The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Digital Painting

by Annie Saxena on Feb 18, 2023

The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Digital Painting

Painting digitally involves using software, a graphics tablet, a stylus, and other digital tools to create the final product. Digital artists produce artwork on computers using specialised software tools rather than conventional painting supplies like paint and canvas. In order to produce a variety of textures and effects, artists can employ a large choice of brushes and painting tools in the software.

Digital artists can choose from a wide variety of software tools because digital painting has grown in popularity over time. Adobe Photoshop, Corel Painter, Procreate, and Krita are a few of the most widely used applications.

The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Digital Painting

The act of painting digitally involves using a digital tool, like a graphics tablet or computer software, to create the artwork. Here are some tips to get you going if you're new to digital painting:

Purchase the appropriate equipment: A graphics tablet and a digital painting programme are required to begin digital painting. With a graphics tablet, you may write or draw right on the computer screen. Adobe Photoshop is a well-known digital painting programme, but there are also a tonne of other choices, including Corel Painter, Procreate, and Krita.

Learn the fundamental methods: Similar to traditional painting, digital painting calls for a foundational knowledge of principles like colour theory, brushwork, and composition. These methods can be learned from books, courses, or online tutorials.

Try out several brushes: Digital painting offers a variety of brush possibilities, including innovative digital brushes and realistic oil and watercolour brushes. Try out various brushes to see which ones suit your style and technique the best.

Start with a sketch: To plan out your composition and design before you begin painting, it can be good to prepare a sketch or underdrawing. This might assist you in resolving any problems or errors before you begin painting.

Work in layers: You may simply make adjustments and edits to your painting without affecting the rest of the image if you use digital painting, which enables you to work in layers. You can also try out various effects and methods because of this.

Digital painting involves effort and experimenting to get better, just like any other kind of art. To develop your own distinctive artistic voice, don't be hesitant to experiment with various methods or approaches.

Online galleries, social networking, printing, and selling are just a few of the ways that digital painting gives you the chance to share your work. You can obtain feedback and make connections with other artists by sharing your work.

Ultimately, digital painting has the potential to be a satisfying and entertaining creative form. You may make stunning and distinctive artwork that showcases your imagination and originality if you have the correct equipment and methods.

What are the Characteristic of Digital Painting?

The following list of five attributes of digital painting:

Non-Destructive Editing: Digital painting enables artists to edit and improve their creations without affecting the original picture. This is due to the fact that layer-based digital painting software enables artists to change some components of a painting without impacting the overall composition.

High-quality Resolution: Artists that use digital painting may work at high resolutions, creating highly realistic and detailed paintings. Moreover, digital painting programmes frequently let painters zoom in and out of their creations, which can help them work more precisely.

Flexibility: Because digital painting is such a versatile medium, artists may experiment and try out new things without fear of damaging their work. Digital paintings can also be easily shared, reproduced, and stored in a number of different formats.

Speed and Efficiency: Digital painting software frequently includes a number of tools and features that can facilitate speedy and effective work by artists. This can involve tools like interchangeable brushes, ready-made textures, and the capacity to copy and paste a painting's various components.

Versatility: From realistic portraits to abstract patterns, digital painting may be utilised to create a broad variety of art styles. Digital painting can also be used in conjunction with other mediums, such as traditional painting or photography, to produce distinctive and avant-garde works of art.

How do I Start Learning Digital Painting?

Learning to paint digitally can be enjoyable and gratifying, but it can also be intimidating at first. You can start with the following steps to learn how to paint digitally:

Selecting software and tools Selecting the digital painting programme you want to use is the first step. Adobe Photoshop, Corel Painter, Procreate, Krita, and Clip Studio Paint are a few of the most well-liked choices. For creating digital art, you also require a drawing tablet or a digital pen and tablet.

Start by learning the fundamentals of digital painting, such as how to utilise the brush tool, pick and adjust colours, and work with layers. You can master these abilities by using the many online tutorials and courses that are accessible.

Practice and experimentation are important in any artistic endeavour. Try with various brushes, methods, and tools to develop your own look. Don't be afraid to attempt new things and fail.

Observe other creatives: Look through the creations of other digital artists to get ideas and discover fresh approaches. Also, studying other artists' lessons and speed paintings can be quite educational.

Join online communities: Connect with others and share your work by joining online communities for digital artists. Also, you can receive criticism and comments to help you hone your abilities.

Create challenges and goals: Create challenges and goals for yourself to keep developing your abilities. You may set a goal for yourself to produce a specific number of works each month or try to imitate an artist's aesthetic.

Keep in mind that mastering digital painting requires both patience and time. Enjoy the process of learning and creating and try not to be too hard on yourself.

What Design Should be Created First in the Digital Painting?

There is no hard and fast rule about which design or subject to create initially in digital painting. It mostly depends on your preferences and the type of content you want to produce. But the general procedures for producing a digital painting are as follows:

Determine your topic: Anything from a landscape or portrait to an abstract design is acceptable for this. You can use an existing image as inspiration or use only your creativity to come up with something new.

