All About Procreate’s Colour Adjustment Tools
Procreate is a fantastic tool for creating your own digital art. It’s wide array of features mean that practically anything is possible, so whether you’re looking to create realism pieces, or more abstract artworks, you can do it all.
The app’s interface is very simple and clean looking, however within the menus there are so many settings and tools which you can use to create or enhance your artwork. In this article we’re going to take a closer look at the settings for adjusting colour, within the magic wand tool.
If you’re brand new to Procreate, we’d recommend that you check out a few beginner tutorials first as you may not want to use these techniques until you’ve mastered the basics, click here for a beginner’s guide to Procreate and here for some handy hints and tips!
So, let’s take a look at what’s inside Procreate’s magic wand tool!
Tap on the second button along, on the top left hand menu of Procreate’s main canvas interface. The tool we’re going to explore, literally looks like a magic wand.
It’s official name is the adjustment tool, however, you’ll probably hear of it referred to as the magic wand, and after all, it is kind of magic!
You’ll see a menu pop up with a list of adjustments available, these are listed below. We’ll go into the ones related to colour adjustments in particular, in a little more detail. We’ll post another article explaining the blur tools and other effects.
Colour adjustment tools
Hue, saturation, brightness
Blur tools – stay tuned for a guide to these!
Special effects tools – stay tuned for a guide to these!
The first thing to note when tapping into one of these tools, is that you’re presented with the option of applying the effect to the layer or to the pencil.
If you select layer, this applies the change to everything included within that layer. If you only want to amend small sections, you can use the pencil option. In this article, we’re going to use the layer option so that we can see an example of each effect.
Hue, Saturation, Brightness
This setting allows you to change colours, brightness or tones of your digital art. This is a really handy tool if you want to replicate a certain element, but in a different colour – it saves you creating it all over again.
Hue = the actual colour of your element
Saturation = denotes the intensity of the colour
Brighten = the light or darkness of your colour
In the below examples, you can see a succulent, in its original green shades, which I have drawn.
In this first image, I’ve amended the hue, and you can see that the plant has changed colour entirely!
For this example, I’ve adjusted the saturation to 0%, which makes the layer black and white.
Finally, I’ve amended the brightness to a low percentage, making the element appear darker overall.
These are just examples of how each option works, if you use them creatively, you can obtain some really cool effects!
This setting lets you amend the balance of the colours, so for example the hue level of red, green, and blue. These three colours, commonly seen as “RGB” are the base of all other shades.
In the below I’ve altered the hues and changed some shades. Think of these three sliders as a physical colour mix – you add more of one tone, and it changes another – exactly as if you were mixing paint.
You can also select whether to apply colour balance to the shadows, midtowns or highlights by clicking the sun icon to the right.
In the below example, I’ve adjusted the colour balance with shadows selected. You can see that the darker areas of the image are changing hue. This setting will select the darker tones of your image.
With midtones selected, you can see how the area which has been colour adjusted has changed.
Finally, if we select highlights, we can see that the adjustment is very subtle – the light areas on the edges of the succulent’s leaves are changing. This setting will select the lightest tones in your image, and adjust those.
So, depending on what type of image you’re editing, will depend on whether you choose to adjust the colour balance of your shadows, midtones, or highlights.
The end result of using the curves tool is similar to using colour balance, it changes the RGB colours.
To use this tool, click on the colour which you’d like to amend and then tap the line to add a dot (which is officially called a “node”). You can add as many of these nodes as you like.
To change all three colours (red, green, and blue) use the gamma setting. To amend just one shade, tap either red, green or blue to the right hand side.
This is a really cool setting which amends the various tones of colour in your artwork. Procreate comes with a handful of preset gradients, you’ll see these listed along the bottom of the screen.
Tap on any of these to apply it to your layer. Move the squares in the gradient bar to denote how much of each colour you want to see.
Some of the preset gradients are really cool, but you can also add your own by tapping on the + in the gradient library. Tap on the gradient bar to add a square (node) and double tap it to open the colour selector. You can create some amazing effects by using a variety of colours!
You can create some really subtle gradients with this tool, however the effect stands out more if you use it on a canvas or piece of artwork which has a lot of different colours in it.
If you need to delete a node, hold down on it with your stylus and hit delete. You can save your custom made gradients in this tool alongside the Procreate presets.
We hope you enjoyed this tutorial and learned about some of the ways in which you can adjust colours in Procreate! Let us know your favourite way to amend shades in the comments below.