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Background credit:
Sonya aka Diffendoofer

Sat Oct 01, 2016 4:36 pm
I really hope this is the right place to ask this question...

Most of my art is from scratch, as can be seen on the examples on my profile.  I'm still trying to figure out what my style is, and I find that the think I have the most problems with is my line art.  I cannot for the life of me figure out what settings work well for line art, especially on a tiny 160x220 canvas.  I do most of my sketching with the pencil tool, and thus far I've been using the default brush setting to do the lines.  I've tried messing around with brushes and pen tools and stuff, but I can't find anything that works well for me to do nice, smooth lines that I don't have to go over repeatedly.  I've tried the line art layer setting on SAI as well, but it smooths out my lines for me and is a little too thick for the 160x220.

What do you guys use for lineart?  Do you have any tips, or specific settings that work for you?
Sat Oct 01, 2016 7:05 pm
Personally, I find it hard to draw out on a a 160x220 canvas, but a lot of people manage it. I usually create a bigger canvas, then size it down if I'm doing a DP.

Are you using a tablet? If so, edit your stabilizer in the top right corner. The higher number you go, the smoother the line, but the longer it takes to create it.

The tool that I use is the Ink Pen. I feel it gives a solid, sleek looking line. Like most people, if my lines are messy, I always just redo the line, by pushing Ctrl + Z.
Sat Oct 01, 2016 7:52 pm
i don't use SAI since it's not compatible with my computer but i use a similar program called CSP which is also by a japanese company so i hope this is somewhat helpful

if you start your canvas as 160x220 instead of a bigger dimension, i personally prefer using any brushes other than the pencil brush (like ink pen, pen, fill etc) mainly cause the pencil brush is to mimic the "pencil effect" so it can look very faint and not as crisp when you view it at 100% (which is not very big at 160x220)

if you're someone that sketches first before going over the line in a darker color, then using the pencil first is fine, but if you jump straight into lineart like i do (cause im lazy LOL) then just use a more solid brush that makes things look more crispy and obvious

here is a tumblr website that features a lot of artists brush settings on SAI
maybe try a few of their settings and hopefully you can find something that works for you!

Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:09 pm
I don't use the line-art layer.  I've tried it before, but it's just not something that works for me.

I suggest using any Pen tools that you have.  (If you downloaded the Sai file that's given on GASR, it should have 2-3 Pen tools already set on there.)

Why do I recommend it?  Because you can draw very thin or thick lines without having to adjust the settings much like you would with a brush or pencil tool.  It's also automatically a little smoother than the other brushes as well.

The stabilizer in Sai helps keep your lines smooth as well. (Mine is set to 0 because I never knew it was there and learned how to make smooth lines without it.)

Here's a comparison of me not really putting effort into it so that my lines would look shaky.

Without Stabilizer

With Stabilizer Set to 15

Your brush strokes won't start to slow down/lag until you get to the S-X sizes, but you usually wouldn't need more than 15 unless maybe if you were using a mouse.

I made those lines using the "Pen 2" tool, which is my favorite for line-art.  If you don't have the same tools as I do, you can download my Sai here:

Last edited by Queen on Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:11 pm; edited 1 time in total
Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:11 pm
@Kelso - Thank you! I don't use the ink pen often but I will try it. And yeah, I keep my stabilizer at like 15. I forget it exists sometimes and don't change it around like some artists do.

@Tetsu - Thank you, I'll definitely check the blog out. By chance are you using a Mac? I know SAI doesn't work on Macs, but my current laptop is on the verge of death and I was thinking about switching to a Mac, so it would be nice to know an alternative program if I decided to do that.

@Queen - Thank you, this was very helpful! I honestly don't remember how I got SAI, but it was a file someone else sent me. I will check out the one in your thread as well.
Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:14 pm

There is a program similar to Sai that is compatible with Mac, called FireAlpaca. I've been meaning to add it to the art program list, but I'm a little behind.

I'll go ahead and add it to the list since you asked for an alternative Mac program. It works for Windows as well if you wanted to download it and try it out before switching computers.

Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:17 pm
@Queen - Yeah that would actually be very great, thank you very much flower
Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:22 pm

I updated the list with the program!
Sat Oct 01, 2016 10:43 pm
yes i'm using mac atm, and the full name of my current program is Clip Studio Paint if you want to check it out
(it's not free but the purchase is a one-time thing, and there's a free trial option so you can try it before you decide if it's worth or not haha)

i was using firealpaca for awhile but it's very limiting in my opinion, it lacks a lot of function/abilities that you may see both on SAI and photoshop
you can still give it a try though since it is free after all, and their lineart brush is pretty nice (you just can't adjust many of the settings)

Sat Oct 01, 2016 11:03 pm

I'll give it all a try, thank you! I really appreciate the help
Today at 6:01 pm
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