In the previous 5 videos we've looked into what Photoshop's vector tools are capable of.  In all of this theory, it might have been hard to see their practical application.  Today's video offers a real-world scenario -  allowing you to try out these powerful (if uninspiring) new tools.  I strongly encourage you to download my sample scene, and give it a go!  This might seem unwieldy at first - but believe me: it's worth it.  

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AuthorMatt Kohr

As you've seen in previous videos, vector shapes allow for extreme precision and edge control.  Spending more time with these shapes often leads to a specific case: the compound shape.  A larger shape trapping areas of negative space - like the letter 'e'.  In today's video we'll explore how to make these shapes in Photoshop vector, using the principles covered throughout the mini-series. 

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AuthorMatt Kohr

Now that you've had some experience with the pen tool, it's time to get more comfortable with vector shapes, and paths.  In Adobe Illustrator these are not separate categories, but Photoshop has a unique way of handling the issue.  In a perfect world, I'd change the system... but this is the one we've got, so let's learn how to use it effectively!

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For episode 3 of Vector Boot Camp, we're getting a bit more advanced.  Here we'll explore the creation of 'compound paths'.  Sometimes complex shapes are more efficiently tackled as the union (or intersection) of simpler ones.  Sadly the process is trickier in Photoshop than it is in Illustrator, so prepare to watch this video more than once.  It's worth it, though - this stuff comes in handy!

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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In the previous episode of Vector Boot Camp we learned about the basic tools.  This video shows a more realistic example of these basic tools in action.  Make sure to download your copy of the worksheet, and follow along!  Though I don't mention it in the video, these techniques work in any software that has vector tools, so feel free to try it in Gimp, Krita, etc.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Vector tools are a powerful weapon for painters, though they're commonly overlooked.  This miniseries will help give you the technical groundwork required to bring Photoshop vectors into your personal workflow.  Said differently: "this stuff is important, practice it because I said so".  

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Hopefully you are already familiar with masking in Photoshop.  (You aren't?  Check out section 12 of the free library. )  But one type of mask that's commonly avoided by illustrators is the 'vector mask'.  I personally avoided it for years.  But it's a great tool!  In this video I'll introduce you to your new favorite type of mask, and in the next few videos we'll practice our vector skills to take full advantage of it's power.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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In the previous video I showed how powerful it is to join 'onscreen mixing' with color grading adjustment layers.  I also promised a followup video that explored the caveats and downfalls, so here goes!  

My final verdict is still very positive, and I think this technique has a lot of potential.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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If you've watched my videos you know two things:  I love 'onscreen mixing', and I also love adjustment layers.  These are two powerful, but opposing, ways to work in Photoshop.  Today I learned how to bring them together... and I'm very excited about it.  

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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If you're working with a really tricky shape, sometimes even the pen tool is not the best way to create a selection.  In this video, I'll showcase an alternative approach to creating complex selections.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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A straightforward approach for learning color.


still life screenshot.jpg

Making the leap to digital color is intimidating.  For many, grayscale offers managable challenge - but color is shrouded in a veil of mystery.  The Color Starter Kit aims to simplify this challenge with a classic strategy: observational painting.  Instead of starting with color theory and color schemes, we'll focus on learning to paint what we see.  Even though the goal is to illustrate fantastic imaginary scenes, I argue that still life painting is the best place to start.  The videos combine classic ideas and digital techniques, with no shortage of drills and lessons to practice.  Along with the videos, you'll find a collection of high quality still life reference photos, as well as .PSD files and worksheets.  

Note: The "Grayscale to Color" included in this collection replaces the 2011 series of same name.  It's much improved, and covers different subjects.

Total Runtime:  365 Minutes

Filesize: a combined 1.76GB (6 .zip files)  

Includes:
Observed Color (Video Series)
Grayscale to Color  (Video Series)
Direct Color (Video Series)
Refined Color (Video Series)
Imaginary Color (Video Series)
Costume Design - Portfolio Builder (Video Series)  

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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The sampling ring is a familiar circle for Photoshop users.  Starting with CC, it's the default behavior for the eyedropper tool.  In this video I explain what it does, and why painters might not need the assistance.  What are your thoughts on the sampling ring?

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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The more you learn about digital painting, the more you'll begin to find tool synthesis.  These are techniques that require the overlap of two or more simple tools.  The combo described in this video is one of my favorite: hard and soft.   

The Ctrl+Paint Library is full of videos that explain individual tools.  If any of the concepts in this demonstration are unfamiliar to you, make sure to check out the free videos linked to the right.

Videos Mentioned in this Demonstration

Spring Loaded Tools
Temp Layers

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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What is "Design"?  In the creative industries, the term has grown to mean many things - which is confusing for beginners.  On Ctrl+Paint I tend to mean one thing when I use the word Design, so let's take a deeper look in this short video.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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The user interface can be a valuable tool for your perception of color - are you taking full advantage?  This short video explains how you can.

Bonus points for reader Federico Rivarola:  " the hoykey are SHIFT+F1 for darker interface, and SHIFT+F2 for lighter interface".  Nice find, Federico!    

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Want to know what tablet to buy?  Confused about the options?  Over the years I've had a lot of different hardware, and my experience might help answer your question.  This video is a bit longer than normal, but I think it's important to hear the pros/cons of various options.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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3D is an amazing tool for 2D artists.  Ask those that use it in their process, and they'll have no shortage of reasons why.  The problem is that many of the reasons aren't obvious to painters.  In fact, I'd argue that many of the most powerful reasons to learn 3D only become clear once you start learning 3D.  Clearly this is an issue.  

Though it's impossible to list the reasons why you should start learning 3D software, this video is one neat example.   If you'd like to know more about 3D software, my new "3D paintover starter kit" is a great roadmap -- and it's all from a 2D artist's perspective.  Check it out!

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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