named Sketch_Brush_1

Step 8

Now press B on your keyboard, Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, select the Temp Brush 2 brush, and hit Enter. Then go to Window > Brush and inside the Brush window use the settings below:

Changing the settings of Temp Brush 2

Step 9

To define this brush with new settings as a new brush, click on the top right icon in the bottom right corner of the Brush panel, and name it Sketch_Brush_2.

Defining the brush named Sketch_Brush_2

Step 10

Now press B on your keyboard, Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, select the Temp Brush 3 brush, and hit Enter. Then go to Window > Brush and inside the Brush window use the settings below:

Changing the settings of Temp Brush 3

Step 11

To define this brush with new settings as a new brush, click on the top right icon in the bottom right corner of the Brush panel, and name it Sketch_Brush_3.

Defining the brush named Sketch_Brush_3

Step 12

Now press B on your keyboard, Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, select the Temp Brush 4 brush, and hit Enter. Then go to Window > Brush and inside the Brush window use the settings below:

Changing the settings of Temp Brush 4

Step 13

To define this brush with new settings as a new brush, click on the top right icon in the bottom right corner of the Brush panel, and name it Sketch_Brush_4.

Defining a brush named Sketch_Brush_4

Step 14

Now we have our brushes ready. If you want, you can delete all temporary brushes we defined by Alt-Clicking on each of them.

Deleting temporary brushes

3. How to Create the Background

Step 1

To create the background, we are going to start by creating a solid color fill layer. Go to Layer > New Fill Layer > Solid Color to create a new solid color fill layer, name it Background Color, and choose the color #f2f2f2 as shown below:

Creating new solid color fill layer

Step 2

Now we are going to add some texture. Go to Layer > New > Layer to create a new layer, and name it Layer 1.

Creating new layer named Layer 1

Step 3

Press D on your keyboard to reset the swatches and go to Filter > Render > Clouds.

Adding filter render clouds to Layer 1

Step 4

Now go to Image > Adjustments > Threshold and set the Threshold Level to 128 as shown below:

Making threshold adjustment to Layer 1

Step 5

Go to Select > Color Range and using the Eyedropper Tool, select the white color by clicking anywhere over the white area in your photo, and set the Fuzziness to 40. Then go to Select > Modify > Smooth and set the Sample Radius to 20 px as shown below:

Creating a selection using color range from Background Texture layer

Step 6

Choose the Lasso Tool (L), Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, choose Make Work Path, and set the Tolerance to 2 px as shown below:

Making a working path

Step 7

Now go to Layer > New > Layer to create a new layer, and name it Background Texture.

Creating new layer named Background Texture

Step 8

Press D on your keyboard to reset the swatches, and then press B on your keyboard to select the Brush Tool (B). Right-click anywhere inside the canvas and, inside the brushes panel, select the brush that you have made named Sketch_Brush_1. Then select the Pen Tool (P), Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, choose Stroke Path, and set the Tool to Brush as shown below:

Stroking path on Background Texture layer

Step 9

Now, while the Pen Tool (P) is selected, Right-click anywhere inside the canvas and choose Delete Path. Then Right-click on Layer 1 and choose Delete Layer. Select layer Background Texture and drop its Opacity to 10%.

Deleting path Layer 1 and changing opacity of Background Texture layer

4. How to Create the Background Sketch

Step 1

In this section, we are going to turn the whole photo into an outline sketch. Select the Background layer, press Control-J on your keyboard to duplicate the Background layer, and then drag that new layer to the top of the layers in the Layers panel.

Duplicating Background layer

Step 2

Now go to Filter > Stylize > Glowing Edges. Set the Edge Width to 1 px, Edge Brightness to 5 px, and Smoothness to 15 px as shown below:

Adding stylize glowing edges filter to Background_Sketch_1 layer

Step 3

Press Control-Shift-U on your keyboard to desaturate the layer and then Control-I to invert the layer. Change the Blending Mode of this layer to Multiply, drop its Opacity to 24%, and name it Background_Sketch_1.

Changing blending mode and opacity of Background_Sketch_1 layer

Step 4

Select the Background layer, press Control-J on your keyboard to duplicate the Background layer again, and then drag that new layer just below the Background_Sketch_1 layer in the Layers panel.

Duplicating Background layer

Step 5

Now go to Filter > Sketch > Photocopy, and set the Detail to 3 px and the Darkness to 2 px as shown below:

Adding sketch photocopy filter to Background_Sketch_2 layer

Step 6

Change the Blending Mode of this layer to Multiply, drop its Opacity to 50%, and name it Background_Sketch_2.

Changing blending mode and opacity of Background_Sketch_2 layer

5. How to Create the Subject Sketch

Step 1

In this section, we are going to create a subject sketch that is actually a detailed part of the sketch. Select the top layer in the Layers panel, go to Layer > New > Layer to create a new layer, and name it Subject.

Creating new layer named Subject

Step 2

While the Subject layer is selected, hide all layers except the Subject and Background layers and fill in your subject with a color. 

You can do it in various ways. For example, you can create a selection of your subject using the Pen Tool (P), Magic Wand Tool (W), Lasso Tool (L) or some other tool, and then just fill the selection with a color. Or you can choose the Brush Tool (B) and brush over your photo using a hard or soft brush. It doesn’t matter what color you use. 

After you’ve finished, make all layers visible again.

Filling subject layer with a color

Step 3

Now Control-click on the Subject layer thumbnail to make a selection of the color fill and then hide the Subject layer. After that, select the Background layer and press Control-J to create a new layer using the selection. Drag this new layer just below the Subject layer.

Creating new layer using selection

Step 4

Now press Control-J on your keyboard twice more so that you have three subject layers.

Duplicating subject layer

Step 5

While the Layer 1 copy 2 is selected, go to Image > Adjustments > Threshold and set the Threshold Level to 128 as shown below:

Making threshold adjustment to Layer 1 copy 2

Step 6

Now select Layer 1 copy, go to Image > Adjustments > Threshold, and set the Threshold Level to 150. Then select Layer 1, go to Image > Adjustments > Threshold, and set the Threshold Level to 170 as shown below:

Making threshold adjustment to Layer 1 copy and Layer 1

Step 7

Select Layer 1 copy 2, hide all other layers except this one, go to Select > Color Range, and set the Select to Shadows, Fuzziness to 20%, and Range to 65 as shown below:

Creating a selection using color range from Layer 1 copy 2

Step 8

Now go to Select > Modify > Smooth and set the Sample Radius to 10 px. Then choose the Lasso Tool (L), Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, choose Make Work Path, and set the Tolerance to 2 px as shown below:

Smoothing selection and making work path

Step 9

Go to Layer > New > Layer to create a new layer, and name it Subject_Sketch_1.

Creating new layer named Subject_Sketch_1

Step 10

Press D on your keyboard to reset the swatches, and then press B on your keyboard to select the Brush Tool (B). Right-click anywhere inside the canvas and, inside the brushes panel, pick the brush that you have made named Sketch_Brush_2. Then choose the Pen Tool (P), Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, choose Stroke Path, and set the Tool to Brush as shown below:

Stroking path on Subject_Sketch_1 layer

Step 11

Now, while the Pen Tool (P) is selected, Right-click anywhere inside the canvas and choose Delete Path. Go to Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal All and hide this layer. Then select the layer mask of this layer, go to Image > Apply Image, and use the settings below:

Applying image on Subject_Sketch_1 layer

Step 12

Right-click on Layer 1 copy 2 and choose Delete Layer, and then select the Subject_Sketch_1 layer and show this layer. After that, click on the link icon between the layer
thumbnail and the layer mask to unlink them, select the layer mask, and press Control-I on your keyboard to invert the layer mask.

Deleting Layer 1 copy 2 and inverting layer mask of Subject_Sketch_1 layer

Step 13

Now, while the layer mask is selected, go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and set the Radius to 1 px as shown below:

Adding filter gaussian blur to layer mask of layer Subject_Sketch_1

Step 14

Hide the Subject_Sketch_1 layer, select the Layer 1 copy layer, and show this layer. Go to Select > Color Range and set the Select to Shadows, Fuzziness to 20%, and Range to 65 as shown below:

Creating a selection using color range from Layer 1 copy layer

Step 15

Now go to Select > Modify > Smooth and set the Sample Radius to 10 px. Then choose the Lasso Tool (L), Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, choose Make Work Path, and set the Tolerance to 2 px. After that, go to Layer > New > Layer to create a new layer, and name it Subject_Sketch_2.

Smoothing selection making work path and creating new layer

Step 16

Press D on your keyboard to reset the swatches, and then press B on your keyboard to select the Brush Tool (B). Right-click anywhere inside the canvas and, inside the brushes panel, pick the brush that you have made named Sketch_Brush_3. Then choose the Pen Tool (P), Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, choose Stroke Path, and set the Tool to Brush.

