Wednesday, July 13, 2011

From Sketch to Vector

I come across a lot of great tutorials online all the time and lately I have been wanting to get in the mix a bit. Not necessarily making full on tutorials, but at least showing my process a bit. So here it goes.
My brother is getting married and he recently asked me to put together some art for his "Save the Date" postcards.  His only input was for it to have a comic strip look to it.  I immediately knew I could make something good in Adobe Illustrator and I was off...

My first step is to locate some good images for me to draw from.  Facebook is always good for that. I don't need anything high res, just enough to get the idea.

After I find my photos, I want to think about what this person's strongest features are, because accentuating those will really help their personality shine through in the cartoon form. After that I can start to sketch.

 As you can see Joe's strongest features are his facial shape and nose while Emily's are her wavy hair and big smile. Next I scan the images (with my cell phone) and bring them into Illustrator.  I put the sketches on the top layer at 50% opacity so I can trace underneath with the Pen Tool. I was originally going to do them with the Blob brush but didn't have access to my tablet at the time.

Now that I have the hard part done I can really do whatever I want.  I knew I wanted to do some sort of short comic but to begin I started with adding color and some text to make a really fun title.

As you can see, once you have your basic assets it really comes down to how you compose them together to make something successful.  (As a side note, the hat on Joe was something I created after the sketch phase.  It seemed easier for me to create something based on the final art rather than to try and sketch something from scratch).  I then took it a step further and made an actual cell from a comic strip.  It wasn't much more work because I already had the heads made.  Just making some simple word bubbles and drawing some quick shoulders and voilá. In the end it was a lot fun to see it come full circle.

1 comment:

  1. Awesome, and very educational. Obviously, you make it look easy.