This admittedly is only my 3rd digital painting, so do seek out experienced folks for a digital painting tutorial. That said, I primarily use a default round brush with various opacity and flow settings. One thing that is important if you want to keep your strokes smooth like a criminal is the spacing setting of your brush. This is cpu intensive so depending on your rig, you may have to settle a bit, but if possible – turn it down to 1%.
Grindhouse Graphix C/O Stroll Sticker P.O. Box 67595 Phoenix, AZ 85082
Now, obviously, you could draw half of it and copy/flip it in the end. Of course, drawing half and seeing it all in real time is better and more natural – it allows you to gauge the full composition while also cheating like a bastard!
How Much Money Do Nonprofit Mailing Postcards Save?Demystifying poster printing: Know your options and when to use them
First a word about the character itself. My Sticker design is based on the SpankyStokes.com Stroll Mascot. Spanky Stokes is a Vinyl Toy Culture Website. A few months ago on Instagram a bunch of artists started drawing the Stroll character. I don’t know the reasoning but it went viral on IG fast & dozens of artists posted their own versions of the character.
I drop in my chicken skratch to a layer just so i get the general proportions and flow if there is one (in this case, I’m not so sure there is anything redeeming, but I’m respectful of my marks and don’t want to hurt their feelings).
Question: So how you do it, Mr. Yeti? How!? TELL ME! I’m a cheater!!!!!!
For sketching I use Autodesk Sketchbook Pro. I like it. It has low overhead, great responsiveness & a simple interface. It also doesn’t judge me.
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Why use manga for inks? Manga Studio has the most natural feeling ink tools of any software I’ve used. The program is robust with low overhead, so it’s great for moderate rigs as well.
Sticker Robot can print on the paper back of your sticker. They call it Sticker Back Printing. It’s a good place to add a logo, your URL, a QR code, etc.
Since I decided to do a die-cut sticker I need to create the die line that will be used to cut the shape. It’s important to have this 1/8″ away from the artwork since it can move ever so slightly in the printing process and you don’t want to clip the artwork, now do you?
Hello, my name is Jake Gillispie, and I am a sticker addict.
In early stages, I work using a handful of layers to experiment. I’ll work at low opacity until I’m more comfortable with the direction and then I merge the layers and begin to work more opaque.
Demystifying poster printing: Know your options and when to use them
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Tutorial: Drawing, Designing and Printing Die Cut Stickers By Zoltron Black Apr 17th Clear Vinyl Stickers Comments
Once the main lines for the crate are in place, I’ll turn off the straight line tool and symmetry tool (just click on them icons again) and then start refining the forms.
In this case, I select the background color to start, since it is really our base fleshtone. I’ll create a new layer and set it to multiply. I then lightly drop in shadow areas with my brush opacity at around 50% and try to – really quickly and roughly – bring out the form.
Third: Solidify the shape and forms until you’re happy with the sketch. I will sometimes leave areas intentionally loose and decide on the refinement in the ink stage. This is a personal preference that really is a result of a personal distaste for following the rules. (PUNK RAWK!!!! And I just used the word ‘personal’ in a needlessly redundant manner in that statement! Yipeeeeeee!!!!)
We need to show the printers where to cut the sticker. To do this, we will created a new layer with a cut line. The first step is to create a new layer above the image layer. With the new layer highlighted hold Command and click the image layer icon to precisely select the image. We need to expand the selection in order to create the die cut line 1/8″ inch beyond the artwork. From the “Select” menu, choose “Modify” then click “Expand.” Since my resolution is 300dpi, I need to expand my selection by 38 pixels to equal 1/8″, (If you work in a higher resolution the pixel width will be greater than 38). It should look like this.
I create a new document in Manga Studio and bring the sketch in (copy/paste works fine from sketchbook pro). I then resize to my liking and take the opacity of the sketch layer down to around 20% and then create a new layer to start inking on.
They call me Zombie Yeti. I like to draw. Sometimes I make Custom Stickers too.
Make sure you are in CMYK mode, put the resolution at least 300dpi. This sticker will be printed on clear vinyl so make the background transparent.
