View Full Version : Could I use ArtRage for coloring my drawings?

03-09-2016, 12:27 PM
I am a comic drawer, and my drawings are done with pencil on paper and inked with black pen or brush, and then scanned. I make up the layout in Desktop Publishing, and then I usually color it in Photoshop.
And I hate Photoshop, but it's the only way I know how to color my drawings, outside water coloring on the paper. And if you know an album is usually 44 pages long, and each page has about 12 frames, wich is 12 drawings, that makes 528 drawings. You'll understand I would rather do it in an easier way than watercolor...

So, since I really, really hate Photoshop, I am searching for ways to color my drawings in an other way. I took ArtRage hoping it would be possible.
I made a few pretty little paintings, but when I pasted one of my drawings (in black and white) on an ArtRage page, and started coloring it, the 'paint' smeared over the black lines.
I saw something that said "layers", which made me think of Photoshop, and I made a layer, tried to color that, but that didn't work. I didn't see my drawing anymore, it was on the first layer, on the other one there was nothing.
I have to figure out how to actually see the drawing, on my screen, be able to color it, (going across a line or so is no problem), but NOT smear the lines.
The colors have to be "transparant", so to speak.
I must admit I haven't thoroughly explored every nook and cranny of ArtRage yet; I reckon if one of you who is real good at this, tells me "Sorry, no, sir, that's going to be impossible no matter what, that's not what ArtRage is for" or something, there's no use in me studying it for hours or days or weeks if it's not going to be of any use anyhow.
But I'd love it to be possible, for as I said before (twice), I really hate Photoshop.....

So, please tell me right away, is it at all possible to do with AR what I would like to do with it?
And if yes, can you point me in the right direction? It would save me tons of time, and I would be very very grateful!

03-09-2016, 01:11 PM
as google is my friend;), i found this on the net......hope it give you a idea what can be done?


03-09-2016, 02:10 PM
There are a couple of ways to do this, depending on the quality of your scans (how black and white they are, basically) and how much effort you want to put in. In most cases, just using a Blend Mode (option 2) is easiest, but sometimes you might have a scanned image that doesn't work perfectly (e.g. the scan quality is very bad or you want to keep some colours intact).

1. Delete all the white areas. You may need to edit the contrast first to make it as clearly black and white as possible. You can do all of these steps in Photoshop, or in ArtRage, whichever is easiest for you.

In ArtRage, you can edit the contrast by going to Edit > Adjust Layer Colors. You can also convert it to grayscale here (set Color to 0%) (Tip: you can also ADD the selected colour to a grayscale image if you wanted to make all your lines blue or something).

To delete the white areas, you can either use a filter (like this one http://mikes3d.com/extra/scripting-plugins/killwhite/ - note, you'll need to run ArtRage 4 in 32-bit mode to use it) or use the Magic Wand mode in the Selection tool to manually delete all the background areas.

You will end up with a transparent image with black/dark grey lines. If you need to save this sketch, save it as a PNG or PSD so that the transparent areas are kept intact. Place it on a layer *above* your colouring layers.

2. Use a Blend Mode to 'vanish' the white areas.

Import your drawing to ArtRage and go to the layers menu. Choose the Multiply Blend Mode.


Ta da! You might notice that you can *just* see where the edges of the scanned paper are. I'd just grab the Magic Wand from the Selection tool to quickly clean that up, but whether you see anything will depend on what your original image was like. In this case, I left the border so you could see the effects.


(Other blend modes will also work as we're only dealing with black and white stuff here. If your scan is brownish/has weird paper lighting, you may get better results converting it to grayscale and increasing the contrast first).

03-10-2016, 05:11 AM
as google is my friend;), i found this on the net......hope it give you a idea what can be done?

That looks nice, but I don't know as of yet how he got that far; I can see however that his pencil drawing didn't get smeared by the AR-paint. It is going really fast, I also wonder why he flashes from one hook of a patch to an other, makes a few dots of color over there, then jumps to an other corner, puts some more color, jumps to an other part, and so on... There's got to be a reason for that, I suppose. He's obviously much further advanced at using AR than I am for the moment.

Still, I can see it is possible to color something that has already been drawn, without wiping it out the way you would with a real blot of paint.
Thanks, Rondo.

03-10-2016, 05:25 AM
HannahRage: (I won't quote all your work)
Thanks a huge lot for your explanations. I am going to study them for a while, for I am not familiar enough with what you're telling me to understand it all. But I am confirmed twice now that it is possible! Your frog does not dissappear under the paint.
I can already answer this: my drawings are very sharp in black and white, since I ink them in Chinese ink and a brush. I never "ink" on my drawing tablet: those lines, however much dexterity you develop, never will measure up to the lines of a Chinese brush. So if I scan them, the scans are usually very clean and contrasted.
I shall have to read your text a few times and try to learn to find out where all the commands are and what they do, before I'll be able to know what I'm doing... I only just got a real AR-packedge. Until now, all I had was the free version, which isn't really worth much.
So, if I scan my drawing, should I save it in PNG right away, instead of JPG, as it usually does?

(so far for my first little question)
If I manage to make good work, I'll let you guys see what I did. :)

03-10-2016, 12:36 PM
So, if I scan my drawing, should I save it in PNG right away, instead of JPG, as it usually does?

If you intend to edit *that file*, then yes, save it as PNG. If you are just going to import it straight to ArtRage and create a new image, then it doesn't matter (as it won't have transparency yet, and you won't be editing the original file - JPG loses quality everytime you edit it).

To go back to the basics a little! (sorry, we keep skipping over that):

1. To open your image in ArtRage, go to File > Import Image (or press CTRL + I). This will create a new painting from your image.

If you use 'Import to layer' instead, it will add it to your current file, but the size may not match up properly as it won't change from what you already have.

2. To add a new layer, look over on the right of the screen for the little 'Layers' button. Click it to open the Layers panel, which you can see in my screenshot above. Click the little '+' symbol to create a new layer.

Now, click on the thumbnail of your bottom layer (the drawing), and drag it above the empty layer you just created. Then apply the blend mode as in my instructions above.

Also, you might want to take a look at the tutorials page for some good step by step courses on using ArtRage: https://www.artrage.com/tutorials/

This is a good free one: https://www.artrage.com/artrage-4-tutorials-theatre-professor/

And there are some very good subscription site courses on there as well, such as http://www.lynda.com/ArtRage-tutorials/Up-Running-ArtRage/427857-2.html

03-12-2016, 04:42 AM
Yes, yes, yes (thinking deeply).
It will require some reading and re-reading your post before I get the whole essence of it.
Then I'll try it out and pester you with some more questions, if you don't mind... :rolleyes: <-there is no "blushing" smiley, so I'll use this one instead...
Thanks again until then!