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Actions, Layers & Filters for Sketching

Lesson 13 from: Painting With Adobe Photoshop

Jack Davis

Actions, Layers & Filters for Sketching

Lesson 13 from: Painting With Adobe Photoshop

Jack Davis

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Lesson Info

13. Actions, Layers & Filters for Sketching


Class Trailer

Day 1




Why Do Expressive Painting


Adobe Bridge Setup & Image Optimizing


Jack's Painting Presets


Enhancing Source Images


Photo Hand Tinting & Workflow Options


Working with Brushes & Palettes - Part 1


Lesson Info

Actions, Layers & Filters for Sketching

I want to do a sketch because we have to end it with a um something that's fun and now that you know drawing this right here is what we're going to do and you only need to obviously to do a little bit of drawing but it will actually get something where you could use it in a portrait setting but let's see if um I want to use this on a few different drawings there's one of our hand tinted ones and light room we've got and see what we want to dio we'll use our yokohama just so you see what that does uh let's see if there's another one I wanted to use well say that's good enough uh we're open all these up and we bring in some shadows that one looks really dark to me that is another one that is hand tinted uh in um it became a raw so that is what you could do with a black went photograph we'll just take all these and other sandy foster shot and we'll go ahead and open these as objects you can open them as objects actually will do them as objects because well also show that oil paint filter ...

