Now use environmental lights to cover the hair, just like you did with the outfit.
We completely forgot abut the sword! Sketch it using Line Tool to stress its direction, then sketch the hands that we skipped. If you have problems with them (who doesn’t?), there’s one tip for you: take a picture of your own hand in the position you need, then use it as reference. Works every time!
Shade the hands without details, just to get rid off the sketch.
Prepare a base for the sword – when it comes to the blade, it’s good to use Pen Tool (P) to keep the shape. If you prefer to use Brush, do it with 100% Opacity and Flow.
Create new layer over the sword’s base and convert it to Clipping Mask, then put basic colors on it. No details yet!
Ok, now you’re allowed to put details. First make sure what the elements are made of, and use a proper technique for them. Should they be mat or shiny? Do they reflect every color around them?
Use advice from Step 11 to simulate metal surface of the blade. It should be easy for you now. Tip: when you want some little part to shine stronger, first draw the light with Hard Brush, then stress it with Soft Brush in Screen Mode.
Now it’s time to come back to the skin (of course, we could’ve start from it, but then you wouldn’t want to cover it with the outfit…). Use dark green to paint the shades (hard brush, low Flow). She’s going to look a bit dirty, but let it be for now.
Take a soft brush and paint the skin with it, just to blend the darker parts with base color. It’s a great trick, gives almost glossy effect.
We’re going to repeat Step 15 with the opposite shade now. Use very light green with Linear Mode of the brush and paint the lights carefully (hard brush, low Flow).
And again, use soft brush to blend the color of the skin.
When adding life to the skin you can realize some of the things you’ve finished before don’t look finished anymore. For example, metal parts should be much more shiny than the skin. Add some light to them with Screen or Linear Light Mode.
For now we’ve just use universal lights – it means they don’t depend on the colors of environment. They can’t stay like this, so use warm, red/orange color to put some light on the character again. Vivid Light Mode will be perfect for this.
Time to add some details on the face. When it comes to the eye, it’s a good habit to always put blue light on it, using hard brush in Linear Light Mode. Whatever the colors around, I always use blue. Don’t ask me why, it just works
There are a lot of “skin brush” packs on the Internet, but if you want to make your own and not to care about any credits, you should be able to do it now. It may look like this below, but I’m sure you can do better. When it comes to the options, the ones from leather brush should work here too.
Use your brush to cover all the skin (light green, Linear Light, very small brush). You may not see the difference, but it’s a detail that looks great when printed.
The last thing here will be adding texture to… everything. There’s certainly some dust in the air, so it can’t be smooth. I’ll show you the trick that’s used by the greatest artists: create a new layer on the top and fill it with some dark color. Then go to Filter > Noise > Add Noise.
The options can change something, but it’s all up to your style. Experiment!
Change the layer blending mode to Overlay and lower the Opacity. The grain shouldn’t be visible, but it can’t be invisible either. You need to feel this moment.
Download the PSD
Tutorial by Monika Zagrobelna
I hope I was able to teach you something and didn’t bore you to death. If you want to see any more tutorials from me, don’t hesitate to contact me through my dA page or by e-mail, email@example.com.
– Monika Zagrobelna