Line-art tips with Krita

Published on

A new video tutorial about Line-art tips in Krita. The theme was voted by my Patreon heros who support the creation of open tutorials ; Thanks again their support ! I hope you'll like it and I'm open to crits and comments to improve the next ones.

Text version for those who can't hear or turn up the volume :


Hi , my name is David Revoy and welcome to this video about lineart tips or inking tips with Krita 2.9.

Two preset toggle switch with [/] key

When you start inking you'll probably need to switch often between an eraser preset and a ink preset.
The fastest way to switch is probably with the numpad 'divide' key on your keyboard.
This key toggle switch between your previously selected preset, and your actual one.
When you open your artwork , select an eraser preset ; then select directly your inking preset.
Now, you can draw, press numpad 'divide' key on your keyboard to switch to eraser, draw again.
Note: this technic works with any preset.

Convert your sketch to bright blue tones

If you want a better visibility of your final line-art, while inking over your sketch ,
you will probably want to turn your sketch to a brighter value. Turning it to a bright blue tones help to better see what you are doing with your line art.
There is many way to turn a layer into blue ; but the less destructive and less resource intensive I found is
to uncheck the 'Blue' channel in the layer properties, then reduce the opacity.
With this method, you also can keep drawing on your sketch layer while inking ; your black or dark color will be displayed automatically as bright blue.
Note: This technic works also on groups

Stabilizer in toolbar

I use a lot the stabilizer feature of Krita to smooth my lines.
But I often need to turn it off and on while working , and the 'tool option' panel takes too much room on screen to be always displayed.
If you right click on your top toolbar, you can configure it ; filter the 'Available actions' with the keyword 'Smoothing'
then add the items 'Basic' and 'Stabilizer' to the right panel. The right panel is a vertical representation of your toolbar.
Press 'Apply' to preview.
You can rename the two feature into 'On' and 'Off' to be shorter on your toolbar.
Now you can access to control your stabilization mode with simple buttons.


Correcting a proportion or moving a part of your drawing at the inking part is often difficult.
You can trasnform your Inking layer, but it's hard to repeat the same action ( especially with complex transformation ) for the layers under.
If you group all your layers ; and apply the transformation on the group ; you'll be able to deform all the layer with a single action.
If you want to protect a specific layer from the recursive transformation, just 'lock' it before.


You can create amazing speedline effect with Krita.
Create another layer ; Select the 'Ruler Assistant Editor' ; display your 'tool option docker' to select 'Parrallel Ruler'.
Click on the canvas to create a new widget.
Then go back to the brush tool , and in the tool option activate the 'Assistant' checkbox.
Now all your lines should be parrallel to your ruler.
You can do various line width with your pen pressure.
When it's over, delete the ruler widget with the 'Ruler Assistant Editor' tool.
You can now transform your line to bring an additional fluid movement to them.
Note : You can also paint other type of Speedlines using other ruler. Feel free to explore.


That's all for today, I hope you learnt something with this video.
Any help is welcome to improve and grow my channel ; feel free to subscribe, share-it or thumb-up it.
If you want to support this type of video tutorial on a regular basis, I invite you to be one of my patrons on Patreon.
For anything else, comment bellow , I'll be around.
Good bye, and have fun with inking.

License: "Line-art tips with Krita" by David Revoy − CC-BY 4.0
Tags:  #video  #tutorial  #krita   | Download: Markdown


link Nathan  

Nice tips David! Krita looks pretty awesome. As a long time Photoshop user, the eraser thing feels super inconvenient! As well as some other limitations on the ergonomic side. But really, Krita seems to be improving fast. Thanks!

link Phelibre  

Merci beaucoup pour tout ce temps passé à nous faire découvrir ce logiciel que je n'ai pas encore appréhendé !

link Omer  

Thank you, David for putting these tips and tutorials together. I am a beginner at Krita and found them to be very helpful. I also enjoyed your amazing and versatile work,

link David Revoy Author,

@Omer : Hey, thank you for the comment !

link Chmidis  

Merci David pour tout, tout ces conseils, je les enregistre, et revient dessus quand j oublie merci

link Riccardo Leone  

Thank you for the tips on lineart. I tought it was a problem of tablet sensitivity, but I was just using too big brushes on too rough sketches (gestures more than sketches). I have a question a bit OT but still inside the comic HOW-TOs: how do you make the balloons? Krita seems still very rough on this side, and GIMP won't fit the text inside a space different from a square. The shape of the "text window" is the main problem. I found a seemingly efficient way to make the outline and backgrounds of balloons with vector layers, but making the "tail" and merge it with the circles is still long. Do you use a specific app for text (more than all, text) and (maybe) shaping the balloons?

