Since my scanner has broken I’ve been taking crappy pictures of my sketches with my cellphone, so I can redraw the lines on Photoshop. They look fine for me (please, don’t judge me), but when I have to send a sketch out to a client, there is no chance I can send them like that, so I clean them up first to make the background white and make them look a little more professional. That’s the least I can do, right?

This is part of the Manual for Crappy Artists, with the steps of how to clean up the crappy photos of your sketches on Photoshop.

Step 1

Open up the crappy photo with the sketch you want to clean.

1. sketch drawing boy playing the drums lalelilolu studios

Step 2

Duplicate the image in the layers box. With the new layer selected, go to Image < adjustments < desaturate.

2. sketch drawing boy playing the drums lalelilolu studios

Step 3

Duplicate this desaturated image, select the top layer and invert the image. To do this go to Image > adjustments > invert.

3. sketch drawing boy playing the drums lalelilolu studios


Step 4

With the inverted layer still selected, choose “Colour Dodge” from the layers drop down menu. This will make the image turn white.

4. sketch drawing boy playing the drums lalelilolu studios

Step 5

Now you need to apply a guassian blur to your layer. Go to Filter > Blur > Guassian Blur. Move the slider to find what level suits your image.

5. sketch drawing boy playing the drums lalelilolu studios

Step 6

Merge the layers to tidy up the image. You can use the Dodge and Burn tools, or simply the eraser.

6. sketch drawing boy playing the drums lalelilolu studios

Ta-da!

It doesn’t look so bad, does it? Now you’re all set to draw and put some colours to it! If you know a different way ‘uncrap’ your photos, please share with me on the comments. I’d love to learn more tricks!

8. sketch drawing boy playing the drums lalelilolu studios

This illustration belongs to the Number Series and is available to purchase here. Thanks!

Update

A friend of mine just reminded me of a very cool app called CamScanner that scan your sketches with an iPhone. This is the result bellow!

lalelilolu studios camscanner sketch

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *