Colorize to create beautiful effects.


Hello everyone! This is Inma R. and today I would like to give you some tips to use the Colorize tool.

Some time ago I made a video tutorial which you can check here:

But on this new tutorial I will explain new techniques, so let's start!

Applying Colorize.

First we need the lineart of our drawing. Make it on a single layer and set that layer as the refference layer (use the little lighthouse icon to do this).

Next we will create a new layer underneath and we will roughly paint with the colors we want to use.

*TIP* adding some higlights and shadows will give you a nicer result.

While we're on the color layer, we go to Edit -> Colorize -> Use hint image and colorize.

We will get this result:

Fixing the Colorize result.

The first thing I did was to smooth the background. I didn't like how the loose hairs have a strange shadow effect over the background, so I used a mixture between the blurring tool to make the colors more stable and the soft airbrush to paint over darker areas (make sure to apply this only to the background, not the character!).

Next I want to fix the eyes.

By default, the Colorize effects puts the Colorized layer on top of the lineart. I will move it down so that it's under the lineart layer. I also set the lineart layer to MULTIPLY.

Now I will create a new layer on top of the Colorized layer and I will set the opacity to 80%. I will use white to paint the eyes.

I make a new layer on top of the "eyes" layer and click on the "clip to layer below" icon. There I paint the pupils.

Now I want to shade the eyes a bit. So as not to make them too different from the rest of the illustration, I work with the soft airbrush on a new layer on MULTIPLY mode.

I add another layer in MULTIPLY mode to add more shadows and another layer in SCREEN mode to add some lights.

Now, as you can see, some parts of the image have completely wrong colors. Each color is fixed on a different way.

When a color is much darker than it should, I create a layer on SCREEN mode and paint over it with a color that gives a satisfactory result (you will need to try different colors until you find the one that looks best depending on your illustration).

When a color is too gray-ish, what I use is a layer on COLOR mode to fix the look. You can complement it with another layer in SATURATION mode if you want more vibrant colors.

I'm going to fix the rest of the colors using these layer types depending on the change I want to make:

-SCREEN: to make a color lighter.
-MULTIPLY: to make a color darker (like on the bangs).
-COLOR: to switch one color value for another (NOT the saturation).
-SATURATION: to make colors more or less saturated.

With this I'm done fixing the base colors!

Optional step.

This is step is completely optional, I only used it because it looked good with this particular illustration.

I go to the layer where the Colorized effect is and I set the layer mode to NORMAL (it was in MULTIPLY mode by default). Then right click on it and duplicate the layer.

Next I click on the icon to enlarge the image and I enlare it by two (don't do this by pulling from the edges, do it by writing the numbers so that the center is still the same).

Now we go to Filter -> Blur -> Gaussian blur and input 50.

I set the layer mode to DARKER COLOR and reduce the opacity (I reduced it to 30% on the screenshot, but later I reduced it again to 15%).

This will create a sort of "glowing colors" effect for the darker colors. It might not work on all illustration, which is why this step is completely optional.


The first thing I want to do now is to edit the lineart so that it's lighter. for this I use this autoaction:

Now I'm going to add some shadows. I create a new layer on MULTIPLY mode right under the lineart (over all the other color layers), and, using the colors from the upper left corner (purple and pink), I shade a bit using this brush:

Next I fix some little details from the Colorized layer by using the blurring tool or picking colors with the eyedropper and painting with a softbrush.

Final effect: textures.

I click on the Colorized layer and then go to Layer -> Layer Mask -> Mask outside selection. This will hide everything from that layer (don't worry, it's not removed!).

Now what I do is to paint back parts of the layer using this brush over the mask and any solid color (the color doesn't matter, so long as it's not the transparent color):

To finish, I lightened parts of the lineart a bit (the heart) and added another texture on top using the same technique (mask outside the texture, then paint some parts of it back).

I also added a new SCREEN layer on top of the lineart and added little details like the stars, light lines, etc.

*This is the texture I used:

About the artist.

I'm Inma R., a freelance artist from Spain. I've worked on videogames, how to draw manga books, event mascots, etc., and on my free time I like to draw for myself or create tutorials to help other people.

The character I drew on this tutorial is the main character of a BL comic I'm making. Feel free to read it on Webtoon!

For more tutorials you can check my YouTube channel:

Or feel free to follow me on any of my social media.

-Instagram: inma_pollito
-Twitter: inmapollito
-Deviantart: inma
-Tumblr: inmapollito

Thank you for reading!



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