Earlier I promised to solve some of your problems when it comes to make selections. You probably only think about the usual selection tools provided in the toolbar of Manga Studio or Photoshop. As there are the magic wand and poly line selection tool etc.
What you discover today goes way beyond that. So fasten your seatbelts (grab a coffee first) and lets go!
If you experienced the same kind of problems with the mentioned selection tools as I am, you cursed so now and then. Perhaps because the poly line tool decided to finish the selection before you did and this kind of stuff. That were the moments where you thought Why can’t I just use a selection tool just like a pen, marker or a brush?
Same thoughts here! Here comes the solution to all that.
I work with Manga Studio EX 4 here. You shouldn’t run into any problem with the debut version.
Let’s assume your sketching and inking is done. In the image above you see that I made this screenshot(s) while re-designing Lynn.
In the layer window of Manga Studio (you can open it via the Window-menu or by pressing F4) you’ll see this little green square with a dot in it. Hover over it with your mouse or pen-tablet and you read the text Use Quick Mask. Click on it!
A Quick Mask Layer will appear in the selection area of your layers window. This indicates that you are working in the quick mask mode now.
This also means that you can use all the drawing tools from the tool pallet (image above) to create the selection area of your artwork. Yes, even the eraser and the fill tool.
I use the marker tool and draw slightly over the inking line. The light brown transparent color indicates the area you are selecting. After I followed the inked outline around the whole face I use the fill tool to make this selection area complete.
You will notice that I did not select the eyes. I did this because I want to make a separate selection area for them later on. In fact this isn’t really necessary because you can make as many selection areas as you like for every single part of the face or the hair.
After drawing your selection you have to finish this operation by clicking that tiny little square again. The text that appears when you hover above it this time says Cancel Quick Mask.
Click on it now and let’s see what happens:
Manga Studio will make a selection of the area you just created and show the Selection Launcher beneath it. Just to be clear: the dotted outline you see in the image above is the selection you just created.
You also see that the quick mask layer in the selection area of your layers window has disappeared. Take a close look to the image above and you see that another icon has woken up. Hover over it and see that it reads Convert Selection To Layer.
Wouldn’t it be a waste of time if you had to made your selections over and over again? Wasn’t it annoying when your selections were bound to a single layer? This would mean that you couldn’t use the exactly same selection on the layer with your pencil work and separately on the one with your color or ink work.
But we don’t have this problem as we can use our selection on every layer we like. Even better, we just have to create it once. To make sure that you don’t lose your selection click on that tiny button and make a selection layer of it!
Above you see the new created selection layer. The symbol to the left shows the selection of Lynn’s face. To make this more clear I will rename that layer later on.
What we now did was saving our selection to use it later whenever we want. If we chose to do so we will have to click on the second button that says Convert Layer To Selection while hovering above it.
In Lynn’s case this would result in a green face that is indicating the choice of our selected area. You also see the dotted line and the Selection Launcher appearing.
OK, let’s look at the facts my friend: a green face could disturb our creative process. The solution is easy.
Just click on the eye to the left of the selection layer. This will hide the green color and will not harm any functionality of the layer. The selection is still active.
You can go now and activate every layer you want to work on using this selection. Use it for example on you color layer and paint the face without touching the hair or the eyes.
Just click on the outer left button of the Selection Launcher to clear the selection.
In the image above you can see that I created five different selection layers for Lynn and gave them a easy recognizable name.
Another important note is that you can edit this layers if something is wrong with the selection you created. Let’s say you selected a part of the hair with your selection for the face. You don’t have to do it all over again. Just select the layer and work on the green mask with your drawing tools.
I hope you found this information useful and you have much fun drawing. Be it digital or with pen and paper.