Stroking path on Subject_Sketch_2 layer

Step 17

Now, while the Pen Tool (P) is selected, Right-click anywhere inside the canvas and choose Delete Path. Go to Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal All and hide this layer. Then select the layer mask of this layer, and go to Image > Apply Image. After that, Right-click on the Layer 1 copy and choose Delete Layer. 

Then select the Subject_Sketch_2 layer and show this layer. After that, click on the link icon between the layer
thumbnail and layer mask to unlink them, select the layer mask, and press Control-I on your keyboard to invert the layer mask.

Applying image deleting Layer 1 copy and inverting layer mask of Subject_Sketch_2 layer

Step 18

While the layer mask is selected, go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and set the Radius to 1 px. Then hide the Subject_Sketch_2 layer, select the Layer 1, and show this layer. Go to Select > Color Range, and set the Select to Shadows, Fuzziness to 20%, and Range to 65 as shown below:

Creating a selection using color range from Layer 1 layer

Step 19

Now go to Select > Modify > Smooth and set the Sample Radius to 10 px. Then choose the Lasso Tool (L), Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, choose Make Work Path, and set the Tolerance to 2 px. After that, go to Layer > New > Layer to create a new layer, and name it Subject_Sketch_3.

Smoothing selection making work path and creating new layer

Step 20

Press D on your keyboard to reset the swatches, and then press B on your keyboard to select the Brush Tool (B). Right-click anywhere inside the canvas and, inside the brushes panel, pick the brush that you have made named Sketch_Brush_4. Then choose the Pen Tool (P), Right-click anywhere inside the canvas, choose Stroke Path, and set the Tool to Brush.

Stroking path on Subject_Sketch_3 layer

Step 21

Now, while the Pen Tool (P) is selected, Right-click anywhere inside the canvas and choose Delete Path. Go to Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal All and hide this layer. Then select the layer mask of this layer, and go to Image > Apply Image. 

After that, Right-click on Layer 1 and choose Delete Layer. Then select the Subject_Sketch_3 layer and make it visible. After that, click on the link icon between the layer
thumbnail and the layer mask to unlink them, select the layer mask, and press Control-I on your keyboard to invert the layer mask.

Step 22

While the layer mask is selected, go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and set the Radius to 1 px and make all layers visible except the Subject layer.

Adding filter gaussian blur to layer mask of layer Subject_Sketch_3

Step 23

Now select the Subject_Sketch_1 layer and change its Opacity to 60%. Then select the Subject_Sketch_2 layer and change its Opacity to 27%. And finally, select the Subject_Sketch_3 layer and change its Opacity to 50%.

Changing opacities of subject sketch layers

6. How to Reveal More Subject Details

Step 1

In this section, we are going to reveal more details of our subject. Control-click on the thumbnail of the Subject layer, select the Background layer, and press Control-J to create a new layer using the selection. Then drag this layer just below the Subject layer.

Creating new layer using selection

Step 2

Now go to Filter > Other > High Pass and set the Radius to 5 px as shown below:

Adding filter high pass to Layer 1 layer

Step 3

Press Control-Shift-U on your keyboard to desaturate this layer, and then go to Image > Adjustments > Levels, and drag the Shadow slider to 85 and the Brightness slider to 170 as shown below:

Making levels adjustment to Layer 1 layer

Step 4

Now Right-click on this layer, choose Blending Options, and then use the settings below:

Making blending changes to Subject_Sketch_Highlights layer

Step 5

Name this layer Subject_Sketch_Highlights, Control-click on the thumbnail of the Subject layer, select the Background layer, and press Control-J to create a new layer using the selection. Then drag this layer just below the Subject layer.

Creating new layer using selection

Step 6

Now go to Filter > Other > High Pass and set the Radius to 10 px as shown below:

Adding filter high pass to Layer 1 layer

Step 7

Press Control-Shift-U on your keyboard to desaturate this layer. Then change this layer Blending Mode to Overlay, drop its Opacity to 84%, and name it Subject_Sketch_Details_1.

Changing blending mode and opacity of Subject_Sketch_Details_1 layer

Step 8

Now Control-click on the thumbnail of the Subject layer, select the Background layer, and press Control-J to create a new layer using the selection. Then drag this layer just below the Subject_Sketch_Details_1 layer.

Creating new layer using selection

Step 9

Press Control-Shift-U on your keyboard to desaturate this layer. Then change this layer blending mode to Overlay, drop its Opacity to 63%, and name it Subject_Sketch_Details_2.

Changing blending mode and opacity of Subject_Sketch_Details_2 layer

Step 10

Now Right-click on this layer, choose Blending Options, and use the settings below.

Making blending changes to Subject_Sketch_Details_2 layer

7. How to Color the Sketch

Step 1

In this section, we are going to color some parts of the subject sketch. Control-click on the thumbnail of the Subject layer, select the Background layer, and press Control-J to create a new layer using the selection. Then drag this layer just below the Subject layer. Then change this layer blending mode to Color and name it Sketch Colour.

Creating a new layer using selection and changing blending mode

Step 2

Now Control-click on the thumbnail of the Subject layer to create a selection of it, and go to Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal Selection to create a layer mask using selection. Then press D on your keyboard to reset the swatches, choose the Brush Tool (B), pick a soft brush and, while this layer mask is selected, brush over so that the layer mask looks as shown below:

Adding the layer mask to Layer 1 layer

8. How to Create the Color Look

Step 1

Finally, in this section, we are going to add a nice color look. Go to Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Curves to create a new curves adjustment layer and name it Color Look.

Creating new curves adjustment layer

Step 2

Double-click on this layer thumbnail and enter the following settings:

Changing settings of Color Look layer

You Made It!

Congratulations, you have succeeded! Here is our final result:

Final result

If you would like to create even more advanced sketch effects with a wet dripping oil paint and 3D pop-out shadow effect as shown below, just by using a single click and in a few minutes, then check out
my Wet Paint Photoshop Action.

Action final results

60 Amazing Christmas and New Year’s Eve Flyers for the Holiday Season

The holiday season is fast approaching, and what better way to celebrate Christmas and New Year’s than to invite your loved ones to a fun celebration? So kick off the festivities with the right flyer to get the party started!

In this collection of 60 amazing assets, we present you with a plethora of amazing resources from both Envato Market and Envato Elements.

Need help modifying these templates? Enlist the help of a design professional by contacting the good folks at Envato Studio.

Christmas Flyers and Invitations

From ugly sweater parties to kicking off a holiday sale, these flyers and invitations will cover all your creative festivities for the holiday season. Enjoy the fantastic selection below.

Simple Christmas Party Flyer

If you’re looking for a simple and elegant flyer then look no further! This beautiful design features Christmas tree branches, sparkling gold stars, and simple ornament designs, all on a fully editable file.

Simple Christmas Party Flyer

Christmas Fair Flyer

Become the star of the local fair with this glittery reindeer design. This download includes one Photoshop file with easy-to-use vector elements. Choose from light and dark versions for more variations.

Christmas Fair Flyer

Xmas Bash Flyer Template

Show off your love of 3D and your excitement for the holiday festivities. This flyer not only comes with a print ready file, but also a fully editable text version of “Xmas Bash” to customize to your party needs.

Xmas Bash Flyer Template

Modern Merry Christmas Flyer

Step into the future with this chic and modern Christmas flyer. Great for office parties or casual events, this flyer comes with an Adobe Indesign flyer and card. It’s also available in several standard sizes.

Modern Merry Christmas Flyer

Merry Christmas Party Flyer Template

Get into the holiday spirit with this fun, vibrant Christmas flyer. Download all the fonts used here for free and customize your design in a few simple clicks.

Merry Christmas Party Flyer Template

Jingle Beats Christmas Party Flyer Template

Jingle Beats, a play off the classic “Jingle Bells”, is a fun flyer design that incorporates gorgeous design elements on an easy-to-use template. Included is even a free video tutorial to assist you in customizing your flyer design.

Jingle Beats Christmas Party Flyer Template

Christmas Party Flyer

Dance the night away with this emerald Christmas party flyer! Featuring a sparking mirror ball and cursive title, this flyer shines with holiday cheer. Simply drag and drop your text and details using the simple placeholders.

Christmas Party Flyer

Reindeer Christmas Flyer

Show off your love for that time of the year when snow blankets the land and the reindeer come out to play. Announce your Christmas events with this beautiful flyer that features several color variations on an easily editable file.

Reindeer Christmas Flyer

Modern Christmas Flyer

Looking for a more modern look? This colorful flyer design features a unique modern vibe that breaks down your favorite Christmas elements into fun geometric shapes. Ideal for the modern design enthusiast, this flyer can be customized easily in Adobe Illustrator.

Modern Christmas Flyer

Ugly Sweater Christmas Party Invite

Put a smile on everyone’s face with this fun Christmas invite! Whip out your favorite ugly sweater and get ready to celebrate the holiday season surrounded by your loving family and friends.

Ugly Sweater Christmas Party Invitation

Cool Pattern Christmas Flyer

Love geometric design? This Christmas flyer features a cool pattern that illustrates several festive trees against a modern red background. It’s also print ready with an easily editable file, so download this holiday flyer and plug in your information with Adobe Illustrator.

