Digital Painting: Getting Started With Colour

Digital Painting: Getting Started With Colour

People naturally want to jump right in and start painting with colors. And why not? Colors are so attractive and like details, they’re so much fun. But color is a beast that takes time and practice to master. As a beginner, it is much much easier to paint in black-and-white, thinking only about the dark values and the light values. Luckily for us, we can start a black-and-white image and simply add colors later in Photoshop. Let’s have a look at this. Before we start, we wanna make sure that first, our document is in RGB mode. That way, we’ll be able to add colors. RGB Next, we want to add a new layer, and put this layer on Overlay. Now with overlay, we will be able to
colorize this image, and it would keep the values that have already been created in
a black and white version. If I were to try to add some blue on this background, it would keep the values, as you can see. I would go from my light value to my dark value, and everything is in blue, but I kept the same value. Now, when I paint with overlay, I want to make sure that the color will not destroy the values that I have. If I were to go with a lighter value, and paint, as you can see, it would transform
everything, really more light. And I would lose the value that I’ve
been creating. Same thing would happen if I were going with something really more dark. I would lose most of the detail on my pear. But here, everything stayed the same. So let’s do that from the start. First, I would like to add some blue to this background. And here I’m gonna paint really fast because I’m planning on going later and fix this image with the color. Then, I would like to have some pink for this bowl. And I’ll make those pears orange. As you can see as I paint, my values stay the same everywhere. It’s only the color that changed. Now I added the first layer of my colors. But I would like to add a little bit more saturation to it. And a great way to do this is to add another layer, but this time setting up to Multiply. Multiply will add the color I’m picking, so I have to make sure that this color is actually pale. If it was a really dark color, it would
destroy again my value. I’m gonna pick that yellow here and just start painting. As you can see, it’s gonna add a little bit of yellow, and is going to multiply it with the orange that’s already there. It’s a great technique to add a base color. It gives you the chance to get your values right with the grayscale and to go afterward and add the color. But sometimes you’ll realize that even though you’ve been really careful when you choose a color the image might become darker or lighter. But at this point you could simply add, as I’ve shown before, a layer of adjustment and pick up, let’s say, the level, and–add a little bit of level to make sure that you get back those values that you might have lost. Seems to be right. From here, I’m just gonna merge everything down… And I’ll continue painting!


  • Ossama says:

    awesome tutorial. Having just started digital painting, coming from a more traditional background, your channel is helping out so much to point out these nuances and tricks of digital painting. I am very confident with Illustrator for graphics but that is not the same as a raster program in terms of drawing and painting. so thanks again for the great work!

  • lady hui says:

    but that's WAY too saturated and looks straight up crazy lol

  • ig says:

    where can i find the tip 5/5?

  • Aditya Sahani says:

    Should i keep my transfer opacity with pen pressure while painting either black and white or colour or I should keep it off

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