Wednesday, July 13, 2005


The very first thing you must do in order to draw comics in Illustrator is to change the PENCIL TOOL settings.

The default Pencil is nearly impossible to draw with. It's even worse to try and draw fast with and fast is the name of the game when drawing comics.

DOUBLE CLICK the PENCIL TOOL icon in your tool pallette.

A fly away menu will open and give you some settings to play with that look like this picture.

The .05 FIDELITY and 0% SMOOTHNESS settings are what I have found work best for me. Play around with them and draw with the PENCIL until you find what works for you.

It is Imperative to click the KEEP SELECTED option OFF. If you keep this box checked it's very hard to draw with the Pencil tool to mimic a real pencil.

If you draw with the Pencil Tool and the Keep Selected button on then the computer erases each line you draw as you draw a new one.

I rarely use the PEN tool at all to draw in Illustrator. I find the Pencil tool does what I need and it's a lot faster than the Pen tool.


Andrew said...

I tried to get this to work several times. Abandoning it, with no fervor to strangle the secrets out of Illustrator.

That is... until I tried it again, last night.

Oh, it was glorious and so simple to use. I'm still a little shaky at it, but that will only improve with practice. Thank you for this Blog, Brian!

I hope to put this knowledge to good use. Only the good use. Not the bad use, the kind with dynamite and bullets. Or maybe that's good... I'm so confused!

DJB said...

I purchased an Intuos tablet twp weeks ago and did all my previous drawing in the past with a good old fashioned pencil followed by pen and ink and making the switch to a tablet was very frustrating to say the least. This one tip alone has helped so much, I've just started with your tutorials but just based on this tip I should be where I want to be with this tablet much sooner than I would have been on my own. Much appreciated.