Basic Line Art using the Pencil Tool in Illustrator
● Create an Outline of an Image using the Pencil Tool in Illustrator.
✓ Template Layers✓ Pencil Tool✓ Workspace Layouts
• This tutorial is part of a series:
1 - 102-pencil-line-art-ai.htm - 2 - 104-brush-libraries-ai.htm - 3 - 105-mesh-tool-color-ai.htm - 4 - 107-vector-eyes-ai.htm - 5 - 111-hair-ai.htm
Other People's Work:
Here are examples of work inspired by this tutorial.
Step #1: Open Illustrator ~
✓ Open YOUR PROJECT in Illustrator …
● If you are working on the CD Cover Project
open that …
● OR, if you are working on the Movie Poster Project open it ...
● OR, if you are working on the
Picture Perfect Project
open a picture of
your face …
● OR, the Don't Buy the Lie Project, open your template …
● OR, the Cereal Box Project, scan your mascot into Illustrator …
… (Remember: all these tutorials are intended to be
applied to YOUR PROJECT) …
Step #2: Template Layer ~
✓ Select the layer that contains the artwork you want to trace click the drop down menu in the upper corner of the Layers Palette and select Template …
✓ A "Template" layer reduces the Transparency to 50%, turns the eye in to the template icon and locks the layer .
Step #3: New Layer ~
✓ Create a New Layer ABOVE your Template Layer …
✓ … and name the layer Outline.
Step #4: Workspace ~
✓ Go to: Window > Workspace > Painting or click on the bar in the upper-right to change your workspace to Painting layout.
Step #5: Pencil Tool ~
✓ Get the Pencil Tool, or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (n) …
✓ … Double-Click on the Pencil Tool icon …
✓ …and uncheck both Fill New Pencil Strokes and Edit selected paths but leave Keep selected.
✓ Also, raise the Fidelity and the Smoothness:
Fidelity: Determines how close the path is drawn to your mouse movement. Set it at a higher fidelity if your not good at drawing with your mouse.
Smoothness: The higher you set for smoothness, the less anchor point it produces, producing a smoother line.
Step #6: Color ~
✓ Locate your Stroke and Fill colors …
✓ … set your Stroke to Black and Fill to None .
Step #7: Zoom In ~
✓ Zoom in VERY CLOSE by hitting Cmd (⌘) +
Step #8: Begin Tracing ~
✓ Begin tracing your work.
Step #9: Continue ~
✓ Continue drawing and keep going until you have a completed outline.
✓ Be Extremely Detailed!
Every line, blemish, structure, hair, eyelash -
The more detailed you are the better the result.
Last Step: Save and Attach ~
✓ Save your work as - FIRST_NAME_LAST_NAME_PROJECT_NAME.ai
✓ Attach it even if you're not done yet!
• ALWAYS save your projects using the following naming convention:
• DO NOT name your project any other way - Improperly named projects will not receive credit and you will be sad.
• NEVER leave your work on the desktop or depend on a flash drive - instead, save your work in a folder you can find later - preferably on a virtual drive where it can be backed up.