Select your artwork, ignoring the background. From that selection, choose ‘select>expand’ and expand it by that magical number: 38px. This gives you a rough die cut outine that you can tweak in various ways to you liking. I tend to use this die cut selection to create a new layer & fill it a solid color. I can then add and subtract to it until it looks sexy.
Take the “magic wand” tool and select the white background. Now notice the closed gaps that were not selected below. Make sure and add them to your selection. Most of them are obvious, but pay attention and get every last gap selected, some are tiny and barely noticeable but they will show up in the final product if you forget one. I’ve marked them in the pic below to demonstrate my point.
Now that the document is ready for the color, I’ll usually drop in a midtone background for a base. Often just a warm or cool grey, but for this I created a warm brownish hue (reminds me of that salad). Why? ‘Cause I can! I’M IN CONTROL!!!!!
So you’ve finished your art? Great work! I knew you could do it!*
I create a new CMYK document with the proper sizing I want to use. I chose to work at twice the physical size of my sticker at 300dpi (300dpi is the minimum dpi you should work with for your sticker, for best results). So, for instance, if you’re sticker is to be a 2″ x 4″ in the end, I’ll work it at 4″ x 8″. After I’m finished with the color I will bring the file size down to match the output.
This is an image of the film that is used to create the custom shape die lines. The cyan and magenta ink have been printed. Next up is yellow and black… All colors have been printed – cyan, magenta, yellow and black.
Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black. Silkscreen Ink.
Ok, Now that we’ve inundated you with information on how to make a custom die cut sticker, now we’ll tell you how to get a custom die cut sticker! Simply follow the 2 steps below and you will be peeling and slapping one of these adhesive beauties before you know it.
For this project I rolled Autodesk Sketchbook pro, Manga Studio, and Adobe Photoshop. And you can too!*
1960’s Batman Action Figure says ‘I don’t think Stephen Spielberg said those things, old chum…’
When I do a marker piece I like to do the most difficult parts up front, so in the event I screw it up early, it’s not a big deal to start over from scratch. The tusks and tongue are the most difficult part, also the most forward objects in the 3D space and the lightest shades. So I color those first, one small section at a time, starting with the lightest shade and blending darker shades outward from the outlined highlights. I continue on from the teeth and tongue to the lips, the beard, etc., until the entire head is complete.
I’m also a sticker artist and the one man wrecking crew behind Grindhouse Graphix in Phoenix, Arizona. The good people at Sticker Robot are handing me the mic today, so I’m going to share my steps of creating a hand drawn sticker and then getting it print ready for Sticker Robot to make into custom vinyl die cut stickers…
The next section I tackle the t-shirt and then on to the hands, belly, arms and legs. I find that it’s best to approach marker projects the same as eating a whale, one bite at a time. Compartmentalize it in its space by color. The final image was done on 9″ x 12″ Bristol, and took me about twenty hours to complete start to finish.
My weapon of choice here are markers and a 2H pencil. I start with a rough loose sketch and get my proportions and pose how I want them, and go heaviest on the outline of the character. I also lightly outline my highlights in this stage, creating a blueprint. With markers you always go light to dark, so by outlining the highlights in pencil I know exactly where not to lay down any ink, keeping the paper white and shiny creating a reflection highlight once surrounded by color.
20 sweet ice cream-themed designs for National Ice Cream Day
I like to work quick and loose when I have no preconceived idea. I’ll often lay down general shapes for compositional targets to give a framed target to the play-field.
Once the document is created, I open my exported ink work from Manga Studio (in photoshop, stupid!) and drop it in a layer of the new document. You can use your line work over a new color layer and select ‘multiply’ to see through to the color, or you can go to ‘select>color range‘ and cut out your lines (I prefer this as i like to play with my line colors).
Recently Sticker Robot approached me and asked me to share my extensive, elaborate, and completely scientific process on making art for a sticker. I said I would not, but instead offered to give a generalized overview of my workflow. He thought about it, and then kicked me in the cock with one of his robot feet…
Since I am a Spanky Stokes fan I wanted to try and put the “Grindhouse” stamp on it, so I jumped in headfirst. If you follow me on Instagram (@jakegillispie) you’ll know I am a big fan of documenting the process.
