photoshop creative

Combine Sketch and Photoshop

Posted in:
Tips & Tutorials, by Mark White
August 17, 2016

Sketch a portrait using the Adobe Photoshop Sketch mobile app, then refine and finish up in Photoshop CC


1. Create in Sketch


Observe your point of reference. Decide on a focal point and begin to draw a rough sketch. Stick to one brush at a medium thickness. Sketch the general lines of the face, such as the eyes, nose and hands.

2. Add detail


Work your way out of the focal point. Begin by adding hair. This will give you direction on the general flow of the painting. Continue painting with a medium brush size, adding pressure to your strokes.

3. Sketch the body


Continue to add hair, but don’t limit yourself to the model’s shape. Go beyond and create something abstract. Give your model messy, over-the-top hair. This is where you can be really messy.

4. Add dabs of colour


Once you have a very general sketch down, the next step is to add colour. Change your brush to a Marker Chisel and change the blending mode to Combine. Begin to add a gentle shade of skin colour.

5. Refine the illustration


Select a Graphite Pencil and add some shading to the shadows, such as behind the nose and around the eyes. Add most detail to the focal point, but also around the rest of the illustration for a messy look.

6. Apply final details in Sketch


Give your illustration some final touches before heading to Photoshop. Add a few more layers of marker for thickness. Finish up with more scribbles to the hair and empty parts of the canvas.

7. Edit in Photoshop


Once you are happy with the sketch, take it into Photoshop. Click the Send to Photoshop button and then rename your layers appropriately. Now is a good time to change your work to 300ppi if you are thinking of sending to print.

8. Select the composition


Open the Channels panel and duplicate the blue channel. Select the Brush tool and set it to Overlay with the colour black. Paint over the illustration until it is all black. Select the channel by Cmd/Ctrl- clicking the layer. Duplicate the layer via copy.

9. Add texture


Place textures between the original background layer and the new selection. This will blend the illustration to the background and add some texture. Add a Color Overlay blend mode to match the skin colour to the textures.

10. Use brushes


Choose a brush from Photoshop that resembles hair. Use a colour that contrasts well with the blue eyes and begin to gently add a few brush strokes. Remember to follow the motion of the illustration.

11. Paint with layer masks


Duplicate the texture layer a few times and place around the image. Change the Color Overlay to match the brush colour in the previous step. Give your texture a layer mask and invert it so the layer is hidden. Then paint with a white paint brush over the top to reveal parts of the texture.

12. Enhance the focal point


Follow the same process as step 11, except this time shrink the texture layers and position over the face. Change the Color Overlay to match the skin tone. Place these textures around the face to give it some movement.

13. Utilise blend modes


Duplicate the texture layer again, place around the model and change the Fill of the layer to zero. Change the Color Overlay to blue to match the eyes. Make the blend mode Screen.

14. Add scribbles and strokes


Continue to duplicate the texture layer and position randomly around the illustration to give it a hand-painted look and feel. Add scribbles with a small brush to add detail to the hair. Incorporate a few custom ink splatters coloured in black and blue.

15. Apply final touches


Add detail to the eyes so the focal point really stands out. Use a small ink splatter around one of the eyes. Add a Hue and Saturation layer and increase Saturation to +13. Add a Contrast layer and increase the Contrast slider to 100 and Brightness to -14.