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Preface.


F
irst time when I came across with an vector graphic editor. There wasn't any good tutorial, there wasn't even Inkscape yet. There was Sodipodi instead. I thought then, that when I learn to use it, I will write an tutorial by my self. Now time have fled. New tutorials and manuals have appeared. The Inkscape was born. But I feel, I'm still not competent enough. Now there isn't any need to write an tutorial by myself anymore. But I already had decided to do it and I want to see if I'm actually able to write it.



For starters.


ScreenShot
I
nkscape is an open source vector-graphic editor, that can be freely downloaded from Inkscape's homepage. Or when you use Linux. U would install it with one or two mouse-click on your package manager.

When you start Inkscape. The window, that is very similar to the screenshot on the right, will appear. At the top of the window, directly below the menu bar, is command-bar. And directly below the command-bar, is tool control bar. At left side, you can see the vertical toolbox.

The most important tools in toolbox are: Selector Selector Node editing tool Node Rectangle drawing tool Rectangle Round drawing tool Round And star drawing tool star

With selector, u can select, move, resize, flip and rotate objects/paths. U can also send them lower or raise up. Node editing tool is also very important. With that u can modify all objects and paths. As the name suggests, star, rectangle and round drawing tools are meant to draw round, star and rectangle shaped objects. Most fun is star drawing tool. That is because of it's randomness availability. From star drawing tool's control-bar(The horizontal tool's control bar at up) You can change the numbers of star's spikes, spoke ratio(length of spikes), roundness and randomness. You can write desired values into those text boxes on control bar or Increasing/decreasing them by clicking those small arrows or choosing values from list, by right-clicking on that box. These parameters can also be modified by dragging those control nodes at edge. When you hold town shift, control or alt key. You can change different parameters by dragging them.

from left. 1) An normal star. 2) Six spoked star with too much roundness applied. 3) Little rounded star with few randomness.

PS. When you want to create an proportional object(example square) hold control key down while dragging(sizing/resizing).

To edit path's and object's fill and/or stroke color, gradient and etc. click to button on command bar. A panel for fill and stroke editing will appear at right(If it wasn't there already). There u can change selected object's fill and stroke color. U can chose also between no color(transparent), flat color, linear gradient, radial gradient and etc.

The direction, range and ellipticity(for radial gradient) can be edited with node editing tool. Node , or by gradient editing/creating tool by dragging those little dot's. The square dot represents the start point of a gradient(center of radial gradient on this pic) and rounded one(s) the end(s). When selecting one dot with gradient editing tool u can change the color of gradient at that stop. With double click on line that connects dots, u can add more stops.


Now these objects are all nice and so, but it doesn't look like they could have much use when it comes to draw an human body. Actually that's not true. All object's can be converted into paths and then edited into what ever shape by node editing tool, joined(united) together with other paths and so on. Of course a path can be drawn also with pencil (freehand drawing tool) from the root. But it's much more convenient. To put things together from rounds and rectangles. To convert an object into path, select it with node editing tool and then click to the object to path converting button at tool control bar. Now you can change the shape of the path by dragging, adding, deleting these small dot's(nodes) at the edges of your path(figure). You can also change the shape of the path by grabbing from path's edge with node editing tool. (When the cursor is in range where path (an figure's edge) can be grabbed, cursor's shape will change from to ) Double click there will insert a node. When you click once, nearest nodes from both sides will get selected. U can delete any selected node by pressing delete key on keyboard. The nodes can be changed to corner, smooth or to symmetric ones, when holding the control key down and clicking on them. Same can be applied also from tool control bar.




Drawing an creature.



A
ctually I have no idea how to draw an creature. So I can't teach that. But I won't admit it. If possible don't use stroke paint. Strokes can't be choppy. They have one width for the whole length. Use filled paths instead. It takes more time, but the result is better.

