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By Lauren Harmon | Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Embellishing an avatar in Illustrator: Deke's Techniques

Embellishing an avatar in Illustrator

Explore Deke’s Techniques at lynda.com.

Welcome back to Deke’s Techniques and the second step to building your own avatar. Last week you learned how to use Adobe Photoshop’s Pen tool to trace your photograph. This week Deke shows you how to copy your path outlines, paste them into Illustrator, and enhance your drawing there. You’ll learn how to add hand-drawn embellishments (like flowing locks and wide eyes) and align your tracing with your hand-drawn paths. The result: A striking black-and-white avatar that will delight your friends on Facebook and your followers on Twitter.

By Robin Schneider | Thursday, January 09, 2014

Photoshop for fashion illustration: It’s easier than you think

Experimenting with color choices

Explore this course at lynda.com.

If you learned to draw with a pencil, it can be scary to make the switch to digital illustration. I’m old school and learned to draw the traditional way: with pencils, T-squares, ruling pens, and an airbrush. I fought the move to digital for a long time—until I realized the computer isn’t the evil thing I made it out to be, but a new tool to add to my box of tricks. And not just any tool, but a power tool.

The good news is that you don’t need to master Adobe Photoshop to benefit from it. Learning just a few tricks has made a huge difference in my workflow: I can accomplish tasks in Photoshop that once took hours if not days to complete. I still draw my initial sketches by hand but scan them into the computer to color. Don’t worry if you don’t have access to a scanner; you can take a photo with your smart phone and email it to yourself instead.

By Lauren Harmon | Thursday, October 10, 2013

Easy figure numbering with paragraph styles: InDesign Secrets

Easy figure numbering with paragraph styles.

Get more InDesign Secrets at lynda.com.

When you’re getting to the final stages in a long layout and find you need to add or remove a numbered figure or illustration, the prospect of renumbering them all can be very disheartening. But InDesign’s paragraph styles can make figure numbering a breeze. Learn how to create a figure style that auto-numbers your captions by following along with David Blatner in today’s free InDesign tutorial video. David also shows you how to cross-reference the number in the text, and update the figure number and text reference when you need to reorder your illustrations.

By James Fritz | Friday, August 09, 2013

Create a realistic dragon tattoo in Photoshop: Pixel Playground

This week’s technique will teach you how to create dragon scales for a tattoo in Adobe Photoshop.

Create realistic dragon scales in Photoshop

Explore Pixel Playground at lynda.com.

Creating a complex illustration can be daunting, but by breaking the design into smaller pieces you can learn how to build complex designs over time. This week Bert shows us how to enhance a dragon tattoo illustration by concentrating on just the scales.

By Lauren Harmon | Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Deke's Techniques: Drawing a distinctive 2D video game character

Fans of Dan Paladin, the artist of popular video games such as Alien Hominid and Castle Crashers, are going to be really excited about this week’s installment of Deke’s Techniques. Deke McClelland uses a few predrawn elements and a template to create a Paladin-inspired 2D walrus warrior with Adobe Illustrator. By tracing Deke’s template, you’ll re-create his steps and learn vital drawing techniques to help you create your own characters. To get started on the helmet, watch the video and use the steps below to help you along.


By Colleen Wheeler | Thursday, April 14, 2011

New series: Photoshop techniques, tips, and Times Square from digital painter Bert Monroy

This month we’re thrilled to welcome back photorealistic painter Bert Monroy in a three-part series featuring the work he did in his latest impressive (not to mention massive) artwork, Times Square. In this new addition to our Online Training Library®, the Bert Monroy: The Making of Times Square series generously shares the Photoshop tools and techniques he developed during this project, so that you can understand how he creates such realistic scenes from nothing but pixels and imagination. Here’s a quick glimpse at what Bert created and what he has in store for you:

A year ago, we featured Bert in an installment of our Creative Inspirations series, during which he showed how this enormous undertaking—featuring over 100 of his friends and industry colleagues walking in one of the world’s iconic intersections—came together over the course of four years.

In the first installment of the new series (released earlier this month), Bert Monroy: The Making of Times Square, The Tools, Bert explains how he used the tools inside Photoshop—from brushes, to textures, to layer styles, and more—to recreate his meticulous version of reality. This week, we released part two, Bert Monroy: The Making of Times Square, The Techniques, in which he shows you how he uses those tools in combination to create the hundreds of little projects that become parts of his larger work. Finally, at the end of the month, we’ll release The Making of Times Square, the People, in which Bert shares the special approach he needs for creating details—from hair to eyes to clothing—of the over 100 people who are milling about the New York landmark in his painting. Frankly, I think Bert’s inclusion of real friends and family in his work that shows he’s not just talented and generous, but fearless to boot. (And that’s coming from a friend who is honored to appear in the painting; you’ll find some other, more notable lynda.com folk included as well.)

This is a great opportunity to see how the creative impulse turns into a practical workflow from a master of his medium. And it just so happens that Bert is one of those generous spirits who not only enjoys watching his own ideas take shape, but is in his element when sharing what’s he’s done with others. Now you can take the tools, techniques, and fearless rendering of friends and family in Photoshop and see what they can inspire and create in your own work.

By David Niles White | Friday, April 30, 2010

Creative Inspirations features Bert Monroy’s stunning photorealistic illustration

OK. Wrap your brains around this: A hyperrealistic, 180-degree panorama of Times Square in New York City illustrated in Photoshop. The finished piece when printed out will be 60 inches by 25 feet. The flattened Photoshop file is 11.7 gigabytes. There are roughly a half a million layers. And it has taken Bert three years to complete.

Times Square, soon to be exhibited at the School for Visual Arts Theatre in New York, is only part of the story of this gifted digital artist who started with paper and rubber cement, graduated to the first Macintosh in 1984 and co-wrote the first ever book on Photoshop. From his home and studio in Berkeley, California, Bert creates art like no other. He is driven to share his gift and his techniques. I’m betting you’ll be as riveted as I was when I met and interviewed Bert for this installment of Creative Inspirations in the lynda.com Online Training Library®.

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