link David Revoy Author,

@Riccardo Leone : Hey, thanks. For my speech-bubbles and text on Pepper&Carrot, I use Inkscape ; this is a constrain I have for the multilanguage system. Inkscape have more text features. But before the conversion of the project to multilingual , I used to do all in Krita. My speechballon where painted manually at this time ; so I didn't had problem of merging tail outline with the round part of the bubble ; also I kept them most of the time without any outline to defintely solve this issue. 100% white. Nowaday you can solve this with the 'layer effect' of krita ; the 'stroke one'. It can add a stroke around any shapes on a layer.

link Dave  

New to the site, just got my first graphic tablet yesterday (getting back into drawing/art) and your work is immensely helpful. Best resource for out there for working on the digital craft, thanks again. Keep it up! *high five*

link David Revoy Author,

@Dave : Thanks for the feedback Dave ! And good luck with getting back in art.

link Vasco Basque´  

Very helpful tips and good to understand! I love the trick with the stabilizer. That brought me to the idea to check if there is something similar for the assistant and there is: "Toggle Assistent". Helps alot to have those features in the topbar. And btw today i found that having parallel (vert/horiz) Rulers active is very nice for quickly measuring angles. :)

So, thx for the tips and the cool video!

link Michael Memeteau  

Hi David,
Very nice work... Just discovered your work today and it's amazing. I have a short question: on several of your tutorials you seems to mirror your work temporarily. Does this has to do with helping you to get the movement right in relation to your drawing hand or is it to force you to get another perspective at the drawing you're making, I'm curious.

link David Revoy Author,

@Michael Memeteau : Hey, my eyes have tendencies to deform and autocorrect in my brain the bad proportion, wrong poses, etc to make them look right.. It's a common problem with drawing. Switching to mirror with M key helps to trick the brain: during a short time after the mirror, the brain see the result as a new drawing and recover criticizing ability. It's easier to see the mistakes. :)

link Taposy Rabeya  

Wonderful inspiring post!! Love so much. Thanks a lot.

link Taposy Rabeya  

Excellent and inspiring! Great video with wonderful details. Thanks a lot.

link Astha  

This is a really good tutorial!

I really like the brush you were using, but it doesn't seem to be in the default ones. How can I use it?

link David Revoy Author,

@Astha :hi, thanks you! Yes it s not the default brush. Check on ' download' category on my website (here). It's the V7 brushes.

link reymo  

thank you very much for this tutorial! i do have a question, though. i moved from SAI to Krita due to technical difficulties with SAI, and Krita is very nice so far! but one thing i do miss about SAI is how easy it was to change the colour of the lineart from black to lighter colours to fit the character's colours and the overall image. have any tips on how to do that with Krita?

link David Revoy Author,

@reymo : Hi Reymo, I don't really know the SAI way to change the color of a line-art ; Here I often use on Krita the Ctrl+U ( HSL adjustment filter ) and click on the colorize checkbox ; then I add a low luminosity/value to the black , a lot of saturation, and keep a dark red/browny/sepia color. I hope it will help!

link eden  

Thank you for your tutorials! I've been enjoying many of them and learning so much. I've been painting in Gimp for a while, but I'm trying out Krita based on your recommendation and I love it! I had a question about your blue line technique. When I uncheck the blue channel in my layer properties black/gray lines do not change at all, however blue lines turn to black. I'm using Krita 3 which may be a little different, but I was wondering if I have colors set up incorrectly? Thanks again!

link David Revoy Author,

:-) super!
I'm a bit confuse by your sentence:
> When I uncheck the blue channel in my layer properties black/gray lines do not change at all, however blue lines turn to black
Sorry my skill in english, just reformulate it with more step, or with a screenshot, and I'll be able to understand the problem precisely and help. Thanks!

link eden  

Sorry I wasn't clear... I was having trouble with your blue line trick in Krita 3.0. I thought I was doing something wrong. When I tried to get some screen shots (on a different machine) I found that it works exactly the way you describe it in Krita 3.0.1 so maybe it was just a bug. Thanks again for the awesome tutorials and for taking the time to help me!

link David Revoy Author,

Ha thank you and good to know! I just read a discution on Reddit about Krita 3.0.1 where the developers mentioned a change of core technology to build the source code. For sure, they will release corrective for 3.0.1 ( so prepare for 3.1a , 3.1b ...etc... ) as they are working on the core technology ( graphic card, access to mouse/tablet) and many other bug fix.. So many different hardware on so many different software... I hope they 'll find a good tech that run for everyone.

link Morgane  

Bonjour, d'abord merci beaucoup pour tous vos tutos,c'est super enrichissant. Je ne savais pas où poser ma question, mais concernant les textes dans vos dessins, les bulles des BD etc, qu'elle brosse utiliser vous dans krita qui soit assez nette et précise ? Est ce que vous les écrivez à grande échelle pour ensuite les redimentionner ?
Merci !

