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My Moksh Process using Affinity Photo

I really grew to love India when I took a trip there in 2012 with a group from Thailand. Our goal was to see how God saw India. Not to see a mob of faceless humanity, but millions of individuals each known and cared for by God. Not to see only the dirt and poverty and caste and corruption, but to notice the parts of their culture that shone - the vibrant colours, the hospitality, the amazing food, the incredible dancing...

In each culture, there's a lot of bad things and good things. I love imagining what India would look like if each of those millions of individuals became a light to the world, a lamp lit by God himself. Heck, I'd like to see MY culture change to that way, too!

In this drawing, the lamp represents Yeshu, born in the hay to be The Light of the world - the light that would ignite so many who followed him. It will be the title image for the story surrounding his arrival on earth.


In this blog post, I'm simply going to go through the digital process that comes after painting the colours and drawing the lines on paper. I use Affinity Photo. Let it be known that I think Affinity is a great company and if you're looking to own a program similar to Photoshop but without a subscription, this is an excellent option. If you use Photoshop, you can do a similar process to this, but there will certainly be some differences.

Step 1: Preparing the Linework

To make the white part of the linework image transparent (so that later, the gouache & watercolour image can shine through), I rasterized this image of my pencil drawing to a mask.

First, I inverted the colours (command-i). Then I went to Layer>Rasterize to Mask.

Then I put a black pixel layer underneath the newly created mask layer. The mask layer now applied to the black pixel layer. You can see the checkerboarded transparent background in this photo.

Step 2: Add Lines to Colour

Here's the colour part, already colour corrected using Adjustments, and already with the white part removed (I just created a circle selection and deleted the white background that way).

I had dragged the mask layer into the black pixel layer, virtually creating one layer of the two, and then copied that into the colour file. It already looks pretty ok, but the black is a bit stark for my liking.

Step 3: Colour the Lines, and other little tweaks

Firstly, I noticed that I "coloured outside the lines" a bit, due to the fact that I painted the colour on a different paper than my lines. So, I went into Liquify Persona (top left corner) and just smooshed the rasterized colour layer about until they weren't too out of place.

I used the paint bucket to fill the lines with a teal colour, but I wanted some variety in the line colour so on the line layer with the colour pixel layer selected (not the mask part), I selected different parts of the lines with the lasso tool and filled them in with different colours. Because there was a mask on that colour pixel layer, I didn't have to be precise with my selections. I just had to make sure I loosely went around the parts I wanted to change colour.

Here you can see I changed the inner circle from teal to a dark orange colour.

And here are some more subtle changes - the dots are white now, the flame has some different line colours, etc.

This is what the line layer looks like without the mask applied!!

This image was fairly simple, so it didn't take a lot of tweaking to achieve what I was looking for. I enjoy the triadic colour scheme of purple, teal and orangey-yellow, and I think that the design is simple and pretty! I hope you think so too!

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