Cool Pattern Christmas Flyer

Christmas Santa Flyer

Show off Santa’s cool side with this fun Christmas flyer. Featuring yummy candy canes and stylish red shades, this Santa is ready for your festive party. Also included is helpful font information, A4 size templates, and so much more.

Christmas Santa Flyer

Ugly Christmas Sweater Party Flyer

Who has the ugliest sweater of them all? Showcase your love for the holidays with this fun, easy-to-use flyer design. With custom-made elements sure to dazzle your friends, this flyer means you’ll be the life of the party after one simple download.

Ugly Christmas Sweater Party Flyer

Christmas Vibes Flyer

Surround yourself with the chill modern vibes of this electric party flyer. Great for DJs and party throwers, this template features several modern palettes to choose from. Enjoy it today!

Christmas Vibes Flyer

Winter Party Psd Flyer

If you love the winter time but aren’t in the holiday spirit, consider this gorgeous winter party flyer design. Perfect to promote your next event, this flyer features two different color variations that are sure to highlight your festive celebrations.

Winter Party Psd Flyer

Classy Christmas Party Flyer Template

Elegance and class make for this beautiful flyer design. This gorgeous template comes in three different colors with all the design elements included! Look no further for your classy celebrations with this beautiful Christmas flyer.

Classy Christmas Party Flyer Template

Christmas Party-Vintage Style Flyer

Nothing says the holidays like a look down memory lane. In this festive flyer design, you’ll find a vintage-themed party flyer with classic Christmas tree and Santa elements. Celebrate your love of vintage design with this holiday poster.

Christmas Party-Vintage Style Flyer

Ugly Sweater Party Flyer

It’s safe to say that Ugly Sweater parties are the event to attend this holiday season! So show off your fuzzy sweater for a chance to win fun prizes! This elegant design features a beautiful knit pattern background. Play with four different color choices to customize this look!

Ugly Sweater Party Flyer

Winter Party Flyer Template

Christmas flyers are a little predictable, but this beautiful winter flyer features gorgeous frozen leaves against a warm wooden background. It’s super easy to edit, so you can adjust any color or element to fit your design needs.

Winter Party Flyer Template

Christmas Fair Flyer

Who doesn’t love a good fair? This flyer design features simple vector elements that are sure to inspire the holiday spirit. Change the text to fit your next event, and enjoy all the food and festivities to be had.

Christmas Fair Flyer

Christmas Beer Party Flyer

Reward Santa with a nice cold glass of beer with this fun Christmas-themed flyer. Available in two different colors, this flyer is ready to hit the printer. Just add your text and sit back to enjoy the holiday brew.

Christmas Beer Party Flyer

Minimal Christmas Flyer

Celebrate the holiday season with this beautiful minimal flyer design. It’s packed with colorful triangular elements, and you can simply customize this poster with your party info before sending this design straight to the printer. Help file included.

Minimal Christmas Flyer

Reindeer Christmas Party Flyer

Rudolph and the gang are all ready to take flight with this simple flyer design. It has unlimited color variations, so you can change the background to fit your needs in a few short minutes.

Reindeer Christmas Party Flyer

Foil Foliage Christmas Party Invitation

Join your loved ones for some holiday cheer! This beautiful Christmas design features gold foliage and red berries. It’s perfect for the holiday season and can easily fit into a colorful envelope for that personalized touch.

Foil Foliage Christmas Party Invitation

Cookie Swop Christmas Party Invitation

Cookie party, anyone? Show off your baking skills with this sweet Christmas design featuring fun cookie elements. You can scale and adjust everything that you see in this lovely vector design.

Cookie Swop Christmas Party Invitation

Christmas Sale Flyer

The holiday season is the perfect time for presents, hot chocolate, and sales! Use this fun flyer to add flair to your marketing strategy with a design that features a joyful Santa popping out of a box. And let us know how it helps your sales in the comments below!

Christmas Sale Flyer

Gold Confetti Christmas Party

Join together to celebrate the holiday season with this elegant gold confetti design. This design features a beautiful faux foil look paired with gorgeous fonts you can download for free.

Gold Confetti Christmas Party Invitation

Holiday Party Flyer Template

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Kill two holidays with one stone with this colorful flyer design. This template features three color variations, with vector objects that can all be resized without any quality lost.

Holiday Party - Flyer Template

Cool Abstract Christmas Flyer

This abstract Christmas flyer is ideal for the modern design enthusiasts! With a unique take on a Christmas tree as the centerpiece of this design, this flyer also features free fonts and customizable elements that can be adjusted easily in Adobe Illustrator.

Cool Abstract Christmas Flyer

Christmas Party Invitation

Bring joy to your family and friends and win them over with this fun party invite. This design features a simple snow-covered village with additional holiday elements for added charm and cheer. Celebrate the holidays with this print-ready design.

Christmas Party Invitation

Merry Xmas Party Flyer

Need a cool flyer for your next club event? This festive design features vibrant holiday elements, all within an easy-to-use and fully customizable file. Swap out the model with your own for a more personalized touch, or download the stock you need from PhotoDune.

Merry Xmas Party Flyer

Christmas Decorations Party Flyer

Say “Merry Christmas” with this fun party flyer. This design features beautiful Christmas decorations with festive 3D text that is easy to customize. Insert your party information and send your design straight to the printer!

Christmas Decorations Party Flyer

Merry Christmas Ornament Party Flyer

Nothing says Christmas like a gorgeous ornament. This flyer design features an ornament front and center that you can interchange with four different color versions. Show off your holiday cheer and download the free text to keep this beautiful look intact.

Merry Christmas Ornament Party Flyer

Santa Is a DJ Flyer Template

Santa is the best DJ around with this fun flyer template. This design features easily editable text against a vibrant holiday theme. Switch out Santa’s picture for your own, or download your favorite from PhotoDune.

Santa is a DJ Flyer Template

Vintage Christmas Party

Explore your love for everything vintage with this simple Christmas flyer. This design features a print-ready template with fully editable elements. Download the free fonts from the links attached, or look for your own on GraphicRiver.

Vintage Christmas Party

New Year’s Eve Flyers

2017 is right around the corner, and it’s time to ring in the New Year like you never have before! Invite
the world to your shindig with these beautiful party flyers.

New Year Celebration Flyer Template

Impress your friends and party goers with this minimalist New Year celebration flyer. Designed with festive party elements like balloons, champagne glasses and more, this template is available in both Illustrator and Photoshop formats.

New Year Celebration Flyer Template

2017 New Year’s Eve Flyer

Kick off the New Year with this explosive design! This flyer features spectacular fireworks with vibrant colors and bold type. With many color variations available, pull in the crowds with this easily editable flyer design.

2017 New Years Eve Flyer

New Year Menu Template V1

Created with lovely flourishes and stunning gold details, this template is the perfect way to bring in the New Year. Included is a double-sided design with fully organized layers. Try it out for your party flyer!

New Year Menu Template V1

NYE 2099 Party Flyer Template

Celebrate the year like it’s 2099 with this fun flyer template! This design features editable text and several template versions that you can use to promote your events online and on social media.

NYE 2099 Party Flyer Template

Clock New Year’s Party Flyer Template

Countdown to the New Year with this clock-inspired flyer template. This design features a beautiful gold theme that is perfect for any club or party event. Add your own text and customize your flyer to fit your celebration.

Clock New Years Party Flyer Template

New Year Sale Flyer

It’s the season for holiday sales and a great time for stores to set up their local flyers. Try out this black and yellow design, for example. Featuring a simple tag design and clean serif fonts, this template may just be the right fit for you!

New Year Sale Flyer

2017 Fireworks New Year Flyer

Announce the New Year with this beautiful flyer. This design features a colorful fireworks display along a beautiful city skyline. With many color variations available, you can explore the possibilities for your own custom designs.

2017 Fireworks New Year Flyer

Happy New Year Flyer

2017 is almost here! So celebrate all the fun festivities with this flyer design. This template features gorgeous 3D text that is sure to stun your event-goers. Let this illustration do all the talking in the planning of your next event!

Happy New Year Flyer

New House Party Flyer

Bring down the house with this party flyer. This design features a fun geometric design with several color variations available. Swap out the “House” text to “Year” for the perfect New Year’s flyer.

New House Party Flyer

New Year Party Celebration Flyer

Featuring bold yellow and blue colors, this template helps you countdown the new year with style. Enjoy the modern vector design with organized layers you can easily customize. Change colors, fonts and more to match your brand or theme.

New Year Party Celebration Flyer

Skyline New Year Party Flyer

If you can’t wait for the beautiful shine of fireworks against the cool night sky then this flyer is for you! This design features a vibrant fireworks explosion front and center with a simple city skyline in the background. Easily customize to your liking for a fun, print ready design.

