9. Finishing Touches to the Background



In this stage I’ll add a background and make some overall adjustments while checking the balance.

[1] Changing the background

I change the color of the white background. I used a lot of colors in the illustration, so I changed it to a natural cream color. I also faintly painted some clouds in a similar cream color so that they added to the effect without standing out too much.

[2] Adding texture

■1. Texture image of rough pattern

I’ll use texture images to create a sense of unity throughout the illustration and to add a little more warmth.

At the top of all the layers, I layer two large texture images of a rough circular pattern in pink and orange. I use this image for all my illustrations.

I set the blending mode of both layers to [Overlay] and reduce the opacity to 4%. This changes the color slightly.

■ 2. Scatter some dust

I create a new layer and use the [Decoration] tool > [Natural scene] > [Small stone] in white to paint a scattered pattern.

Then, I use the [Edit] > [Transform] > [Scale up/Scale down/Rotate] tool to change the size of the scatter. (Shortcut key: Ctrl + T)

I reduce it to this size.

I then use my registered shortcut key to duplicate this dust layer many times so I can scatter the dust all over the illustration.

▼ In Part 1, I assigned Ctrl + G as the shortcut for [Duplicate Layer].


I merge the duplicated layers, and use the [Eraser] tool > [Hard] brush to erase parts and adjust the balance.

You can also draw directly with a smaller [Small stone] brush, but I find it easier to convert the larger stones to an image and then scatter it over the illustration.

[3] Finishing details

I return to the background again. I want to add more texture to the background, so I create a new layer above the background and add a paper texture set to 4% opacity.

Finally, I want to add a little more warmth and texture to make this illustration exactly as I want it.

I open the [Material] palette and import the [Monochromatic pattern] > [Texture] > [Impasto] texture. I set the blending mode to [Soft light] and set the opacity to 13%.

Now I’m finished.


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