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In Painter 11 Essential Training, John Derry, one of the original Painter authors, demonstrates basic and advanced creative techniques that can get beginners up and running. He also shows old hands the new features that can get a creative vision out of the head and onto the canvas. John demonstrates how to establish an easy workflow in Painter by using a Wacom tablet, and he explains how to create, edit, and publish projects. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download the Painter/Photoshop Consistent Color Management PDF and the Brush Troubleshooting Checklist PDF from the Exercise Files tab.
We are now going to take a look at non- destructive layer painting and what this offers you is a way to work with imagery or from scratch, so that you have an image built up on several layers and in doing so it provides you with more fearlessness to try things out that you wouldn't otherwise do. I'm going to apply this to the notion of working with a photograph but strictly speaking, you don't have to do that. You could use these same techniques that we are about to outline for starting an image from the scratch.
In either case the idea behind layer painting is that you have the ability to fracture an image up, so to speak on multiple layers and when you do that if you are trying something out with regards to one element in an image, and you are not sure what your final result is going to be by doing this on a separate layer, it means that should you not like what you have done, you always have the ability to undo that. Whereas in traditional media or even with Painter after somebody undoes, that's going to be your image kind of cast in cement.
So, this frees you up from getting cast in that digital cement so that you can actually try things out in a much more freer style. So, let's take a look at this. If you happen to open up a file and get a dialog message like this one that says Convert Paths to Shapes. Just go ahead and say yes. It is just part and parcel of Painter's way of dealing with things. It won't cause any problems if you go ahead and just say yes. I often use the phrase, Dip your paintbrush into a photograph and in this particular video we are going to look exactly at how that's done.
But before we just jump in and start painting there is few things that are Painter specific that are important to have internalize, otherwise you could find yourself with a great deal of confusion and frustration. So I'm going to talk a little bit about Brushes in relation to Pick Up Underlying Color which is in Option in the Layers palette and show you what can happen in different circumstances when it is either enabled or disabled. The second thing we are going to talk about is another one of these features in Painter that I referred to as a major fulcrum point and it involves the Brush Property Bar and right here is something called Reset and something called Bleed.
What are those things? Well, Reset is short for Resaturation. This is part of Painter's will control. It is where Painter gets its source of color and Resaturation controls how quickly is color provided to the tip of the brush so that it can paint with it. The other side of that coin is Bleed. Bleed decides how much do I pick up any color I find underneath of it and understanding that as you will see means that the Reset slider when it is present for a brush is like a clutch.
When I press down and disable this all the way, it is like I have put the clutch and I'm just free floating, no paint is being applied. When I engage the clutch at some level, I'm then applying paint. Now some of this still is theoretical until we get into it. So, let's jump in and I'll show you how this Resaturation control in particular interacts with Pick Up Underlying Color. This is a lesson that we'll follow across to a pretty big majority of Painter brushes. There are some that do not use the Resaturation model and in this those case you either cannot do this or there is another means enabled to which you can engage and disengage color.
But I'm going to focus right now strictly on the large majority of brushes that do use Resaturation. So, let's take a look at our set up right now. We have got a layer. We have got Pick Up Underlying Color on. I have got the Captured Bristles from Acrylics category, which by default does have resaturation. So when I paint with it you would expect it to paint whatever the current color is and sure enough it is doing exactly that. So this brush is behaving exactly as you would expect it to behave out of the box, so to speak.
Now, let's look at some of these conditions that can occur. For example, if I turn off Pick Up Underlying Color and I paint with a brush, you see how it is being contaminated by white and there is even this very kind of undesirable white fringing around the edge of the brush. That tells me right away whenever I see this condition the first flag that should raise for you is Pick Up Underlying Color is not on. So when I turn that on that white does not appear. So we have got one condition that can happen here and I have given you a technique for disabling this behavior.
Now the other thing is you can have Pick Up Underlying Color enabled and just like I can paint with a brush, you can say I want to turn this into a Blending Brush only, I can turn Saturation all the way down. Now, all right there you go, I'm now blending with my brushes. However once again if you set this up and you haven't though about checking to make sure that Pick Up Underlying Color is on, you will run into this, a completely white area. It will try to blend with any colors it finds on that particular layer, but you can see when you are painting fresh area it doesn't even know where it is coming from and once again Pick Up Underlying Color, when that's enabled, that's what telling it to stop using this sort of false white color.
Which is basically what happens when there is nothing coming off the brush and Pick Up Underlying Color isn't on. You will get that phantom white. But with Pickup Underlying Color on in this case, you will get a blended color of what's underneath of it and when Resaturation is turned up, you will get the color that you want to paint with. So, once again think of this as a major clutch to Painter. I could be using this for some reason that I'm painting here and then I could say now I want to blend. So I turn that all the way down. Now I'm blending not only the background, but any colors I find on the layer.
So Pick Up Underlying Color and Resaturation are key components to what we are going to be working with here. The thing that's particularly useful about this is that it takes a wide range of Painter brushes and instantly turns them into a blending brush. So you are not limited to strictly 'here is a category Blenders.' There is almost any brush in Painter can be a Blender. It is just categorized that way for once that make a lot of obvious sense to have in your toolkit.
But any brush in Painter especially the ones that have the Reset and Bleed controls on the Property Bar are going to be capable of blending color underneath of it.
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