To finish up the mini-series on advanced masking, this video introduces the concept of "selection building". Though this is not an official title, it's a process by which you make the job of creating complex selections easier and less frustrating. This technique is especially useful if you're adding graphic or pattern overlays on to your characters. If this seems abstract or challenging make sure to give it a try for yourself -- like other types of masking, it's much easier once you've had a hands-on experience.

If you're not familiar with masking, these are good videos to watch first: Masking 101 pt.1, Masking 101 pt. 2, Masking 101 pt. 3

To follow along with the video, here's the robot PSD for download.

And to learn about applying 2D decals using the warp tool watch this video: Warp Tool

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Edge control is often the key to efficient painting. As you've seen in Advanced Masking pt 1, nesting masks adds a high level of flexibility to the painting process. This video will continue the idea of nesting masks by exploring complex selections. Even if these ideas may seem abstract at first, they are worth learning. In my experience, once you begin to utilize methods like these you're able to approach Photoshop from an entirely different angle --- and will find yourself problem solving in a whole new way.

If you're not familiar with masking, these are good videos to watch first: Masking 101 pt.1Masking 101 pt. 2Masking 101 pt. 3

If you want to experiment with the PSD file from the lesson, here is the robot for download.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Are you using masks to their full potential?  Do you even know what masks are?  If you answered no to either of those questions, get ready to have your mind blown.   Masking is one of the most abstract concepts in Photoshop painting, but in my opinion it's the secret for truly efficient workflows.  Though it doesn't feel like a traditional painter's process, it's a skill no digital painter should live without.  This video focuses on painting textural overlays and the concept of 'nested masking' for maximum versatility.

If you're not familiar with masking, these are good videos to watch first: Masking 101 pt.1Masking 101 pt. 2Masking 101 pt. 3

If you want to experiment with the PSD file from the lesson, here is the robot for download.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Paintings often start as line drawings. Eventually, you'll paint over those lines - resulting in a full painting. If you made that line drawing on its own layer in photoshop, you're able to remove those lines in a totally risk-free way! This video shows how to use a layer mask to easily remove the linework and replace it with a painting.

If you don't know about the basics of masks, make sure to watch these three videos first: Masking 101 pt 1,  Masking 101 pt 2, and Masking 101 pt 3

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Hopefully the first two videos have sufficiently impressed you with the power of masks. If not, this video about editing masks with the brush tool absolutely will. By this point you've seen the power of masks, but haven't seen how they relate to a painting process. Once you begin adding nuance and painterly edges to your mask with the brush tool, you'll see what you've been missing all this time. It can be hard to explain in words, but all experienced digital painters will agree that masks bring unique power to the painting process.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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The introduction to masking continues in this video with layer sets. Did you know you could apply a single mask to multiple layers? Get ready to have your mind blown. This is where masking severs ties with the traditional art world, and can only be called "strictly digital". Even though it might seem abstract at first, this concept will completely change the way you paint.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Continuing where part 1 left off, this concludes your introduction to the pen tool. This video focuses on a real-world example, creating a technical outline around a character's silhouette. If you were to attempt this job with the lasso or marquee tools you'd quickly run into trouble. The true beauty of the pen tool becomes apparent when working on a series of technical curves.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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Want to make controlled, dependable, selections in Photoshop? The Marquee and Lasso tools each have their strengths, but the Pen Tool combines the best of both worlds. This is the first half of a two-part introduction to the amazingly useful Pen Tool. For whatever reason, this is often overlooked by digital painters - avoiding it for the more accessible selection tools. I encourage you to give it a chance, because you might not want to go back to the lasso tool.

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AuthorMatt Kohr
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One of the most important aspects of digital painting is edge control, and selections allow you to 'paint inside the lines' effortlessly. What happens when you want to use a few different recurring selections in your illustration? "Save Selection" is one option, though this video offers a quicker alternative.