City New Year Flyer

Mirror Ball 2017 New Year’s Flyer Template

Nothing screams the New Year’s like the drop of that giant mirror ball in NYC. So show your excitement for 2017 with this simple and elegant flyer design. Included is a print-ready template with built-in free fonts to make your life a little easier.

Mirror Ball 2017 New Years Flyer Template

NYE 2017 Party Flyer

Pop those champagne bottles in style with this electric New Year’s Eve party flyer. This design features free fonts and design elements with many different color variations to choose from.

NYE 2017 Party Flyer

Geometric NYE 2017 Flyer

Dazzle the crowd with this stunning New Year’s Eve flyer. This design features an abstract geometric design that effectively showcases the fun of your event along a vibrant skyline. With many color variations to choose from, you can’t go wrong with this electrifying template!

Geometric NYE 2017 Flyer

Luminous Flyer

Inspired by the bright lights of a city, this Luminous flyer is perfect for your next event. Ring in the New Year with this vibrant design that is easy to customize, with all elements included.

Luminous Flyer

Ornate NYE Party Flyer

Get ready to have the time of your life celebrating the New Year with this unique party flyer. This template features vibrant 3D text against an ornate design, with elements that are 100% scalable.

Ornate NYE Party Flyer

New Year Celebration Party Flyer

If you need something simple and straight to the point then look no further with this celebratory party flyer. This design features all New Year’s-themed elements, from fireworks to champagne and more. Customize with your text for a fast and easy flyer.

New Year Celebration Party Flyer

Alternative Space Party Flyer

Promote your next club event with this alternative party flyer. Perfect for New Year’s or any other fun celebration, this design features a futuristic design that can be customized to your needs. Links to all fonts used are available in the downloaded file.

Alternative Space Party Flyer

Minimal Design Party Flyer

Need something minimal for New Year’s with an artistic flair? Bring down the house with this party flyer which features geometric shapes and unique elements that give this design a one-of-a-kind feel. Switch out the text to easily customize this flyer for your New Year’s celebrations.

Minimal Party Flyer

Glittery New Year Party Flyer

Shine bright like a diamond with this glittery party flyer! This design features an explosion of glitter and unique champagne design elements that show off your design for that electric New Year’s appeal.

Glittery New Year Party Flyer

DJ New Year’s Eve Flyer Template

Party like a DJ with this fun flyer design. This template features a DJ theme with sleek white headphones and a unique banner design. Plug in your party details and get ready to ring in the New Year in style!

DJ New Years Eve Flyer Template

2017 Champagne New Year Party Flyer

Glass of champagne, anyone? Celebrate the New Year with this festive party flyer. This template features a beautiful gold theme with glitter, stars, and tall champagne glasses that are sure to stun any event-goer.

2017 Champagne New Year Party Flyer

3D New Year’s Eve Flyer

If you love 3D then take a gander at this beautiful New Year’s Eve flyer! This party design features fun 3D elements that are 100% scalable. Customize to your liking to ring in the New Year with style.

3D New Years Eve Flyer

New Year Flyer Bundle

One of the many great deals on GraphicRiver is this New Year’s Eve flyer bundle. This bundle features three stunning flyer designs, each with its own unique visual take on this theme. Get three organized party designs, all for one great price!

New Year Flyer Bundle

New Year Celebration Flyer

Enjoy the best aspects of minimalist design with this festive New Year’s flyer. The elegant design features a 100% vector file that utilizes these awesome fonts. Download it today to make your celebration shine!

New Year Celebration Flyer

Conclusion

This list is jam-packed with exciting resources for the avid designer familiar with Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. If you need additional help modifying these templates, enlist the skills of a talented professional by choosing one of the amazing designers from Envato Studio.

And with thousands of holiday flyers at your fingertips, chances are we’ve missed a few to add to your personal collection. Be sure to browse Envato Market and Envato Elements for more resources, and let us know your favorites in the comments below!

Confusion and outrage over the new Dropbox visual identity

File storage tool and workspace collaboration platform Dropbox unveiled its controversial redesign last night much to the support, but mostly fuming distaste, of the design community.

The bold new identity aims to illustrate Dropbox’s new collaboration tools as a deliberate move away from acting purely as a file storage facilitator. 

Dropbox published a blog post stating the new brand design was inspired by the creative work of its customers – everyone from musicians to medical researchers. The new brand identity will roll out over the next few weeks on its website and products.

It includes a bright new colour palette, new typography, illustrations and collaboration with artists – a far cry from its minimalist blue-and-white corporate aesthetic.

The fresh look has been created by a number of teams alongside Dropbox’s own design team, including design and brand studios Collins and xxix, Sharp Type, Animade and digital brand company Instrument. Check it out in the video below.

A dedicated website to the new visual system, written by Aaron Robbs and Nicholas Jitkoff, explains some ideas behind the evolution – how “the world needs your creative energy” and Dropbox can facilitate “meaningful work instead of busywork”. By “pairing contrasting colours, type and imagery”, the design aims to demonstrate “what’s possible when we bring ideas together in unexpected ways”, indicating that Dropbox may have wanted the rebrand to be shocking in nature.

Most people who use the file storage service deal with noise and cluttered inboxes all day, and the brand didn’t want to be another distraction. But some feedback on the bold colours and playful animations indicate these elements can be in fact, overwhelming and distracting to the purpose of Dropbox, like whether or not your files will be kept safe.

Read the comments on this Dropbox Design post as an example, or under the #Dropbox hashtag.

It’s important to note the Dropbox UI itself hasn’t drastically changed, so you’ll still be able to continue using it as you please with the hint of a few more illustrations and the new logo.

What the new visual identity consists of

The Dropbox logo continues to be the familiar blue surfaces in front of a black wordmark, but instead of forming a literal box, the collection of surfaces “show that Dropbox is an open platform, and a place for creation”.

Dropbox wants to move away from the label of simply being “a great place to store stuff”, and so the new logo can now change based on the situation – it can become animated and take on new bright colours aside from blue.

Dropbox has paired a range of contrasting colours together for the redesign, including yellow and purple, orange and green, red and pink, as well as keeping its traditional white and blue.

Working with specific artists, Dropbox co-created collages to represent the creative process and the positive outcome of working together.

These will be rolled out over the next few weeks and months. Alongside this, a host of “loose, handmade and witty” rough graphite sketches, paired with abstract shapes, have been released. These pay homage to Dropbox’s earlier style.

The illustrations have been created and animated with the help of Animade, who created 40 of the final illustrations as well as four animated vignettes – “which now live happily across Dropbox and on desktop and mobile.”

You’ll see these illustrations when you download files sent to you, as part of the onboarding process for mobile, and in pop-up windows across the interface. Here’s a look at all Animade’s illustrations.

Animade says the illustration concept was to “represent a space where creative work-in-progress happens”.

To finish off the new visual identity is the choice of Sharp Grotesk as Dropbox’s new brand typeface.

Attracted to its versatility, Dropbox demonstrates with this video how one typeface can be used in many different forms and weights, allowing the brand to “speak in a variety of tones.”

How to Create a Retro Interior Illustration in Adobe Illustrator

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

All of us have a nostalgia sometimes for the past: for the people we knew, some places, or things. Living in a high-tech digital age, we can miss something like an old-fashioned grandma’s pitcher or an old toy you owned as a child. Because you still remember how it was broken and you still want to cry. Just don’t cry now—I still need you to pass this tutorial!

Wipe off your tears and think about… something like… like a retro TV standing on a cabinet. I will show you how to create such an illustration using basic shapes, some warp effects, and the Offset Path.

By the way, GraphicRiver has a good collection of retro items, so feel free to check its collection.

1. How to Create the Retro TV

Step 1

Open Adobe Illustrator and create a new document (File > New) with 850 x 850 px Width and Height. We will start to create a TV shape. Using the Rounded Rectangle Tool, create a light grey rounded rectangle. Set the fill color as shown in the image below. You do not need the stroke color for your rectangle—it’s only there for better visibility.

Next, we will apply the Inflate effect to this rounded rectangle. Go to Effect > Warp > Inflate. Enter the options you see below. Expand this shape (Object > Expand Appearance).

creating the TV shape

Step 2

Now we will make a smaller copy of the transformed rounded rectangle placed exactly in the middle of the original one. While keeping the shape selected, go to Object > Path > Offset Path, enter the negative number -9, and press OK. You will get a smaller copy of the shape in front of the original one. Change the color of this copy as shown in the image.

Next create a smaller copy of this shape. Select the second copy and again, go to Object > Path > Offset Path, and enter the negative number -4. Change the color of the smaller copy to dark grey.

And finally, using the same method, make the smallest copy of the shape, which will have the Offset Path -2. You should have four shapes in total.

creating the TV shape 2

Step 3

Now let’s create the screen for the TV. Create a copy of any grey shape and place it in front. Make it smaller, and change the color to a darker shade. Next create a smaller copy of this shape: select the shape, go to Object > Path > Offset Path, and enter the negative number -2. Change the color of the created copy to a bluish grey.

creating the screen

Step 4

Let’s give our TV screen more volume. Create an ellipse by using the Ellipse Tool (L), which overlaps the bluish shape. The color of this ellipse does not matter, as it is used as a cutter. 

