Handy Dandy Digital Art Tips

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Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015



I've gotten quite a few art-related questions recently, so...

I thought that it'd be a good idea to create a general thread for digital art tips, and maybe for critique and general art help, if people are interested in this. So if you have any digital art-related questions that you don't think warrant their own thread, feel free to post them here.


So here it is! If you have tips regarding digital art, dump them here! It doesn't matter if they clash with other peoples' tips because there's no 'correct' or a 'single' way to achieve something. People can judge tips for themselves and see if they are convenient for them. Remember: Tips and advice are just that, and not actual art rules.


I'm going to ask y'all not to reply directly to long advice posts or posts that say DNR in the title in case someone wants to edit their post due to spelling or misinformation. Keep replies in non-reply posts, thank you!


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Varku's picture
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Joined: 06/14/2015


If your signature is unreasonably huge and filled to the brim with large images and boatloads of GIFs: please refrain from posting in this thread! I'd rather not have people lag it up like crazy. Please be considerate of others. Thank you.

General art tips:
Note: These tips are mostly about learning art. These tips may help you achieve the mindset you need in order to improve at certain aspects of visual art. They're not rules set in stone, and definitely not rules that if broken, make you a bad artist in any way.
- Do not use pure black for your lineart.
Pure black lines in art that lacks black everywhere else can distract from the piece in a very negative way. The contrast will mess up the general feel of the piece, making your lines very noticeable and harsh, taking away attention from your colouring.
There are exceptions to this, of course! Few works do benefit from pure black, so always keep experimenting & see for yourself.
- Do not shade with black and white.
(Unless you know what you’re doing!)
Not with non-normal layer modes and especially not combined with low opacity! This will make the entire piece look muddy and generally not pleasant to look at. Lights and shadows come in many colours. You would be limiting yourself if you were to use nothing but b/w as pure black and white don't really exist in nature.
- Don't add shading with a base colour 'but darker'.
It's a common beginner mistake to do this. It not only looks unnatural, it also looks incredibly boring. Nothing looks like that in real life. Light and nearby objects influence the colours of other objects. Nothing is truly 'one colour'. Try playing with different colours and watch your art come to life!
-Multiply (layer) mode works well for beginners.
In order to get a good feel for the software, many people use multiply layers on so-called 'midtones to add shading. If you're learning how to apply colour, it works very well! However, shading with multiply is a beginner technique, and once you get the feeling for colouring, you should ditch this method asap in favour of choosing your own colours. Sticking to this method will stagnate your progress.
- Learn about colour theory. (IMPORTANT)
If you’re wondering how some artists pick colours, it’s everything but random. These people know exactly what they're doing and what colours to pick. There are actually 'rules' regarding colour use. The quality of the colouring might be one of the MOST important things in art. Your drawings can be mediocre, but if you colour good, your drawing will look super nice unless people actually start paying attention (which they never do!)
-Mind the saturation.
Colours are nice, colours are fun. What's not fun however are overly bright colours all over the place. Give your viewers' eyes some rest by saturating your focal points and point of interest. Desaturate stuff that shouldn't get all the attention in your piece or desaturate things that could use more 'gloom'.
For example: Make a character pop by making it bright, but make sure not to make the background just as bright and colourful as the character. Stuff will bleed together. Overly saturated work is painful to the eyes and causes visual chaos where there should be none.
-Check your channels.
Be sure to periodically check your R, G and B channels separately to make sure that you've picked the correct colours in your piece. Does the greyscale version look bad in one of the channels? Fix it accordingly.
- Learn about composition.
Remember the old days when you could just... randomly draw a thing anywhere on the canvas, do a pose on a whim? I sure do, and I don't miss them. Composition is important. Composition can make or break an art piece.
- Flip your canvas
Most people deviate to one side, making the drawing look skewed and they end up not noticing this because their eyes are used to what they’re seeing. Flip your canvas horizontally to notice the most obvious of mistakes and keep doing this until your work passes.
- Don't pick your colours from a reference.
Colours are influenced by lights, shadows and other colours surrounding them. Try picking a skin-tone colour from a photo and you’ll understand what I mean. 
Learn to choose your own colours based on perception so you don't have to rely on examples that may not work out for the piece you want to do. If you draw a person near a fire, the colours should reflect that on the skin, for example.
- Don't shade purely with the dodge and burn tools.
It’s not 2008 anymore.
- Pay attention to the light source.
Nothing is as grating as colouring that doesn't match any possible light source. You can't just shade randomly and make it look good, because people will notice. You might think they won’t, but they will.
-Try not to use too many layer modes besides ‘normal’.
This will come back to bite you in the hiney once you start post-editing, merging and fixing your work especially if you're working with opacity/alpha/fill as well. You won't learn much about colour if you keep relying on the software to pick the colours for you. Layer modes are super convenient if you want to add something w/o messing up the blending, but I wouldn't recommend using them for every single thing.
– Easy on the overlays!
Overlays are good, but if people can easily notice that you’ve been using overlay layers, you’re doing something wrong. Excessive overlays may make your piece look oversaturated, flat, and like colour barf, which isn’t good unless that’s the intention! It's also important to know colour theory for this.
