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Thread: Digital Drawing Help!

  1. #1
    Teen Member Rowen's Avatar
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    Question Digital Drawing Help!

    Hello again everyone, its been a long time but I'm back and ready to get this digital drawing in the bag lol. I have a few questions that I've never really seen mentioned and wanted to see what you guys had to say about them. Now I know shading, light direction ect. But its very basic and I almost feel silly asking. Well - here it goes:

    1. Holding the stylus (or pencil) - I've noticed in some of the videos where the cintiq is used that the artists don't rest there hands on the surface of the device. I'm very much a 'palm rester' and use that as a stabilizer and my wrist for controlling the direction and pressure. Should I hover like they do and use my entire arm to draw? I just want to make sure I'm using the right form. (and I noticed resting my palm on my Surface pro that it marks where I had it resting at.)

    2. Second is how do I know what size to make my drawing area? Using typing paper or even a drawing tablet I know just how big my art needs to be - but with a program I'm not sure how large to make it. Lets say for desktop backgrounds or for print. The reason I ask is because I tend to draw tiny - its something I'm working on but I need a reference so I don't do that.

    3. I remember there being a guide somewhere that explained how to set up a Wacom for digital art - do any of you still have it. I've search and must be looking over it. My line don't look nearly as neat as I see in those videos (Grants my level isn't near theirs). So I just want to make sure I've got my settings correctly adjusted.

    Thanks in advance for any help and advice you can give. I really want to get back into drawing but I get so discouraged when I see my finished artwork. I'm hoping the assistance you all provide will help me get started on the right foot.

    Rowen

  2. #2
    Ruler of the Seventh Empire GunZet's Avatar
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    1: You can hold your pencil and/ or stylus however you feel. I have very jittery hands a lot of times due to anxiety issues, so I palm rest almost 100% of the time. What works for others may not work as well for you, I know because I've tried the hand hover thing, both digitally and traditionally. It just allows you to work looser and frees up more range of motion because you're using your arm rather than your wrist. But I say to each their own.

    2: See this is why digital is so great, this shouldn't really be a very big issue unless the program you're using doesn't allow it. If you're not sure what size to make your canvas, go with a custom size via cropping, scribble the sketch out at around 75-150ppi, then manipulate your drawing with scale and rotation tools until you get the composition you're looking for. Blow the final composition up to 300ppi (print size, though this can vary, for most purposes anything 300ppi and above is print-quality,) and then do the finished piece. Saves the time for people that draw tiny, like myself, and it's something you can even do traditionally. Lots of comic artists doodle their images on scrap paper so they can take those onto a lightbox and get the composition right within the panel without too much worry of screwing up. Source: Tiny drawer myself.

    3: Most of the settings for your tablet should be in 'Control Panel' and should say 'Wacom Tablet Properties' or something of that nature. I don't know what guide you're talking about, but I can tell you that those control panel settings don't mean very much when it comes to lines, that's all half-program, half-skill. If you're using Photoshop, the settings you're gonna wanna fiddle with are under the 'Brush' tab. Personally I leave 'Shape dynamics' (for detecting pen pressure), and 'Transfer' checked, because it enables opacity pressure so it behaves like a real pencil. Sometimes I'll also use scattering to get texture. Though this is all assuming you don't know all of the above lol.

    So yea, hope that helped a bit.
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  3. #3
    Teen Member Rowen's Avatar
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    Thanks a lot! Its great to get other peoples thoughts on things....I guess I over analyze a lot lol. I have Photoshop CS2 (Pretty old I know) but I've been trying to use Manga Studio 5. I just like the way Manga Studio looks and its way cheaper than Photoshop to upgrade. Although if I ever get good enough I may want Photoshop as well for effects and such.

    Thanks a bunch for your detailed response GunZet! It is greatly appreciated. Now to pick up some of my manga and get started learning the software and the in's and out's of this tablet lol.

  4. #4
    Teen Member Rowen's Avatar
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    Forgot I also have Sketchbook Pro, but I have not used it much and not sure how suitable it would be for my art. I'm interested in Anime/Manga style drawings so the program that gives me the tools (and is affordable) will be the one I gravitate toward.

  5. #5
    One Thousand Member JJJorgie's Avatar
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    You can draw in the manga/anime style with any drawing program. Style only depends on the artist. However, there are a few programs like Manga Studio which you've already discovered allows you to easily make comic pages and word bubbles and so on. Also, GIMP and Krita are program I personally like to use. Just remember, style isn't hindered by tools. A great artist can make amazing use of the cheapest tools.
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