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HOW TO: Easily isolate lineart

Mon Jul 6, 2015, 9:39 AM
Man how the fuck do i put my lineart on its own layer?

If this is a question you've found yourself asking, then this mini tip is for you! :dummy: Here are two simple ways to isolate that shit so you can freely colour it or on the layers below it.

  • Instructions for: Photoshop (though if the tools are similar you could prob do this in whatever graphics program you got on hand)
  • Works best for: digital lineart or traditional lineart with a solid background

Method 1: Colour Select

If you are a) super duper lazy or b) draw your lineart with a million different colours on different layers then here's a method you'll like. IT SHOULD BE NOTED THOUGH that this method will sharpen the hell out of your lineart, which might not be a look you want in which case jump to Method 2.

Here's my sample image (which i've coloured the lineart of, so you can see how it works).

Isolate Lineart M1 Img 1 by Darqx

"But Darqx!" You might be saying, "that lineart already looks done!" HAHAHA no. For starters all these lines are on like six different layers also since i turned off the background layer you can see i use white on many different layers to block out things on the lower layers - in other words this is a shitty lineart setup if i actually want to colour this.

Let's fix that. First i'll turn my background colour back on again. This method won't work well without it!

  • Create a new blank layer (shift + cmd + n / shift + ctrl + n) and rename it lineart.
  • Go Select > Color Range and use the eyedropper to select your background colour. Play with the Fuzziness setting until you get a line width you like (lower fuzziness = thicker, "noisier" lineart). I decided on 156 for this pic since it was closest to how the original lines looked.


Isolate-lineart-m1-img2 by Darqx Isolate-lineart-m1-img-3 by Darqx

  • Once you hit 'OK' you should see a whole bunch of marching ant lines on your image showing that the background has been selected. Invert your selection (shift + cmd + i / shift + ctrl + i) to get the lineart.
  • Use the paintbucket to fill your selection with a colour. Deselect your lineart (cmd + d / ctrl + d) and TADAH FINISHED!


Isolate-lineart-m1-img-4 by Darqx

Method 2: Channels

Don't like your lines so crispy, or have really thin detail lines? Then use Channels, and your lineart will turn out near exact how you've drawn them. The drawback with this method is it needs to be set up pretty specifically:

  • Your lines need to be pretty dark (ideally black), otherwise your isolated lineart will turn out slightly semi-transparent
  • The background colour has to be white


GET IT? GOT IT? GOOD. SO HOW DO WE DO THIS??

  • Create a new blank layer (shift + cmd + n / shift + ctrl + n) and rename it lineart.
  • Click on your Channels tab (it should be next to your Layers tab, otherwise go Window > Channels).


Isolate-linart-m2-img1 by Darqx

  • Select the RGB channel layer (cmd + click / ctrl + click). A whole bunch of marching ant lines will appear on your image - like Method 1 this means the background has been selected.
  • Go back to your Layers tab and invert your selection (shift + cmd + i / shift + ctrl + i) to get the lineart.
  • Use the paintbucket tool to fill your selection with a colour. Deselect your lineart (cmd + d / ctrl + d) and admire your perfectly isolated lineart :dummy:


Extra tip: Colouring isolated lineart

You can easily colour your isolated lineart by locking the layer's pixels. To do this:

  • On your Layers tab, select your lineart layer.
  • At the top of the tab there should be the word "Lock:" with four symbols after it. Click the one that looks like a checkered square (Lock transparent pixels). A little padlock will appear on your layer.


isolate-lineart-extra by Darqx

  • Now you can simply paint over your lines with the brush tool!


Isolate-linart-extra2 by Darqx


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:iconphoenixleo:
phoenixleo Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015
Happy Birthday! :iconballoonplz:
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:icondarqx:
Darqx Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks so much Leo! :D
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:iconphoenixleo:
phoenixleo Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015
Most welcome! :la:
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:iconarthurjones93:
ArthurJones93 Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015
Happy Birthday!! :D :party:
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:icondarqx:
Darqx Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
:hug: Thank you!
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:iconheartlesshunter13:
HeartlessHunter13 Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015  Hobbyist
HAPPY BIRTHDAY! XB
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:icondarqx:
Darqx Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
:iconthankyouheartsplz:
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:iconheartlesshunter13:
HeartlessHunter13 Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2015  Hobbyist
Your very welcome! XB
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:icondarkshuka:
Darkshuka Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy Birthday XDD
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:icondarqx:
Darqx Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanx very much Darkshuka! ^^ (i hope you are enjoying the prem haha!)
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