Painting in vectors with paintbrush tool

Working as an illustrator in a newspaper means working under pressure and tight deadlines, so I need to figure out different ways to accomplish different tasks and always keeping good quality. Illustrating in Adobe Illustrator might be as easy or as difficult as you want, that’s up to you, the only thing to keep in mind is that I have only a few hours to fulfill the task. Under these conditions I’ve come up with an interesting solution, painting in vectors with the paintbrush tool, probably this is not something new for some colleagues, but it is for me; the result is quite good.


All I need to do first is to create a layer where I’ll draw the strokes, and then lock it:

Sommelier illustration. Stroke

Right below this layer I add a new layer, in this one I’m gonna ‘paint’ in vectors all the fill with different colors, and lock it too:

Sommelier illustration. Fill

Finally, I add a new layer right between the stroke layer and the fill layer, in this layer I’ll add lights and shadows in the same way I draw with the paintbrush tool, just playing around with the opacity (if I’m gonna add some lights I’ll paint using the stroke in white color on ‘lighten’ mode and a very low opacity, like 5% to 10%, the same for the shadows, the difference is that the stroke is black on ‘multiply’ mode and keeping the low opacity:

Sommelier illustration. Lights and shadows

This is how it looks in ‘outline’ mode, what a mess!:

Sommelier illustration. Outline

And this is the final illustration inserted in the page:
Sommelier illustration. Full page
Using this technique allows me to save a lot of time, I like it, I think I’m gonna use it for further illustrations.

© Copyright Reporte Indigo 2012

About hugoherrera

I'm the freelance illustrator
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