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Create stylized characters

By Renée Chio
Web: Open Site
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(14 Votes)
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Date Added: 13th March 2015
Software used:

Making the bra

  • A. I worked on the bra on a separate layer
  • B. Using a lace brush (you can custom make your own brushes in Photoshop to speed up your process), I painted on another layer underneath to make the lace in the neckline, and named the layer ‘LACE'
  • C. On a new layer, I used another brush from the same set and made only one color sample. I rotated it 45° CCW and, using the Transform tool in warp mode, (which can be found on the top of the window) shaped it to fit the breast. I named that layer ‘LACE BREAST'
  • D. I moved the lace sample above the breast
  • E. Holding down Ctrl, I clicked the layer thumbnail of the ‘BRA' so that it selected only those pixels
  • F. Now holding Ctrl+Alt and clicking on the ‘LACE BREAST' layer thumbnail, it unselected the pixels on the lace previously created, leaving only the negative space to work with
  • G. I hid the ‘LACE BREAST' layer
  • H. I created a new layer (‘SKIN') and painted the selection with skin color using a soft brush
  • I. I then repeated the same process with the other breast
  • J. I made a subtle color adjustment using the Hue/Saturation tool (Ctrl+U)
  • K. On the same layer, I painted the bottom of the breasts using a hard brush
  • L. With a soft brush, I added a subtle pink reflected/bounce light coming from the tutu, and painted some tiny ribbons

Using a color sample to create the lace detail on the bra

More polishing

As I said in step 04, I polished from the most important thing outwards. So, in this step, I'll do the rest of the skin (arm and belly). Using a large soft brush, I try to achieve a softer finish than the face and chest. I also picked darker colors with less tonal variation.

Even if the lighting is not technically correct, this will help the head/chest area stand much more.

defining the skin tone using hard and soft brushes

Making the tutu

In trying to figure out how to make the tutu, I realize that the best approach was to make it as if it was a real tutu – layers upon layers of semi-transparent, fine, mesh-like fabric, called tulle. A little bit of texture went a long way here.

  • A. I started by making the sketch transparent so that I knew what area I'd be working on
  • B. I made a basic form so that I didn't have to create hundreds of semi-transparent shapes to make it opaque. I mixed a bunch of colors making sure the cooler and darker tones were in the shade
  • C. Here I started drawing petal-shaped forms all around the skirt using different shades of pink, overlapping each other until the base shape was not visible
  • D. I used a skin and texture brush (again can be made easily in Photoshop and added to your brush library), and erased the middle of each form, leaving a nice textured gradient. Then I went to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and blurred just a little
  • E. I repeated the same process with the other petal-shaped forms of the tutu
  • F. To add some depth, I set the forms on the side in the darkest shadow to Overlay mode
  • G. I merged all the layers of the tutu (hotkey: Ctrl+E) and using the Dodge tool (hotkey: O) I highlighted the brighter side a little (50% on the Highlights setting, keeping Protect Tones unchecked, with a soft brush)
  • H. Using another Gaussian Blur, I blurred the back side to push it into the background

The process of creating the mesh fabric for the tutu

Background and final touches

  • A. I obtained a brick texture from the internet
  • B. I set the layer to Multiply mode and lowered the opacity to 50% so that the texture was not as harsh on the layer that contained all the color information
  • C. I merged it with the base color and added a Gaussian Blur to push it into the background
  • D. At the end I just added a soft light around her using a large soft brush

Adding a brick effect to the background

The final image

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