From sketch to screen

One of the great things about working digitally is the flexibility it affords you. There are so many options to undo and redo parts and layers that it's easy to knock out quick variations to appease a demanding client. The trouble for many of us is that it's still quicker to do the thinking on paper.

Have you ever wondered how to create vector images from something you doodled in a sketchbook? If you have, then you only need a pencil (or camera), your computer, and a little patience to convert any photo or drawing into vector art in Illustrator. Even the most novice user will be well on the way to creating stylised images from illustrations or photographs in no time.

This tutorial will show you a simple and fast way to create a basic technical illustration using a sketch as a guide. You'll find that this way of working is not only quicker than working from a blank canvas, but will also make you think carefully about using Illustrator's tools, helping you to choose the most suitable one for the job. And because this is Illustrator you'll be creating an image that can be re-factored easily, so the colours and scale can be changed at your discretion.

In this example I've chosen to use an image of a spray can. However, you can use a similar process to convert any image into stylised vector art. The basic principles will be the same, but you can draw your own lines and choose your own subject matter and colour palette.

Click here to download the support files (453KB)

Click here to download the tutorial for free

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

The Creative Bloq team is made up of a group of design fans, and has changed and evolved since Creative Bloq began back in 2012. The current website team consists of eight full-time members of staff: Editor Georgia Coggan, Deputy Editor Rosie Hilder, Deals Editor Beren Neale, Senior News Editor Daniel Piper, Digital Arts and Design Editor Ian Dean, Tech Reviews Editor Erlingur Einarsson and Ecommerce Writer Beth Nicholls and Staff Writer Natalie Fear, as well as a roster of freelancers from around the world. The 3D World and ImagineFX magazine teams also pitch in, ensuring that content from 3D World and ImagineFX is represented on Creative Bloq.