Deviation Actions

MegSyv's avatar


By MegSyv
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I ramble a lot in this one, so here's a simpler TL;DR version for you:

How To Make Your Scanned Artwork Transparent in Photoshop Using Channels

1. Paste your Lineart into your Comic Template, or make sure your lineart layer is actually editable (double click on it, then hit enter)
2. Increase Contrast Using LEVELS (Image > Adjustments > Levels or Cmd/Ctrl + L) to eliminate any grey haze or debris/clarify your linework/increase the amount of white
3. Turn off the visibility of every layer except the scanned artwork in the Layers Tab
4. Open Channels Tab (Next to the Layer Tab - note: Channels are not available in PS Elements)
5. Cmd/Ctrl + Click on the Channel THUMBNAIL
6. Return to Layer Tab
7. Make sure your Scanned Artwork Layer is the one selected
8. Hit the DELETE button
9. Deselect (Select > Deselect or Cmd/Ctrl +D)
10. Lock the Transparency of the Layer
11. SHIFT + F5, Select BLACK from the dropdown menu, then hit ENTER/OK

ya done son

There are programs that offer much easier ways of doing this that I need to look into/learn, but it might be helpful for you fellas who are more comfortable working in Photoshop.
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© 2016 - 2021 MegSyv
anonymous's avatar
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Foxstar703's avatar
Wow! This helps a ton - Never really understood the channels or how easy it was to get rid of the white. Thanks!
(Also DotL is amazing! Truly is a highlight of my week when it updates :D)
yamilink's avatar
This is really super cool that you still ink traditionally. I draw a fancomic with ink and copic markers, and I am curious what kind/size of paper you use and they type of scanner that you have! I just use regular printer paper and a very old 3 in 1. 
I love yours and Yoko's work! Thank you so much for bringing this comic to life and sharing it. 
MegSyv's avatar
Aw man, thanks! I have an old Epson Expressions 1640XL Scanner I found really cheap at a yardsale, which makes scanning huge pieces a BREEZE. I can scan all the 11x17 inked pages no problem. I love it to death, even if it weighs 10,000 pounds. 
Thanks for reading!! Your work is absolutely stunning. You have a great grasp on painting and values. 
yamilink's avatar
Ghh! Thank you so much! <3 
FerenzaaNet's avatar
Thank you so much for this.
Sabergre's avatar
Oh cool! I didn't know what the channel tab was for before now and I was kind of afraid to mess with it. Well I know what it does now. Thanks!
TheDrawingDutchman1's avatar
Thanks for making this really helped me ^-^
Zwaa's avatar
This is awesome! Thank-you for making this!
LukiaDeathstalker's avatar
Such enjoyable tutorial!! Goodness, it was so fun to read all of it, the enthusiasm was contagious! :D
KitaMikichi's avatar
...It's that easy to clear out the white of the paper?! 0_0  (Never really use channels, so I'm not that familiar with them; this was totally new to me!)

Thanks for the tutorial! 
Minajerie's avatar
This is actually pretty cool.

I use sai myself (its just what I used and what I am used to), and when I do traditional stuff I love that it has a simple option for me- It has a 'Luminance to Transparency' option. It turns everything that is white, transparent. It does, however, turn anything this is done to into black and white. So if I have a pink sketch, it will turn it into grey but all the white will be transparent and that's what I need anyways. ^w^
cuttsthebutcher's avatar
loving those rainbow teeth
SHARK-008's avatar
Me who just use Multiply on my scans ^^; ( and some brightness/contrast ( and usually I don't erase the sketch I did before I ink because usually we will not see it with the ajustement ). I suck for digital inking ( I tried and it's not my thing, I just regret sometime I can't just 'pop' a picture fast, I mean if I want to do something I need to draw, ink, found the scanner, scan it, open it in photoshop, adjust, put the colors, I would like to be more fast ^^; )
KitaMikichi's avatar
Haha, I'm like you, I just multiply my traditional line work and mess with the Levels.
SHARK-008's avatar
I think many do. X3
Karmada's avatar
So glad I'm not the only one who creates comics in this way. :) Thank you for the tutorial!
lolzwaitwhat's avatar
I wish you had been the one to teach me this in college, i would have figured this out WAY sooner if the teachers simply did something like this to explain it.
SuperAnirtakus's avatar
Love this! Once I am able to do digital painting again, I will totally try this out!!
Yuriakashu's avatar
I ink traditionally, so having this resource is super helpful.  Thank you so much!
Eupraxia's avatar
As someone who uses OpenCanvas 6 and can't afford Photoshop, these shortcuts mean nothing to me :'(
SHARK-008's avatar
Damn, I don't found how anymore, but some time ago you can found on Adobe website Photoshop CS2 for free ( since it's an old version and they don't give support anymore for that version ), ok it's not the last version but if you search perhaps you can found it. ^^;
Eupraxia's avatar
That was either a myth or it's been unavailable for years.  OpenCanvas 6 is a great program and can do pretty much anything I need it to.  It just doesn't have the shortcuts.

Not that it matters in this case, since I don't ink traditionally.  If I scan a sketch I just ink over it on a separate layer.
anonymous's avatar
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