okay let's start with this one because this is the sample we have the idea is um using a little um filter trick of being able to find edges and then inverting them um there's really? Only a half a dozen are so main ways of manipulating pixels in programs and taking an image and duplicating it and blurring it and changing its blend mode and putting it back onto something on top is how one sharp mask works it has its how little chrome effects can be used on typography it's it's just there's not that many things you can do to a pixel so the effects that you see or being done by a fairly limited set of algorithms and how you bring those together there's even the filter generator I don't know if it's still ships with photoshopped they let you have plug in those numbers on offsetting and how you wanted an image um to be filtered you could create your own filters in photo shop in this case I've created an action on one of these techniques that's going to imitate a drawing a sketch okay, I don't want to sketch this entire document I won't don't want to go through the model's eyes and I certainly don't ever want to do here and I also want to be able to catch her personality in here so all of that presupposes either a lot of skill or a lot of time on my part even if I were to trace it so I've got an action that I'm given to you all and um that is well say sketch with highlights will actually do um our first one davis filter effect sketch okay and you can see if there's other ones that I've given you a swell is part of being here today, thes beta two thousand three um and I'm going to run it using that'll shortcut because I can't get down to the play button at the bottom of it and that's going to be a command double click or control double click on the pc and it's going to come up there and explain what you're going to do in the way that you determine what, um kind of edge work you get in this technique and we'll explain the layers when we are done with the corresponding image is by controlling this blur. Like I said, you've got your original image. You're going to take this blurred copy and how these to interact with each other is going to reveal the edge because that blurring is going to spread that edge and everything that's inside that non blurred edge is going to end up being a hard line, so by taking it down you can end up with a very fine pencil with no shading to it. As you take it up, you start actually bringing in some shading into the pencil effect, okay, so it really depends what you're going for. I purposely left the dialog box up so you can determine one based upon the detail in the size and resolution of your file what it is you're going for a day and how much detail? So I'll say that right there and you say okay and it does one more thing you'll notice that one it was did a line work now it can adjust brightness contrast in de saturation adjustments to taste what this did is it created all these layers for you based upon your original and this is the secret mickey mouse club handshake right here because this is what's doing the magic you know what is this? There are two things going on here that are creating the magic one it is a inverted color commander control I inverts the color so the inversion of the color is one of the elements that's controlling this special effect and the other let's just convert it is this filter right here called sprayed strokes and sprayed strokes is giving us are sprayed strokes and the inversion of the image is giving us our shading. The line is coming in because this layer right here is in the color dodge blend mode. So here is the resulting image. Leaving it in full color what's what's happening is by inverting the image you're able to do there's a number of filters that basically invert the tonal range of an image leaving behind the a distinction between two different layers colored dodge is one of them so to get the accurate color of red lips and orange skin this is going to invert it, so by intentionally inverting the color, the blend mode, which is also doing its own inversion, brings us back to the real color it's a total non intuitive. I don't know who stumbled upon this years ago. We've all been those of us who have been around the block for a while have all been working with blend modes and blurring and doing this thing, but specifically the halo effect by the amount of blur that you do, and that I'm giving you the potential of leaving behind. He sprayed strokes again, depending upon how big that radius is is where the coolness comes in. That is, the magic so it's a duplicated the current layer it's an inversion of it. By doing a commander control eye, you can see that it without doing our inversion that is showing you what that colored dodge does with an inverted color. It's running sprayed strokes. If we do sprayed strokes, the settings for the spread strokes on this one happens to be twelve and seven um, I actually have, um, or elaborate action of this which does both strokes going it something like a right diagonal, and then it also does the exact same thing at a reduced length at a left diagonal and that way, and it uses the difference cloud to make a knot oh mask so rather than all the strokes in one way it creates an irregular left right stroke through the picture and that's part of the the things that come if you buy the class, those of the more elaborate ones I added a d saturation uh, hugh saturation adjustment layer to get it into more of a traditional pencil sketch. I added a brightness and contrast and here to kind of emphasize that sketch. So here you have a rough pencil sketch let's actually take this right here and run it at a smaller setting. What was that ability to? Ah, to duplicate a current document, leave the current one just as it is. Does that command take image duplicate? And this time I'm going to say that just the merge layers only so now I've got just that that left that document open so there they are. It's awesome actions come up here filter sketch, double click you guys that this is all review now you guys are doing great. I'm gonna come up here. The default setting is twenty five. I'm now going to take it much smaller, ok? And now it's going to be a let's turn these on so you can see okay, so this is going to have less shading I may take that, um brightness up a little bit I think I like the twenty five better or the larger one better so we'll go back to this one and now what I want to do this looks like, you know, a kind of rough sketch the fact that it's all going one direction is kind of a telltale sign that it's probably a digital filter but it certainly looks dramatically different from the photograph so it's setting in apart from that storytelling side um but when I don't get the feeling of paper um in here one I haven't put any paper on here so let's add a paper to this so this is going to be an advanced part of the class because its not built into the action and we do it based upon you guys now being seasoned professionals in terms of blend modes, patterns and things like that I want to add a say a watercolor paper texture on top of this what could I do? I'll tell you because you guys air your brains or is fried it's mine are you say give me a margaret and chips I don't care dude just show me don't mess with me now I'm a loaded gun layer new pattern okay? I'm not gonna change the blend mode though I could at this point I'm not going to I'm going to come up here and I'm going to do my water color and I'm going to use in this case my watercolor overlay so it's a nice watercolor, medium gray paper. And for those of you who have done drawings, one of the most fun things you could do with the drawing is do a like a chalk drawing on a colored paper just like a colored canvas colored ground that only do you do black, then use white, right, and so officer and you're able to hit thes highlights in it is what we're gonna do here now. The thing is, of course, that I want this paper I can't put the paper underneath everything because I've got a bunch of papers here. So what am I going to do? Tow let that show through this blend mode the blonde mode of what I could do your right, you could do a passing the thing with opacity is it's gonna lighten those the drawing lines so I don't really want to lighten it. So there's a couple that I could do one if you were to squint well, fifty percent great. The problem is that's gonna want to disappear, right? It's only gonna wanna dodge and burn it. So I'm gonna go rightto multiply and take down my opacity, so now what I have is I have, um, paper have a nice grave medium ground paper I still have nice which black lines but I have a textured paper on here and I could experiment with different papers I could use you know, a white paper what I'm going to do now is add a uh layer at the top and I'm getting frustrated now because I don't have my layers palette so I'm just using the shortcuts that command option come in option shift and for new to make a new layer so there's my new layer and now I'm gonna come in and when they use one of my pencil pencils I could use one of the ones that I've used before but I don't need it I'm not really cloning I just want to add some highlights to it when you use the good old fashioned paintbrush and I'm going to use one of my regular media brushes which I believe you could use any brush there's a bunch of brush tips there basically those same brushes I think some of the best ones are, um the ones that were done for uh back for photoshopped five but I'm just going to use in this case a wow chalk extra small and I'm gonna use white paint by the way another couple shortcuts will end up for the last few brain cells that