Content Creation

How to Turn a Sketch Into Digital Art in Photoshop 

Digital Art in Photoshop
Digital Art Created by

In 2017, The Guardian published an article about big ideas that started on a napkin. From Pixar movies to the White House, the article tells us that ideas flowed from the brains of influential people to the surface of a table. The familiar concept of “doodling” reminds us that designing a plan has to start somewhere. So if you have to visualize the next big thing on paper, here’s how you can turn a sketch into digital art in Photoshop. 

5 Steps to Creating Digital Art in Photoshop

The only items you’ll need to transfer a sketch are a piece of paper, a pencil (or pen), a marker, and Photoshop. If you don’t have a subscription to Photoshop, you can get one for roughly $11.00 a month. Otherwise, we’ll assume you are currently subscribed. 

1. Start Drawing

You don’t have to be an amazing artist to do this. If you need a reference image, go to Google and find some! This is a quick sketch I drew for this blog.

2. Trace Your Image

It will be easier for you to transfer your drawing if you trace it. Grab a marker and create an outline of your sketch.

3. Upload Your Sketch to Photoshop

Drop your image into a blank canvas on Photoshop. To make it easier to trace, lower the image opacity to 25%.

Digital Art in Photoshop

4. Create Your Vector

You can create a vector by using the shape and pen tools. By using these tools, you can create a digital outline of your image. Click on any area of the image to start. Use the anchor points to adjust your lines. I recommend an 8-10 point line weight for an illustrative style.

Curvature Pen Tool in Photoshop
Coffee Mug Vector

Coloring Your Image

After you adjust the vector to your liking, you can start coloring your image. Use the magic wand tool to select specific areas. Once you select your areas, choose the paintbrush tool and begin coloring.

Magic Wand Tool in Photoshop

Don’t be afraid to experiment with the paint bucket tool and different blending options too. Here is my final result:

Final digital art of Coffee mug

Digital Art in Photoshop

You can create digital art in so many ways, but this 5-step process is easy for any skill level. Remember, creating digital art in Photoshop can be the beginning of the next big idea!

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