Designing fantasy costumes by applying decorative brushes




Introduction to conceptual design

For every character there is a unique design. What race does it come from? How is your personality? What skills do you have? They are some of the data that will direct the design of both the appearance and the clothes so, as in any design, we will begin by sketching in the rough until we reach something that satisfies or fits your character.

For example, for this tutorial I will introduce how I design step by step one of my original characters, Lorelei, who is a young priestess who uses white magic.


I will use CLIP STUDIO PAINT PRO and the brushes used will be detailed later.


Concept art - First sketches

First of all, it is good to try several designs until you reach the "indicated" so my first step is the rough sketch

Whenever I draw rough, I use the design pencil, one of the default brushes of CLIP STUDIO PAINT PRO, since it has one of my favorite textures; but it's okay to use any other.

In this example I will continue with model 3 since it is my favorite, I think it has a pretty angelic pose and the dress fits well with the personality I imagined for Lorelei.

Now that we have the concept that we will work in detail, we will proceed to shape it.

Personally, I usually change the color of the rough sketch so as not to confuse the strokes of the first sketch with the new one.

In [Layer Properties -> Effect -> Layer Color] it is possible to change to the color of your preference.

In this way:

After detailing the costumes, something like this remains:

Usually the fantasy characters have several details on the clothes so I have circled the areas where accessories will have to be detailed in the dressing room later with the Linework!

(*) Optional: I usually try colors before Linework until I get a combination that I like. Using ink and oil paint brushes (Ink + clear and Tempera respectively)

Streamlining the Linework with detail brushes and shortcuts

As I mentioned earlier, most times the costumes of the fantasy characters are very detailed. If we followed a traditional process it would take a long time Luckily we have the CSP detail brushes and that will save us a lot of time.

One way to streamline the Linework of objects with straight shapes is to make a point / click where you want to start, then press the shift key and direct the line as far as you need. In this way, I used this shortcut for the Linework of the book and the staff:

Now, for the missing details of the wardrobe we will use the following brushes:

Like any other brush, you simply trace in the direction that is required; The more force / pressure you apply, the larger the drawing of the brush will be. I will use these brushes for the details of the neck, sleeves, skirt, dress and socks.

You can also transform the figure with Ctrl + T, and also delete what is left over.

When finished applying, the design looked like this:


Now that the Linework is almost ready, in [Edit -> Convert brightness to opacity] we can replace the white background with a transparent one.


The filling tool is one of the most used when I apply the base color, since if I select [Fill -> Refer to other layers], the paint can only be applied in closed areas regardless of the layer in which they are located .

For example, now that I have the Linework (with transparent background), in a separate layer (and selecting the paint bucket) I apply in each zone.

So on to fill the entire figure.

For coloring / shading I use ink brushes, [Rough] for flat shadows and [Ink + clear] to blur and / or mix. Of course, this step may be different depending on the coloring style of each.

In addition, another method to erase a stroke is by clicking on the transparent box of the color sample, in this way it will erase with the same texture and shape of the brush.

Just as we streamline the Linework in straight ways with a click + Shift above, it is also possible to use it with any other brush. In this example I will use the airbrush to color the staff.

Color II - Detail brushes II and Materials

Another use for detail brushes is to give it a slight "embossment of ornamentation," something like a lace.

To do this, there are two methods:

1) Select the colors that the ornament will have (I'm taking a brown color for the edges and a yellow / gold tone for the rest)

Then, in a clipping layer, change the layer type to "Overlay" to give it an old gold effect.

The second method is only to use the edge of the detail brush:

2) To do this, the background color must be white so that in [Edit -> Convert brightness to opacity] it becomes transparent.


Now that the background has become transparent, you can edit the color that embroidery will have as you like, in my case I will choose orange.

Then, we will change the type of layer to [Add brightness] so that the embroidery stands out (the type of layer depends on the color you choose).

Remaining this way:

We are almost done! Finally, let's apply a material to finish our design.

First we select the area where we will apply the material:


We go to [Materials], choose and drag the material to the area that we selected previously

You can scale the texture of the material with any of the corner points.

To change the color of the material we can go to [Layer Properties -> Effect -> Layer Color]. I will use pink since that is the color of the skirt.

Now, I will edit the layer type to "Soft Clear" so that it can "blend" with the original color.

And ready!

I hope this tutorial has helped you to generate your detailed costume designs faster, after all, the amount of detail in a drawing is one of the things that take so long!

Thanks so much for reading!


I will attach some of my social networks in case you are interested in seeing more of my drawings!



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