Welcome to our tutorial. Today we’ll be learning how to create a digital artwork out of a real photo using vectors with Adobe Photoshop. This is a very rewarding thing to do and I hope you enjoy the tutorial below. Oh and leave me comments or suggestions any time. I’d love to read them. I’ll be working on a Miley Cyrus photo, not because I’m a fan, but because everyone loves her (or not). So here’s the finished product below:
Here’s the original Miley photo.
Sometimes when you start creating vector, you really need to organize your thoughts. Here is what I did. I opened the original pic to adobe photoshop CS4 then I made folders under the layers of adobe. Just click the folder icon below the layers. Below is the sample.
I then started with the face layer. Try to trace the entire face of Miley first, make sure that you trace the whole face, ignore the hair of Miley. We will place the face behind the hair anyway. I used the pen tool for this. See below:
After clicking pen tool, click at the top the “shape layers”. You can experiment what is the difference of the 3 buttons beside shape layers too.
Beside the shape layers.. that is the “paths” button. If you choose that, it wont automatically create another layer, but only creates a path. It is useful when you darken and lighten your layers later.
Insure that you chose the shape layer when starting the vector. It is easier, but still it depends on your convenience. While you start vectoring, you can rearrange the folders, and the layers under the “layers” box. You can also hide and unhide the picture of miley cyrus so that you can trace it properly.
Add darker color for your nose. Use the pen tool and change the color to a darker one. Same idea with the mouth and the dark areas of the face.
Now after you have edited the face, and the hair, proceed to eyes. Here is what I did, drag the original picture to the top of the layers so that you can just unhide the other layers that are already done. You can now focus more on the eyes by still using the pen tool , and the shape layer option. And make sure you change the color everytime you add the vector or the layer on it.
Now you should be done with the face, and the hair. Let us go to the body of miley. Note the order of the layers, since the body is behind the dress, and behind the hair or the head, we should place the body folder at the bottom of the layers.
Right click the later>click rasterize layer.
Next , would be the dress. Same process when adding the layers, and darkening the sections of the picture. I just added the texture by using the layer style option. You can view it by just double clicking the layer you want to add style to.
For the pants, I just rasterized the layer, and traced the area where you need orange, then after tracing using the pen tool and this time, beside the “shape tool” I used the “paths” tool.
As a tip, it is easier to use the paths when you are finishing the vector wallpaper. All you need to do, select the layer, trace the object, after you closed the path, right click on it, and click on “make selection”. A pop up will open for you choose the feather of the path, you can choose 0 since this is a vector art. Once you have done that, the area should be selected, and you can choose the “fill” button, still on the pen tool section. After that choose the color, and fill out the entire selected object. Or if you are just darkening the selected area, you can use ctrl+m while it is selected, and darken, or lighten it. You can do it to all the layers as well.