Now make a copy of the bluish shape in front (Control-C, Control-F) and, while keeping it selected with the overlapped ellipse, press the Minus Front button on the Pathfinder panel. This action leaves us with the part of the ellipse in front of the bluish screen. Finally change the color of the upper part of the screen to a lighter color.

creating the screen 2

Step 5

Let’s add a speaker to our TV. Create a small dark grey circle (for an even circle, use the Ellipse Tool (L) while holding down the Shift key). Select this circle and while holding the Shift and Alt keys, drag it to the right. This way, you’ll create a second copy of the circle, which will be horizontally aligned. 

While the newly created circle is selected, press the Control-D buttons three more times to repeat the previous step and create a group of circles exactly the same distance from each other. 

Now select the line of circles and while holding the Shift and Alt keys, drag them down. And again, press the Control-D buttons to repeat the previous step. Do this as much as you need to get a result close to the one presented below.

creating the speaker

Step 6

In order to move the objects with more precision, we need to enable the Smart Guides. So, let’s go to View > Smart Guides (Control-U). Draw a circle with grey fill color and no stroke color. To make an even circle, use the Ellipse Tool (L) while holding down the Shift key. Create a copy of this circle in front (Control-C, Control-F), make it smaller, and be sure it stays exactly in the middle of the original one. For the smaller circle, change the fill color to the light grey.

Next, using the Rectangle Tool (M), create a grey rectangle and place it exactly in the middle of the circle. Create a copy of this rectangle in front (Control-C, Control-F), decrease its width (using the Selection Tool (V)), place it exactly in the middle of the original one, and change its color to the light grey.

creating the manual switch

Step 7

Now place the manual switch on the right side of the TV. You can slightly rotate it to the side, to have the rectangle not precisely in the vertical position. To highlight this manual switch, we will create a dark grey circle behind it. After that, create a copy of the manual switch together with the highlighting and place it below, as shown in the image. The second copy of the manual switch can be slightly rotated in a different direction.

placing the manual switch and creating another one

Step 8

Now we will create the antenna. Let’s start by drawing a thin, vertically oriented, light grey ellipse. Using the Direct Selection Tool (A), move its left and right anchor points down. Create a small circle and attach it to the sharper end of the ellipse as shown in the image below. Make a copy of it to have an another antenna (Control-C, Control-V). Add an oval on the bottom.

And again, you do not need the stroke color because it is only there for better visibility.

creating the antenna

Step 9

Place our antenna on top and behind the TV (Control-X, Control-B). As the outer shape of our TV does not have any stroke color, we need to emphasize that the antenna is behind and is separated from the TV. Therefore, create a very thin horizontal oval and place it on the line of intersection between the antenna and the body of the TV.

placing the antenna

Step 10

Now let’s create the TV legs. First create a grey rectangle, and then take the Direct Selection Tool (A) and move the two lower anchor points to the left. The lower anchor points should be closer to each other than the upper anchor points are.

creating the TV legs

Step 11

Place the TV leg in its place. To make another leg, select the left leg, right-click > Transform > Reflect, and then choose Vertical, Angle 90 degrees, and press Copy. Move the copy of the leg to the right. Our retro TV image is ready!

placing the leg and creating another one

2. How to Create the Cabinet

Step 1

Of course, in past times, TVs were heavy and quite large. They were not hung on a wall, but placed on cabinets or tables. Therefore, today we will place our TV on a cabinet. 

Let’s start with a brown rectangle (Rectangle Tool (M)). To make a darker rectangle inside the brown one, again we will use the Offset Path: while keeping the brown rectangle selected, go to Object > Path > Offset Path and enter Offset -10 px. Change the color of the created rectangle to dark brown. 

Again, select the dark brown rectangle and go to Object > Path > Offset Path and enter Offset -3 px. Now, change its color to another shade of brown.

creating the cabinet

Step 2

Let’s add a texture to the doors of our cabinet. Create a very thin, light brown ellipse, which should fit into the smallest rectangle. The Smart Guide, which you activated in one of the previous steps, will be really useful here. Place the oval inside the smallest rectangle on the left side. 

Make a copy of this ellipse horizontally aligned (drag it to the right while holding the Shift and Alt keys). Now use the Control-D buttons to repeat the action as many times as necessary to fill the rectangle.

adding the texture to the cabinet

Step 3

To make two doors for our cabinet, create a thin darker brown rectangle and place it in the middle of the cabinet, as shown in the image below.

continue creating the cabinet

Step 4

To make the handle, create a brown even circle. Create a copy of this circle in front (Control-C, Control-F), and make it smaller. Be sure it stays exactly in the middle (use the Smart Guides). Now, change the color of the newly created circle to a lighter brown. Make a third copy of the circle, but this time just a little smaller than the light brown one (Control-C, Control-F). The color of the third smallest circle will be slightly darker than the second one.

For your convenience, group all the circles together (right-click > Group). These three circles will be our handle. Place the handle on the left door. When shrinking it down, make sure to hold the Shift button. Make a copy of the handle for the right door: hold the Shift and Alt keys and move the handle to the right.

creating the handles

Step 5

The legs of our cabinet will be made in a similar way as for the TV. For that, create a brown rectangle, and then while using the Direct Selection Tool (A), move the two lower anchor points to the left. The lower anchor points should be closer to each other than the upper points are. Place the leg on the left side of the cabinet. 

Finally, make another leg: select the left leg, right-click > Transform > Reflect, choose Vertical, Angle 90 degrees, and press Copy. Move the copy of the leg to the right. Our cabinet is ready!

creating the legs

3. How to Create the Background

Step 1

Create a blue square 850 px Width and Height, by using the Rectangle Tool (M). First, take the tool, and then click on your artboard and enter the necessary options.

creating the background

Step 2

To add some dimensions to the scene, create a darker ellipse in the bottom part of the square.

adding the shadow

Step 3

Finally, place the created TV and the cabinet in front of the background. However, it will be easier to put the background behind all the objects (Control-X, Control-B).

placing all objects

4. How to Create the Jar of Flowers

Step 1

Now we will add a pretty bouquet of flowers in a mason jar! To make the jar, we will start with a grey rounded rectangle. Remember that the stroke here is for better visibility. 

Add a small rectangle on the upper part of the rounded rectangle and another small horizontally aligned rounded rectangle on top as the neck of the jar. Unite these shapes using the Unite button on the Pathfinder panel.

creating the jar

Step 2

To add some water in the jar, create another copy of the shape of the vase by using the Offset Path (enter the value as -6). You will get two copies inside one another.

Now lower the opacity of these two copies: on the Appearance panel (Window > Appearance), you have to click on the word “Opacity” and in the pop-up menu, decrease its Opacity to 50%.

Now we will cut away a part of the inner shape. For the cutter, create a rectangle with any fill color you want. Make sure that the rectangle overlaps the top part of the inner shape. While keeping these two shapes selected, press the Minus Front button on the Pathfinder panel. We will end up with the bottom part of the shape, which will represent water in the jar.

creating the water in the jar

Step 3

Place the jar on our cabinet near the TV.

placing the jar on the cabinet

Step 4

Finally, add some flowers into our jar. You can find out how to create these flowers in one of my previous tutorial. Place your flowers behind the jar. You’re done!

adding flowers in the jar

Conclusion

And we are finished! Well done! I hope you enjoyed learning some of the processes and shortcuts during the creation of this image in Adobe Illustrator. As always, feel free to share your project and ask questions in the comments section below. Happy designing!

final image

Art History: Harlem Renaissance

“Sometimes I feel discriminated against, but it does not make me angry.
It merely astonishes me. How can anyone deny themselves the pleasure of
my company? It’s beyond me.” — Zora Neale Hurston

Getting Religion by Archibald Motley
Getting Religion by Archibald Motley

We are artists. Illustrators. Graphic designers.

Art unites us all, with an array of styles as diverse and unique as our heritage.

In this next part of our Art History series, we turn to the Harlem Renaissance, a 20th-century cultural and creative movement giving African Americans the platform to voice their stories through several artistic mediums.

The Harlem Renaissance

What if you were free?

Art is a humbling reminder of history. Though they were considered free, African Americans waited for a new life outside the borders of southern racist ideologies after the American Civil War. 

In turn, a new wave of dreamers migrated to the west, midwest, and northeastern US states in hopes of economic stability.

Migration Series Panel by Jacob Lawrence
Migration Series Panel by Jacob Lawrence

As the years progressed, the families of these great migrators gave way to the stunning artists and intellectuals of the 1920s. Today we honor a few of their legacies by taking a look at their incredible styles.

Sculptors

Her sculpture of President Franklin D. Roosevelt inspired the dime. Selma Burke was an extraordinary American sculptor whose sculptures influenced many during the Harlem Renaissance. Her style consisted of remarkable busts and wooden sculptures of maternal subjects. 