To draw an human head, it's obvious, that the best way is to draw a round first. And then change it into path by clicking to object to path converting button at node editing tools control bar, or choosing "Object to path" from path menu. Next add some more nodes. U can do that by double clicking at edges or by selecting all nodes and then clicking to node inserting button at tool control bar. To select multiple nodes. Drag over desired nodes, or hold shift key down and then click one by one to nodes that u want select/deselect. Modify the shape by dragging nodes and edges until u get desired shape of head. Something like u can see at right. Hopefully a nicer one :) Damn it! Did I already told all that before? ..But it would be pity to delete now.< :-)

There is an easy, quick way to make shades. They will be not best, but u don't have to drag nodes around. Duplicate the object that needs shaded and cut the shade out from that double. To do it. Click to Duplicating button at the command bar. Move the double into an free are and then duplicate it once again. Change the color of the new double so that they will become distinguishable from each other. Slightly move the new one, so that an desired shade shaped area of the double will become visible from behind. Select both doubles again and then chose Division from Path menu. Because the division creates too much nodes to the line, where it cuts. It's recommended to click also simplify from path menu. Select the piece that will become into shadow and move it into place and change it's color to darker one.. The piece that was left can be delete. Select it and press delete key.

Simple shaped(radial or linear) shadows, example hair line on picture below, can be made with gradient tool. Also Blushing (red cheeks) can be easily done with gradient. All body parts and things: eyes, brows, hairs, nose, mouth, hands and so on. can be shaped out from rounds and rectangles. It's very convenient to build body from ellipsoids.
I actually wanted to draw an face of girl, but made somewhere some mistake and got an face of somewhat feminine guy. Oh well that's what happens when trying to do, too many things simultaneously.


Afterword.


S
ince I already wrote the preface, then I have to write some after words too isn't. Here they are: Damn it! I will never write any Introductions, again. It's already too annoying to correct my typos, grammar errors and all other things that I make. But there is also my lack of experience to write an Introduction. It already makes me mad when I think, how some certain guys might read this and laugh at me... Well I still believe, that I'm better than all those laughters. LOL. Just kidding. Actually it's just that I have nothing to say anymore. Because I'm done with this "introducing" thing. And I'm too lazy to correct errors now. So I just goofing off, by writing more errors into this after word, that I have to correct later. I had fun with drawing and doing page layout. I'm satisfied with the illustration at page footer. That was the first thing I drew after page header. SnowmanThe blue haired boy with nerd-antenna, is drawn last. I don't like it so much. I wanted to draw an girl, but made some mistake. I changed it into an boy, but still wasn't satisfied. As for revenge, I made that creature into even more foolish looking boy with silly smile.. But I still wasn't satisfied.




The End


The End.




Views: 131

Tags: Drawing, Graphic, Inkscape, Vector, svg

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Comment by Hardi on February 18, 2009 at 17:16
I'm glad you liked it lynne.

PS. Anahitachankun. Is Photoshop microsoft's software? I thougt it was adobe or smth.

Anyways Inkscape works in Windows very well. And There are things that u can't do with vectors so well as in rasters (Photoshop). Like some shadows and some coloring. Best result can probably get when combining those 2 programs. Well I'm not the most competent person for explaining ..sWell therefore please check from wikipedia articel about vector graphic, for futher information.

As for me. I'm too lazy to deal with rasters. Actually I don't like painting rasters with mouse. I even bought an A6 sized wacom digital board for drawing, (I didn't had enough big budget for bigger one) but it seems my hands are too clumdy or unskilful to hold pencil.. And that board is so small. So I haven't used it much... It even don't work with my current X-server gonfiguration anymore.

My goal is to learn to use vectors so much that I could represent everything by vectors in the best possible ways..
Comment by Lynne on February 17, 2009 at 12:10
This is really wonderful Hardi. You're so skillful.
I love your art works really.
Thanks.
Comment by Anahita on February 17, 2009 at 10:22
whoa, that's so cool. and I really mean it.

you have talent and your imagination ability is surprising me. you know you are really some thing. I wish I could take a look inside your dreams and see what kind of places your mind goes when you are creating. ;) of course I am not trying to buttering you up as your friend, I am talking about the feeling that your painting giving me. those are lonely but yet odd, you know like those painting about landscapes of Mars, a far away and unknown world.

ah man, if we weren't this lazy maybe we could work on some thing together, like making an animation or even a comic but I know not me neither you are into hard working stuff . XD

P.S: the tutorial stuff was quite good but I am a slave of Microsoft software's so I am still stuck with Photoshop. plus I have worked with Photoshop for such a long time that I don't like to switch over to another designing program but after seeing what you have done with this software....hmm... I guess I am tempted to give it a try. ;)

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