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Krita Free Painting App Tutorial by TysonTan Krita Free Painting App Tutorial by TysonTan

Updates
2014-07-25: Source file has been made available. Please feel free to translate this tutorial into your native language!
2014-07-23: Shortcut chapter update, Typography improvement.

As requested, I'm sharing my Krita experience here as a
comprehensive, 24 pages tutorial. This tutorial shows how I created a
new picture of Kiki (the mascot) for Krita 2.9 startup splash, covering
many Krita related know-how such as:

  • Brushes of choice
  • Customizations
  • Layers
  • Ruler assisted drawing
  • Transformation
  • Mask
  • My 2 drawing strategies
  • and more!

I hope this tutorial helps. Good luck and happy drawing with Krita!

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Add a Comment:
 
:iconutao:
TysonTan has been holding the flag of Krita since years, and looking at his latest pictures done with this free drawing software, no one can doubt it is possible to do professional-looking art without Photoshop or SAI that can cost hundreds if not a thousand dollars. Tysontan here shows us the tricks and tips of Krita, and since I recently decided to give it a try, I'm more than happy to see all the most important aspects covered in this beautifully written tutorial. Of course it is always a pain in the rear to start working with a new program which can maybe do the same things as the one you used before, but the shortcuts, icons are different, the tools can be differently named, etc. In this tutorial you can find how-to instructions on using the basic tools like selecting, color picks, layers and their properties, coloring tips and more. And who else could you give a better insight than an artist who's been obviously using it with professionalism for years?

So, all the fellow artists who don't want to spend hundreds on good graphic software but need something more than Microsoft Paint, dig through this tutorial and check out the links! And show love and support! Donations are welcome by the team ^^
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
40 out of 41 deviants thought this was fair.

The Artist has requested Critique on this Artwork

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:icontiffashy:
TIFFASHY Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ooohh this is beautifully done~ ;u;
I got some questions for this. When I open up two files, I select a colour from the reference sheet and when I go to the other page the colour won't be on my eyedropper. How do I select the colour from another picture and take it to the picture I want to place it onto?
Is  Ink_Brush_25 ideal for outlining?
Reply
:iconaedelline:
AEdelline Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Krita is an amazing program! My favourite thing about it is mirror drawing, because it works amazing for all kind of art that needs to be symmetrical, although not everyone knows about this feature. Too bad because both Sai and Photoshop lacks those...
Reply
:iconthe-universe-of-nya:
The-Universe-of-Nya Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Krita will not let me preview my art on deviant and it's below 1200x1200 pixels and it is in jpeg format.
Also krita will not let me convert it into a png either.
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
It never happened to me. Can you tell me how you export and what Krita says when it refuses to convert a document into PNG?

Or you may want to try the new Krita 2.9beta2 to see if it solved the issue:
krita.org/item/krita-2-9-beta-…
Reply
:iconthe-universe-of-nya:
The-Universe-of-Nya Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
File> Export> PNG
it says: it cannot export image in this colorspace or channel depth to PNG.

If I download a newer version, will my images from the older save there, be deleted or will have to convert them? And is that version free?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You must have been using a colorspace other than RGB 8 bits. I guess you were either using CMYK or RGB 16 bits. PNG does not support those color space.

When creating a new document, set the "color" section of the dialogue as:
* Model (RGB)
* Depth (8 Bits)
* Profile (sRGB built-in)

For existing documents, use:
Menu > Image > Convert Image Color Space
And set the options the same as above.

You will have no difficulty exporting pictures to PNG after that.

Krita will remain free forever. Your old pictures will not be affected.

Good luck!
Reply
:iconthe-universe-of-nya:
The-Universe-of-Nya Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
People have always told me CMYK was a good colour usage because it's the original colours. Guess it only works traditionally. Thank you!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Color management is an extremely complicated subject. A quick suggestion: Use sRGB 8 bit for everything unless you are dealing with photos.

sRGB is the modern display standard. Almost every screen today is designed according to sRGB. Although it hosts the smallest range of colors, it is actually wide enough for digital painting. So if a picture looks great under sRGB, it would probably look great on anything. Because we painters use relative color to give proper contrast and impression, we don't really need bit-exact color precision.

In contrast, CMYK/AdobeRGB has much wider color range than most of the display devices. On a standard display, pictures with wide color space often suffer noticeable color distortion. They don't promise color fidelity in printing circumstances, either. What you really need is proper color calibration for your devices and thorough color proofing for your pictures across every device. Those tasks are not cost-effective for independent artists.