- Don't use the blur/smudge tool to blend colours.
Unless you know what you’re doing, things may end up looking super artificial, plastic-y and clashy and that’s not something you want. The blur tool is used for blurring, not mixing and/or smoothing things out. It's a better idea to blend your colours using a brush as you'll have more control over the blending, and your colors will still look sharp.
– Filters are your friends. 
Try experimenting with filters to see what could give your work some extra ‘oomph’ once you’re done. Use them sparingly, though, because you don’t want people to know that you used filters and especially not have them notice which ones.
- The software doesn't matter.
People often claim that it does matter, but it doesn't. Your skill is your own, and using different software will not make you better than before. Pick the software you think is chill and don't worry about what everyone else uses. 
- Custom brushes don't make you good.
Thinking that they do can be very insulting to artists. It's not the brush they're using, it's how they're using it.
They're light sources, not shadow sources.
(imo) It's easier to add light than it is to add shadows. Start out dark and lighten, rather than starting out light and then adding shadows. You'll see that it's much easier to define light sources that way, as you don't have a fully lighted piece to worry about 
'shadowing' now.
- Watch the tangents!
Tangents happen when lines and/or edges touch each other unintentionally, either fusing two unrelated subjects together or creating an undesirable composition. E.g: When the top of a character's head aligns with say, a doorframe, that creates a tangent, and it's not something you would want in your art.
- Learn the real deal before you start stylising.
In order to bend the rules, you need to learn them. All cartoonier styles are based on real human or animal anatomy. If you start out drawing in a cartoony style without knowing how real proportions work, your drawing will appear grotesque and unpleasant to look at.
- Don't draw on a white canvas.
It's digital art, you can choose whatever colour you want, so why go with white? White is distractive, bright and messes with your perception of colour due to the strong contrast between white and other colours. Opt for a midtone grey or a colour you likely won't use in your piece instead, or incorporate the background into the foreground.
-Leave that comfort zone!
It's fun to be good at drawing the same sideways facing head, but it will not make you any better at drawing. Sure, you'll get better at drawing that specific side-facing head but you won't learn how to draw a different face, or bodies, scenery or anything else! Draw varied things, draw things you still need to learn how to draw properly.  Draw something else!
-Don't over emphasize the eyes.
The eyes are the window to the soul, aye. However, nothing looks as bad as overly detailed and shiny anime-esque eyes on something that doesn't look like needs them. People usually tell others that if the eyes look good, the rest will, too. This isn't true. Make your eyes match your style, don't make them stand out in a grating way!
-Don't be afraid to be inspired by others.
All art is derivative work. It's fine to look at someone else's work and become inspired to make something based on it-- anything can be inspirational. It might be the colours someone used to paint a tree, the way someone draws reflections in eyes, etc.  Don't let the original content police scare you off. Copying is bad, but being inspired is not.
-Have fun!
Haha, just kidding. Art is torture.
Nevertheless, make sure to draw for fun. Not every drawing has to be a masterpiece that makes sense in any aspect. Do what you enjoy doing, after all a hobby is still  a hobby, and it should be enjoyed as such.
Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015
Painting tips:
These are tips for learning- not strict how-tos. These tips make it easier to learn how stuff works before you swap your techniques to something more appropriate for yourself!
- Work from dark to light.
Most people are used to using midtones for their flat colours. This is super inconvenient when it comes to learning how to apply lighting in a painting. It’s much easier to start out with the dark tones and gradually adding lighter and lighter shades to the parts that should be bumped. This is only a valid tip if you're still practicing basic lighting, but it's valid nonetheless.
Remember: IRL light doesn't work like a 'shaded midtone'.
- Don't use too many layers, if at all.
It defeats the purpose of painting and it's NOT convenient, contrary to popular belief. Made a mistake? Just paint over it. No need to mess with layers. Just paint. If you want to learn to improve; don't rely on failsafes. Learn to do it correctly in one go.
- Greyscale
Having a hard time blending colours or getting them right? Try working in greyscale and add colour to your work once you’re done. It makes blending easier and allows you to learn about colour while you colour.
- Learn about colour values if you're working in greyscale.
A light grey can't be coloured a bright red, and a dark grey cannot be coloured a bright yellow. All colours have their own values. Ignoring these will make your colours look muddy.
- Try steeing clear from using soft brushes in your entire piece.
It can work, but it usually makes the piece end up looking blurry and everything but crisp. Soft brushes are intriguing, but not always the best choice. Try using some variation in line hardness!
- Don't shy away from strong contrast.
 It’s better to have too much than too little. You can always lower the contrast afterwards.
-Leave that selection tool alone.
Just paint! Try not to use the selection tool too much; it tends to be very noticeable in the end product and the quality of your art will suffer from it. It'll end up looking inorganic and choppily digital-looking.
- Layer your steps.
No, not as in ‘use layers’ in the software, but on your own. It’s easier to gradually add detail to your painting by layering than it is to start with one part of your painting, work it out in detail and then move on to the next. Start with your basic drawing, and slowly add new things to it over time. Don't draw a tree in a field, but draw a field with a tree in it! Layering will make sure parts of your work won’t clash with the rest and will make it look more consistent.
- It will likely look like a mess.
Dissatisfied while you're halfway through your painting? Does it still look awful even though you're working so much on it? Don't worry about it and keep going! Most paintings look like garbage while they're still in progress.
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Joined: 03/11/2017

