Monday, May 16, 2016

How to Add a Canvas or Paper Texture to your paintings in ProCreate

Adding a Canvas Overlay In Procreate

     There are a lot of advantages to digital painting, but sometimes the resulting paintings can lack a texture. I notice this a lot in my digital pencil drawings. To remedy this, I like to add a paper texture to my drawings.

Drawing Paper Overlay
     Since I like to paint and draw digitally in a realistic style, I also like to add that extra texture of a drawing paper or canvas to my art. All my digital pencil drawings have an added overlay, and only some of my digital paintings will have the canvas overlay.

     The border collie drawing to the left has a rough paper texture added, which I think lends to a more authentic look.

Contemplation with  canvas overlay
     This is my snow leopard painting, "Contemplation" with a canvas overlay. Now I don't always add the canvas overlay to my digital paintings for a couple reasons, mostly if the painting is going to already be printed on a canvas wrap, the canvas overlay can actually muddy the colors. A canvas overlay is great though if the painting is going to be printed on paper,  it gives that oil painting feel. I have actually had people think that my paintings and drawings were done in traditional methods, especially with the overlays. I am always honest though with how my art is made, so when I upload to the printer of my choice, I always state that it is a digital painting or drawing.

     So here is how I add the canvas or paper overlay.
First, you need the canvas or paper texture of your choice. You can go on google and find paper textures under public domain websites or you can purchase the texture off sites like Shutterstock or Getty Images. I actually have found that another art program that I use, Art Rage has some awesome textures so I will open Art Rage on my iPad, click create new painting.You can then choose paper or canvas and how rough or smooth you want the texture.

     Next, I will save the Art Rage canvas as a new painting and export to my camera roll. You can then import this canvas texture into your Procreate painting as a new layer. In the image to the right, you can see the canvas as the top layer. I have it invisible right there, but when clicked on it will cover the painting.

     Now with the texture layer selected, go to the blend modes for that layer. You just tap the N next to the layer to bring up blend modes. Default mode for the layer will be Normal, but you want to go down to Multiply. This will allow your painting to show through the canvas or paper layer, but still allow the texture to show.

     Here you can see the close up of the canvas texture on my painting. It adds that much more of a finished or polished look to it. You can  use this method with many types of textures, not just paper and canvas. There are many cool effects that can be created using this method and the blend modes in digital painting. Try out all the different blend modes and see what you can create.

I hope you enjoyed this quick and dirty digital painting tip!

--Becky Herrera

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