I have been doing color management on my workflow for many years. My experience tells me that unless you have proper equipment and knowledge, you would be better off to do no CMS at all. When CMS goes wrong it can go way off and you don't even notice yourself!

So stay simple, use sRGB 8bits! sRGB 16bits is also a great choice. Higher bits means less color banding when you are blending colors. Remember to convert back to 8 bits when saving for web, though!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
It's not because of Krita "won't let you" preview your art on DA. It is DA not being able to decode your native Krita document.

Krita saves its native
documents as .kra files, just like Adobe Photoshop saves its native
documents as .psd files. Native formats provides better save performance
as well as preserving layer information. As each application has its
own unique native document format, most being closed and proprietary, other applications normally do not support them.

Instead, websites
respect a different set of open, portable format, you can only use
jpg/png/gif in most cases.
To save a file as JPG/PNG, use Menu > File > Export... and make sure the document type and extension of your filename is PNG or JPG.
Reply
:iconthe-universe-of-nya:
The-Universe-of-Nya Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I already did all that and it still didn't work anyway. I did export and everything and it wouldn't let me convert it into PNG in the first place.

But it's solved now.

I had to convert it into PNG in Paint then tr and upload.
Reply
:iconmay156028:
may156028 Featured By Owner Dec 18, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
did you upload this from krita or did you convert it into a different file type or art program? DA won't let me upload anything from krita. :( is there any advice you can give me?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Dec 18, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
If you are working in Krita with its native .kra document format, you
will have to export the picture into JPG or PNG files before you can
upload it online.

Menu >> File >> Export
to save your picture with .jpg or .png as filename extensions.
JPG is a lossy format, you may want to set the quality above 90.
PNG is a lossless format, but it's heavier.
Also remember to resize your picture within general screen sizes, ideally smaller than 1280x1280.

It's actually the same story across all drawing apps.
Reply
:iconmay156028:
may156028 Featured By Owner Dec 18, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you! :D
Reply
:iconyingyingkirby:
yingyingkirby Featured By Owner Dec 8, 2014
This Tutorial Is Great That I Already Drew Two Digital Artwork That Including Mandeville!Without This Tutorial,I Will Never Drew Digital Art Of Mandeville!Thank For This Tutorial,It Is So Much Helpful For Me!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
You're welcome! Good luck on painting with Krita!
Reply
:iconyingyingkirby:
yingyingkirby Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2014
I Will Use This Tutorial All Time When I Use Kirta And I Am Ready To Upload My First Ever Deviation Which Is One Of The Two Digital Artwork That Including Mandeville!I Will Give You The Link That Bring You To The Artwork Once My Deviation Is Upload!
Reply
:iconyingyingkirby:
yingyingkirby Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014
Thank!
Reply
:iconrainbow-torch:
rainbow-torch Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2014
Hello, I have been using Krita for for a while and I just recently updated it to I believe your ver.

However, is there a way I can add a magnifying tool in my toolbox, like in the older ver?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I using the newest in-development source codes to build my own binaries. Plus I'm running Krita on a GNU/Linux distribution, so there is going to be some differences between yours and mine.

Krita's toolbox is not customizable, or I there is a way to do so but I've never figured that out. You can add tools to your horizontal toolbar as an alternative. 

