Tips and tricks

Tutorial: The Magic of grayscaling your art

Sometimes I don’t know which colors I would like to use for a given design or piece of art. In this tutorial I will show you how you can quickly and easily create different color palette suggestions for your drawings!


The technique I sometimes use when I need to do several color schemes is what I call “grayscaling”, though it might be known under different names as well. The concept is easy enough. All you have to do is render a dawing in grayscale and then play around with colored layers and layer blending modes. Below I will take you through the process step-by-step.

Once you have finished the line art for your drawing fill it with a gray base color. Preferably a middle tone.


Now you can add highlights, shadows and textures to your drawing. But stick to grayscale. NO COLOR just yet. The work you put in at this step will effect the end result of your drawing.


Once you are satisfied with your grayscale you can add color to your drawing! In the example below I just used a mustard yellow color on a layer in color blend mode.


In the next step you will want to duplicate your color layer and play around with the color settings. This will allow you to create several color schemes on separate layers. It will make it super easy to tweak and play around with your design.


At this point I like to play around with patterns or color shifts and have a lot of fun experimenting on the individual color layers. The sky is the limit!
I have gone through the same process for the skin, accessories and hair.


That’s it! That’s all you need to know!

Leave a comment if you have any questions or ask me on IG @anitaolsenart.

Stay creative!

Love, Anita Olsen Art

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