Using digital software to create my art is something I wouldn't think twice about now. In college though, I pretty much strictly stuck to traditional media. I was never sure about using programs like Photoshop & Illustrator to create my work because I felt like the software sort of takes away some of the process and does some of your work for you (this was before I found out about graphics tablets, although I think it still applies to Illustrator a lot). I taught myself, through trail and error how to use Photoshop and never looked back, although that's now kind of the problem.

Whenever I draw something, unless I scan it into Photoshop and colour it, it's just a sketch, sometimes I add some grey marker to add shadows and it feels more like a finished drawing but that's it. I've been starting to feel like I have a huge pile of really cool sketches, some of which don't really need to be turned into digital pieces, so I wanted to find a new way that I could turn them into more than a sketch without spending too much time on them.

Once again, Jake Parker came to the rescue! I often watch his videos while I'm working, and came across one where he did something really clever with one of his drawings which I thought was genius! Below is a step by step of how I used his technique to turn one of my own sketches into a finished piece, super quick, and let me add, it was so fun to do! 

First up is the video itself which is full of great content...

Here is my initial sketch that I started out with, as you can see it's super rough, but I knew where I wanted to go with it so didn't add much detail. To create this idea I created a few sketches from research first (you can read more on that in the previous blog post 'Investing in your creative bank).

Next up, I scanned in my sketch, turned the lines down quite a bit so that I could just see them. I also added a shadow underneath to make it more dynamic.

Then I added my gradient, the colours don't really matter, but going with something fun is better for this I think! I also erased some areas where I wanted to keep the white, such as the teeth.

Then comes the fun part! I printed it off onto some card, and used my brush pen to ink in the lines. As you can see, it looks like a finished piece and also looks a lot more complex than it actually is. For more depth, you can always use a grey marker to add shadows. I did the opposite and used a white gel pen to add some highlights. 

Overall I think it turned out pretty nice and it's definitely something I'll be doing in the future. If you decide to try it, feel free to tweet me on Twitter or tag me on Instagram because I'd love to see it! 

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!