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 Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method

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Vanadis
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PostSubject: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:40 am

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Notes: This was done in GIMP. I'm positive it'll work in Photoshop as well. Dunno about Elements or anything, as I've never used it.

This tutorial will not teach you how to use GIMP. Though, if you have any questions about using it while trying out this tutorial, and you can't seem to find the answer elsewhere, ask away and I or someone else will certainly answer.

Also, I use a tablet. I'm not sure how well this would work out using a mouse or trackpad, as it's pretty much all freehand. So, really, this is not the hair to do if you're in a rush, LOL. This tutorial took over eight hours, and about three quarters of it was drawing the hair. BUT I DO IT BECAUSE I LOVE YOU!

On to the tutorial!

------------------------

STEP ONE.

Find your photo that you want to use. I find it easier to use a bald Sim, though one with short hair works, too.

Out of personal preference, I do all my skin smoothing and shading and makeup and fixes and whatnot before I start on the hair. If you want to do any sort of lighting effects, you can wait until after the hair is done, as it'll affect that as well.

So, we're going to use Miss No-Name here. We'll call her Sophia for now.

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STEP TWO.

Find your hair colors that you want to use. I'm going to go with a blonde. You can ALWAYS change this later on. I love the color effects. :D

Like most people I've seen tuts by, I also use an outline and a palette. I use between SEVEN to TEN colors, usually, plus dodge and burn. The many colors is I think how I get it looking realistic. Real hair just has so many tones in it it's not even funny. Multitude is also the main depth-adding factor.

I'm only gonna use seven colors this time. So, make a NEW LAYER (if you don't, you'll cry) and find your colors. Smack them on this layer. You can call it palette or whatever. I'm a dork and I number my colors, but this is because I name my layers the corresponding number.

Then, I outline my hair on that same layer, since this whole layer's going to go bye bye at the end. I use color 2 or 3 for this. I'm using 3 here.

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Looks borked, right? Yep. This method looks seriously funkified for a while. Don't fret.

STEP THREE.

Make a new layer. I call this layer 1, because it corresponds with hair color number 1. This is going to be the darkest. Move this layer down underneath the Palette layer, so that when you brush color on, you can see your guidelines. Hold onto your hats, ladies and gents; this is going to look even MORE borked.

Brush Color 1 on. Like so.

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Now ain't that a masterpiece, or what? (I hope you said 'what.')

STEP FOUR.

Make a new layer. This layer is called 2, because it corresponds with hair color number 2. The second darkest. Move this layer above Layer 1 but underneath Palette. (One of these days I'll spell palette right on the first try.) If I lost you, your layers look like this:

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The brush I use for this is one that comes with GIMP; it's your general every day brush, the circle one. There are a few. I use Circle (07). So, I've got my size set at 1.60 with that brush, and I start to brush over Color 1 with Color 2. This time, I cover up almost everything, except for the parts I want to be the absolute darkest, such as the roots, and the separations between different sections of hair.

I don't consider these 'strands' yet. This is the preliminary shading, really. So, I take my smudge tool at a really low opacity (about 15% or so) and smudge it. Take extra care to blend in the 'ends,' though, just so you don't end up with big chunks of WTF in the hair. Make sure you follow the lines while smudging.

Before the smudgie:
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After the smudgie:
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And then, about this point, I go back to the palette layer and erase my hair outline, because after the first two shades, it just starts to confuse the whole thing. (Of course, if you want to keep the outline, definitely keep it.) I get something that looks like this:
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STEP FIVE.

New layer, call it 3. If you didn't erase your outline, move it between Palette and 2. If you did, it doesn't matter where it is, so long as it's above 2. My brush is now scaled to about 1.25. When drawing, I drew over some of everything, but this time, kept the biggest sections to where the highlights are going to be. I followed the same steps pretty much as in step four.

Before smudge:
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After smudge:
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STEP SIX.

New layer, call it 4. Same deal. My brush is scaled to 1.05 this time.

Before smudge:
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It didn't look quite like I wanted, so I took a tiny eraser and erased some of this highlight layer, then smudged again. Still didn't, so I repeated the step a few times, until I got this:
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STEP SEVEN.

New Layer. Called it 5. Brush is now scaled to 0.85. This is where you really start paying attention to highlights. Like, crazy attention. This is the LAST layer that is going to be SHADING. Colors six and seven are highlight only, for the most part.

Before smudge and erase:
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After smudge and erase:
(I did the smudge then erase then smudge step like four times that time. You can now start to really see the individual strands. I LOWERED the SMUDGE OPACITY even lower this time, to about 5%. Still 50% rate, though.)
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STEP EIGHT.
New Layer. Called it 6. Brush is now scaled to 0.35. You pay even more attention to highlights here! This is the all over highlights, but still, most of the concentration of color should go where your light source is hitting your sim. There are going to be highlights in other places too because of ambient lighting, but not too many.

Before smudge:
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After smudge:
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Then, I did this step over AGAIN (though on the same layer, and with the same color, but this time with a brush scaled to 0.25. I went even closer to only the highlights.)

Before smudge:
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After smudge:
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STEP NINE.