The art God is giving tips 

I'm going to take advantage of this >:) 


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ScarfyWings's picture
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Tips from the art god=instant track


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DatOneTrumpet's picture
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I remember when I'd shade with black and white. Those were dark times...

also, people shaded with dodge and burn tools? ;A;

w h y



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Varku's picture
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Joined: 06/14/2015

Dark times of the past, where they belong!

Oh my gosh there was a meme about the dodge tool back in the day but it kind of faded into obscurity because people stopped abusing dodge, so the meme stopped being relevant ;_;


But yeah it was so common and grating that it got meme'd on.

chameishida's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 08/01/2014
I've been on tumblr long

I've been on tumblr long enough and have seen how to and art advice enough to know that yep, I'm not going to dodge the bullet here too aren't I? XD

yep XD, already failed to follow the first three step.


W--well, in my defense, I think it's depend on the style too, if you aiming for something natural or wanting the object/character to blend in with the surrounding then don't shade with black but for some style I think it can work wonder too, like if you're aiming for stylerize, high contrast, cartoony cel shading style. sometime it's up to your preference. what I'm saying is....like Varku said, keep experimenting, maybe try following these tips and then don't and see which one do you prefer, if you know what you're doing then just go for it, don't let it discourage you

sorry Varku, if this sound like I hijack your post ^^"


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Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

Don't worry about hijacking as long as it's art-related :þ

There's no steps, nor do you 'fail' art if you don't listen to these tips. They're guidelines that might make learning how to art easier for people. It's mostly handy things I picked up over the years (stuff no one ever told ME, aaa)-- except maybe colour theory-- that stuff is quite mandatory in art (and no one told me about that for years either... hmm)


But yeah it does depend when it comes to black linework! Take Batman the Animated Series, for example. That's good use of both blackwork and shading that both fits the tone of the show and is aesthetically pleasing. Thing is, the artists knew what they were doing and it really shows in the end product.

