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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!

High resolution versions:

Links

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 ^^
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:iconwindswirl:
WindSwirl Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2015  Student Digital Artist
Thank you for sharing this!
I just downloaded Krita and I love it!
Especcially this sketiching tool is so much fun! >///<
Reply
:icondaniv-p:
DaniV-P Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2015  Student Digital Artist
Krita just doesn't work for me D; which is so sad cuz I really like it. I love drawing on it but the multiply tool just doesn't work. Idk if I'm doing something wrong? (I doubt it because I've been using the multiply tool on photoshop and SAI forever) instead of making the lines darker the multiply tool makes them lighter no matter what colour I use or how dark the colour already is, so I can't do nice lineart or nice blended shadows because the multiply tool isn't doing what it's supposed to. It's doing the opposite.
It's only this one thing that's not working, yet I use the multiply tool for everything so it's one thing and everything at the same time. Gosh Krita. Of all tools you decide to not let work :tears:
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
It hever happened to me, but you may try Blending Mode: Darken >> Linear Burn for a change. It does very similar thing to Multiply.
Reply
:iconkuro-lolita-kitten:
kuro-lolita-kitten Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I've got Linux Mint Rebecca on an external drive which I plug into a laptop, but whenever I install and try to open Krita it ways essential components cannot be found. Any suggestions as to what is going on? Thank you^^
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Before you start, make sure your copy of Linux Mint is NOT a LiveUSB system. LiveCD/DVD/USB are supposed to be used on trial run before real installation. in that case you cannot change anything permanently. Each restart will reset or even destroy your system if you messed up something.

If you are using properly installed system, then:

To install missing Krita runtime components on, open terminal:
sudo apt-get install kdelibs5-dev kdelibs5-plugins kde-runtime oxygen-icon-theme konqueror

This works for most Debian/Ubuntu derivatives. Linux Mint is one of them.

If you are using Ubuntu, you can install the newest Krita from PPA:
launchpad.net/~dimula73/+archi…

It might also work for Linux Mint. But there could be problem. Use Ubuntu is the way to go.

I wouldn't suggest you use Linux Mint and Krita on a external drive, though. Linux has a swap partition and Krita does autosave every 5 minutes. Disk I/O over USB is too slow for those tasks. When Krita autosaves you will experience huge slowdown. You may turn off its autosave from Menu>>Settings>>General>>Miscellaneous
Reply
:iconkuro-lolita-kitten:
kuro-lolita-kitten Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much for your help^^ It is a LiveUSB system, which is probably why it won't work for me, although everything else seems to install and work just fine ((odd, right?)) I should probably just put Mint on my computer anyway... hopefully it works then?
I really appreciate you taking the time to help me~♡ Krita is such a beautifully powerful program^^
Reply
:iconqueenwolfiey:
Queenwolfiey Featured By Owner Edited Jul 15, 2015  Hobbyist Filmographer
I am interested I love fancy performance paint programs (or apps)!

where should I find it?
Reply
:iconkuro-lolita-kitten:
kuro-lolita-kitten Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
There is a website where you can download it on windows, linux, or mac
Reply
:iconqueenwolfiey:
Queenwolfiey Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2015  Hobbyist Filmographer
Thanks
Reply
:iconkuro-lolita-kitten:
kuro-lolita-kitten Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
You're welcome^^ it truly is a lovely program
Reply
:iconbondofox:
BondoFox Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I can sure use any help I can get.  Thanks for creating this!  Please enjoy a Llama Badge
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You're welcome!
Reply
:iconjavicandraw:
javicandraw Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
More than a tutorial this is an act of love. I cant begin to think how long this took to plan and execute. Brilliant stuff!!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you! It was a passion work!
Reply
:iconfrostyfreeze321:
FrostyFreeze321 Featured By Owner May 31, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I have problems with installing Krita 2.9:

My system is on drive D:
My drive C: have about 500MB free space, my drive D: have 260MB..
I want to install it on C: 
I picked installation place on C: 
While installing it says that I can't install because drive D: has too small memory..

What can I do? I can't free more space, because my PC is a bit old..

I mean My C: size is 29.3GB and D: is 8GB... And whatever I do to free space on D: isn't working, only thing I'm able do is to remove Windows Installer Baseline Cache, but I don't want to mess my PC...

?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner May 31, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
I'm afraid you will have to uninstall other applications or get a new HDD. There is no other way out. HDDs are not anything expensive to come by these days. Judging from your HDD's capacity, I suspect you cannot use any of the current internal HDDs now.
You can use a portable HDD to store your documents, pictures and videos, free space on your internal drive.
Reply
:iconnamiheartphilia:
NamiHeartphilia Featured By Owner May 30, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you, very helpful!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You're welcome!
Reply
:iconowllover132:
owllover132 Featured By Owner May 28, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I just got the program a few minutes ago. can't you name the layers? This did kind of help. I'm still lost on where the undo button is...
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner May 28, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Double click on the layer name to rename. Don't move your mouse outside of the layer docker while editing. This is a known bug that cancels editing unexpectedly.