Almost there!

New Layer. Called it 7. This is the last and lightest color, used only – ONLY – for highlights. Brush is scaled now to a measly 0.10.

Before smudge:
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After smudge:
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STEP TEN.

Here, I deleted my Palette layer. Then, I merged all the HAIR layers down, starting with 7 onto 6, 6 onto 5, etc. Do not merge 1 onto the background (your Sim) yet. So you should have your Sim layer(s) and ONE HAIR LAYER.

If you like, you can smudge some of the hairs, whatever. Blah. It's a tut, so I'm not going to bother with that right now. Especially with how long this has taken me. (But I had fun doing it! :D )

Here, I used the Dodge tool on a low opacity, low rate (like 15 opacity, 30 rate) on JUST the areas where the main light source hit the hair. Then I smudged it in using that uber-low opacity smudge that has been our best friend forever throughout this tutorial.

Voila.
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So, now you folks know the basic gist of how I draw my hair. Yes, it's long, and tedious, but I adore the result.

Usually, I don't like the result at first. Like... now, actually. Haha. SO I have a few things I do afterward that make it more pleasing to me.

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Here, I went into the menu: Colors>curves, and played around with the curves and got this pretty ash blonde (I think) color. Woo!

Or, I like to do more fun stuff.

HEY! I haven't used GREEN hair in a while. Let's do that.
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Here, I went into menu: Colors>Colorize, and fiddled with it until I got a minty green. On a whim I decided I wanted it to look blacklight reactive, so I went to Colors>Brightness-Contrast, and made this.


And that's all, folks!

I hope this helped someone!



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Last edited by Vanadis on Sun Jan 29, 2012 7:10 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Monks
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 7:30 am

:puggy:

The smudge tool! Never thought of using that.....Hmmmm.

Btw, this is fantastic. I'm so trying this later. SHANK YOU SO MUCH <3
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Vanadis
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 7:35 am

Woot!

Yeah, the smudge tool is my best friend. So long as you don't overdo it.

Yay! Definitely let me know how it works out for ya! And... spanks for the shanks. *bleeds out the side* I'mma go fix this... where's my stapler...
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 10:28 am

This is great, Vana
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Vanadis
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 10:36 am

:Thanks:

Occasionally, I don't suck! :D
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:12 pm

I will have to try this ^w^ Great tut!
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:08 pm

Sweet! Looking forward to seeing how it turns out for you!

(LOL thought clicking the Thanks button would thank the person's post. Turns out... I just thanked my topic. O.o Interesting....)
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:12 pm

Lol! This is failing lmao! XD
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:43 pm

:sorrow: What are you having problems with?
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:45 am

I dont normally like smudge hair, But you worked it great here :D
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 12:33 pm

Vanadis wrote:
:sorrow: What are you having problems with?

When I smudge it, it just turns into massive blobs.
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 1:29 pm

One day when I have time I will try this out... It looks amazing!

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Vanadis
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:01 pm

Oliviafrost1 wrote:
Vanadis wrote:
:sorrow: What are you having problems with?

When I smudge it, it just turns into massive blobs.

Do you have the opacity down at about 10-15%? You can keep the rate at 50%. Also, the size of your circle thing should not be that much bigger than your strands. When you've got that set up, smudge along the strand, following the shape of it. Don't go across and through them .
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:11 pm

Heehee, thanks Bliss. And Mynan.

Also Liv, I forgot to add this, but make SURE you're starting new layers. If you don't, that'll turn it into blobs, too.
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 3:56 pm

The end result it amazing!
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 4:40 pm

Heehee, thanks!
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:11 pm

Ok I was doing everything right apart from I used a big brush for laziness! I will keep the same size as the strands and try again ^w^
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:16 pm

Oliviafrost1 wrote:
Ok I was doing everything right apart from I used a big brush for laziness! I will keep the same size as the strands and try again ^w^

LOL That'll do it! You can have the smudge a bit larger than the strands, in fact, I keep it a little larger... but big ones are bad juju. XD
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 5:38 pm

O___________________________________________________________O

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Please can I have your skills I mean look what I did O___O (Btw I stole your headshot lol)
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:00 pm

lol, it's fine that you stole my headshot.

My skills were actually acquired from going to school for graphic design before I switched to engineering... They can't be given, but they can be practiced.

Hm. Trying to think of pointers.

You will probably have to go down the strand with the smudge a couple times, and a few more even for the ends.

Other than that, just practice drawing the hair shapes.

I can already tell you have the basic theory down. Trust me, even mine wasn't that great the first time. I've been at it for months.

I'm thinking about adding to the tut post with some pointers...
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:03 pm

Woah Vana! This is amazing *O* I am seriously going to have to try this out - thank you so much for making this tutorial - have a flower :D @-}--
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:12 pm

YAY FLOWER! Thanks Nutty! :D Can't wait to see it!
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:15 pm

Lol! XD Yeah i agree with what your saying:)
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PostSubject: Re: Vana's Smudgerific Hair Drawing Method   Fri Jan 20, 2012 3:55 am

Yay! Can't wait to see it!
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