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Soft Shading

Flat Coloring

It looks like the ink job is done, so now onto the first stage of the coloring process.   The first step is to lay down the flat colors.   Iím going to use a thick, hard brush for this stage, as I want the flat colors to be 100% opaque everywhere they lay.   The brush is also pressure sensitive to its size, so it will be easier to squeeze color into those tight areas around the hair without having to resize the brush.

Iím going to be throwing all the colors down on their own separate layers because it just makes things easier to work with at the end.   You could put down all your colors on the same layer, but itís going to make shading a little messy when it comes time to do that.   I usually feel that the skin tone of the character is the most important out of all the colors, so I usually start off with that.

I didnít follow the lines exactly, but thatís okay because weíll be covering it up with more color in just a second.   I also took the time to name my layers at this point, because this is where Iíll start to accumulate a lot of layers very quickly, and itís easier to keep track of them when theyíre named obviously.

This may look like a big step, but really itís just taking the time to make a new layer for each patch of color that I want to remain isolated when shading.   Also an important thing to do at this stage is to make sure you record the colors youíve used, so if (or when) you mess up the shading process you can always paint over everything with the base color again and start fresh.   Thatís where the color swatches tab comes in handy, located at the top right of my workspace.

I started with a blank palette and dumped all the colors I used into the swatches tab.   To place a color in it just simply click anywhere on the blank area of the swatches window.   You should notice your mouse cursor change to a paint bucket when youíre able to drop a color in.

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