Roosevelt Plaque by Selma Burke
Roosevelt Plaque by Selma Burke

Similarly to Selma, artist Augusta Savage created small clay sculptures of animals as a child. Even early on, her work was impressive. She later went on to create realistic busts of several notable figures during the Harlem Renaissance like W.E.B. Du Bois and more.

Sculpture by Augusta Savage
Sculpture by Augusta Savage

Painters

Laura Wheeler Waring was an African-American artist and educator for more than 30 years. She specialized in textural oil paintings of unknown African Americans and notable Harlem Renaissance figures.

This portrait of civil rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois landed her major recognition within the movement. In turn, she went on to create many more portraits of important leaders and activists.

WEB Du Bois by Laura Wheeler Waring
W.E.B. Du Bois by Laura Wheeler Waring

Initially, her life as an educator slowed down her personal work, but she later used her love of travel to discover new artistic interests.  

For artists, the Harlem Renaissance gave way to new expressions of African-American life.

Anne Washington Derry by Laura Wheeler Waring
Anne Washington Derry by Laura Wheeler Waring

In the Migration Series (at the top of this post), artist Jacob Lawrence depicted colorful portrayals of the Great Migration. He used flat visuals and bright colors to abstract the material as a result of his influence of Mexican muralism.

Jacob Lawrence
Jacob Lawrence

Illustrators & Muralists

While the Harlem Renaissance is believed to have disappeared during the late 1930s, its influence would affect generations of black and brown artists to come.

These artists explored minimalist and abstract elements in their work, influenced by Pablo Picasso and others. Many even attributed Cubism to their early inspiration for working in design.

Early on in her career, graphic artist Elizabeth Catlett crafted wooden sculptures depicting the female experience. Her work revolved around Afrocentric themes which explored the human condition.

Sharecropper by Elizabeth Catlett
Sharecropper by Elizabeth Catlett

But if you were a designer during the 1930s then perhaps Aaron Douglas would have inspired you.

His work showcased a unique abstract style. Painting silhouettes of
African American men and women, he communicated scenes of social life and
struggle.

Aspiration by Aaron Douglas
Aspiration by Aaron Douglas

For our last artist, we’ll take a look at the extraordinary work of Charles Alston. An illustrator, painter, and sculptor, Charles contributed greatly to the rise of the modernist art styles in African-American work during this time.

His illustrations were usually of presidents, musicians, and prominent activists, but he also explored many other mediums in an effort to improve his skills.

Carter Woodson by Charles Alston
Carter Woodson by Charles Alston

Conclusion

Though the movement came and went as a result of the Great Depression, the Harlem Renaissance continues to be an inspiration for artists even today. Its wide range of culture and influence is a
true testament to
the evolution of art. And I hope you continue to learn more about these
amazing timelines on your own.

For more stories from the Harlem Renaissance, dive into the links below for further reading. And join me next month when we discuss Cubism.

The following sources were also included in this article:

Illustrator Tom Gauld has a new collection of wryly funny literary cartoons

Illustrator Tom Gauld is best known for his short, wry, literary comic strips for The Guardian‘s Review section. These have taken on a life of their own – being widely shared across social media outside the context of the paper, or even linked to Tom himself.

Tom has just released his second collection of comics, Baking With Kafka, which you can buy from Amazon or Waterstones. It’s the follow up to his first collection, You’re All Just Jealous of My Jetpack).

As with his previous work, Tom’s comics create comedy through the juxtaposition of literary and cultural norms and traditions. Social media goes up against the canon of literature. Children’s books are reimagined with themes from social history.

Many of Tom’s strips also poke fun at the processes of both writing and reading stories: from a writer’s gradual decline into cliché to the spread of unread books on all of our shelves. 

Publisher Canongate has also created animations from some of the comics. Watch them below.

Baking With Kafka

Author Health Hazards

All of Tom’s work is hand-drawn – and he describes this as giving it a feeling of “aiming for perfection, but acknowledging that there will always be a bit of human failure in there.”

That quote is taken from an interview with him filmed by his rep agency, Heart – which you can watch below.  In the video he discusses his creative process, beginning as ideas in his sketchbook before being fitted together “like Lego” to create works that often express quite complex ideas using simple linework and stick figures.

Recently, Tom created cartoons for the celebrated recent ‘New York Stories’ issue of The New York Times Magazine – which was the first issue to be presented entirely in comic strips. He created a story across a spread, created hand-drawn typeface that was used throughout and illustrated the letters, contributors and puzzle pages.


Illustrated page for the ‘New York Stories’ issue of The New York Times Magazine

He’s also published two graphic novels books – Mooncop and Goliath – and cards you can rearrange to tell different stories.


The cover for Goliath

You can see more of his work on his site or on Heart’s – though the best way to keep up with his work is on Twitter.

How to Create a Metallic 3D Spiky Text Effect in Adobe Photoshop

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

This tutorial will show you how to use Photoshop’s 3D tools and settings to create a spiky text effect with text and preset meshes, as well as a few textures, adjustment layers, and filters. Let’s get started!

This text effect was inspired by the many Layer Styles available on GraphicRiver.

Tutorial Assets


The following assets were used during the production of this tutorial:

1. How to Create 3D Text

Step 1

Create a new 1000 x 850 px document with a white background.

Create the text in All Caps using the font Squada One. Change the Size to 250 pt and the Tracking to 150.

Create the Text

Step 2

Go to 3D > New 3D Extrusion from Selected Layer.

New 3D Extrusion from Selected Layer

2. How to Work With the 3D Scene

Step 1

To access the 3D mesh settings and properties, you’ll need to open two panels: the 3D panel and the Properties panel (both found under the Window menu).

The 3D panel has all the components of the 3D scene, and when you click the name of any of those, you’ll be able to access its settings in the Properties panel. So make sure to always select the tab of the element you want to modify in the 3D panel before you change its settings in the Properties panel.

3D and Properties Panels

Step 2

If you select the Move Tool, you’ll find a set of 3D Modes for it to the right of the Options bar.

When you choose one of those, you can then click and drag to perform changes (on the selected element in the 3D panel).

Use those modes to change the Current View into an angle you like.

Move Tool 3D Modes

3. How to Adjust 3D Mesh and Cap Settings

Step 1

Select the text mesh tab in the 3D panel, and change the Extrusion Depth in the Properties panel to 55 px.

Extrusion Depth

Step 2

Click the Cap icon at the top of the Properties panel. Change the Sides to Front and Back, the Bevel Width to 5%, and the Contour to Half Round.

Cap Settings

4. How to Create a 3D Cone Mesh

Step 1

Create a new layer on top of the 3D layer, fill it with White, and name it Cone.

Create the Cone Layer

Step 2

Go to 3D > New Mesh from Layer > Mesh Preset > Cone.

Create the Cone 3D Mesh

Step 3

Select the Current View tab in the 3D panel, and choose the 3D text layer’s name from the View menu in the Properties panel.

Change the Current View

Step 4

Select both 3D layers, and go to 3D > Merge 3D Layers.

Merge 3D Layers

5. How to Scale 3D Meshes

Step 1

Select the Cone mesh tab, pick the Move Tool, and use the 3D Axis to scale the cone into a size you like.

The arrows at the ends of the axis move the mesh, the part below them is used for rotation, and the cubes are used for scaling. The cube in the center is used to scale the object uniformly. All you need to do is click and drag the part you want to use.

3D Axis

Step 2

You can also click the Coordinates icon at the top of the Properties panel to use numerical values.

Click the Scale icon and uncheck the Uniform Scaling option if you don’t want to scale the cone uniformly.

Scale the 3D Mesh

Step 3

We need to achieve a long thin cone, so the Y Scale value needs to be larger than the other two.

The final overall size is up to you to decide, based on how many cones you plan on adding and the size you’d like them to be.

Change the Y Scale

6. How to Use Different Camera Views

Step 1

After creating the cone you want to use, it’s time to duplicate and place it all over the text.

To help you to place the cones more precisely, you can use the different camera view options.

Select the Current View tab in the 3D panel, and choose Front from the View dropdown menu in the Properties panel.

Front Camera View

Step 2

After you choose a camera view, you can zoom in or out, or move the scene around using the Move Tool‘s 3D Modes.

Once you get a clear view of the part of the text you want to work on, select the cone mesh tab and place it wherever needed.

You can initially use the 3D Axis, and then you can use the Coordinates values to get a more precise result.

Move the Cone

Step 3

Another helpful camera view is the Top view. It will help you place the cones along the extruded part.

Top Camera View

7. How to Instance Objects

Step 1

Right-click the Cone mesh tab, and choose Instance Objects.

This will create a linked copy that reflects the changes made to the original mesh, like the material settings, for example.

Instance Objects

Step 2

Move the copy along the Z Axis to push it behind the original cone.

Move Along the Z Axis

Step 3

Instance as many objects as needed to cover the extrusion behind the original cone.

