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Tutorial - cel shading by Serio555 Tutorial - cel shading by Serio555
This is mainly how I'd do cel shading, and I need to say that this is the method I like to use, so it's definitely not the only or the best method out that's there. Plus, it's by no mean a standalone method, as to get a better result it often pays to combine cel shading with "normal" painting. But for a simple cel-shaded anime look, this is the basis of the method I use.

This tutorial was done in Photoshop CS2, but should work with other software that has blending modes.

Frankly, I don't expect this to be all that helpful, but since there's no one way to colour a picture I find it difficult to write a meaningful colouring tutorial. Hence I'm simply showing some of my basic methods, if anyone's interested.
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:iconmanwithoutwings19:
manwithoutwings19 Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2013
Well, I have learnt the techniques but does cel shading by chance looks better via soft shading?
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:icontaishobee:
TaishoBee Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you!
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:iconthetruecrystalvixen:
thetrueCrystalVixen Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
This is pretty cool, I will try this when I get better ^W^
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:iconxlavenderkisses:
xLavenderKisses Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2009
This tutorial is great (:
-runs off to try-
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:iconmabru-black:
Mabru-Black Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
This comes really handy to me!!! (I am terrible at shading T_T) I'm gonna try it!!!!
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:iconharusameiro:
Harusameiro Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2009  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Question: Maybe I should already know this by now, but how do you select more than one thing with the lasso tool at the same time (like in the picture of hair at the bottom)?
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:iconserio555:
Serio555 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2009
You set the selection type to "add to selection" [link]
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:iconharusameiro:
Harusameiro Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2009  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks!
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:iconserio555:
Serio555 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2009
you're welcome :)
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:iconkaori-izuna:
Kaori-Izuna Featured By Owner May 30, 2008
this is helping alot ^^ thanks so much hun!
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:iconscotslegend:
scotslegend Featured By Owner May 26, 2008
Great, i\'ll try this technique next time :)
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:iconayrael:
Ayrael Featured By Owner May 26, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Very useful. I like the way you colour the hair
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:iconpriscillahavenaar:
PriscillaHavenaar Featured By Owner May 26, 2008  Student Digital Artist
Woaw!
this great! :B
You did a nice job on making this tutorial.
Can't wait to see more real soon.
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:iconandes-sudo:
Andes-Sudo Featured By Owner May 26, 2008   Digital Artist
It's good to see the different methods people use to colour their art. In Photoshop you have SO many different ways of working! I'm not keen on your method though, as I think there are better ways to work. I prefer to work with color fills and adjustment layers (for shading), and keep everything seperate (in layer groups). And, I use this method on any style of drawing that I'm doing. If you're interested I could upload a PSD example.
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:iconserio555:
Serio555 Featured By Owner May 26, 2008
That's alright, I use a lot of different ways for colouring myself. This is simply the method I find quickest personally since it's basically blocking in the colours and adding some manga-style toning (which I'm reasonably proficient in), but it's definitely not for everyone. I also keeps everything separate, so in practice I will work on the colours a bit more before adding the cel-shading.
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:iconandes-sudo:
Andes-Sudo Featured By Owner May 27, 2008   Digital Artist
I guess it's about finding what works best for yourself. I think I've found a good way of working in Photoshop that fits me very well and leaves everything individually editable without magic-wanding or fiddling. (Although, I need to work on my brushes). A similar set-up doesn't really work well in Painter, but I'm still learning that! ^^;
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:iconserio555:
Serio555 Featured By Owner May 27, 2008
Yeah, I know other people who work in greyscale then add the colours using a gradient adjustment layer, but working that way I often ended up with too many layers as I need an adjustment layer for each element.

Nowadays most of the time I simply use the brush tool and paint the colours, so I actually use painter more than photoshop for colouring. I try to keep minimum layers because I find it improves my techniques more and I don't rely on the software as much, but that's just me.
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:iconandes-sudo:
Andes-Sudo Featured By Owner May 28, 2008   Digital Artist
I don't get on with that greyscale first method either. It seems forced when I try it and it doesn't really change how it turns out, it just takes longer! Maybe I'm doing it wrong... I don't mind having loads of layers though, as long as you manage them well it's not a problem.

There's something about Painter that almost forces you to REDUCE the amount of layers you use. Probably a good thing! :D
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:iconblackvegetable:
Blackvegetable Featured By Owner May 25, 2008
Nice tutorial!
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:iconelegant-ruin:
Elegant-Ruin Featured By Owner May 25, 2008  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks for the tutorial serio!
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:iconthe-shadowed-angel:
The-Shadowed-Angel Featured By Owner May 25, 2008
Great tutorial. It's interesting to see how different artists work :D Especially since there are so many ways to achieve different effects
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:iconserio555:
Serio555 Featured By Owner May 27, 2008
Yep, that's why drawing is fun.
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:icontyranda:
tyranda Featured By Owner May 25, 2008
thaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaanks
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:iconphoenix-lapa:
Phoenix-Lapa Featured By Owner May 25, 2008
thanx so much great job
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:iconcarlovalente:
CarloValente Featured By Owner May 25, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
ottimo tutorial, anche se lavoro diversamente
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:iconserio555:
Serio555 Featured By Owner May 26, 2008
Sorry, but I don't quite understand what you say there ^^;
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:iconcarlovalente:
CarloValente Featured By Owner May 28, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
excuse me i wrtite in italian!

GREAT TUTORIAL!
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:iconksiopeaslight:
Ksiopeaslight Featured By Owner May 25, 2008  Professional Interface Designer
Good tutorial!! thanks for u're xperience!!
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:iconarcane-wind:
Arcane-Wind Featured By Owner May 25, 2008
Very useful! And also a new technique to me, I've always done cel shading (and most shading) by painting in darker colours on the same layer. I shall definitely try these sometime.
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:iconserio555:
Serio555 Featured By Owner May 25, 2008
That's pretty much how I do most of my shading these days, I just paint directly on it. But for cel shading I use this method as the greyscale picture makes it easier for me to define and edit the shades (kind of like manga styled toning). But of course, the result is a pretty simple, "standard" look, but it's quicker for me since I can shade the entire figure at once without distraction from the colours.
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:iconarcane-wind:
Arcane-Wind Featured By Owner May 25, 2008
another possible pro I can see is colour balance.. when I pick my colours separately sometimes it turns out weird because I get different lighting on each piece of my picture xD
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:iconserio555:
Serio555 Featured By Owner May 26, 2008
Well, in this case every colour is simply darkened by an equal amount of grey :P
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