How to add zoom icons to Krita's toolbar:
1. Right-Click on the horizontal toolbar, select "Configure Toolbars";
2. On the first drop-down list, select "Brushes and Stuff";
3. In the "Filter" form of "Available Actions" column, type-in "zoom";
4. Select "Zoom In" or "Zoom Out", click the "->" arrow in the center to add it to the current toolbar;
5. Use the "^" and "v" button to change order;
Reply
:iconrainbow-torch:
rainbow-torch Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2014
Thanks, I am also using the Linux ver. too.
Reply
:iconim-reshi:
Im-Reshi Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
It's like Photoshop but better:D
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Krita focuses on digital painting, while PS is primarily about image processing. Tey all have their own strong point. Butif it is for drawing, I will choose Krita. :)
Reply
:icondrawing-4ever:
Drawing-4Ever Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2014
I decided that I will also test Krita!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Good luck! :)
Reply
:icongoldenandsilver:
GoldenAndSilver Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2014  Student Artist
I'm using krita and I like it so far, but I'm having trouble with it.  When I started on it, I couldn't draw on it but I press something and it worked.  It's happening again and I don't know how to fix it so I can draw on it.  Help?  :c
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I guess you are using Windows version, but I'm not using Windows and I have never encountered your problem, sorry I can't help you. You may contact the dev team on twitter: twitter.com/Krita_Painting They will answer your question. Good luck! :)
Reply
:iconmyrazhe:
Myrazhe Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This is very helpful, thank you! few question though. I noticed on the brushes of choice the inking have numbers on them. I tried to look for the one that the ink circle_5. Where would I find that one? And which tool do you use for sketching? I love learning from awesome experts. =3
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Tutorial page 3 has all answers to your questions. Please pay attention to the filter below the brush preset window, you can search using the filter. I use the brushes mentioned on page 3 as well.
Reply
:iconmyrazhe:
Myrazhe Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
okie doke thankie!!
Reply
:iconxnessax:
Xnessax Featured By Owner Aug 31, 2014  Student General Artist
it looks like Paint tool SAI ,such sweet program :heart: And sweety drawing :heart:
IM YOUR FAN , U REMENBER?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you! I think Krita and SAI work very differently. I could never get use to SAI given its UI philosophy.
And yes I remember you, you've never changed your avatar picture. ;)
Reply
:iconxnessax:
Xnessax Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Student General Artist
No problem!! :o!!

yeah i tested krita out, i feel complicated with it but SAI is easier for me ,because i already dominated it. I have lots of drawings made with it and my tablet :D 

In soon i will try calmy learning in Krita, but there's not commands i can try to do. Like pressing P to use pencil, pressing B to brush air, presing L to new layer, etc... Maybe it might be a configuration. 


Yep. I never change my avatar, that's like forever and i have another new account, with other avatar of a drawn girl (Amazingist ) . :D 
:heart: :3
Reply
:iconshadowlegionnaire:
ShadowLegionnaire Featured By Owner Aug 29, 2014  Student Writer
This is awesome! If I ever decide to seriously learn how to draw, I'll use this program. :D
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you! And good luck on the drawing!
Reply
:iconshadowlegionnaire:
ShadowLegionnaire Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Student Writer
YW and thx. I reckon I'll need it. ^^;
Reply
:iconalbinokiwi47:
AlbinoKiwi47 Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
Can i please ask for some non-art related help with krita?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I can try to help, but if it's too technical you should consider to consult the dev team, they have a twitter account twitter.com/Krita_Painting .
Reply
:iconnoxmoony:
Noxmoony Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2014  Student Filmographer
This is so detailed and well designed. Absolutely beautifully handled! Thank you so much for doing this, very helpful! :)
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you and you're welcome!
Reply
:icongongoozle:
Gongoozle Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2014
Thank you so much for this, its helped me get over allot of hurdles going from pencil and paper to digital. I tried Photoshop and Sai but its krita that won me over. It is unfortunate that some brushes lag on windows, like the airbrush but I am hoping they fix that in a future release. Also thank you for all the shortcut tips, the canvas turning one has saved my life XD. I've always been the kind of person who can draw lines as well horizontally so I always turn the paper, now I can do it in krita!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Good luck on drawing with Krita! :)
Reply
:iconcaramelpuffpuff:
CaramelPuffpuff Featured By Owner Aug 15, 2014
You may never heard of this, but does it have a smiliar function as RETAS Paintman? It's the most popular software that is perfect for making anime drawings, used in Japanese Anime Industry. 
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I had very vague impression about RETAS, but I'm neither familiar with Japanese softwares nor their industry.
Reply
:iconjeztarzcourt:
JeztarzCourt Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2014
This tutorial is very informative and easy to follow.  I can't wait to apply what I have learned.  Normally I only work with traditional media, but I am very keen on trying this digital application it seems like a lot of fun!  Yay new toys! -cough- I mean tools.
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you! And good luck drawing with Krita! :)
Reply
:iconreshlrlam:
RESHlRlAM Featured By Owner Jul 29, 2014  Student General Artist
Could you tell me more about mask layers? Because I don't know how to use them :C
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Mask layers are not a must use feature in most cases. It complicates the workflow and make it less intuitive. I think my introduction has the essentials you need. I recommend you to use direct drawing when possible.
Reply
:iconreshlrlam:
RESHlRlAM Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2014  Student General Artist
Yeah, I found it myself, when I looked at this tutorial more closely ^^;
But still thank you for the respond :D
Reply
:iconhazelwing:
HazelWing Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is awesome!
Thanks!~
Reply
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