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White-Heron's avatar

Krita tutorial - Basics

Getting started with Krita isn't too complicated: just start it up, select a brush preset and experiment away. A better understand of the interface will really improve your workflow though. I've added various tips that so-so artists (like me...) may find useful, but ultimately everyone will find his or her ideal workflow.

This tutorial is under a CC-0 / Public Domain license. :)

To find back other tutorials mentioned in these tutorials and more, visit Krita's resource page: [link]

My Krita tutorial series:
Big thanks to Claus for converting all these to a wiki format as well. Everybody is welcome to submit improvements, updates and translations to this wiki, so it may be more up-to-date. These tutorials were done with Krita 2.5.2 ~ 2.5.3. To my knowledge, Krita 2.6 should have a mostly similar interface.

Part 1 - Basics ( Wiki version )
- Symmetry mode, Interface, Quick overview of some brushes

Part 2 - Layers and Editing ( Wiki version )
- Layer management: alpha locking, layer mask and erase mode, filter brushes, masks and layers, local selections, clone layers, use recommendations
- Image properties and editing: basics, selections, transformation tool and deform brush,

Part 3 - Brushes

Part A: General ( Wiki version )
- Preliminary: common "issues"
- Brush management: Saving/Deleting presets, brush folders
- Drawing modes
- Assistants

Part B - Pixel Brushes 1/2 ( Wiki version )
- Brush tips: Autobrush, Predefined brush, Custom brush, Text brush
- Paint build-up behaviours: Default (Opacity vs Flow, Build vs Wash-up, Airbrush mode), Blending modes

Part B - Pixel Brushes 2/2 ( Wiki version )
- Brush shape dynamics: common settings, opacity, size, spacing, softness and sharpness, rotation, scatter
- Color source, color dynamics, Texture -> Pattern
- Combos!

Pixel brushes - Appendix 1: Gallery of predefined brushes
Pixel brushes - Appendix 2: Brush presets from the tutorial

Part C - Color Smudge Brush ( Wiki version )

Part D - Curve, Particle and Dyna brushes ( Wiki version )

Part E - Sketch, Hairy and Chalk brushes ( Wiki version )

Part F - Hatching, Grid, Spray and Experiment brushes ( Wiki version )
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Mykrame's avatar
Thanks you so much :)
PVIL's avatar
Thanks for the job. I installed KRITA on monday. I begin with that softwar and i see that there lot of intersting possibilty.
SnowShrax's avatar
i hope someone answers this soon... but i can not find the stabilizer ANYWHERE in 3.0 i believe. plz halp my hand is shaky af ;-;
update: nvm i got it ^-^
AxelEmberFlare's avatar
Hello! I'm new to Krita and I have accidentally closed the Stabilizer bar. How do I go back to it?
Yoloimagg's avatar
you bring it back by right clicking from where it was before lel there's more options tho
AxelEmberFlare's avatar
Thank you for responding to my question :D I have it back now.
DaBongaKong's avatar
Did not read it whole yet, but thanks for all the efforts mate! I am sure that there is going to be a lot of useful information, for a self thought noob like me :)
TheJinJ's avatar
Great tutorial on the basics, just what the doctor ordered! Hope you don't mind, I included it on - under the Krita heading
APHStamps98's avatar
Thank you for the tutorials ^^ brush toolbar disappeared and I can't bring it back, can you help me with it please?
White-Heron's avatar
I'm totally late but...
Top toolbar -> Settings -> Dockers -> Toolbox.
princesaaid's avatar
Just downloaded the program i m not the best artist but i am going to make a stab at it again. noob==== 100%
darealprice's avatar
Thank you for this tutorial! It's really handy, but I have one question. How do you turn to grayscale? I've been looking on the internet but I have no answer
White-Heron's avatar
Do you mean you want a layer to be only grayscale?
- Select a layer
- In the upper menu, select Layer -> Convert Layer Color Space
- Choose Model: Grayscale
LovelyShibe's avatar
I have krita 2.9.5 and i cant find the "paint dynamically mode" option. Any idea where it is? Im really stuck x.x
White-Heron's avatar
In the upper menu, there's a square icon with a brush on it, where you can choose the brush types. When you click it, you'll get a drop-down with the different brush types. If you choose Pixel Brush for example, you'll see a number of options in the second column, like Opacity, Rotation, Pattern etc. Check the box next to it to activate the dynamic, and if you want to map it to something other than Pressure, choose what you what in the third column that appears when you choose that dynamic. More on that here:…
LovelyShibe's avatar
Thank you muchly for the help :O This program is more complicated than it looks but it seems very worth it!
ynne-black's avatar
How exactly do you export a file? (It keeps on saying "cannot export file in this colourspace" for .psd, .png, .tif and such)
White-Heron's avatar
Open Image/Properties. Did you convert your image to something weird? It should be RGB and such.
ynne-black's avatar
I haven't touched the settings before and the file was created in Krita. :c
Now I manually set sRGB and 8 bits (?? or something like that) and it seems to work fine, but I changed the default settings (in some general settings) and then when the program crashes just once they are back to CMYK something. :C
But thank you
MyPassion-Chan's avatar
maybe change CMYK to RGB?
Angelic-Painter's avatar
i just downloaded krita......and umm i still have some misunderstandings, such as.... the brush just wont listen to me, and sometimes when i chose the size to be lower it keeps going up...and some brushes wont work :/ i got some problems with erasing but this kinda helped with the erasing. sometimes the brush lags behind :/ stuff like that, but i'm sure i'l the skills  with time. THX for the tutorial!
DaBongaKong's avatar
brush lags if you use some performance-heavy brushes (big textures, smudging) in big resolutions. And the size might be caused by holding shift? Shift + drag resizes your brush tip :)
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