Adding Transitions by Moving the Path

Sep 21, 2018

There are two slightly different methods that can be introduced here: the artist can either delete from or add to the initial curves. They are both very effective and, once mastered, they can be useful complements to hand-drawn brush strokes. The artist has to keep in mind that sometimes it’s easier to draw freehand than to force drawing with the Pen tool.

Adding Transitions by Moving the Path

(1) Add your path in a way that reflects where you want to place your final brush stroke. Note that adding shadow lines to sunk relief requires placing your path slightly on the outside of your guideline, so you can build inwards.

(2) Stroke your path with the sun line brush weight (10 pixels), and note that even the shadow line areas get the sun line width first. This brush stroke represents the outside of your inked line, so make sure its curvature is accurate.

(3) Change your brush size to shadow line weight (16 or 20 accordingly) and add a dot which would represent the actual shadow thickness and shows you how much you have to move your path to get the desired thickness.

(4) Move your path according to the sun-shadow transition. Note that the path needs to be moved more wherever you want to have full shadow and less (or not at all) where you want to have your transition.

(5) Repeat the second step and add a sun line weight (10) brush stroke to your new path. Don’t forget to change the brush thickness back to sun line! Note that the width doesn’t change on the areas where the path wasn’t moved.

(6) Delete the damaged areas and, once everything looks as desired, delete your path as well. Adding entire features and deleting the missing parts later is a lot easier than dealing with sections, especially when drawing sun-shadow transitions.

(7) The final inked circle with the transparency changed back to 100%. Unevenness in transitions can be corrected manually by using very thin brush strokes and the eraser.

You can download the short tutorial to learn this skill.

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