Author: Liz Kohler Brown

How To Create Any Brush in Procreate

How To Create Any Brush in Procreate

I get so many questions about how I create Procreate my brushes, I thought it would be a great time for a brush making post. I’ve pulled together all my brush making tips and tutorials so you have them all in one place! Why would 

Insect Illustrations and Animations on Your iPad in Procreate

Insect Illustrations and Animations on Your iPad in Procreate

I love adding playful insects to my illustrations because it’s an easy way to add a whimsical feel to an otherwise boring composition! So I created a class to show you my whole process so you can start incorporating insects into your illustrations. In this 

From Procreate to Print: How to Print Your Procreate Drawings and Illustrations

From Procreate to Print: How to Print Your Procreate Drawings and Illustrations

So many people have asked me how to print work made in Procreate, so I thought it would be helpful to look at some of the most common questions and problems when it comes to printing. We’ll look at questions like “Why do my prints look so different from the screen?” and “Should I buy a printer or order prints online?”

Florals made in my Wilflowers in Procreate class.

This post is not sponsored so all of the opinions are my own! However I do include some affiliate links in the post, which means I would get a small percentage of the purchase price at no additional cost to the buyer.

Every Printer is Different

This is the annoying truth about printing your work onto paper or any other product: every printer is slightly different. If you print the same image on 20 different printers, you may get 20 totally different results. So how in the world do you get a print that is accurate to your original image?

Most professional printers will automatically adjust your image to make it look more like it does on screen. So if you order from a local print shop or art print site like the ones listed below, you probably don’t have to worry about adjusting your image. However if you’re printing at home on your own printer, testing and adjusting is a must! We’ll go deeper into these later in the post.

Size Matters, Folks

They say it’s not the size of the image, but the number of pixels that counts right? Sorry, I had to make at least ONE design joke. Seriously though, pixel count is key to getting high quality prints. So before you create a new image in Procreate, always be sure you set your DPI (dots per inch) to at least 300. Anything lower could result in a blurry print or the printer may not print the image at full size.

That means that 20 x 20 inches at 150 dpi is actually 10 x 10 inches in the print world. So triple check your DPI before you start sketching! Note: some printers or companies will request a different DPI, so if you’re working for a client or using an online printing company, be sure to check what DPI they recommend.

RGB or CMYK?

You’ve probably heard that RGB is for amateurs and CMYK is for professionals. Or that RGB is outdated and CMYK is more modern. The thing is — it depends. Some printers will request RGB while others ask for CMYK. So the important thing is to double check with the printer before saving your file! Most modern home printers are set to read RGB colors, however some more professional printers will require CMYK, so no matter what printing option you use, be sure to check with your printer before exporting your file.

Screen Vibrancy vs. Print Vibrancy

When you look at your artwork on a screen, it’s made artificially vibrant by the lights in your screen. If you reduce the brightness on your screen, the artwork suddenly looks less vibrant. So naturally, when you print your work onto paper, the color that you see on the screen will not necessarily be the exact color you see on the print.

Here’s an example of what I mean. See how much more vibrant the image looks on the screen? This was printed at a local office supply store, so they probably didn’t change my image to make it print closer to the screen colors. However if I had taken this to a professional print shop, they probably would have gotten much closer to the original.

Illustration made using the process in my book on iPad lettering.

So how do you make the print as vibrant as what you see in Procreate? If you do a test print on your home printer and it comes out dull, that is a sign that you need to play around with the Hue/Saturation/Brightness in Procreate by going to the Adjustments Menu and clicking Hue, Saturation Brightness. You may want to make note of your changes, because you can apply those same changes to future prints to avoid doing test prints in the future. For example if increasing saturation by 20% worked well for one image, it will probably work well for others.

What Printer Should I Buy?

If you have considered buying a printer before, you’ve probably searched for printers on Amazon and then quickly closed out the window after realizing how overwhelming the choices are! I’ve selected a few printers here that are known to be great for art prints because of their screen to print accuracy and vibrant inks.

Warning — good quality printers are expensive! You can certainly find cheap printers, but the prints won’t be high quality, so unless you’re just doing hobby projects, don’t be fooled by cheap printer deals. For hobbyists though, standard home printers are a fine choice, especially if you’re not concerned about the paper and ink lasting for years.

The great thing about more expensive printers is that you can order archival ink and thick archival paper, which means the prints will stand the test of time. If you use inks and papers that aren’t archival, the ink will fade with exposure to light and the natural moisture in the air. So if you don’t want to get a lot of bad Etsy reviews in a year, be sure to invest in archival inks and archival paper!

