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Uploaded: November 17, 2013
Artist: Demonwolf_faerie
Difficulty: Novice  Novice Skill Level
Steps: 9
Updated: November 17, 2013
P.O.V: Na
Favourited: 2 times
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Overlay is a really cool tool that I don't think is used as often as it should. The way it works is you create a new layer above your drawing, set it to overlay, and color the picture. Using overlay, all the values and tones stay the same when you paint, and the only thing that changes is the color. I really like to use this because this way, I don't have to worry about color while I'm shading, which makes things a lot less stressful. This tut will basically show you how to use the overlay tool (in SAI, but can be translated to other programs) while drawing in greyscale. Have fun! ^^

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how to paint with the overlay tool

How to Paint with the Overlay Tool

how to paint with the overlay tool step 1

STEP 1.

So for this, I'm going to assume you know how to draw things. And if you don't, then leave a comment and I'll make a drawing-things tut ^^ basically, what you need to do here is create a new layer below your sketch and fill it with a random color. I used and orange... ish.... color. :)
 
how to paint with the overlay tool step 2

STEP 2.

Add another layer between them and fill it with a light grey. make sure there's no empty space in the grey.
 
how to paint with the overlay tool step 3

STEP 3.

Sooo..... now might be a good time to merge the sketch and grey layer, but if you wanted to save that for later, so be it. Start adding some different values on the face, we'll blend them next.
 
how to paint with the overlay tool step 4

STEP 4.

I got a little carried away here, but you get what I'm doing, right? Blend the different values into the face and add more until you're satisfied, then draw a bunch of hair where the hair goes.
 
how to paint with the overlay tool step 5

STEP 5.

NEW LAYER!!! set this to "Overlay". I''ve seen some artists color using lumi too, I'll show you how that looks in a bit.
 
how to paint with the overlay tool step 6

STEP 6.

on your overlay layer, color over everything in the colors you want, pretty much :) it might be easier to use separate layers if you have a very detailed picture, but I used just one. If you look at the eyes here, you can see that I had some trouble with coloring just the eyelashes, so maybe I should've had a separate layer.... NOTE: just because the values are already determined by your greyscale, don't think you only need one color! Blending a couple different colors into your overlay usually looks best =D
 
how to paint with the overlay tool step 7

STEP 7.

Here's another way to color that I've seen some artists use. Instead of an overlay layer, use a lumi layer.
 
how to paint with the overlay tool step 8

STEP 8.

use the airbrush (or any brush, really) at a very low density/opacity, and color over the picture this way. With lumi, you can be a bit messier when coloring, but I don't always like the metallic look it gives when you use it on the whole picture. You can decide, I guess.
 
how to paint with the overlay tool step 9

STEP 9.

For this, I sorta used both an overlay layer and a lumi layer. Feel free to mix and match and whatnot ^^ have fun!