How to Digitize A Sketch Using Photoshop- Your Design Guide

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by Graphicszoo 10 days ago 5 mins read

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These days, professional designers use handmade sketches and turn them into digital masterpieces that sell in hundreds of dollars.  

And guess what? They do it through the Photoshop software.  

If you learn how to digitize a sketch or, any piece of art and, derive sales out of it then, the design world would have a lot on offer for you.  

Photoshop software has many features that can put life into a handmade sketch. 

But how do you use photoshop if you don’t know anything about it? 

What do you do? hire a Photoshop expert? 

Wouldn’t that be a costly affair? 

Well, this is one of the reasons why it is highly recommended to outsource graphic design services to get on-demand graphic designs for your business. 

Availing on-demand graphic design services is the best way to get professional designs for your business without having to compromise on quality and time. 

Anyway, getting back to our topic of discussion for today, here are 7 simple steps to follow in order to digitize a sketch using photoshop.

1. Scan the sketch 

The first step ina photoshop guide is about scanning the image in the right way. All you have to do is place the sketch in your printer and scan it to at least 300 dpi.  

Remember, the higher your pixels are, the better your sketch will look after scanning. You need to ensure that the scan is crisp with all the details visible.  

Notice even the smallest of details to avoid rescanning. 

2.Open the sketch in photoshop 

After you have saved your scanned sketch in the computer’s hard drive, the next step is to bring it to photoshop.  

There are few things that you must ensure before working on the sketch in photoshop: 

  • Enhance the contrast level of the sketch after saving it.  
  • Clean the image. Make sure that there are no unwanted spots.  
  • Clean unwanted colors and fill the gaps.  

Once all this gets done, your sketch is ready for its photoshop edit. 

how to digitize a sketch in photoshop

3.Create photoshop layers 

The next step in this photoshop tutorial is about creating multiple layers. When you make layers of an image, you create different versions of it.  

Whatever editing you do in one layer will not apply to your original image until you want it.  

Layers give you the flexibility to try different options in photoshop.  

So, click on the “new layer button” and fill the transparent white part by using a “fill-in” option. 

Drag it down to your sketch and name it. Similarly, create many layers of the drawing and name them differently. 

4.Time to outline the sketch  

After making multiple layers, it is time to draw a colored outline using the brush tool. If you have made an error in the sketch, in this step, you can rectify them.  

Outlining helps you to add colors to your sketch appropriately. 

After the sketch outline gets done, you can remove the pencil outlines by hiding layers to create colored outlines.  

Pencil outlines in the layers distract you from creating the colored outlines; that is why it is best to hide or remove the entire layer before coloring. 

how to digitize a sketch in photoshop

5.Add colors in your sketch

Coloring is the most critical step in learning how to digitize a drawing in photoshop. 

You scanned the sketch right, outlined it right, and layered it right but, if you did not color it right, the whole meaning and message of the sketch changes. 

Coloring might be the fun part but, it is also the most critical, which is why we would recommend that you take your time before deciding the color patterns.  

Color psychology varies from person to person. 

So, it would be best if you find a standard color pattern for your sketch that most people prefer.

6.Add final details and shades

The final step allows you to add details to your sketch. You can try different things by playing with colors and designs.

You can create a layer for separate parts of your sketch and detail them individually without compromising on the original image.  

Moreover, you can choose to shade the image. Here is how you do that: 

    - Click on the ‘eyedropper’ tool. 

    - Use it on the section you want to shade.  

    - Click on the brush tool and choose the shade color.  

    - Use the brush to change the shade color.  

Shading adds a glare in the sketch, making it look real.

how to digitize a sketch in photoshop

7.Export in the right format 

Choose an appropriate format to save your file. JPEG and PNG are two of the best formats to save your export your file. 

To conclude

After reading this article, we hope that you must have understood how to digitize a handmade sketch by using photoshop.  

The best part about it is that you can do it all by yourself.  

Just scan your sketch, open it in photoshop, create layers, outline it, add appropriate colors, shades and export it in the JPEG or PNG format.  

However, if you want a more detailed version of your sketches then, you must hire an expert design agency such as GraphicsZoo, as they have the necessary experience in creating unique digital sketches.