If the cone needs resizing to fit within the extrusion area, use the Coordinates values to scale it, and apply the same values to the copies.

Make sure to end up with an evenly spaced line of cones along the extrusion of the text.

Adjust the Extrusion Cones

8. How to Create a Spiky Effect

Step 1

Select all the Cone mesh tabs created, right-click any of them, and choose Instance Objects. This will duplicate all of them together, and you can transform them as a unit as well.

Use the camera views, 3D Axis, and Coordinates values to move and rotate the copies next to the original meshes.

Rotate the Copy Meshes

Step 2

Instance and move as many cone meshes as needed to place spikes all over the text.

Add More Spikes

Step 3

Once you’re done, you can select a random cone mesh and change its Y Scale value to make it longer.

Change the Y Scale

Step 4

Use the different camera views to adjust its position after scaling it.

Adjust the Position

Step 5

Repeat that to scale up a couple of other random cones.

Scale More Cones

9. How to Create a Metallic Cone Material

Step 1

Select the Cone_Material tab in the 3D panel, click its Diffuse texture icon in the Properties panel to choose Replace Texture, and open the 9.jpg image from the Metal seamless textures pack.

Replace Texture

Step 2

Click the Diffuse texture again, and choose Edit Texture.

Edit Texture

Step 3

This will open the texture file. Add a Solid Color fill layer, use the Color #ffae21, and change the layer’s Blend Mode to Linear Burn.

Save and close the file.

Color the Texture

Step 4

Use these settings for the rest of the values (the color values used are in RGB):

  • Specular: 191, 191, 191
  • Shine: 80%
  • Reflection: 50%
  • Roughness: 3%
Material Settings

10. How to Save 3D Materials

Step 1

Click the Material Picker box, click the pop-up menu icon, and choose New Material.

New Material

Step 2

Type Cone_Material in the Name field, and click OK. This will add the material to the picker so that you’ll be able to reapply it later on.

Save the Material

11. How to Create a Front Inflation Material

Step 1

Select the text’s Front Inflation Material tab, click its Diffuse texture icon, and choose Load Texture to open the 15.jpg image from the Metal seamless textures pack 5 pack.

Load Texture

Step 2

Click the Diffuse texture icon again, and choose Edit UV Properties.

Edit UV Properties

Step 3

Use any Tile values that you like and click OK.

Change the Tile Values

Step 4

Use these values for the rest of the settings:

  • Specular: 100, 100, 100
  • Shine: 50%
  • Reflection: 5%
Material Settings

12. How to Add a Bump Effect

Step 1

Click the Bump folder icon and choose Load Texture to open the 10.jpg image from the Metal seamless textures pack 5 pack.

Load Texture

Step 2

Change the Bump value to 25, and edit its texture’s UV Properties to match the Diffuse‘s.

Save the material once you’re done.

Bump Settings

Step 3

Select the text’s Extrusion Material tab, open the Material Picker, scroll down to the Front Inflation Material‘s icon, and click it to apply it to the Extrusion Material.

Extrusion Material

13. How to Adjust More Material Settings

Step 1

Select the text mesh tab, and change its Texture Mapping to Tile.

Texture Mapping

Step 2

Select the Extrusion Material tab again, and edit its Diffuse and Bump textures’ UV Properties as needed.

Edit UV Properties

Step 3

Select both Bevel Material tabs, and apply the Cone_Material to them. Also, apply the Front Inflation Material to the Back Inflation Material.

Apply Materials

14. How to Adjust a 3D Scene’s Lighting and Render It

Step 1

Select the Infinite Light 1 tab, and change its Intensity to 60% and its Shadow Softness to 30%.

Infinite Light Settings

Step 2

Use the Move Tool or the Coordinates values to move the Infinite Light until you get a result you like.

Move the Infinite Light

Step 3

Select the Environment tab, click the IBL texture icon, choose Replace Texture, and open the Living Room image.

Environment Light

Step 4

Change the Intensity to 50%, and move the image around to get a result you like.

You can go back and forth between the Infinite and Environment lights, and change their settings or move them around, until you achieve the result you want.

Environment Light Settings

Step 5

Place the Modern wood texture background design image below the 3D layer, rename its layer to Background Texture, resize it to fit within the document, and adjust the 3D scene’s camera angle accordingly to choose a final camera view.

Don’t worry about any empty areas that appear as we will crop them later on.

Add the Background Texture

Step 6

Once you like the final result, go to 3D > Render 3D Layer. The rendering might take a while, but you can stop it any time by pressing the Esc key.

After the rendering is done, right-click the 3D layer and choose Convert to Smart Object to avoid making any accidental changes.

Render the 3D Layer

15. How to Apply a Texture Overlay

Step 1

Place the Concrete rough texture image on top of the 3D layer, rename its layer to Texture Overlay, change its Blend Mode to Color Burn, resize it as needed, and right-click it to choose Create Clipping Mask.

Texture Overlay

Step 2

Double-click the Texture Overlay layer to get the Layer Style box.

We are going to adjust the Underlying Layer sliders under the Blend If section. Press-hold the Option key, and click-drag the left slider to split it. As you move the slider’s ends, you’ll notice how the texture starts to blend better with the text. What this slider does is protect the darker areas of the text from being affected by the texture.

Blend If

16. How to Adjust a Background Texture

Step 1

Select the Crop Tool, uncheck the Delete Cropped Pixels box in the Options bar, and drag the sides of the bounding box to get rid of any empty areas outside the background texture image.

Hit the Return key to apply the crop.

Crop the Image

Step 2

Select the Background Texture layer, and go to Image > Adjustments > Levels. Change the Output LevelsHighlights value to 147.

Levels

Step 3

Go to Image > Adjustments > Hue/Saturation. Change the Hue to -13, the Saturation to -31, and the Lightness to -40.

HueSaturation

Step 4

Double-click the Background Texture layer to apply a Color Overlay effect with these settings:

  • Color: #655d52
  • Blend Mode: Overlay
Color Overlay

17. How to Add a Vignette

Step 1

Create a new layer on top of the Background Texture layer and name it Vignette.

Select the Brush Tool, and set the Foreground Color to #b7b7b7.

Create the Vignette Layer

Step 2

Change the Vignette layer’s Blend Mode to Linear Burn and its Opacity to 70%.

Pick a big soft round brush tip, and change its Opacity value in the Options bar to 10%. Paint around the document to add the vignette. You can change the Opacity values if you want a more subtle outcome.

Add the Vignette

18. How to Add a Quick Dodge and Burn

Step 1

Add a new Curves adjustment layer on top of all layers, and select its mask’s thumbnail.

Add a Curves Layer

Step 2

Go to Image > Apply Image. Set the Layer to Merged, the Channel to RGB, and the Blending to Linear Burn.

Apply Image

Step 3

Change the Curves layer’s Blend Mode to Luminosity, and drag the curve’s center slightly upwards to brighten the lighter areas a little bit.

Brighten the Image

Step 4

Duplicate the Curves layer, and drag the curve’s center slightly downwards to darken the darker areas.

In order to affect the darker areas, you need to invert the mask. So click the mask’s thumbnail, and press Command-I.

Darken the Image

19. How to Apply High Pass and Noise Filters

Step 1

Create a new layer on top of all layers and name it High Pass.

Press the Shift-Option-Command-E keys to create a stamp, and change its Blend Mode to Soft Light.

High Pass Layer

Step 2

Go to Filter > Other > High Pass, and change the Radius to 1.

High Pass Filte

Step 3

Create another new layer on top of all layers and name it Noise.

Go to Edit > Fill, change the Contents to 50% Gray, and click OK.

Fill with Gray

Step 4

Convert the Noise layer to a Smart Object, and change its Blend Mode to Soft Light.

Noise Layer

Step 5

Go to Filter > Noise > Add Noise, change the Amount to 3 and the Distribution to Uniform, and check the Monochromatic box.

Add Noise Filter

Step 6

Duplicate the Texture Overlay layer, drag the copy on top of all layers, and change its Opacity to 50%.

Duplicate the Texture Overlay

Congratulations! You’re Done

In this tutorial, we created 3D text and cone meshes, adjusted their settings, and created their materials.

Then, we adjusted the lighting, added a background, and rendered the 3D scene. After that, we used textures, adjustment layers, and layer styles to adjust the coloring and contrast of the effect.

Finally, we used high pass and noise filters to finish off the effect.

Please feel free to leave your comments, suggestions, and outcomes below.

Final Result

How to Draw an Octopus Step by Step

Final product image
What You’ll Be Creating

The theme of this tutorial is drawing an octopus; we’ll base it on the anatomy of this mollusc but also bring some stylization into our artwork.

I’ll show you an easy way to create a pencil sketch from scratch, and then we’ll explore the step-by-step process of drawing with ink liners. We’ll also learn to use dots and mix artistic techniques to our advantage! 

