ImageThe texture of fibrous tissue like muscle, ligament and tendon can be quickly rendered in Photoshop with the aid of a preliminary pencil sketch. Setting a sketch layer to Multiply mode in a Photoshop painting can create the shadow areas of fibrous texture (sketch layer opacity = %65). The same sketch can also be used to create highlights for some subjects. This works especially well for fibrous tissue if the sketch is prepared with this application in mind.

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The texture of fibrous tissue like muscle, ligament and tendon "fig 1" can be quickly rendered in Photoshop with the aid of a preliminary pencil sketch fig 2".

Shadows

Setting a sketch layer "fig 3" to Multiply mode in a Photoshop painting "fig 4" can create the shadow areas of fibrous texture ("fig 5", sketch layer opacity = %65). The same sketch can also be used to create highlights for some subjects. This works especially well for fibrous tissue if the sketch is prepared with this application in mind. The pencil sketch should be created with linear strokes that suggest fibers or groups of fibers. Crosshatching or other shading may be added on a separate layer if desired, but no marks should be added on the same sketch layer as the strokes representing the fibrous tissue.

Highlights

Here is a method for adding highlights to fibrous tissue. Duplicate the sketch layer and invert the duplicate (Image/Adjustments/Invert). Increase the contrast of the duplicate layer using Levels or Curves until the sketch lines are as white as possible, but the spaces between lines do not fill in "fig 6". Change the blend mode of the duplicate layer from Multiply to Screen. The sketch should now appear faint with light lines of the duplicate layer exactly covering the dark lines of the original layer. Move the duplicate layer 2 or 3 pixels in the direction opposite the light source using the arrow key(s). Add a layer mask (black) to hide all the light lines on the duplicate layer. Gradually add highlights by softly brushing with white in the layer mask "fig 7". Finish the painting by adding highlight and shadow definition to larger forms "fig 8".

Biography

John Daugherty, MS CMI is the owner of Highlight Studios in Waukegan, Illinois and an internationally recognized medical illustrator. He is also currently Associate Program Director for the Biomedical Visualization Graduate Program at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Specializing in anatomical and diagnostic illustrations of the human body for the purpose of educating patients and healthcare professionals, John is sought after by clients who appreciate aesthetic compositions that tell the medical story. He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards for his illustration work in medical education and healthcare marketing, including twenty Association of Medical Illustrators salon awards. His illustrations have been included in exhibitions held by the New York Society of Illustrators, National Library of Medicine, Rx Club, John Muir Medical Film Festival, Oakland Museum of Art, Benton Museum of Art, International Museum of Surgical Science, and Lisboa-Terreiro do Paço in Portugal.