Black can really overwhelm the viewer if it's not applied properly. People tend to use black as a crutch rather than a personal choice. They make stuff pure black (or white, for that matter) w/o thinking about it, but in most cases, 'almost black' would look much, MUCH better as it doesn't distract from the piece as much.


But yes! Always keep experimenting. Do things people don't like, do things people shy away from. Who knows you might discover a super cool technique no one ever thought of before.

Red Wind123's picture
Red Wind123
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Joined: 09/07/2014
le bloop

I have a tip! 

Use red for sketching, and blue for basic lining for bone structure and such. I've found that using red to sketch out the lines is quite helpful, it gives you a way to experiment because it isn't lineless or a black line. Blue lining is good too especially in humans because drawing out basic bones can help. I use the blue line for semi finalized lines and begining of details. 


And another tip: 

Foreshorting with the coil technique 

This has been under our noses but trust me it works! 

HERE's a video about it


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Tracking then i need to do my hw byee


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Ghost Light the Flightmare froze my subject. Deal with it.

TRACKING! Varku the art god gives art tips so that must be 100% true and very helpfull! Thank you =D


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cat's picture
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How I do shading: mess with

How I do shading: mess with opacity so that if mess up the coloring it will look the same on any color. Then smudge. Don't use darken blah blah. (I haven't posted any of the art that takes a while here XD) 


shading for animation=kill me life isn't worth this pain.


if you want something to not work out at all use negative or divide. Just, why do those options exist. 99% when I use them it's either black or no change at all. :/

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Now back to homework... I've got a presentation tomorrow... heh


clear the slate and start over

just watch it all burn

the name that you know

you will have to unlearn


she's no longer here

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The Ecliptic Eight
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Tracking ^.^/

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Wolf and Star
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A wild post appeared!!!

Any tips for shading? 


I always attempt to maintain my light scorce but sometimes, it's hard to tell exactly where the shadows will fall and how dark they will fall. As well as how thick to make the line and how to set the opacity.


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Varku's picture
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Joined: 06/14/2015

@Wolf and Star:


Sometimes you can be sneaky and cheat your shading a bit if you get confused. People will notice it when shading is off throughout the piece, but they won't notice a single 'wrong' detail.


Where does the shading go:

What works well is to see your drawing as a 3d entity rather than a flat image. What you can do is divide your work into sections,  and think of a wireframe. How would the wireframe wrap your subject? What parts of your subject are round, or dented in? What part extrudes forward? I always do this in my head, but I drew this up because I'm bad at explaining:


See how some parts dent in, whereas others stick out? This is a good basis to start shading from. You know what shapes you've got to deal with now, and you can base the lighting/shading on them. 


This excludes a lot of other environental effects that affect the shadows, but it's easier to add those after you've got the basic shading down. It all depends on the light source(s) and the subject.


How dark does it need to be:

That really depends on your style, the subject matter & its environment, and there isn't a cookie-cutter way to do this. This is why I like to work from dark to light, because it's easier to decide where light comes from than it is to decide where the shadows are going to drop.  Since it's digital art we're talking about, I wouldn't worry too much about shadows being too dark. Just go over them with a lighter colour if you think so! Don't forget that shadows don't all have to be the same shade.


Line thickness:

This answer is going to be unfair because I personally prefer to do the lines after I've done the rest. I like using 'contour' lines rather than lineart. However, I make those lines a tad thicker if they fall in a shadowy or darker area.

Maybe someone else will be able to help you out with this, because I know that there's a few people here who do excellent lines!



Opacity is only something I tweak when I do some post-drawing editing. I prefer not to change it while I'm coloring because it won't teach me how to pick my own colours and neither will it teach me how to blend. I also get overwhelmed by the idea of layer opacity as I can never decide what % looks better so I decided to ditch it altogether :0

Mel la's picture
Mel la
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Joined: 02/05/2016

I'm still new to digital art, and I'm a lot better at art with pencil and paper. When I draw digitally, I usually trace because when I don't it just doesn't turn out to look like I want it to / it would on paper. You're probably just going to say practice and I get that, but do you have any other tips?

Oh and I do use a drawing tablet by the way.


Mel la.


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Varku's picture
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Joined: 06/14/2015

I don't think there's anything wrong with tracing traditional work digitally. If that's your preferred method, then by all means keep doing it!


