Adobe Illustrator: Shading

In the Illustrator session, we continued with creating our illustration of Marilyn Monroe, in particular we were focused on shading.  Last week was all about creating the facial features of Marilyn, and the week before that was the basic structure; now we were seeing how we could improve and make the illustration look more realistic, but yet do so in a cartoon, pop art kind of way.

Firstly we created a thin black line with 0.25 thickness, this was then duplicated and position slightly bellow.  With the duplication and position enabled, we could carry out duplicating and repeating the procedure which as the end result created a series of lines going down one side of Marilyn’s face.  This was going to be a shadow; however it was too wild and needed to be adjusted to certain areas of her face.  This was done by using the pen tool, creating a clipping mask so that the shadow appearances moulds around the drawn path.  To make this effect look better, we simplified the path so that it looked much smoother, but also lowered the transparency so that it looks more natural.

The next technique we used for shading was “halftone”.  Firstly we created a rough outline of Marilyn and filled it grey.  Using the mesh tool we created a wire frame that effects how the shading will appear. How you use the mesh tool is entirely down to the individual, however I ensured that the lines were tighter on the outer edge compared to the inner, so I could drag different shades of grey in from darker to lighter. Each illustration would look different based upon this stage, therefore we could experiment with it to find how we wanted it to look.  Below shows my end result from the tutorial.


The Illustrator tutorials I am finding rather helpful as I am learning different ways that Illustrator can be used.  In the sessions, our tutor Steve, has been going through the different stages in the illustration to create Marilyn. I now feel that I would be able to do this by myself, therefore by next Monday I intend to have completed by own version of the Marilyn illustration following what we have been taught from our tutorials.