Do a quick sketch: Using the pencil tool in your digital painting software, begin by making a quick sketch of your topic. This can aid in the composition and design planning.

Pick a colour scheme that complements your theme and the atmosphere you wish to evoke. Try out various colour schemes to see which one suits your painting the best.

Block in the primary shapes by utilising the brush tool to draw in the primary colours and shapes of your subject. This will provide you with a starting point and enable you to improve your painting as you go.

Improve your painting: Develop your artwork in layers, enhancing the textures and fine-tuning the details as you go. To give your painting depth and texture, experiment with different brushes and implements.

Finish your painting: If you are satisfied with it, finish it by tweaking the lighting, contrast, and colours. To make your painting stand out, you can also add finishing touches like highlights or shadows.

Never be scared to explore and attempt new techniques because digital painting is a flexible and versatile medium. You may make stunning and original digital paintings with time and effort.

Which Pen are Used for Digital Painting?

Although there are many other kinds of digital pens used for digital painting, stylus pens are the most popular. To replicate the experience of drawing or painting with a traditional pen or brush, stylus pens are used on graphic tablets or touchscreens.

Stylus pens come in a variety of designs, including battery- and rechargeable-powered ones, as well as ones that employ electromagnetic resonance technology. Wacom, Huion, XP-Pen, and Apple Pencil are some popular brands of stylus pens.

Think about ergonomics, tilt sensitivity, and pressure sensitivity when selecting a digital pen. While drawing or painting, increased pressure and tilt sensitivity can give you more control and precision. Also, it's crucial to pick a pen that fits your digital painting technique and feels natural in your hand.

What are the Advantages of Digital Painting?

Digital painting has a number of benefits, including:

Non-Destructive Editing: One of digital painting's biggest benefits is the capacity for editing paintings without affecting the original image. This is due to the fact that layer-based digital painting software enables artists to change particular components of a painting without impacting the overall composition.

Cost-Effective: Digital painting does away with the requirement for pricey art materials like paints, brushes, and canvases. A computer, tablet, and digital painting programme are all you need.

Digital painting software has a variety of tools and capabilities that can aid painters in working swiftly and effectively. This can feature the option to copy and paste painting pieces as well as pre-made textures and brushes that can be customised.

Versatility: From realistic portraits to abstract patterns, digital painting may be utilised to create a broad variety of art styles. Digital painting can also be used in conjunction with other mediums, such as traditional painting or photography, to produce distinctive and avant-garde works of art.

Digital paintings may be readily saved, shared, and printed in a variety of forms. Because of this, it is simple for artists to share their creations with a larger audience and to replicate them in a number of mediums.

No Mess: Digital painting eliminates the need for messy solvents or paints. For artists who don't have access to a dedicated studio area or who want a tidy working space, this makes it a wonderful option.

Ultimately, digital painting is a flexible, affordable, and effective medium that benefits artists of all skill levels in a variety of ways.

What are the Common Mistakes done by Beginner in Digital Painting?

These are some typical errors that newcomers to digital painting may commit:

Without a sketch as a foundation It's usual to start a digital painting without first sketching out the basic shapes and composition, which is a common mistake. Before you start painting, a preliminary sketch might assist you in organising your idea and making any adjustments.

The use of excessive layers While utilising too many layers might make your painting chaotic and challenging to control, it's tempting to get carried away when digitally painting. As much as you can, attempt to integrate your layers together and keep them orderly.

Failing to comprehend the software Particularly for beginners, digital painting software can be confusing and daunting. Spend some time becoming familiar with the fundamentals of your software package and trying out various tools and capabilities.

Using filters and effects excessively can make your painting appear fake and gimmicky, even if they can be a beneficial tool in digital painting. Use filters and effects thoughtfully and sparingly.

Avoiding the use of model images: While making digital paintings, it's crucial to use reference photos, especially when it comes to lighting, perspective, and anatomy. Your painting might be inaccurate and shallow without reference materials.

Rushing the process: Learning to paint digitally takes time, so newcomers may feel tempted to cut corners. Spend some time honing your painting, and make any necessary adjustments. The secret to producing excellent digital paintings is perseverance and patience.

Keep in mind that mastering digital painting requires both time and effort. Don't let failures or mistakes deter you; instead, keep trying new things and picking up new skills. You may produce magnificent digital paintings that reflect your individual style and ingenuity with enough time and effort.


A computer, a graphics tablet, and the appropriate software are often used to create digital paintings, which is a well-known art form. The artist utilises a digital art programme to produce 2D artworks by painting and sketching using the stylus that comes with the graphics tablet. Digital brushes are the first of several methods and equipment that are used by digital artists.

All digital art applications have them as standard features, but users can make their own by changing their shape, texture, size, and transfer.  The majority of these brushes—but not all of them—are designed to mimic conventional techniques including oils, acrylics, pastels, charcoal, and airbrushing. As well as these, layers, lasso tools, shapes, and masks are useful tools. Digital painting has advanced beyond imitation of classic art forms to fully.