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More Developments in Digital Art 2021

There are some more interesting things to look at around the world for digital art during 2021 I want to share.

Vexel: Marrying Pixels with Vector for organic Digital Painting

Nelson Chu, developer of Eastern watercolour digital painting software Expresii, has written a really detailed article about the novel Vexel Rendering system in the software. This method makes it possible to get really crisp details when zoomed in rather than the usual blurry pixel look of purely raster based methods.

There is a lot more to it than I can understand, I recommend you read his article for more information, it is far too detailed and technical for me to give it justice here.

Krita 5 Wet RGBA brushes

The next version of Krita, an open source free digital painting software, will be Krita 5. One of the many improvements to the upcoming release is the smudge engine which will allow the RGBA brushes to use the smudge engine as well, creating a more tactile, wet oil like brush effect. You can watch a video here to learn more about them:

I’ve mentioned these a few times already on the website because I’ve been trying out the Beta version of Krita 5. The color smudge engine inversion 5 has been re-written to include the gradient mapped and lightness brush tips along with performance optimizations. The developers of Krita are all working really hard to iron out the bugs and get this release polished.

Blender + Krita (Painterly style shader) by Pierre Schiller

I saw this recently in the Krita forums, it is a shader style for Blender to enable 3D artists to use a painterly style effect on their 3D models. The intended use is to create a starting point render in Blender which can then be taken into Krita and worked on further with the RGBA brushes.

I think this could be useful for 2D artists who also incorporate a 3D workflow, perhaps it would be useful for creating a starting point for painterly backgrounds for projects that need lots of different angles like comics / graphic novels and picture books.

You can get the shader on Pierre’s Patreon.

Watch the video by Pierre to get a good idea of what it is and how it works.


If you like this article you can also read my article on digital art software updates for 2021.

Thanks for reading.


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