Pencil Sketch Effect
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I got this idea when I did a pencil sketch using a photograph as the model. When I scanned my drawing into Paint Shop Pro I realized that anyone could achieve this sketch look in Paint Shop Pro with a few simple procedures, a good clean image and no drawing abilities. Below is the original photograph and the pencil sketch effect created with Paint Shop Pro.

Pencil1Pencil6

The first step is to pick the freehand tool and set it to either point to point or freehand with anti alias on or off makes no difference. Select the area you want to use and keep in mind that this selection doesn't even have to be close to exact. Once you have selected what you want promote this to a layer. See Fig. 1 below.

Pencil2

Fig. 1

The next step is to convert your image to black and white by using Colors | Gray Scale then do Colors | Increase Color Depth to 16 million colors. Now go back to the original layer and add a new layer then flood fill it with white. You can now delete the original layer if you wish as we will no longer need it. Go back to the layer with the face and Use the Color | Adjust | Brightness/Contrast to lighten out most of the details in the image. In this case I used the Brightness at about 25 and contrast to 0. This will vary depending on the image selected to use. Once you have it lightened to where you want it you are ready to merge this layer and your white background. At this point you should have something similar to Fig. 2 below.

Pencil3

Fig. 2

This step can be skipped if you are happy with the look of what you have done so far. This step darkens the image if you have it too light, to suit your tastes. First you need to duplicate the merged layer and with gaussian blur set to about 10 blur the image as shown below in Fig.3. Turn the blurred layer's blend property to Burn and turn down the opacity till you have a nice uniform look to your image, See Fig. 4 below. This helps to give it a penciled look. Once you have a setting that gives the effect of a pencil's tone and texture then merge these two layers together.

Fig 3

Fig. 3

Fig 4

Fig. 4

At this point you need to select the retouch tool and set the retouch mode to Smudge, Shape to Round, Size 2 to 4, Opacity 70 to 80, Step to 1, Density and Hardness to about 50.

Here comes all the drawing ability you will need. Work in small areas at a time and brush the lines in the image to soften them always moving in the direct of the line. You can also use the retouch in push mode to clean areas by pushing the surrounding areas of white into the dirty areas. The push and smudge tools combined can blend and soften all edges to give a smooth flowing look to it as well.

Back to Joe's tutorialsPaint Shop of Horrors - HomeGoto Top This page was last updated on October 11, 2001 by Joe Cilinceon