PROtip: Originally E.T.’s space cock weiner was to be hanging out through the crate handle hole. True! Look closely at the rough sketch!
To get your work printed these days, you’ll need to get them into a ‘computer machine’… To that end, I work primarily digital from start to finish for maximum control and expediency.
If your sticker is a custom shape, like the sticker in this tutorial, simple flip your front sticker file and the magenta die line horizontally. Add your black and white graphics, making sure to pay attention to the 1/8″ bleed and safety guidelines and save the file. Title it, “Sticker-Backt.tif” – It’s pretty simple.
PROtip: don’t use the eraser tool. Instead, you can select to use any pen or brush with a transparent ink that essentially erases just like the eraser but with your comfortable and familiar settings.
Sticker Tutorial: How to Design and Prepare Custom Stickers By Zoltron Black Aug 27th Featured Comments
Obtain your free Zombie Yeti E.T. Sticker in TWO easy steps!!!!
I was picturing an aged and frail E.T. alone in an abandoned shed. Living there, tied to a milk crate removed from Elliot’s bike many years ago… Sheltered in darkness, with only a small hole in the roof for light, and a battered body of scars and bruises for companions… Living in constant fear of the inevitable returning visitor that takes shape in the form of a matured Elliot… (A superfluous side note: Elliot was in a car accident years prior that left him with a limp, a bit deranged, and super mega horny!)
First you want to scan the image into Photoshop. The Stroll was slightly larger than my home scanner so I took it to a office supply store and had them scan it to a thumb drive.
Well, hello! I didn’t see you over there… I’m afraid you caught me fresh from the shower. I’m so embarrassed, as all I have is this small hand towel for cover… I should probably get dressed, but I’m sure you’re in a hurry, so perhaps I’ll just begin…
Listen kids, you know there are many tools and many ways to make pretty pictures. So, make the pretty pictures in any way you want. I won’t judge you!*
“At that point you can choose to flatten color areas and continue to refine, or squash that bastard down to half size and have it refined for you” – Steven Spielberg
Once you have all your gaps and background selected go to the “Select Menu” and click “Inverse” and Delete. Then drag (Or Copy and Paste) the image into the new file we just created and you have a nice clean, transparent background.
Now that I’ve got the drawing done, I do what every sticker addict would, prep for sticker printing. For this tutorial I am using Adobe Photoshop CS5 on an iMac.
Prologue: Tools of the Trade: Chapter 1: Chicken Scratching Winning Ideas Chapter 2: Solidifying with Sketchbook, Bro Chapter 3: Inking with Manga Studio Chapter 4: Color with Photoshop Chapter 5: Prep That Sticker for Printing …And ‘Knowing’ is Half the Battle! So, you want a FREE E.
T. sticker? Prologue: Tools of the Trade:
Once I’m finished with my inky lines, I need to get the inks out of Manga Studio and into Photoshop. Why? Just to prove I’m in control.
Save the file as a (layered) TIF and the front sticker side is done. Title it, “Sticker-Front.tif”
Using a wacom tablet or Cintiq, the toolset and pressure sensitivity can be adjusted to a near perfect digital facsimile of pen and ink. I also recommend a felt or flex nib to give you good drag like pencil on paper. (I like drag!)
The guys at Sticker Robot snapped some images of the sticker printing process. Here’s some behind the scenes photos of Die Cut Sticker Printing.
Answer: Click on the horizontal symmetry tool and in this case, the straight line tool to speed things up. Then draw lines on one half of the page and watch them magically drawn on the other!!!! VOOOOOODOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!
Before saving it, I would advise printing it out on paper in full size to check for mistakes and test it on a QR reader to make sure it works and isn’t too small. I have found that if you go less than .75″ squared my phone has issues reading them.
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Re-enactment of Z’Yeti at work. Some desk-o-rations have been changed to protect their identities.
Once you’re sticker art is ready to roll, place your order (with stickerobot.com, punky brewster!) and then set up camp by your mail box and wait for your stickers to arrive! Be sure to bring a bottle or can to save your bodily waste and a plenty of glue for sniffing!
“E.T. The Endearing Tutorial” Or “Try Real Hard Not To Say ‘Cock’ in a Tutorial, Yeti!” directed by ZombieYeti
Sketching from an idea is great, but getting your idea from blindly sketching with no direction is often more rewarding!