Here are a few printers that work well for professional artists/designers because they create high quality prints and can be used with archival materials:

Canon PIXMA Pro9000 Mark II Inkjet Photo Printer

Canon PIXMA PRO-10 Color Professional Inkjet Photo Printer

Epson SureColor P600 Inkjet Printer

Epson Artisan 1430 Wireless Color Wide-Format Inkjet Printer

Buying a Printer vs. Using a Print Shop or Site

The obvious benefit of using a print shop or website is that you don’t have to pay a lot of money up front to start printing. You can pay per print, and even ask for a refund if the print has a flaw. If you flub up a print at home, you’re stuck with it and you wasted some paper and ink!

If you’re doing a lot of printing though (like running an Etsy shop or stocking a local gallery or shop) then driving to the print shop, or waiting days for the print websites to send your prints may not be an option. Most customers expect items to be shipped within a few days (thanks a lot, Amazon), so you don’t have time to wait several days for a website to print your work and ship it to you, so you can ship it to your customer. So if you’re selling your prints, having a printer at home or using the drop shipping options below may be your best bet.

Where Can You Order Prints?

If you’re not in the market for a printer and don’t want to have to worry about stocking paper and ink, there are still plenty of great options both locally and online. Two of my favorites are FinerWorks and Giclee Today.

Companies that offer drop shipping will both print the work for you and ship it to your customer. It’s super easy to upload your images, input your customers information, and sit back while they do all the work.

The downside? You don’t get to see the print before the customer does, and you can’t include any personalized packaging. They may also include their own marketing in the package, which could be confusing or off-putting for the customer. Unless the company offers white labeling (meaning they remove their own marketing and put yours in place of it), then you may be helping that print company market to your customers at your own detriment.

Here are a few websites that offer drop shipping:

Giclee Today

Printify

Finer Works

Art of Where

Printhouse

Printful

Print on Demand

The easiest way to print your work? Print on demand sites. All you have to do is upload your image to the site, then it is automatically applied to a wide range of products, so all you have to worry about is making the art.

Mockups made on Society6

Ordering from these sites to resell to customers is not a great choice though, because the pricing is set for the customers, not resellers. So while you can make some money from a print on demand shop if customers buy your work directly from the site, ordering from the sites, then shipping it to your customers yourself is not a cost effective option.

Not sure how to sell your work on print on demand sites? I have a whole class explaining how to get images you made on your iPad onto Society6 and how to create beautiful mockups of your work.

Society 6 for iPad Artists and Designers

I hope this article helped answer your questions about printing from Procreate, but if you still have some doubt, join my Facebook group where iPad artists and designers chat about making art, printing it, selling it, and everything in between!

Wildflowers in Procreate + Free Color Palettes and Gouache Brushes

Wildflowers in Procreate + Free Color Palettes and Gouache Brushes

I absolutely love drawing and painting florals, but I have to admit I often get stuck in a rut and draw the same plant forms over and over. This month I did a complete overhaul of my plant form library and wanted to share my 

How to Make Gorgeous Color Palettes + 9 Free Palettes for Procreate

How to Make Gorgeous Color Palettes + 9 Free Palettes for Procreate

So many of you have told me that you struggle with choosing colors for your work. I hear you! I used to agonize over color combinations and wonder why my colors never seemed to look as good as everyone else’s. It wasn’t until I did 

Acrylic Landscapes in Procreate + 32 Free Acrylic Procreate Brushes and Stamps

Acrylic Landscapes in Procreate + 32 Free Acrylic Procreate Brushes and Stamps

Landscape painting is my go-to process when I get stuck in a creative rut. There are days when I just don’t feel like drawing anything, but somehow seeing a beautiful landscape can get me in the mood to start creating!

I decided to turn my love of landscape painting into a class, so all you fellow landscape lovers can start incorporating landscapes into your drawing routine. In the class you’ll learn everything you need to know to create acrylic landscape paintings on your iPad in Procreate!

When you watch the class you’ll get all of the acrylic brushes I created including 12 different types of acrylic strokes, textures, and some color changing brushes that will help add some realistic variation to your paintings.

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The set also includes 19 bird and plant stamps, so you can quickly add some layering and depth to your composition.  I’ll show you how I created the stamps, so you can make some of your own unique silhouettes that fit the location and mood of your landscape.

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First we’ll look at a few ways to create a fluid sky full of variation and acrylic streaks.  We’ll cover easy ways to add shadow and highlights to your landscape features, then look at how to use elements in the foreground to add depth to your paintings.