you have left to set your default colors in your color palette, which you should know that's tapping the deaky says you're defaults to black and white the ex key will exchange your four grand background color so black white white to black new dodging and burning using old tricks that's really nice to do you're working in a mask so no indeed to get your your black and white x to exchange those colors of course you know things like bi to get the brush tool things like that okay tea for free transform that's that's a command tea anyway okay so I've got white right here it's on its own layer and I'm now just gonna come up here and going to come up here and I'm gonna put in the speculum highlights in a way that looks kind of organic and it's just going to be what am I trying to do? I'm trying to suspend the disbelief of the audience as they're looking at this that this wass done hitting command f k some filter so I'm now going toe come up here and I'm gonna hand put in these things I'm going to do it in such a rough way that it actually looks um like it's organic and I can since I'm working on this layer if I want to I can do that same trick I did before there's nothing stopping me from looking at my original okay and actually I'm still painting on this layer but I'm no longer being bothered by the um that little paper that I did and I'm just going to do basically the speculum highlights on the lips and I'm gonna come up and I'm going to I had just a few things we'll do that that no stroke here okay not crazy but that no stroke that history palate well you you're saving the last you know twenty states you know they're shortcuts for that you know commands ear control z is undue command option z goes backward in time throughout all your old steps like I just did with all those strokes or control all dizzy on the pc command shift z lets you go forward in time through entire history state whatever you do do not do command option shift is he that's where that spot with the goatee came in okay temporal conundrum that's right don't do it okay so I'm just going to dio again I'll just put in a few things here like that so doing a few little highlights now what those last two stages here it is here here's just adding some pencil highlights if I want I could actually add that take off the d saturation so now I'm back to full color I'm still getting my gray paper I've got those lines in here but by me going in and pan painting in some details I'm starting to get that you can obviously also at reduced capacity just to pull in a little bit of color so now by this d saturation, which is, of course, just a adjustment layer with saturation taking all the way to zero, I can you know, the way I did that. So that is how we did that, um, sketch, which is taking a few more times on it. Here. I actually added here's the same little, um, highlights, but I added a, uh, brown to the paper, okay? And the last thing that will do with that, and then we'll take some questions, but I think we're right about there is in terms of the brown here's, a here's, your last great tip for the day. Let's, take our d saturation back up. So it matches that won the, um, pattern phil pattern, phil, like grady and and a bunch of other things in photo shop are wonderful nondestructive what are known as procedural ways of working what light room, what photoshopped remembers much like light room or a doe became a raw is it remembers the process, but not the pixel pushing. In other words, this pattern, phil layer. The reason why I can change it to a different pattern or move it around is it's, a layer that says, I'm gonna reference those patterns in the library and that's why I can change it next week because it's just a reference an adjustment layer in the senses like that it doesn't permanently change the pixels underneath it it's a layer I can delete it I can change it it's procedural everything in light woman and o b camera is also procedural it's just the slider locations you can go back and change it at any time there's another thing in photo shop that's been around for a million years that's also procedural mind bendingly powerful and those are the layer styles laywer styles that you get to it's at the bottom of the layers palette which of course we can't see because I can't see it um also known as the blending option to see if I can blending options I'm doing a right click to get to it it's normally the little black and white oreo cookie you know dipped in chocolate icon blending options this where you find your opacity and different things like that the's or your layer styles this could be used like that I've got twenty libraries of layer styles that are part of the one click wow preset collection for ah a lot of people use it for your drop shadows you're bev als your glass chrome plastic jewels would steal you know crystal all those things are things that I used for graphic design for automatically creating depth in this case just the little thing that I want oh mention here every single layer in photo shop has access to the blending options or the layer styles dialog box and with that there is something called color overlay and there's nothing stopping you from coming up here and choosing, you know, a nice what she was a nice brown will make it kind of a rich brown, and since we have blend mode, you can come over here and just say color and now what I've done, and I've got this procedural way of changing color and it's not actually going to change this layer at all, it's going to tuck the layer style up inside of it, blending modes just like opacity. Stay with the layer so me being able to come over here and change any layer or tent any layer, or do a c p a tone on any layer in addition to doing drop shadows and devils and bosses, this is kind of neat because it's going to allow me to come up here and add a tent to this procedural fillet er the filler and it has now a color overlay tucked up inside of it. So in case you've never worked with layer styles, their mind bendingly cool, incredibly useful color overlay because we do tit things it's very nice that rather than create another layer on top, fill it with a certain color change that blend mode to do that all by simply going into the dialogue box that's already built into every layer why not okay and um and there's all sorts of things you could change that from that too overly if I wanted to make that I mean multiply now that is going to be a using a multiply so that is going to add a different kind of feel to it in terms of this so you have all your blend modes at your disposal you've got all colors you've got you know you're drop shadows and clothes and everything else so that is something there let's dio this we could run that action actually let's we'll run that same action let's do that sketch okay, so that again probably fool around with that a little bit more in terms of doing it with sketch I don't particularly care for that one yokohama let's try that one had that up a little bit more. Okay, I like that a little bit better. We're starting to get that, you know, sketchy feel and again I could hand do that so that you have that action to play around with but the action that I really want to show and let's see if I've got that we'll do it on our, um young lady here let's go ahead and, um the other one here where is a smart object used that image duplicate I do want to be a smart object and we're going to do here this is a tease for tomorrow but also one of the simple things that also when I've one thing I've given you is actions let's see if I can get down to it I hope I can get down to it smart object painting looks like I can this right here and we'll change the parameters later but this is what we did by running that action and this is what's going to like because some of you it were talking specifically about, um your portrait's in portrait studios this is where we're going to start off tomorrow where this action is a smart filter recipe it's actually tucked inside our raw file actually being applied directly to the raw file because we brought it in is a smart object and we're using it for doing this effect which in this case is using these four five different filters the oil paint, median and boss and a couple ones that are creating textures and it's allowing us to get this painterly effect including this um rough canvas and skipping of surfaces skipping of paint along services this is a starting point this is an ending point you could use it as an ending point for painting what I do and what we did with the princess diana painting is used this for details within a portrait where I'm going dude, the last thing I wanted to his hand paint somebody's eyes because I know I'm going to mess it up, use tricks like this and then hand paint into things like the hair, the background of the gown. So we're going to start off tomorrow talking about more detail about the brush going to get into the mixer brush. I'll explain this particular recipe, but this recipe actually, you know, automatically works that uses the built in textures in photo shop, even if you don't have my canvas aces and stuff like that. But if you have things like my canvas, this is where I mentioned I also gave you. This is texturizing, which will get into where you can load the texture, but that's. Why? Why? I gave you guys a pdf a psd of that one particular canvas texture just because it's, so useful. Instead of using the synthetic canvas that's in here, you can actually bring in something like a real canvas. So that is where this load texture comes in, but anyway, so that's, where we're gonna start tomorrow.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Painting Files

