Wednesday, February 24, 2016

My Illustration Process 2: Working with Chibis

I've always found chibis so adorable, and yesterday, I finally had enough determination to draw one seriously. I used to doodle chibis on my notebook, but to work from start to finish digitally? Never. 

In case some of you aren't aware, the word "chibi" (ちび) is slang for "short person" or "small child" in Japanese. It's being widely used in the world of manga and anime, and I'm not complaining. Chibis are incredibly "kawaii" (カワイイ) or cute.

My Process

As usual, I start with a rough line sketch of what I want to draw. Sometimes, if I'm feeling up to it, I'll stop there and just clean up some lines, add shadows, and then highlights.

I turn down that layer's opacity and start doing some lineart. I never use black for some reason, as I think it decreases the softness of the overall picture. Used dark brown for this one.

After that comes one of my favorite parts - laying down the base colors, adding shadows, highlights, and other elements to make my amateur art look legit. Haha.

I tend to do the eyes early on, mostly because once I love how the eyes looks, it'll motivate me to finish the rest. Haha. Was planning to go for a soft purple, but pink got in the way.

From there, it's just filling in the rest of her clothing, adding shadows and highlights, getting dizzy with what patterns would go together, fixing the saturation and hue of some colors, and adding a background.

My favorite area for this drawing was the hair. From sketching to filling them in, they're my most awaited part of the whole drawing - until it came to adding depth to them. I SUCK at doing hair, but the way hers turned out made my cry a little bit inside. Who knew I could do something like that with hair?

It took me a little less than 2.5 hours to finish everything, and by the end, I felt so accomplished. I felt proud to have created something really cute for my first ever Chibi drawing, and I am now incredibly excited to draw more! The best part about this was that I used a different coloring technique. It went on for a bit longer than I'm used to, but if my art always turns out like this - light, cute, airy - then I'm perfectly fine with that.

Below is a GIF of the whole process.

Although I'm not what you can call an "expert" in this field *yet*, I'd love to share what I love doing. Any suggestions? What If I created a Skillshare account and started an online class that way? Would anyone subscribe? Haha.

Anyway, thanks for dropping by!

Join the conversation!

  1. Omg i love chibis too!! They're too cute. I really wanna learn how to draw. Thanks!!

  2. This is a great tutorial ! Thanks for giving me a lesson today :) Always good to learn

  3. Another amazing drawing! I can see Alice in Wonderland on the fourth picture. Hehe Honestly, I would love to subscribe on your Skillshare but I don't think my laptop could handle Adobe Photoshop. I need a bigger RAM I guess.

    Cess Piano

  4. sooo cute! I would definitely like to learn how to make them in Photoshop but am not sure if my skills are up to it since I am not that creative.

  5. aw this is so cool... I have tried drawing chibis before and even used SAI Paint tool but I never come up with such a neat result like yours haha. You really did a great job! Keep it up!

  6. Oh my such a great creation dear! I love her highlights! Congratulations! :)

  7. Wow that's really cute!!! You know what, I'm a frustrated digital illustrator. I never know where to put the shadows, how to blend the colors, how to make perfect linearts, etc. I have tons of bookmarked tutorials I never got to try cos time. Well, this reminds me to do some art today! Thank you! :D

  8. Kawaii indeed!!! It was nice of you to share your workflow here. Great post :)

  9. Wow! I wish i have the same talent. That's why you have a good blog lay out as well. Please, do more. I am excited to see! ;)

  10. I really love how chibi was drawn! Thank you for sharing.

  11. I may not much of an expert, but this is absolutely adorable and If I were you, I would feel so proud! I wouldn't even know where to begin to create something like this!

    It's also great how you've shared your working process; so many people try hide how they create something so beautiful!

    Keep up the amazing work! :) x

  12. What do you mean you're not an expert? This is so good! You're an expert for me!

  13. You have a great talent. I am an IT grad but never get to be this good on photoshop or any other drawing software.

  14. Wow! Thanks for sharing this, I don't know how to use adobe photoshop, now i have an idea already will try to edit some of pictures soon, :)

  15. I so so admire people to draw traditionally and digitally! This is really a nice tutorial! I have a friend who loves to draw hair. He's featured on my post called Featured Artist of the Month. Hihi. His name is Christian Binamira, @chrismiraart on Instagram. :)

    Mariaisquixotic ||



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