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Next we’ll use an impressionist painting style to build up a landscape with small strokes.  We’ll talk about ways to use light and shadow to create an abstract landscape that is full of color and variation.

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Last we’ll combine all the painting techniques into a varied composition with bold shapes and color.  We’ll look at how to adjust the colors of your painting so even if you’re working with a plain landscape, you can still create a vibrant painting.  I’ll show you how to get tons of beautiful acrylic paint strokes and textures so that your paintings have the lifelike feeling that is often missing in digital art.

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By the end of this class you’ll be able to turn any landscape into a beautiful painting.  Landscape painting is a great way to help you loosen up with your digital drawing and painting.  You can even create simple abstract paintings in a few minutes, just to loosen up before a drawing session.

It’s also my go-to painting style when I get stuck in a creative rut. Even when I have no idea what to draw, I can always be inspired by a beautiful landscape and some simple paint strokes!

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You could use the paintings you create in this class as gifts for friends and family, art prints to sell or give away, or upload them to print on demand sites like Society6 and Red Bubble.

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Painting in Procreate is also a great way to plan for your paintings on canvas.  If you like painting with acrylics on real canvas but tend to be disappointed by the results, you can use Procreate as a sketching tool for planning out the colors and composition, before putting brush to canvas.

All you need to take this class is your iPad and a stylus.  I’ll be using the Apple Pencil, but you could use any stylus or even your finger. 

Not ready to watch the class yet? You can Pin It for later by hovering on the image below.

How to Get Your GIFs into Instagram Stories Sticker Search

How to Get Your GIFs into Instagram Stories Sticker Search

Have you ever wondered how artists and designers on Instagram are getting their GIFs into Instagram stories search for anyone to use? This tutorial will show you everything you need to know! I did the whole process from start to finish and want to share 

Learn to Design Professional Digital Planners with Vectors

Learn to Design Professional Digital Planners with Vectors

I’ve designed several digital planners over the years, trying out different apps and processes, and this is by far the most efficient and precise process I’ve ever tried.  I love the process so much, I decided to create a whole class to show you every 

Free November 2019 – 2020 Digital Planner with Customizable Sections and Buttons

Free November 2019 – 2020 Digital Planner with Customizable Sections and Buttons

If you follow my blog or classes, you know I love using digital planners to stay organized. I’m such a picky planner though, I can never seem to find a planner that fits all my needs as a blogger, teacher, designer, and overall organization obsessed person. Luckily there are a lot of iPad apps that make it easy to design a digital planner, so I’m always working on a new design and layout for my next planner.

This year I created a dated (my first dated planner!) 2020 planner with tons of customizable sections. I also added in December 2019 in case you want to get started with the planner right away (swipe left on the January page to see December 2019). I created a tour of the planner and show how to use all the buttons and customizable sections in this video:

I made this planner using the process shown in my new class on creating a digital planner with vectors in Affinity Designer. If you want to create your own planner, check out the class!

The planner has a simple, minimalist style, but has a lot of stickers and customizable sections that you can use to add whatever colors and shapes fit your personal style!

The planner has lots of buttons at the top of the page that help you navigate to the month views, planner sections, stickers, and customizable sections that you can make your own:

The buttons on the left link to each month of the year, and the ones on the right link to these sections:

I also created a section for the hex codes in the planner so you can add them to your custom colors in Goodnotes if you want to write in the colors of the planner palette.

The planner has all the usual sections, like yearly, monthly, and weekly views:

See the blank sections on the planner pages above? I left those blank so you can use the huge set of customizable stickers and lined sections to make the planner exactly how you want it to be:

The customizable sections range from colored stickers and lined bullet lists to goal trackers and monthly calendars!

Not sure how to use a digital planner? Check out the video above to see all the steps.

Download the Goodnotes Version of the Planner

Download the Notability Version of the Planner*

Download the PDF Version of the Planner

Download the PNG Version of the Sticker Pages (only necessary for the PDF Version)

Download the Sencillo Font

*Because of the way Notability crops stickers, I wasn’t able to insert each sticker individually on the Notability version of this planner. So you have to use the scissor selection tool to crop some stickers.

**If you have trouble downloading any of these files, check out the troubleshooting suggestions here.

Best Apple Pencil Grips, iPad Cases, and Desk for iPad Drawing

Best Apple Pencil Grips, iPad Cases, and Desk for iPad Drawing

I just made some major changes to my workspace, so I thought it would be a great time to share all of my favorite pencil grips, cases, and drawing desk tips! Want to hear all of this in video form? Watch the video here: I