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2.2 Starting the First Illustration

Hi there, this is Simeon for Tuts Plus. And in this lesson we're gonna look at the initial composition here in Photoshop. And then, we're gonna go on to start the linework over in Illustrator for our very first vector portrait starting with the main character, the quarterback. Okay, so, we're gonna arrange an initial composition, just for us to get an idea of the layout before we go on with the process. And this'll help us speed up the process, and also give us a vision of what we want the outcome to be. Right, so if we just create a new document, and we're gonna put the size to A4. At this moment in time, we're just gonna call it Starting Comp. Okay, excellent. Now, we're gonna get the quarterback. Click on to the quarterback, and we're gonna drag the quarterback cut out on to the Starting Comp. Also, what we'll do is just put this Starting Comp over here, and we'll click onto the running back. And we'll also drag those two on, so we've got those two layers on here now. Let's just turn off the visibility of the running back for a second and just concentrate on the quarterback. Right, we say that is the most prominent player within the poster. So what we want to do, just increase his size. Hold down the Shift key to keep the proportions in check. Just increase his size considerably, cuz we want him taking up a good portion. And having noticed that the quarterback is kind of at a slant. This will give us a good segway to create some text. That goes at an angle as well, maybe sort of at his midriff area, just adjacent with his elbows. Got a good lean on that side. That could be worked upon. So now, we've got him in position at that point. That's fine. What we're gonna look at doing now is just marking out our horizontal and vertical central points. So just minimize those. We'll bring up the rulers by just pressing Ctrl or Cmd+R. Okay, and we're gonna get a vertical central line. The vertical central line and the horizontal central line. Right, let's open up back our Layers palette. Okay, so now we've got our quarterback in position there. He's looking pretty good. Let's have a look at our running back. So if we just entitle the layer running back. Okay, awesome. We'll drop him slightly behind the quarterback, just so that they're interlinking. And let's go leave some more room for some text at the top if needed. And we can really go to work with some splatters and maybe some extra silhouettes as well, okay. So if we save that file at this moment in time, just take away the the guides by pressing Cmd or Ctrl semicolon. So we take away the guides, we see that we've got our initial composition. Now, what we're gonna do, is actually gonna jump over into Illustrator and begin the vector portrait of our quarterback. So, I'll see you in Illustrator. Okay, so we're now in Adobe Illustrator. And we've got the central quarterback image open, which you'll find in the folders. What we're going to do now, we'll just have a little discussion on how we're going to begin the process. It's actually by applying the linework. Linework is very similar to what you see in comic books, in regards to the black inking before color is applied. So if we look at our image here, we can see that. Cuz it's a very sunny day, there's a lot of shine coming from the sun. Which in contrast, creates a lot of deep shadows. Especially, underneath sort of the helmet, around the facial features, around the eyes, the jersey here, and going on. Very much in the jersey with the deep blues and blacks, and a little bit on the bottoms. So these areas we will apply the linework to the outline of facial features and to the deep shadows. And this is a first port of call where we apply the structure, very much in the same way we see in comic books. So, what we're gonna do initially is just prepare our file. Because we can see that, in the instance where I've got my artboard, is not covering the whole quarterback. So what we are gonna do is just click onto the Artboard Tool, and we're just going to adjust the artboard like so. So we're covering the whole quarterback. Can leave a bit of distance horizontally and vertically. Right, and we just cut back onto the Selection Tool. Right, next thing we're gonna do is lock this layer, because we don't want this layer moving about at all. Okay, excellent. And what we're gonna do now is entitle this layer, Reference. Brilliant, right. So now, what we're gonna do is, we're gonna have a black fill, and no strokes. So it defaulted to a white fill, we'll just switch those around. And now, we'll set the stroke to none, by just clicking the white square with the red diagonal line going through it. Okay, awesome. So starting with the eyes, there we are. We're just gonna zoom in. And we're gonna now zoom right in, and start applying linework to this area. So we'll create a new layer, and entitle this new layer Linework. Okay, that's awesome. Now, let's zoom in nice and tight. And we're looking to get the deepest shadows we can see within here. There's a lot of shadows. You can't really make out much features of our quarterback's eye. We're just gonna go around, put our Opacity to 0. Just go around and click. And create a nice interesting shape, getting in all the deepest shadows here. So, go around, and we see we've got a sort of lighter part there. So what we'll do is just weave into that section. Come back out around here, and then just continue drawing. Just a little flex here. If we can make some sort of idea or visualization of eyelashes, that'd be awesome. We'll zoom out a little bit, within our transparency palette, we can see the shape we've just drawn. And we can see we want to target under here, with the eyebrow left and right. So we could do that in all one shape, but we're probably not going to. So underneath sort of the helmet, we would want a bit of linework just to symbolize the helmet and obvious that is a feature. That's what a linework layer is for. So we put our Opacity down to 0. We'll actually go around and just click on a little bit of the edge of the helmet frame there. We'll come in nice and smooth around this area, and draw around the outer parts. Shadow of the nose, top of the nose bridge. And we'll go inside, we can see it's slightly lighter here, so what we'll do is just draw that in again. When you apply your shapes, try and apply, where you can, nice, interesting shapes in your own sort of style. This way, when people look at your work, they'll see that you've got your own style. So now, with the eyebrow again, we can see that it's very deep, very dark. So we're gonna include that in our linework there also. And just go along here, come back round. Any sort of grooves and divots, we're dear to them, draw them sort of in our own way. And come back to the starting point, get our circle, and complete our shape. Now, I'll put our Opacity up to 100. Okay, so let's have a look and see how that looks. Right, we can see that we are starting to get some facial features in there. Okay, so we'll just draw one more shape and just continue. The next thing we're gonna look at is the outer edges of the nose. So we're just gonna create a nice thin line. We'll put Opacity to 0, and just draw it in here, create a nice thin line within here, going in along. And we're gonna zoom in a little bit so we can see the inner parts of the sort of nostril, we'll see how the shadow's working in there. There's some variations, so we're just gonna groove round, nice and tight around the outsides. Just went back there. Obviously, Ctrl, Cmd+Z. And let's come along the outskirts. What we're creating is a nice thin line where you can just see the outer parts of the nose. Okay, awesome. And we'll complete our shape. Okay, basically that is how you create the initial composition, and begin to apply linework to the vector illustration. And in the next lesson, we'll continue applying the linework. And build up the facial features and parts of the helmet and shadows. I look forward to seeing you in the next lesson.

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