What could also work is trying out some different brushes. If you like the way pencil looks, you could try to download or make a pencil-like brush and see if you like that more than what you're currently using. A lot of default brushes can be quite harsh and digital-looking, so maybe brushes that look like the real deal can do the trick for you.


If you like the feel of pencil on paper, you could always stick a piece of paper onto your tablet and use that as a drawing surface. I know a couple people who like the texture of paper more than the plastic/glass of a tablet.

Mel la's picture
Mel la
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Joined: 02/05/2016
Thanks for the advice

Ok, thanks for the advice! I've always thought that tracing certain parts is sort of cheating, but if that's accepted then that's cool!]

Thank you, I will play around with some different brushes too.

Mel la.

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

There's plenty professional artists who prefer to work traditionally and then finish their stuff digitally. Tracing a digital sketch wouldn't be cheating either, would it?

It's only cheating if you steal someone else's work, I'd say. 


No problem!

Varku's picture
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Updated with some additional tips that might be handy, including 'it'll be a mess'. Here's some progress shots to accompany that one.


Tritendo's picture
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"I fight for my friends."

Hi I have a question. In the General Tips section, custom brush part precisely, you mentioned that it was how artists use their brush and not the brush itself. What did you mean by 'how'? Is it like they can use one brush for different textures or purposes or is it something else? Thanks in advance ^-^


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Varku's picture
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Joined: 06/14/2015

With 'how' I really just mean how. It's what you do with a tool that matters, rather than the quality tool itself.


Someone can buy an expensive professional paint brush and just thoughtlessly slather paint all over a canvas.

At the same time someone else can buy a cheap plastic paint brush and still make a masterpiece with it.

Tritendo's picture
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Joined: 06/23/2015
"I fight for my friends."

Ah, I see. Thanks for clarifying that bit ^-^

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In case I need to find this again :3

Bless you Varku


Important: FlyingFury’s cousin here! The owner of this account is currently unable to log in on her own time, so I will be checking in periodically to make sure that this account does not get deactivated. 


'Ello, it's FlyingFury here! My dragons and I hope you'll enjoy your stay in our humble Signature. 



About Me:


I am a girl

I am a Libra

I am sleepy

My favorite color is blue

My favorite animals are dragons (big surprise)

I enjoy singing, listening to music, writing, drawing, and reading

I listen to classical/soundtrack music, Frank Sinatra, Paul McCartney, Disney, and much more

I like Harry Potter, The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, the Avengers, Star Wars, Transformers, Disney, Pirates of the Caribbean, and more

I love flying, going fast, and rollercoasters

My Current (but often changing) Obsession Is: Skyrim! ;)

I have a wonderful mutt named Bailey, and I love her to death :3

I play(ed) other games as well, such as Skyrim, Drakan, and a couple of Wii games. Feel free to hit me up in my message box if you play any of these games, I'd love to talk about them! :D



About My Viking:


My Viking's Name is Chaoze.

Chaoze has mid-back length obnoxious brown hair usually in some sort of braid, dark brown eyes, and typically wears white war paint on her face. She can and will fight with anything she can get her hands on (mostly because she isn't good at fighting in the first place), but prefers to use swords above anything else.

My main dragon is my white and blue Sand Wraith named Opal.

[Character Backstories Currently Under Work]

I have many other dragons that I'm too lazy to list. :P

I am a member of Dark Fury Night Racers.

I currently have 2 Platinum Stars.



Some Art And Stuff:


^Opal, drawn by the talented Arrowalker. Thank you!^


“A rustle of trees

A flock of birds rising

The beat of large wings

A dragon is flying

On her back is a rider

Brown hair streaming out behind her

Golden light seeps through the trees

The sky in the west is burning

The strength of the day is wavering

Taking to the sky

Upwards they fly

They burst through the clouds

Gone are all sounds

Their speed slowing

The feel of floating

Amber light on silver-blue wings

Here gliding, the heart seems to sing

The fiery sky pulses it's last light

The sky now a blanket of stillness




A swirl of shining beads scattered in the sky

Dragon and rider to home now fly

Depending from the starry night

Upon a towns’ sleepy blinking light

Dragon and rider now asleep in their beds

And so it seems our story ends

But this is wrong

For their hearts for adventure still long

For dragon and rider adventure has only begun

Dragon and rider together

As one”

^A lovely poem by my mysterious 2018 Secret Santa. You know who you are - thank you!^

Skyheat's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 05/20/2014
Smile, everybody's watching! >:)

I see a lot of digital art here, and although I occasionally draw with a tablet, would it be too much to ask for critique for a traditional piece I did around 2 weeks ago? I’d like to hear from everybody and what they think, all opinions are appreciated!