link David Revoy Author,

Merci pour le retour sympa.
Pour mes bulles, je les trace sur Inkscape, idem pour le texte. La dernière (longue) vidéo que j'ai posté à un chapitre sur le sujet. , à 1:00:03 Chapter 5: Adding text with Inkscape
Bonne création!

link Karen  

Hi! I just wanted to say that I really appreciate how concise and informative you were in this video. It's very nice to find a video that gets straight to the point and quickly and comprehensively shares the information it has to share, so I don't have to comb a 30 minute video for a few facts! I also really appreciate the fact that you've decided to share your tips in text form. Sometimes, that's more accessible! I have a feeling that you have a lot to share here and I have a lot to learn. I look forward to checking it all out!

link David Revoy Author,

Hi Karen!

To be true, I start to be totally annoyed with the 'professional Youtuber' type of video/channel we can find in 2017 ; They listened to bad marketing advice for more minute watched and more revenues... for example doing too long video of poor quality, posting video chat about anything, and not cutting video. Here I also I have no time to watch or follow this type of channel. I tend to skip. Trying to find a good tutorial on Youtube is getting harder and harder.

I still wonder if I'll not focus on producing more written article with picture. And use video for demo embeded inside the article. I tend to prefer learning this way.
Thank you for the feedback.

link Loz  

Hi David. Your site is one of the few places fro me to learn about Krita, thank you so much for this help. I am a total beginner with this program - coming over from Photoshop & Illustrator. I have a few questions that I cannot seem to find answers to anywhere nor official places to ask them. Perhaps you could help with most pressing one about the selection tools?

In PS & Illustrator, then pen tool allows you to go from bezier curve to straight line. I can go from line to curve in Krita no problem but not the other way around. Once the line is curved, it wants to stay that way. I have tried the PS functions (click + ctrl or shift) but they do not work with Krita in this way. I have tried all the selection tools (I think) and I cannot get any of them to do this. Can you advise?

link David Revoy Author,

Hi Loz,
Thank you for your comment on my blog.
The Bezier selection tool in Krita can do curves and straight lines ( just click to place the node instead of click+drag) but it doesn't allow to modify previous nodes while creating it. For this you need to create a vector layer, do a vector object and then convert it to selection. But I think your question is more specific and I probably don't get what you are trying to perform exactly ; can you detail it more?

link Loz  

Hello again, thank you for responding.

I am trying to make a complex shape selection in Krita which goes from a curved line to a straight one. In particular, the window shapes (think church like with curved top and straight bottom) are proving very difficult to fill. I have sketched out some shapes which do not completely close off, so the contiguous selection tool is not working well for these shapes to allow me to fill/paint in properly.

In Photoshop when I use the pen tool to place a point down, I am able to manipulate the individual handles off this point separately. This allows for the bezier curve to become a straight line and for complex selections to be easily made.

It seems that by holding down Alt in Krita, I can sort of do this but I find the point snaps back, then I am unable to go back one point to correct and therefore have to start my complex selection again. Basically, in short I am finding the selection/bezier tools really difficult to use properly and am a little lost.

I do hope this makes sense.

link Kuroko  

I like your drawings :))

Thanks a lot for the tip on the custom stabilizer keybindings. I've been looking for this!

link Dana  

Your tutorials are great, thank you for making them.

link Tuvie  

I set the eraser toggle to "e" in my config krita menu. So it feels almost identical to photoshop. Except you press e again in order to return to painting, instead of b.

link Edward  

What would you say your character art style is called? I love it but I want to find more materials on the concept behind it.

link David Revoy Author,

That's hard to answer. My art style is tinted within Belgium/French comics, video games of the 80s/90s and Manga influence. Especially anime from the 80s/90s (they were popular on French Tv and broadcasted for children). I think I took a lot from that; author like me might be part of 'manfra' ( a word for MANgaFRAnçais ) even if I see the modern usage of 'manfra' more and more restricted to comic French author publishing on small b&w books... while here I prefer the full color big size of pages and humor strip (a form coming more from the Belgium/French humoristic comics).

link eStani  

Hello David! you are the best! I like your videos and your way to expane things. Start to learn Krita this summer and its really cool programm. Wonderful that its free!! Do you know any chat were i can ask some qwestions sometimes. English is`nt my mother motherlanguwch so its a bit difficult sometimes(>:

link David Revoy Author,

Thank you eStani!
For chats and questions; maybe the best is to use for them.

Post a reply

The comments on this article are archived and unfortunately not yet connected to a dedicated post on Mastodon. Feel free to continue the discussion on the social media of your choice. Link to this post:

You can also quote my account so I'll get a notification.
(eg. on my Mastodon profile.)