Hello. After reading all the submission guidelines and stuff that I had not read before, I realized-- I’ve been doing it wrong. I’ve been hand-drawing most of my stuff, scanning it in to my computer (which is older than dirt), and coloring in/etc. with paint. Not “paint 3d”, just paint. (Like I said, she’s old.) And that option doesn’t offer layers or anything akin to it. So if I were to invest in some new equipment… what program(s) do you use (if it’s not too personal)? I know @acraigl, @krittikae, and @benjaminleebates are fairly good artists, so I was hoping to ask them, but if anyone else wants to chime in, I’ll happily take suggestions. Thank you for reading!
The hand-draw > scan and color method is common and I used to do that as well before I got a tablet. I highly recommend that (getting a tablet), but don’t rush into a million things all at once. Start with a better painting solution and then decide if that’s a direction you want to go.
I use the Adobe Creative Suite (Photoshop and Illustrator) for most of my designs. You can get much further along than you are now with some free or reasonably inexpensive alternatives. GIMP is the best opensource (free) Photoshop alternative, though it can take a bit to learn the UI. They do have lots of online tutorials to help.
Clip Studio Paint is another option which does a lot for $50.
Or Adobe Photoshop Elements which does almost as much as it’s big brother, but is only $100, sometimes cheaper if you can catch a sale.
Sounds like you might need a new computer as well, but there are free trials out there, so test drive a few and see what works with your system and what feels more natural to you to use.
Thank you! I really appreciate it!
I use Adobe suite, so Illustrator and photoshop. I got used to them in previous jobs and now I would be lost without them. If I was starting out (more or less) like you I would learn the free tools like GIMP, as mentioned by Acraigl.
Well thanks for the compliment!
I started off with a drawing tablet. Wacom, I think, and I would use it to draw directly into my desktop.
When that died, I upgraded into a laptop with a touch screen. I think I spent maybe $400 on a refurbished one?
I prefer to use Adobe Illustrator. It annoys me that I have to pay a monthly fee, but my husband uses Adobe Audition for his podcast, so we’d be paying for Adobe stuff anyway. I have the Templates loaded, and I draw straight with my finger into the program. Then I use my mouse to neaten up lines or make edits. When I’m happy with the way the design looks, I pull up Photoshop and make the actual composite picture that I upload to the derby.
This works for me. Illustrator had enough tutorials when I was starting out to make me feel like I could easily learn anything I needed to do, and it feels more intuitive than Photoshop. I know I could probably get the same results, but I like the tools in Illustrator better. I can take a brush, make it a color, and draw a line.
We’ve all had huge swings in our careers. If you look at a single artist’s catalog, and sort it by date, you’ll see an evolution of style and quality. My earliest stuff was mostly text based, with maybe a small doodle. As I’ve practiced, I’ve gotten to a point where I feel more confident trying new art styles. My favorite thing is to pander to my own nerdy interests, so I do a lot of Star Trek, Harry Potter, and Doctor Who. You know, stuff I want to wear. Sometimes I get discouraged when I don’t get a lot of votes in the Derby, or a shirt I really liked doesn’t print, or when one does, but it doesn’t sell very many shirts, but then I remember that art is supposed to be about fun. Creating something new. Trying something new. At the heart of it, we have such a wonderful little community here where we do genuinely support each other! A lot of us are Facebook friends now. We’ve talked about our problems, gotten feedback on our ideas, celebrated birthdays, we’ve even watched movies together!
This art thing comes in waves. No one (except for Walmazan, lol) is always on top forever. It took me a long time to get my first shirt printed, and even longer to get my first win. Just take your time, and know that we’re all here for you. <3
Thanks guys! I’m actually on hiatus this month to work on my book (haha. don’t even ask how THAT’S going…) but I am so glad you are willing to share your experience and take the time. THANKS!! I will be trying new things with full gusto! Kudos!
With your finger??? Why don’t you use a stylus or digital pen?
I don’t have one.
But I have TEN fingers that are free…
In all actuality, I used to have a lot of problems with the image skipping when I had a Wacom tablet. I’d try to draw a straight line, and sometimes it wouldn’t connect all the way. I got really comfortable just using my finger when I got my laptop. I think I probably do have a stylus around here somewhere, or maybe one of those pens that have the soft bump side you can use, but I just like the control I have.