Combining hand-drawn illustration and digital technology

Here I would like to share with you how I created hedgehogs illustrations.


hedgehog, greeting card, postcard, cute animal, illustration, original artwork, pencil drawing

The first and most important rule for me when I start creating an animal character is

to spend a few days studying the real animal and drawing many sketches from the photos.



The next step is to doodle many characters in different ways and styles.


sketches, hedgehog, pencil drawing

When you look at one of them and start smiling- this your new character.


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Now I refine sketches and try to find the best proportions.

Usually I scan sketches, do some contrast corrections with levels in Photoshop, and print them with 15%-20% opacity on 90g office paper. After this I draw on the top of them with 3B CARAN D'ACHE pencil and scan the best ones again.

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When I am happy with my character, I clean the pencil drawing in Photoshop and print on 300g watercolor paper.

For the first time I saw the technique of printing sketches on watercolor paper in Charlesbridge Publishing blog where Rosalinde Bonnet talks about her creating process.


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I use Pebeo Colorex Watercolor Ink and watercolors to finish the illustrations. I scan the ready illustration with 600 DPI and clean it in Photoshop.

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Here are some other drawings with hedgehogs where you can see how they get alive:


sketch, hedghog, rain, sad, emotions
hedgehog, character design, cute animal, illustration, rain, sad, emotions

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birthday, animals, sketch, pencil drawing

birthday card, watercolor illustration, cute animals, greeting card design, invitation

And here are the final products: postcards which you can get in my Etsy shop.

I print them at Moo Company. The advantage of their service is that you can have up to 25 designs in one order, as well as they print on 330g premium paper with matt finish.

greeting cards, postcards, cute, adorable, animals, hedgehogs, watercolor, illustration

In this post you have learned my secret how to make the illustration look like a traditional one using modern techniques: computer and printer. I also will be very intersted to learn your know-how.