Watercolor style animation in Clip Studio PAINT


Hello! In this article we will learn step by step how to make a Watercolor style Animation in Clip Studio PAINT, we will see the whole process so that we can achieve a great result.

The animation that we will perform:

On this occasion we will make a Watercolor style animation trying to make it as artistic as possible, that is, that the brushstrokes are noticed when painting, remember, we are not looking for perfection.

To do this, we will go step by step with each of the parts of the process, so that you understand it in the best way.

Therefore, I invite you to watch the following video:

Tutorial: Watercolor style animation in Clip Studio PAINT

Remember to activate the subtitles in your language, you will surely find it;)

And tell me, what did you think of the tutorial?
We saw step by step how to make a Watercolor style animation in an easy and simple way.

Step-by-step summary of the tutorial:

Now I invite you to review what you have learned through a guide that will support what you learned in the video tutorial.

1. Creation of the Animation Project:

File - New and we choose the last option, Animation and we put the following values, but if you want to make it smaller you can do it without problems :)

You can try the following sizes:
5760 x 3240
3840 x 2160
1920 x 1080

And the animation will be 72 frames and 24 fps.

Remember to activate the timeline in: Window - Timeline

And don't forget to save the project in File - Save.

2. Key Poses of Watercolor-style Animation

We are going to make a simple animation, so we will make 3 key poses, which are the following:

Key Pose # 1 at frame 1.

Key pose # 2 will be at frame 33

And key pose # 3 will be at frame 52

Achieving for the moment, the following result:

3. Breakdown of Watercolor-style Animation

This drawing is very important, for the same reason we will do it in frame 26 and it will be like this:

Do not forget to activate the onion skin tool, so you can see the previous and subsequent drawing.

Initially we will have this result, with the main drawings:

4. Intermediate Drawings of Watercolor-style Animation

In this part of the animation process we will add more drawings to make the girl's movement more fluid.

The first intermediate drawing will be on frame 24.

The second intermediate drawing at frame 29.

The third intermediate drawing will be on frame 31.

The fourth intermediate drawing will be at frame 48:

And the last intermediate drawing will be at frame 50:

Achieving the following result:

5. Sketch of the Watercolor-style Animation

Simple but cute right? Now, we will continue with the process of Lineart and Color in the Watercolor style.

6. Animation Color Palette

Outside of the animation folder I have created a layer called colors where I will have all the colors that I will take at the moment of painting the animation:

7. Brush for the Lineart of the Watercolor Style Animation

For this part of the process I will use a brush from the Assets page of Clip Studio PAINT to clean up the animation, which is free and that I will share with you below:

I thank the creator of these brushes, they are beautiful!

Once we have downloaded it, we take it and we can drag it to the Sub tool panel of the Pencil or Pen tool and we can test how this brush works.

And as you can see, it is a textured stroke which looks very natural, it comes in handy to clean up our animation in a more natural and artistic way.

8. Convert frames to folders

As an Animator, without a doubt this option is one of my favorites in Clip Studio PAINT, we can convert a frame from the timeline to a folder where we can add the layers we want, then I will show you how it is done.

First, we select the Animation folder called Sketch and lower the opacity to 50% and previously activate Change Layer Color:

Then we go to the timeline to create a new Animation folder, by name we can call it Lineart, Color or Final Animation, as you want.

At the beginning it will be empty, so we need to create a new Animation cell, in frame N ° 1:

Now we go to the layers panel and selecting Frame 1 we are going to create a New Layers Folder:

And we change the name to the new folder, the name must be the same as the Frame, in this case "1".

Then we take the layer called "1" which is the frame and we put it inside the folder called "1":

This is how this folder becomes the frame in our animation and on the timeline. If you want to change the name to layer "1" you can do it, also the idea is to create more layers as you can see in the following image:

Try to create the same layers as me and with the same name because we will work in order on each of them, so the process of this animation will be easy and entertaining.

