ElementalSpirits's avatar

Ala Style Tutorial

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"Ala style" because I'm probably most famous for using this style on Alacrity, and I have no better name for it. I was asked to make this before I left and now, a couple of years later, I finally oblige. ^^;

I've tried to include everything I could think of (as well as some useful short cuts), but please ask if you find I've missed something.

This was designed for Photoshop, but I'm sure if you look you will find a similar method in your own program.

Tutorial © Me, ElementalSpirits.
If you distribute, please leave the www.elementalspirits.deviantart.com on it.
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1000x5276px 4.88 MB
© 2012 - 2020 ElementalSpirits
anonymous's avatar
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Blue-WR's avatar
Blue-WRStudent Traditional Artist
this is so helpful!!! thank you, you have saved me so much time now haha
arnoodle's avatar
arnoodleStudent Digital Artist
leafaye's avatar
leafayeProfessional Digital Artist
thank you soooooooooooooooooo MUCH for making this!!!!
Filippa-e's avatar
Filippa-eHobbyist Digital Artist
Awsome! Thank s for sharing :D
kornla1's avatar
gracias buen tutorial
Alcemistnv's avatar
AlcemistnvHobbyist Digital Artist
Hel, I have a question that might seem a bit, simple.
I understand the shading directions (Although I can't seem to pull it off myself), but how do you go about coloring? I can't seem to add multiple colors in one area without using the smudge tool, and I've been told rather often (in negative ways may I add), that it's elementary and is an easy way out.

After using Xy's tips for a bit, I experimented with overlaying but I still wasn't realistic enough colors. Granted, my art still has that cartoon factor, which is something I want to remove when I get the tablet (I draw some good realistic art on paper), but it seems like I can't just seem to color right.

I was wondering if there was a simple way to explain this just as alittle tip. I don't have to know the whole long secret (if there is one, haha).

Thanks! :)
ElementalSpirits's avatar
ElementalSpiritsHobbyist General Artist
You say you are waiting for a tablet, does that mean you are using a mouse?

To mix colours on the canvas I normally use the soft round brush (should be the first one) and/or pressure brushes. With a mouse you can't use pressure brushes, but you can change the opacity of the brush to get the same sort of effect. It's not quite as easy, but it works. You can change the opacity at the top of the layer window (or short cut by using the numbers on your keyboard).

Realistic colours come from just a matter to practice and experimenting I'm afraid, but try to use the more subdued colours in the middle of the pallet more then the extremes to the right. You can always fix the colours afterwards using Curves, Colour Balance and Hue/Saturation afterwards, but again these take practice to work effectively.

I hope that explains everything?
Alcemistnv's avatar
AlcemistnvHobbyist Digital Artist
That explains a lot :)

And I actually use my laptop's mousepad when I draw, so a tablet is a HUGE step up for me with a lot. Especially because there is only so much I can do with certain aspects of the image (I don't draw too cartoon-y on paper).

I'm rather excited for the pressure brushes, but it's interesting to know that changing opacity does have a similar effect.

Thanks!!! :D
NanetteAlsop's avatar
Many thanks for this - it will be very uselfull for me :)
caligrl1881's avatar
caligrl1881Hobbyist Filmographer
I have been looking for a tutorial for digitally coloring my sketches forever!!!! Thank you so much!!
ClarkyGirl's avatar
Multiple layers? -face palm- all this time...
ElementalSpirits's avatar
ElementalSpiritsHobbyist General Artist
It seems so obvious! But new artists never consider it. ;)
ClarkyGirl's avatar

Sumps and walks back to computer
mrXylax's avatar
You have no idea how much fun it is to see this :D I figured it all out long time ago but it's great to see whole progress :D
ElementalSpirits's avatar
ElementalSpiritsHobbyist General Artist
Thanks! Yes, it's fairly simple to work out if you know how photoshop works. I learnt it from various other tutorials/artists using this style, but they never were that comprehensive (very basic information), and I can never find them when people ask me about it anyway. So it's easier to just have my own I think (and hopefully this one covers everything you could possibly need). =D

The only thing I think I did differently on here then on Ala was that for shading I had to use very low opacity instead of multiply/overlay as Rob's coding didn't recognise them and the dogs looked very strange. :XD:
vagariraven's avatar
vagariravenHobbyist Digital Artist
Yeah... It certainly has changed :/
WerewTerrefGrin's avatar
WerewTerrefGrinStudent General Artist
woooo! :D
Riixon's avatar
RiixonHobbyist Digital Artist
Ah very helpful <3
LadyPirran's avatar
Man, I was on Alacrity when it first came out. I loved the site, but then I faded off with real life stuff, had a baby, and... my account would be so old now, I wouldn't know where to begin :( Absolutely incredible tutorial though, thank you!
ElementalSpirits's avatar
ElementalSpiritsHobbyist General Artist
Hehe I know what you mean, it's changed quite a bit since then.. I don't even play on it much any more. ^^;
Alcemistnv's avatar
AlcemistnvHobbyist Digital Artist
WOW. That's amazing!!!! :D
You've always been a big inspiration for me, and I hope that one day I can be just as good as you. But alas, improvement takes a long time.

Thank you for this wonderful guide :)
ElementalSpirits's avatar
ElementalSpiritsHobbyist General Artist
Aww thank you!
I'm sure that you can be if you keep it up! =D
Alcemistnv's avatar
AlcemistnvHobbyist Digital Artist
No problem ^^
And thanks :) I'm going to wait until I can get my scanner before doing this because using a photo doesn't help (has been trying it), but I'm hoping I can get it done soon~
anonymous's avatar
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