I’ve had a few requests about my work, so I thought I’d put together a tutorial of my method. This covers just this one style, I use several others, but in principle this is method pretty consistent. And with every drawing I’m learning more and more, so this method might change in the future.
- laser print of a 1/4” grid
- tria marker
- tombow brush marker
- large tip koi water brush filled with watered down india ink
- fine and medium tip markers
1. Loosely explore the lettering with the Tombow and the Tria markers. This is about getting a feeling for the composition.
2. Use a bleed-proof translucent paper, so you can faintly see the grid paper beneath. Pencil in some guidelines; I do this freehand to practice my linework. Then using the water brush sketch out the lettering. The water brush is tricky to get used to but it provides an amazing structural base. I have a long way to go with this brush, look at how off my lines are.
3. Layer a second sheet of paper over the waterbrush sketch. Use the pencil to trace over the outlines, making adjustments and corrections along the way. See how I fixed up the “d” and the bottom underline.
Tip: This it the bottom of the B, turned upside-down. I always draw my curves with my pencil on the inside of the curve. This way I can use my hand almost like a compass, and naturally follow the curve.
4. Using the fine tipped marker I trace over the pencil outlines. Again making more adjustments and finalizing the forms. See how the bottom underline now has width to it.
5. Using the medium tipped marker, I fill in the outlines.
6. Onto the computer, and scan the drawing in Grayscale into Photoshop. Create a new Levels Adjustment Layer. Pull the white slider left to remove the light grey tones. And pull the black slider to the right to darken the black tones.
7. Now over to the Channels Panel, and duplicate the Gray channel.
8. Convert your document to RGB or CMYK, whichever you’re most comfortable in. I work in CMYK because my day job is in print. Create a new Fill Layer of Solid Color. I do this to allow easy colour picking later on. On the right of the link in the layer is a mask (shown in white).
9. While selecting the layer you created, select Apply Image under the Image menu. In the pop up dialog window, select the Gray copy channel, and select Invert. Tada! you have a colour fill layer with a mask on it.
10. Now you can have fun with colours, textures, whatever. Double click on the left square of your fill layer, and it will bring up a dialog box to change the colour. I went for simple white lettering and black background. Save you image for the web, and you’re done.
To open this up for discussion, and tweak this method, I leave this with: Was this helpful?