Practise session: Tracing a photograph in Adobe Illustrator

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Today I practised tracing a photographic image into Adobe Illustrator. I took an image of myself, then started using the pen tool, with the fill option turned off, to trace around the outline of the image. After that, I created a new layer beneath the outline and added colour. This technique was exhaustive and extremely imprecise, as I could not trace the shape exactly the way I wanted it to. It created an interesting effect, but was not as clean or as accurate as I would have liked it to have been.

I also never finished tracing the entire image, as it would have taken quite a bit of time at the rate I was going. I think that I might have to look for tutorials of some more practical ways that I can trace photographs, without having to resort to this messy technique. However, I cannot quite tell if it’s because I am doing it wrong, or because of the technique itself why it doesn’t look so good. I think I’m going to ask somebody about this soon.

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