I’ll then rough out my palette, grab a few accent colors and play on the sides to get some sort of approach.
PROtip: at 300dpi : 38 pixels is the equivalent of 1/8 inch.
1. Leave a snarky comment, or the title of your E.T./Quantum Leap dream novella, below!
I always start from the middle tone and work darks first, then light, and lastly highlight. Why? No clue – personal preference? Brain wiring? Large genitalia? Probably a combination.
I then make a new layer to work on. It’s here I’ll start to refine the drawing and drink liquor.
Open the image in Photoshop and create a new file. I want my final sticker to be 4″ high by 3″ wide at its furthest points. So I make the document 4.25″ high by 3.25″ wide. You need 1/8″ of space from your artwork to create the die cut and another 1/8″ of bleed past the die cut that will be trimmed off later. The extra .25″ accounts for this.
I’ll continue to push and pull areas of light and dark until I’m relatively happy with things.
You’re ready to order your stickers! Go to stickerobot.com place your order, upload your artwork and then comes the hardest part of the process…. Waiting for that box full of magic to show up at your door. Now go forth and stick’em up.
And don’t forget to socially stalk me (Zombie Yeti) on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and Xbox Live & PSN as ‘YourMom’!
Once the shaping is to your liking, use your selection and ‘edit>stroke‘ that bitch! (3px width stroke for the sake of readability at 300dpi, says me)
For my workflow, I select the pen tool (NOT THE BRUSH TOOL) and using the sub menu (DOUBLE CLICK THE DESIRED TOOL ICON), choose a pen of my liking. I like to use ‘brush’ for broad work and ‘g’ for fine detail work. Ultimately, it’s what you’re comfortable with. My brush pen settings are pictured below.
From the file menu, select ‘export’ and export your image in the format of your liking. I usually choose BMP – so suck on that TIFF, you cocky son of a bitch!
As I work to bring the form into focus, I often turn down the ink layer to get a gauge on the form. In this case, I have no reference to use so I’m more concerned with generalizing the light and faking some dimension than making a photographic representation of the alien mofo.
Make sure to follow Jake on instagram or facebook – and definitely leave a comment below.. (And Thanks Spanky!)
Once I have things how I want them I erase the stray pencil marks leaving just the basic outlines and start with the focal point of the image, his head.
Now go to “Edit” and click “Stroke.” The stroke should be 2-3 pixels for a 300dpi file. Magenta is a good color to use since it usually stands out from your artwork. This will be the die cut line and edge of the sticker. Label the layer “Diecut.” It should look something like this.
Since this is going to be a clear sticker we need to ditch the white background, it’s full of stray marks, drips, blood, sweat and tears that I don’t want on my sticker.
Knowing this, I use the ‘marquee‘ tool to create a fixed size selection of 38 x 38 pixels. I use this as a measurement tool. I move it to the furthest bits of art on all sides & drag a ruler guide to give me an idea of my safe zone for the die cut. This isn’t necessary, but can be helpful when refining your shape in the next step.
I like to add a QR code (Quick Response), so people can scan the back of my sticker and come straight to my website. You can have a code automatically generated by using QR code generating sites like Kaywa or Qurify. Or you can Buy iQR from the app store (they offer vector support.)
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An example of the usefulness of sketchbook pro is with the milk crate in this piece. It is pretty much head on and makes for a great symmetrical element. As such, sketchbook pro has great symmetry tools and straight-line tools to help us expedite this more mechanical element.
For this project, I turned on my ‘heartlight’. I reached deep into my psyche, and tried to picture an alternate take on E.T. for the 21st century…
…If you like where this is going, you can read more about this in my upcoming “E.T./Quantum Leap“ fan-fiction cross-over novella: “I Want You to Kill Me, Ziggy”.
This project was created using a *gasp* Windows based computer machine (PUNK RAWK! …although I do have a mac – put the gun down…) with a Wacom Cintiq 24 HD. I use many types of software, and pick and choose based on the process, desired output, and arbitrary roll of a 20-sided die.
“Working larger and then reducing helps create and retain detail” – Steven Speilberg