There is no undo button by default. You can use Ctrl+Z to undo and Ctrl+Shift+Z to redo. You can add undo/redo buttons to toolbars by right-click > Configure toolbar.
Reply
:iconowllover132:
owllover132 Featured By Owner May 29, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
thanks.
Reply
:iconvvheatley:
VVheatley Featured By Owner May 15, 2015
I am really having trouble creating transparent backgrounds
is there like a step by step thing you can show me please? 
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner May 18, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You just draw your stuff on a higher layer and hide the lower layer.
Reply
:iconvvheatley:
VVheatley Featured By Owner May 19, 2015
AHH thank-you very much  
Reply
:iconnocara:
nocara Featured By Owner Apr 26, 2015
Amazing as always,  great Tyson ^^ Latelly I have been strugling to lear how to use krita and here there are some basic concepts i had not clear
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner May 18, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you and good luck!
Reply
:iconpetrexkgb:
petrexkgb Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Krita is awesome. I like the brush feel even more than in Photoshop CS6, which is saying quite something!!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Krita is really good at mimicking real media, but PS still has its edge when doing image processing.
Reply
:iconpetrexkgb:
petrexkgb Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yeah, no doubt about that. But there's a lot more than meets the eye with this tool. Quite positively surprised with it!
Reply
:iconnovax31:
novax31 Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2015   Artist
How do you post your pictures?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You export it as .png or .jpg from the file menu.
Reply
:icon777edgar351547:
777Edgar351547 Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2015  Student Digital Artist
I need help, I cant see Reference Images. i dont know what to do.
Reply
:iconsamantha-dragon:
Samantha-dragon Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Just go to Settings > Dockers > Reference Images - it opens new tab in first tab group on the right side (for me) and you need to find it there and click on its tab name to set it active. For me I can see only "Ref..." almost at the right edge of monitor. Than, there you can choose the source folder and work with it :)
Hope it makes some sence :]
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
I never used Reference docker, sorry about that!
Reply
:iconligax:
Ligax Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2015  Student Filmographer
what size canvas do u usually start with when your sketching and when ur painting do the size change?
also what resolution is good to use with this program
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
I draw on A4 300dpi size most often. I think 1366x768 is the minimum but you need to hide a lot of dockers under such low resolution. I would suggest at least 1680x1050 and 1920x1080.
Reply
:iconligax:
Ligax Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2015  Student Filmographer
thank you!!
Reply
:iconmasterslacker:
masterslacker Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much for this!! I have just recently picked up Krita and this was extremely helpful. I also love your Kiki art! 
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks! I'm glad it helps!
Reply
:iconynne-black:
ynne-black Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2015  Student General Artist
Thank you for this tutorial!

I just wish Krita would let me save files other than .kra, it sucks to printscreen my pictures. D:
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You can go Menu-File-Export, change the filetype or filename extension to JPG PNG or whatever you want as long as Krita supports it.
Reply
:iconynne-black:
ynne-black Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2015  Student General Artist
But as I said, then "could not save xx." pops up
Reply
:iconpetrexkgb:
petrexkgb Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
To me it happened because I was trying to save with an area selected. After deselecting there was no problem xD
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
It never happened to me. I even went back to test this on Windows.

Did you created a 16-bit or CMYK document? JPG and PNG only support 8-bit RGB color space by their specifications. If you did use 16-bit or CMYK, make sure to use Menu-Image-Convert Image Color Space to convert it back to RGB 8-bit before you export to any portable format.
Reply
:iconynne-black:
ynne-black Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2015  Student General Artist
But it also asks for some sort of... I have no idea what to choose, but it says something about sRGB? What are proper settings that should for sure work?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
CMYK and 16 brings more problem than they can benefit you. You should always use sRGB / RGB / 8-bit in almost all cases unless required by your client. I suggest you create new document with those settings from now on. This is not just for Krita. Other apps either don't support anything else or just don't bother to warn you about it.
Reply
:iconynne-black:
ynne-black Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2015  Student General Artist
Thank you :)
Other apps never ever showed such message to me, I guess their default settings were correct already. I'll keep it in mind from now on!
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You're welcome. But if you understand my last comment correctly, it wasn't because other apps has "correct default settings". They just convert colorspace automatically, so they do not give you warnings. Krita does not do that, and it is not necessarily a bad thing. Color management is very complicated. Doing everything automatically sometimes break things without the user noticing them.

FYI: Krita's default document setting is actually RGB / sRGB / 8-bit (which is "correct"). Krita will remember the last settings you used, so you must have changed it before so things "went wrong" after that.
Reply
(1 Reply)
:iconthe-universe-of-nya:
The-Universe-of-Nya Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I wanted to ask a couple things. How do you fill a specific shape with a gradient? Also, how do you create stars, like what brush should I use?
Reply
:icontysontan:
TysonTan Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You can either use selection tool beforehand to limit how much the gradient tool affects; or you can use the gradient tool on a separate layer, then use eraser or transparency mask to trim tje edge.

As for using what brush for what, this depends on so many things. There is no set answer. I suggest you do some experiment yourself.
Reply
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