Also (so I don’t seem so out of place) I would say my main struggle with digital art is choosing a color to do lineart with. Let’s say I’m drawing a brown husky. Would the lineart be entirely a darker color of what the brown section of the fur would be for the entire piece or does the color correspond to the part you’re drawing? Thanks!

  • Sky

Screen Shot 2017-09-28 at 8.12.43 AM.png


 》A Little Introduction《


▲ Skyheat ▼ Seek Daylight ▲ Kyliana ▼ ♀ ▲ USA ▼ Virgo ▲ Retired SoD Player ▼ Rakan Main on League ▲ Zenyatta Main on Overwatch ▼ Anime Enthusiast ▲ Future Bass Lover ▼ Former Osu! Player ▲


✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦ ✦


》Some Gaming Info《

League of Legends: Rakan // Xayah // Ahri // Zed // Syndra // Quinn // Katarina // Akali // Orianna // Kai’sa

Overwatch: Zenyatta // Sombra // Tracer

Osu!: Former top 3k Players USA

World of Warcraft: Former rank #14 Mage // Stormrage

SoD: Former Phantom Lords Member

Find my artwork on Instagram: >Here<


“May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I wont.”



》Do You Feel My Heart《

“Life is truly a mysterious thing. Each and every life spins its own separate tale,

Yet they become intricately intertwined.

No one ever knows how they will end up.”

- Decim // Death Parade

❄ The End ❄

❄ I hope you enjoyed your visit ❄

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

't is to be expected of a digital art tips threads :þ But of course you're welcome to share anything for crit! I won't promise any useful info for trad artists, though. I personally can't work traditionally to save my life lol


I've got to say that I really like it! The shading is lovely and I envy the way you draw hair and those eyes are just ??? how do you do that traditionally? I already mess 'em up digitally hahahaha

For critique, I noticed that the middle of the lips/philtrum don't completely align with the middle of the nose. The forehead ornament also looks like it's fusing into the hair a little bit, creating a slight tangent. Lastly, I feel like her focus/pupil position is sliiiightly off, but that might be an optical illusion due to the strand of hair covering the pupil.

All of these are super minor points, and maybe a bit nit-picky, but it's all I could think of.


When it comes to digital lineart, geez I don't know! whatever colours fits best depends on the piece, I'd say. It all depends on the style, environment, etc.

Depending on how you work digitally, you can always change the lineart colours to see what looks best afterwards. It's one of the big pluses digital has to offer: Everything can be changed and fixed if it doesn't turn out the way you want it to. If I work with lineart, I just use something like dark grey and change it once the piece is done. Makes it easier to go for multicoloured lines, too.

Skyheat's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 05/20/2014
Smile, everybody's watching! >:)

Ah, thank you so much for your opinion, I really appreciate it! :)
Yeah, now that I'm taking a closer look at the details of the drawing, I could see that there are small mistakes that I could fix.
As for digital art, I have a long journey of improvement ahead of me. Since I don't draw digitally enough, I might not improve as fast as I did for traditional art, but hey, we all take time to reach our goals. :P

peymae's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/25/2015
I need some of these

Oh hekkin tracking 


newsflash: if u use asterisks around words and say uwu you're automatically a furry. sorry i don't make the rules just enforce them [cocks shotgun]

Starke Raving Madmen's picture
Starke Raving Madmen
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 01/03/2016

Definitely tracking










Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

Terrific Photoshop Tip ©:


Messed up a thing? Thing too big or small? Thing is oddly shaped? Use the liquify tool and you'll save many minutes which you could spend on making yourself a sandwich.

Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 02/24/2017
xXNovaXx killed my subject.

So, I had a question. What do you do for lines. Like lines to make some thing lose like a blouse or pants.