What You Will Need

  • A sheet of drawing paper
  • A graphite pencil (I recommend using an HB type)
  • An eraser
  • An ink liner number 0.2
  • An ink liner number 0.1
  • An ink liner number 0.05
The art supplies I will be using

1. How to Draw an Octopus With a Graphite Pencil

Step 1

I draw a slightly curved core line; it will help us to mark the positioning of the figure.

Drawing the core line

Step 2

I outline the rough shape of the head. Then I add an oblong shape where the eyes are located.

According to this foreshortening, one side of the octopus is more visible to the viewer than another.

Working on the head of the octopus

Step 3

I add the framework of the limbs. An octopus has eight arms that can be divided into four pairs.

Now I mark only the arms that are visible in the foreground, just to keep the process as simple as possible. We’ll add the hidden arms later.

Adding the arms

Step 4

I draw the eyes. They are large, enclosed in a capsule, and have a slit-shaped pupil.

Adding the eyes

Step 5

I draw the fold of the aperture at the side of the head.

Adding the head details

Step 6

I add the siphon; it resembles a funnel. An octopus uses a siphon for respiration and locomotion.

Now we are ready to proceed to drawing the tentacles, or the arms. This topic needs additional explanations, so I’ll see you in the next section! 

Drawing the siphon

2. How to Draw Tentacles 

Step 1

It’s worth mentioning that, according to Wikipedia, the correct name for the limbs of an octopus is “arms”, not “tentacles”. But since it is a common appellation, I’ll be using “tentacles” now and then throughout the tutorial.

I draw the first pair of arms, keeping the lines smooth and soft.

Drawing the first pair of the arms

Step 2

To draw the inner parts of the tentacles correctly, we need to keep in mind the principles of perspective.

The foreshortening defines how much of the interior surface we see; the image below illustrates this concept.

We’ll dwell upon drawing the suckers (the round elements that cover the interior surfaces of the arms) just in the next step.

Comparing the foreshortening examples

I add the inner parts of the first pair of arms.

Refining the first pair of the arms

Step 3

The stylized form of a sucker resembles a bowl with a hollow central cavity.

The principles of perspective are applicable here, too: the point of view defines how we see the object. For example, if we have an overhead view of a sucker, we’ll see only the top plane with the cavity and no sides.

Exploring the perspective How to draw a sucker

Each arm has two rows of suckers. Depending on the species, the suckers can be placed in a parallel or a staggered order.

The rows of suckers

I add the suckers to the first pair of the arms. The suckers get smaller towards the end of the limb, so just mark the smallest ones without adding many details.

Adding the suckers to the first pair of the arms

Step 4

I draw the second pair of arms and then add the inner sides.

Adding the second pair of the arms

Step 5

I add the suckers to the second pair of arms.

Adding the suckers

Step 6

I draw the remaining tentacle of the third pair. Then I add the inner surface and the suckers, just as we did in the previous examples.

Working on the second pair of the arms

Step 7

I draw the second arm from the third pair; it is hidden behind one of the arms in the foreground.

Adding a new arm

Step 8

I add the fourth arm pair. Use your imagination and artistic flair to find the best direction for these arms; it’s important to keep the balance of the figure.

I applied light pencil hatching to the inner parts of the limbs just for your reference.

Drawing the fourth set of arms

Step 9

As a final addition to this pencil sketch, I draw the suckers.

I clean my drawing with the eraser. It’s important to make sure that all unnecessary pencil lines are removed before proceeding to any additional artistic tool. 

The sketch is ready for inking!

Completing the pencil sketch

3. How to Draw With Ink Liners

Step 1

Before we begin inking our octopus drawing, let’s try some warm-up exercises and practice making dots on the paper. 

Dotwork (also known as stippling) is a great artistic technique; it’s a perfect choice for creating beautiful textures.

Draw a sample of dotwork that consists of two parts. Use the 0.2 ink liner for the left one and the 0.1 liner for the right one.

A dots size variation sample

Step 2

Create a line, using only dots. The speed of drawing influences the accuracy of the individual dots within the line.

The 0.2 ink liner is a great tool for this exercise.

Creating various kinds of lines

Step 3

The goal of the next exercise is to make a gradation of value. With the 0.2 ink liner, create a sample with an increasing density of ink dots.

Playing with the density of the ink dots

4. How to Draw an Octopus With Ink Liners

Step 1

With the 0.2 ink liner, I create the main contours. 

To make the drawing more interesting, I use a dotted line in addition to a traditional continuous outline.

Working on the contours

Step 2

I add dots to the sides of the octopus, using the 0.2 ink liner. I also darken the pupils and mark the darker places of the figure.

Creating the main details and the texture

Step 3

With the 0.1 ink liner, I add a layer of dots to the drawing.

Completing the basic texture with dots

Step 4

I add dots to the back arms of the octopus, using the 0.1 ink liner. To create the core shadows of the arms, you can place dots closer to each other.

Working on the back arms

Step 5

I outline the suckers, using the 0.05 liner, and also add dots to the eyes to make them more three-dimensional.

Outlining the suckers

Step 6

With the 0.2 liner, I add another layer of dots to the sides of the octopus, giving the drawing more contrast and making it more three-dimensional.

I create a pattern of the skin, applying the groups of dots to the head and arms. Approximately five dots per group is the way to go.

Increasing the contrast and creating the pattern

Step 7

I make the contours of the drawing a bit thicker, using the 0.2 ink liner.

Working on the contours

Step 8

The ink drawing is complete!

As a finishing touch, I apply pencil hatches to the sides of the octopus, creating soft transitions from shadow to light. This combination of artistic techniques makes the drawing more unique and interesting.

Adding the graphite pencil strokes

Your Drawing Is Complete

Congratulations! You’ve created a beautiful artwork; I hope you enjoyed both the process and the result.

I wish you much success in drawing with pencils and ink. Have fun capturing the unique charm of the wonderful world of animals and nature!

Your drawing is complete

Adobe Illustrator, InDesign or Wacom tablet users shouldnt update to macOS High Sierra (or buy a new Mac)

MacOS 10.13 breaks Illustrator and InDesign – and Wacom tablets don’t work with it – so you should hold off updating your Mac or buying a new one. There are also a few issues with Photoshop. Here’s what we know so far about when fixes will be released.

Operating system updates are always accompanied by bugs and other issues with your favourite software applications, though these are usually fixed quickly with patches. It’s rare, however, for an OS upgrade to fundamentally break major applications and make hardware unusable – to the point that the companies behind them tell you not to upgrade.

This is what’s happening to Adobe Illustrator and InDesign. Adobe has said that neither “officially supports” macOS 10.13 (aka High Sierra) – i.e. is usable for day-to-day work – and a fix doesn’t seem to be on the way soon. MacOS 10.13 was released last week, and is designed to deliver better performance through a new file system (APFS) and HEVC video compression, as well as adding VR support and an upgrade Safari.

The message from Adobe is that Mac-based designers and artists who use Illustrator and InDesign shouldn’t upgrade their Macs to macOS 10.13. This is essentially also saying that you shouldn’t buy a new Mac either if you use either of these apps, as you can’t buy a new Mac with an older OS – unless you’re able to get your hands on some older stock still running macOS 10.12 (aka Sierra).

Here’s how macOS 10.13 affects Illustrator CC 2017 and InDesign CC 2017, and Wacom tablets:

Illustrator CC 2017 High Sierra compatibility

The new APFS file system on MacOS 10.13 may prevent Illustrator CC 2017 launching, throwing up an error message. It may also stop it installing.

Illustrator will default to emulating the Illustrator 6.0 colour space. You can reset this in the application’s settings, but you’ll need to do this every time you launch the app.

Incompatibility with some graphics cards/chips will cause glitches to GPU-accelerated tools and effects such as Brushes, Live Corners and the like. You’ll need to turn these off (if the above hasn’t put you off already).

Adobe says that its engineers are working on fixes and will release them “in a future version of Illustrator” – but no time scale has been mentioned. We hope it doesn’t take until the next major release of both apps, which past behaviour by Adobe suggests would be in November this year, about a month or so after announcements at its Adobe Max conference.

InDesign CC 2017 High Sierra compatibility

In InDesign CC 2017, the issue is simpler but equally disruptive. After a while of using InDesign, your cursor might turn into a “pixelated box”. This would make using InDesign somewhere between highly frustrating and impossible.

For this Adobe says that “Our engineering team is working with Apple to correct the root problem as soon as possible” – so a fix should hopefully appear soon.

Photoshop CC 2017 High Sierra compatibility

Photoshop can’t use APFS disks as scratch disks.

Older Adobe apps and macOS High Sierra

Some users have also detected problems with Premiere Pro, and pre-CC 2017 versions of all of the Creative Cloud and Creative Suite tools aren’t supports and are likely to see problems on macOS 10.13. 

Wacom High Sierra compatibility

Wacom has released a statement on its support site saying that “due to nature of the changes in High Sierra, the existing Wacom driver for 10.12 will not work.”

The company “is currently working on a new driver update to support the new operating system. The new Wacom driver will be ready by late October at the latest.”