How To Turn Drawings Into Digital Art
How To Turn Drawings Into Digital Art

How to Turn Drawings into Digital Art A Comprehensive Guide for Artists

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In the realm of modern art, digital technology has revolutionized the way artists create and showcase their work. Turning drawings into digital art allows for a wider range of possibilities, enhanced precision, and seamless integration with other digital tools. This guide will provide a comprehensive walkthrough of how to transform your hand-drawn creations into stunning digital masterpieces.

Materials You’ll Need:

  • Drawing tablet or scanner
  • Art software (e.g., Photoshop, Procreate, GIMP)
  • Basic understanding of digital art concepts

Step 1: Scanning or Photographing Your Drawing

The first step is to create a digital copy of your drawing. If you have a scanner, this is the recommended method for capturing high-quality images. Place your drawing face down on the scanner bed and ensure it’s aligned correctly. Adjust the resolution settings to at least 300dpi for best results. If you don’t have access to a scanner, you can take a clear photograph of your drawing using a high-quality camera.

Step 2: Importing and Cleaning Up Your Image

Once you have a digital copy of your drawing, import it into your chosen art software. If necessary, crop out any unwanted areas around the image. You may also want to adjust the contrast and brightness to enhance clarity.

Step 3: Tracing Your Drawing

Using the drawing tools in your software, trace over your imported image. This will create a vector-based outline that you can manipulate and resize digitally. Take your time and be as precise as possible to retain the details of your original drawing.

Step 4: Coloring and Shading

Once your drawing is traced, you can start adding color and shading. Use a combination of brushes and gradients to create a realistic or stylized look. Experiment with different colors and blending techniques to achieve the desired effect.

Step 5: Adding Details and Effects

To enhance the depth and realism of your digital artwork, add additional details such as highlights, shadows, and textures. You can also apply filters, layer effects, or composite other images to create a more complex scene.

Step 6: Exporting Your Digital Art

When you’re satisfied with your digital art, it’s time to export it in a suitable format. For web use, JPEG or PNG files are commonly used. For high-quality prints, TIFF or PSD files are recommended.

Tips for Success:

  • Use a high-resolution image to ensure the best possible quality when digitizing your drawing.
  • Experiment with different brush sizes and opacity settings to achieve various effects.
  • Blend colors smoothly by using gradients or the smudge tool.
  • Take breaks and come back to your work with fresh eyes to spot any areas that need improvement.
  • Don’t be afraid to experiment and try new techniques. Digital art allows for endless possibilities.

Software Recommendations:

  • Photoshop: Industry-standard art software offering a wide range of features and tools.
  • Procreate: Popular sketching and painting app for iPad users with a user-friendly interface.
  • GIMP: Free and open-source software with a comprehensive set of digital art tools.


Turning drawings into digital art is a rewarding and accessible way to enhance your artistic skills and explore new creative avenues. By following these steps and experimenting with different techniques, you can create stunning digital masterpieces that transcend the limitations of traditional mediums. Embrace the power of technology and let your imagination soar with the world of digital art.