I've tried and no matter what I do it doesn't work.

You can check out my art in my siggy. It's awful.




here's a link to the account I use.


Click here!

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

I usually don't add lines to folds, but when I do I tend to use thin and very tapered lines, thinner than the rest of the lineart so they won't look too present in the complete picture.


For the rest it's really just observing clothing, how it works and how certain fabrics drape around the body. Here's a good guide to cover the basics.

Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 02/24/2017
xXNovaXx killed my subject.

Tysm varku! I'm trying it out on my next request. I'll post the drawing when I'm done.

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

Be sure to, and np!

Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 02/24/2017
xXNovaXx killed my subject.

Sorry, I finished a while ago but I forgot.

Rheyleen, for Rheileen's storm.

It's not much better but it's good for a start, I think.

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

Definitely good for a start! 

I'd try to add some shading to the folds as well as the other parts to make your character pop out a bit more. It's pretty tricky to learn but likely worth it in the end!

MericcupNightFury's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 07/14/2016
In my deference, I was left unsupervised.



Every tracking post needs a fun gif.... well, at least mine do! 



I normaly don't respond to privet messaging. If you wish to contact me please do so here:



Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kelytagrace/

Tumblr: https://kelytagrace.tumblr.com/

DenviantArt: https://www.deviantart.com/kelytagrace


Profile... stuff:


In-game Info:

Name in Game: ALostPrincess

Age: 18ish

Gender(boy/girl): Girl

Clan: The Phantom Shadows

UDT: 400,000

Stars: One Gronkel Iron Star

Trophies: 4,000+

Member: Nope

Dragons: 78

Titains: 30

Elders: 1

Main Dragon(s): Varda(Titain Wooly Howl) 

Favorite Dragon Class: Strike Class

Favorite Dragons: Night Fury, Wooly Howl, Skrill, Triple Stryke, & Stormcutter

Favorite Activity: Dragon Tactics


Out-of-game info:

Name: None of your bisness XD

Age: Between 12-30 yrs

Gender(boy/girl): Girl

Religion: Christain(Presbyterian)

Nationality:  American

Favorite Activity: Drawing, baking, playing SoD and going to WDW.


My Dragons:


Strike Class:

Varda: Titain Wooly Howl, Female

Kiume Simba: Titain Wooly Howl, male

Kralovna: Titan Wooly Howl, female

Beowulf: Wooly Howl, male

Hela: Titain Skrill, female

Magnum pi: Skrill, male

Zury: Skrill, female

Plumaria: Triple Stryke, female

Askari: Triple Stryke, male

Mushu: Snow Wraith, male

Ragnhild: Titan Snow Wraith, female


Stoker Class:

Kafka: Thyphoomarang, male

Maleficent: Thyphoomarang, female

Johhnny Rebal: Mounstous Nightmare, male

Tara: Titian Mounstrous Nightmare, female

Galaderial: Fireworm Queen, female

Larry: Hobblegrunt/Threadtail, male

DreamFinder: Singetail, male

Pascel: Titian Terible Terror, male

Joanna: Flame Whipper, female

Ikran: Silver Phantom, male

Kidogo: Smothering Smokebreath, male

Grendel: Moldruffle, male

Kahn: Fire Terror, male


Boulder Class:

Atlantis: Elder Sentinel, male

Samurai: Titian Sentinel. male

Mordu: Titain Whispering Death, male

Nazgul: Titain Scearming Death, male

Clawhauser: Titan Gronkel, male

Lohi: Hotburble, male

Bluegrass: Snaffelfang, male

CannonBall: Groncicle, male

Smokey: Eruptodon, male

Tiitus: Grapelgrounder, male


Tidal Class:

Elgar: Titain Sand Wraith, male

Kope: Titain Sand Wraith, female

Stitch: Sand Wraith, male

Gharial: Windwalker, male

Erza: Windwalker, female

Adaliah: Scauldron, female

Kinaara: Scauldron, female

Sannr Vinr: Sliquifirer, male

Segger: Tide Glider, male

Mogwai:  Titian Thunderdrum, male

Maji: Titan Shockjaw, Male


Tracker Class:

Seamist: Titain Deadly Nadder, female

MacGyver: Titan Deadly Nadder, male

Juddy Hopps: Deadly Nadder, female

Eeyore: Titan Rumblehorn, male

Bongo: Mudraker, male


Sharp Class:

Solvi: Titain Razorwhip, female

Lani: Razorwhip, female

Pippin: Scuttelclaw, male

Hatari: Titan Scuttelclaw, male

Tarakona: Scuttelclaw, female

Figment: Titain Stormcutter, male

Okoa: Titain Stormcutter, male

Imara: Titan Stormcutter, female

Lavani: Stormcutter, female

Delta: Titan Speed Stinger, female

Frozone: Shivertooth, male

Gladiator: Titian Grim Gnasher, male

Naseem: Raincutter, male

Changa: Prickelboggle, male

Clementine: Timberjack, female


Mystery Class:

Nalu: Deathsong, male

SweetTea: Titan Deathsong, female

Abbot & Costello: Titain Hideous Zippelback, males

Senegal Sal: Titain Hideous Zippleback, females

The A-Team: Snaptrapper, males

Aragorn: Armorwing, male

Patriot: Titan Flightmare, male

Eomer: Titan Bonenapper, male

Cincinatus: Changewing, male

Ajagar: Titan Buffalord, male

Sakaria: Sweet Death, female

Aladar: Dramillion, male




Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

The essentiality of breaks


I thought this might be a good piece of advice, and one I should be heeding much more often than I should.

Take breaks! Take many breaks and add in a couple of longer ones as well.


It's kind of similar to the 'flip your canvas' idea. After a while people tend to get used to the piece they're working on and get so used to it that it's hard to see what can be changed for the better.  Flipping the canvas resets your eyes and you'll easily be able to notice mistakes in your art.  However, after doing that time after time after time, your eyes will also be getting used to both your regular and your flipped drawing.


Now is the time to take a break! Even if everything looks okay, you'll thank yourself later.

Anatomical, composition and shading mistakes are easily noticed by flipping the canvas, but the general colouring as well as the intensity of it is something that's also easy to get used to, and no flipping or turning will change the colouring. So take that 30 min break every once in a while. Do something else, refresh your mind. Eat some fruit.


Sometimes longer breaks can also be appropriate, especially when you're (close to being) finished with your work. There's been many times where I thought I was finished, only to open my document a day later to see that the colouring is not what I thought it would be. It's disappointing, but at least I can fix the errors I never noticed before.


Before vs after

Haha, whoops! I completely missed the mark when it came to colour intensity with this one. The colours in the first one look dull and washed out, which wasn't my intention when I started the piece and definitely not something I noticed after I was done for the night. Imagine if I'd upload the left one if it were finished; it would have been such a waste.


Take your breaks! They're good for you and your art!

Joined: 07/25/2016
So I’m starting to learn to

So I’m starting to learn to paint, and since you don’t shade with black, what colour do you shade with if you plan on making customizable bases? Since the colours change drastically with each piece?

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

What kind of customisable bases are you planning to make?

Joined: 07/25/2016
The normal request a fan

The normal request a fan dragon bases, where people tell me what colours they want. I just want to pain them more realistically

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

I don't see why you would pick black for that in the first place. It'll give you more trouble if you want to recolour the black parts. (black + colour = black, usually) I think the easiest approach would be to work in greyscale so you'll be abe to edit the values more easily. It'll also make colouring easier and much more fun to do! --And no black is needed.

Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

Bumping because it might still be relevant!

Vanilia Viking's picture
Vanilia Viking
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 08/06/2014
Tracking!(how did I not see


(how did I not see this before?)


Welcome to my short siggy. :D

Rhaeyne and Nightsky drawn by chameishida. :)


My main dragon, Nightsky (M, Sand Wraith) drawn by ScarfyWings. :3


Story time: Rhaeyne's Courage by IrishMexicanViking. ^^


Profile picture was drawn by Fireflash. :3

Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 09/20/2016

                          Tracking. I'm only recently getting back into digital art. And now that I have a tablet, this will definitely be helpful. Thanks for making this ^^






Varku's picture
Supreme Viking Champion
Joined: 06/14/2015

Glad to see that it's still useful c:


Don't forget that y'all can add your own tips to this thread as well!