Costume Enhancer: How to do it right!

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Hey all!

This is guide for my brush pack: Costume Enhancer. I thought it would be helpful to post a guide on not only how to use it but how to customize it to tailor your own needs. One of the things you need to be careful on is just using it just as it is. While this brush pack is meant to speed up your creation process and even add those extra details, it's real easy for it to look like a cookie cutter design and, worse of all, flat! We don't want that! So take a look at my guide below on how to fix that issue as while we take a look at some additional ideas to add even more to your design.

Do keep in mind, you should not use this pack substitute your drawing capabilities. This is made to save time.

1. The first thing you want to keep in mind is your character. What type of character are you trying to create, what time period etc?  Keep those things in mind while looking through the tools and creating your initial sketch.

2. Now that you got that down, go through and add the brushes you would like! Try not to go over board since it could make the costume too gaudy, unreal or flat (not unless that’s your intention then go right ahead!). Remember, create something that would be possible to make in real life. Not only that, just think if you were going to draw this character again. Details are nice (love em to death) but it could become a problem when you want to draw the character more than once.

3. The next step helps your little add ons fit in with the space that they are in. Think of the perspective that your character is being viewed from. This is very important if you want the details to look believable. Even if your character is facing the viewer head on with no extreme viewpoints, it is still worthwhile to have the details follow the curves of the body and folds. It makes your clothing look more three dimensional when you can imply contour lines. You can do this via the liquify tool and transform tools.

Another method you could use, which would probably work even better, is to change the brush settings so pen pressure is activated! I will show you an example of that later.

4. Everyone has different ways of doing line-art. Some are cleaner than others. Me, I tend to be on the sketch side most of the time. Because of that, the brushes don’t quite mix with my sketch. This can be solved by either cleaning up your sketch with an eraser (which is what I did), or adding some of that sketchy-ness to the added details by drawing over them a bit. By doing this, you integrate both elements.

Don’t just leave the brush details how they are (I mean you can but that would be boring). Draw little details inside them with a basic round brush like nicks tears, and even broken pieces. I added a hand draw frill at the bottom as well as some patch marks and a random charm on the ribbon. Then just rinse and repeat when you decide to add more to you design.

This is what the brushes would look like if they were pressure sensitive versus if they were left how they were. With pen pressure activated, you could combine step 2 and 3 saving you more time. You could even make your character look more dynamic by having things fly of of them in perspective (yay pen pressure!)

To turn pen pressure on, go to Window>Brush>Shape Dynamics and change the size jitter to pen pressure. Setting a percentage on that is complete optional!

F5 is the keyboard shortcut to Brush.

Wanna take it a step further?

Use the brushes to create your own complex designs like embroidery or simple borders!

Emboss or engrave designs on clothing or armor via styles!

The possibilities are endless! Another cool way to add subtle detail is to include fabric texture or fabric patterns into the clothing. Even if it is just subtle, it really adds a lot! I personally use pixelstains’s brushes to add texture to fabric.

This concludes the tutorial! If you haven’t already, check out the Costume Enhancer Brush Pack.

Feel free to pop a comment below if you have any questions !