9. Cleaning the Watercolor-style Animation

We select the Lineart layer, which is a vector layer and with the brush that we downloaded, installed and previously tested, we will begin to clean the first drawing of the animation:

Once we have the first drawing clean, we advance to frame 33 to clean the second key drawing, and here comes one of my favorite Clip Studio PAINT options.

We add a new animation cell on frame 33 and in the layers panel a new folder has been created keeping the same layers that we created in the first frame of the animation, I love it!

This is how we will clean our drawings in the Lineart layer of each of the drawings as we create them, achieving the following result:

10. Background Color of Girl Animation | Important!

Before starting to fill our work with color, it is very important to select the "BG WHITE" layer and paint white in all the animation drawings, remember that watercolor works with water, therefore, if we do not have a background solid and when we add a background to our project the colors will blend with the girl and it won't look good.

11. Base color of the Watercolor style Animation

To begin we select the "Base Color" layer to paint the flat colors of our animation:

And this time we will use a brush that comes by default in Clip Studio Paint, when selecting the Brush tool, in Sub-tool you can select the Watercolor tab and choose the Round Brush.

And doing the same with each of the drawings in the "Base Color" layer we will achieve the following result:

12. First Texture for Watercolor-style Animation

To further improve the color of the watercolor in our animation we are going to add a paper texture that is included in the brush that you can download from the Clip Studio PAINT assets, which is free like the previous one and is the following:

I repeat my thanks to those who create these beautiful brushes :)

Once you add it to Clip Studio PAINT, you grab it and drag the material to the work area:

It is very important that you first select one of the layers that are outside the animation folder, so that the texture is a normal layer and is visible throughout the animation.

Now we take the texture layer and leave it on all the layers of the project, covering all the elements for the moment:

Once the texture layer is selected, we go to Combination Mode and from Normal we change it to Overlay:

Making it look like this:

13. Cool Watercolor Brushes

Now I am going to use 2 types of brushes for the animation shadow, to paint I will choose Watercolor Wash and Wet Mix:

14. Shade 1 of the Watercolor-style Animation

Now we are going to paint on the "Shadow 1" layer of each of the animation drawings, to improve our animation even more artistically, making it look like a watercolor painting.

Achieving for the moment the following result, but we need a little more:

15. Shade 2 of the Watercolor-style Animation

Now we will paint on the "Shadow 2" layer to add more details:

Obtaining the following result:

16. Details of the Watercolor-style Animation

Now we are going to select the "Details" layer of each of the animation drawings to add the last color details:

17. Edition of the Animation Lineart

We duplicate the layer of the lineart of each of the drawings:

And we are going to select the Line Correction tool, in the Modify Line width sub tool and in the Tool Properties we activate Reduce:

What we are going to do is play with the strokes, so that in some areas it is finer, almost without being seen and in other areas the line will be stronger, this will give the feeling that the color that we were adding is mixed with the lines of natural form:

18. Animation Project Fund

We create a new raster layer outside the animation folder and choose one of the brushes that comes in the resources that we downloaded and installed previously, we dragged it and left it in the Brush Sub tool to use it:

And we hide for a moment the animation of the girl and the color palette to calmly paint a simple background:

At the moment we have this animation and it is much better :)

19. Final Animation Texture

We open the Material panel and choose the other texture that comes with the brushes that I shared with you earlier:

We take the material and put it on top of all the layers of the animation:

And in combination mode we put it in Overlay:

Making it look like this:

And finally, we edit the size of the texture with the Operation tool achieving the following effect:

20. Export your Animation as .mp4 video

Let's go to File - Export Animation - Movie

We choose the folder where we want to export our animation and we can change the name:

And in the window that appears called Movie Export Settings I'll change it:

A Full HD 1920 x 1080 and we accept:

21. Export your Animation as a .gif video

Let's go to File - Export Animation - Animated Gif

We choose the folder where we want to save our animation .gif

And in animated GIF export settings we can change the size if you wish, at the end we accept:

22. Final Animation watercolor style in Clip Studio PAINT

I hope this article has been very useful and motivates you to make your own Watercolor style animations.

I leave you a greeting, that you are very well and see you in the next TIP.



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