Ratings and Reviews


Okay, I'll be first. Jack has an easy, approachable way of teaching. It was more like being in the room with him, watching over his shoulder as he created something utterly new and exciting. Even when he worked on images he had done many times, I never sensed boredom or a lack of enthusiasm. He was patient with questions and answered them completely. I hope Jack enjoyed this way of teaching as much as the world enjoyed watching. Maybe he'll find more to share. I know I'll sign up for his next one. This workshop inspired me to start creating art again. I'm slowly losing my sight and sad to say, I was starting to let it get to me. As I watched Jack, I tried just a few things and realized that I can do this. Digital art is much easier for me than pencil and paper because of the technology. I miss the pencil and paper drawing, of course, but this is so much FUN! The techniques that Jack shared are wonderful and the results rockin' ... or as Jack says, bitchin'. Thanks to Jack and creativeLIVE I'm back in my head in a good way.


Okay, I'll be first. Jack has an easy, approachable way of teaching. It was more like being in the room with him, watching over his shoulder as he created something utterly new and exciting. Even when he worked on images he had done many times, I never sensed boredom or a lack of enthusiasm. He was patient with questions and answered them completely. I hope Jack enjoyed this way of teaching as much as the world enjoyed watching. Maybe he'll find more to share. I know I'll sign up for his next one. This workshop inspired me to start creating art again. I'm slowly losing my sight and sad to say, I was starting to let it get to me. As I watched Jack, I tried just a few things and realized that I can do this. Digital art is much easier for me than pencil and paper because of the technology. I miss the pencil and paper drawing, of course, but this is so much FUN! The techniques that Jack shared are wonderful and the results rockin' ... or as Jack says, bitchin'. Thanks to Jack and creativeLIVE I'm back in my head in a good way.

a Creativelive Student

Thank you Jack Davis. Having tried to paint, both in the real and digital worlds, this is the first time I have seen a comprehensive demonstration of the techniques and philosophy for the artist. This course is valuable for any aspiring artist, digital or otherwise. By the way thank you CreativeLIVE for the long form training space you offer both the teachers and students. Jack is inspirational, talented and sometimes funny. Watching him paint in real time is by far the most impressive sight but the information about why is more valuable. Overall this course will give you ideas, knowledge and skills (if you practice). I highly recommend this course for anyone that has tried to paint in the past and was underwhelmed by the results.

Student Work