In this first “Making Of...” chapter, I’ll cover the tools I prepared before going into drawing.
 Tool layout
As a basic rule, palettes that are related to drawing (such as brushes) are placed to the right, other tools such as the [Layer] palette and [Navigator] palette are placed on the left, and the canvas is placed in the middle. This drawing tool placement is due to me being right-handed.
When drawing, I frequently merge and copy layers. The [History] palette in the middle of the left dock is there to check if the results of these operations are acceptable.
Each palette can be selected from the top [Window] menu to toggle visibility. Additionally, palettes can be displayed individually as windows or as layered tabs in the docks on the sides and bottom of the screen.
 Main brush
I’ll explain the brushes that were used in this piece.
All brushes are the basic brushes with minor adjustments.
■ Oil paint flat brush
[Brush] tool → [Thick paint] sub tool → [Oil paint flat brush]
(In Ver.1.8.5 and earlier, select the [Oil paint flat brush] sub tool from the [Oil paint] sub tool group.
If you updated from a version earlier than Ver.1.8.5 to Ver.1.8.6 or later, you can still select the [Oil paint flat brush] sub tool from the [Oil paint] sub tool group.)
This brush is set to slightly mix colors. I use it to layer colors. It was probably the most used brush in this piece.
■ Darker pencil
[Pencil] too l→ [Pencil] sub tool group → [Darker pencil]
I use it on parts where I don’t want to mix colors, or where I want to draw sharper lines than the [Oil paint flat brush].
[Airbrush] tool → [Soft]
I use it to blur sections and make gradients.
 Texture Brushes
The texture brushes used here were made by importing an image material and setting them up so they could be used in brush strokes.
I prepared two types of brushes; brushes that use materials as paper textures, and brushes that use materials as brush tip shapes.
This brush was used on the dragon’s skin details and roughly textured sections.
The material is used as a paper texture. To apply a paper texture to a brush, set [Texture] from the [Tool Property] palette (the [Sub Tool Detail] palette if there is no option). The texture’s scale can be adjusted with the [Scale ratio].
The [Sub Tool Detail] palette, where you can set detailed sub tool settings, can be displayed by clicking the bottom right tool icon of the [Tool Property] palette, or by selecting [Sub Tool Detail] from the palette display in the upper [Window] menu.
This was mainly used for the dragon’s breath.
By using textures like the above as brush tip shapes, materials can be used like a stamp.
Clicking the [Tool Property] palette’s [Source setting] button (in the [Sub Tool Detail] palette if not displayed) in [Direction] will display the [Direction Effect source settings]. This brush has changed the settings for [Input affecting to Direction] set to [Direction of pen], making the brush tip face the tablet’s pen tilt direction.
[Direction of pen] will only be applied when using a tablet with tilt-sensitivity.
For details on how to create brushes, refer to the TIPS below.
 Selecting/making colors
When choosing which colors to use in illustrations, think of the surrounding light source colors and the motif’s local color.
In this piece, I made a color set based on the colors of the light source, which are effected by the surrounding flames (red) and the dragon’s breath (blue shades), while the dragon’s colors are muted.
■ How to make color sets
(1) The main colors are first selected from the [Color Wheel] palette, and later fine tuned.
(2) While only the adjusted colors are painted with the [Oil paint flat brush] initially, colors that are mixed well are added to the [Color set palette] using the eyedropper tool.
(3) Based on the palette, the piece is detailed and more colors are added to the palette when necessary.
At a certain point, it becomes more frequent to select colors from the canvas.
 Checking shortcuts
Shortcut keys can be checked and adjusted by opening the [File] menu → [Shortcut Settings].
Although the [Pencil] tool’s shortcut is initially bound to the [P] key, I have changed it to [V], as the initial position was too far away from other frequently used keys such as the [Ctrl] + [z] (undo) shortcut. Due to keyboard layouts, it also helps that this places the [Pencil] next to the frequently used [B] key (hotkey for [Brush], [Airbrush]).
Similarly, this piece’s custom brush “brush _custom01” was assigned to the [V] key.
We will go into “Sketching” in the next chapter.
[Artist profile] 電鬼(denki)
I mainly draw illustrations for TCGs and books. Previous TCG works include: Z/X, LUCK AND LOGIC, LOV, and Last Chronicle, among others. Some of my favorite motifs are girls, backgrounds, machines and monsters.