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Creating and Painting Over Text Paper,
Composite Method, and a Pencil Sketch
by Jinny Brown  e-mail

copyright 1994 - 2001, Jinny Brown

Here’s the result of a 20 minute experiment using a Text-textured Paper, a Painter Composite Method, 
and one of my pencil sketches, scanned.

NOTE: My tutorial was originally written for Painter 5 and has now been revised for Painter 6. Translations are included in parentheses for Painter 5 (should also work in Painter 5.5).


Creator of "Text-tures", Jim Benson, is an artist and co-author of several books. For some great tips, take a look at:


Working his tutorial with "text-ture", I enjoyed the experience and its result so much that I decided to share my own method. Adding different twists, as you probably will, produced a surprising effect. My image, shown at the end of this tutorial, is nothing to write home about, but the general effect could be used in a more interesting image, later on. See what you can do with it! 

Follow these steps to create your own surprise.

1.Open a new WHITECanvas, 500 x 500 pixels square, 300 ppi (pixels per inch) for print or 72 ppi for the Web.

2.In the Tools palette, click the Text tool, then click the Canvas

3. In the Controls:Text palette, from the Font dropdown menu, choose a font (choosing Other Font will open the Choose Font window and display a longer list of fonts). 

4.Type a few lines of text (I typed just four lines, to make a "square" of text).

5.In the Tools palette, click the Layer Adjuster tool (Painter 5, Floater Adjuster tool). This will automatically select all of the text Shapes.

NOTE:  In the following step, if you want to position your text before dropping it to the Canvas, after the text Shapes are grouped, use the Layer Adjuster tool  (Floater Adjuster tool) to move the Group.

6.In the Art MaterialsLayers section (Floaters section), click the Group button to group the text Shapes, then click the Drop button to drop the text Shapes to the Canvas.

7. In the Tools palette, click the Rectangular Selection tool and draw a selection box around the text. Keep the selection close to the edges of the text, depending on the amount of space you want to appear in the Paper texture between each repeat of the text. (This is similar to a tiled/repeated Pattern.)

8.In the Art Materials palette, from the Papers menu, choose Capture Paper.

9.Push the Crossfade slider to 0.

10.Give the Paper a unique name not used by Painter, and one that you'll remember, then click the OK button to save it in the current Paper Library.

NOTE: It's important to make the new Paper name unique so you won't accidentally overwrite an existing Painter Paper by using the same name.

11. With the text still selected, from the Edit menu, choose Clear
(or Ctrl/Command+X), then from the Select menu, choose None
(or Ctrl/Command+D). This will leave your Canvas blank again, and ready for you to add your new Paper texture to its surface.

12. In the Art Materials palette Papers section (Painter 5, click the Paper icon to open the Paper palette) click your new Text Paper icon to make it active, or select it by name from the dropdown list of Paper textures.

13.  In the Brushes pallette, make the following selections:

  • Brush Popup: Charcoal 
  • Brush Variant Popup: Soft Charcoal
14.In the Brush Controls palette, make the following selections:
  • General section (Painter 5, go back to the Brushes palette)
    • Method: Buildup
    • Subcategory: Grainy Soft Buildup
  • Size section (Painter 5, to go the Brushes palette, Control menu, and choose Size)
    • Set the brush size to suit your fancy. 
NOTE: After you click the Brush tool, you can also alter your brush size using the Controls:Brushes palette (to open the Controls palette, in the Windows menu, choose Show/Hide Controls or use Ctrl/Command+5 to toggle it open or closed). Experiment with brush sizes and, from the Edit menu, choose Undo
(or Ctrl/Command+Z) if you want to try again. (From the Edit menu, choose Preferences, Undo and set the number higher if you want. The maximum allowed is 32 which uses more memory, so increase the number with that in mind, depending on your system's resources.)

15. In the Art Materials palette Colors section (Painter 5, click the Color icon), choose a color from the medium-grey area of the Saturation/Value Triangle.


16.In the Controls:Brushes palette, move the Opacity slider to 90%, then paint a few strokes over the Canvas. Adjust the brush size and opacity until you get the effect you want. 

NOTE:To clear the Canvas and begin again as many times as you want, from the Select menu choose All (or Ctrl/Command+A) and from the Edit menu choose Clear (or Ctrl/Comand+X).  To remove brush strokes one at a time, from the Edit menu, choose Undo (or Ctrl/Command+Z).

17.Choose two or three more colors in the medium-grey area of the Saturation/Value Triangle and continue painting strokes to very loosely cover about three quarters of the canvas, leaving some white around the edges.

18.Open a Scanned Pencil Sketch with a WHITE BACKGROUND that’s at least as large as the 500 x 500 pixel square Canvas. (Or, you could make a pencil sketch in Painter on a separate Canvas and use that instead, in the following steps.)

19.In the Select menu, click All (or Ctrl/Command+A) to select the entire pencil sketch.

20.In the Edit menu, click Copy (or Ctrl/Command+C).

21.Click the Layer Adjuster tool (Floater Adjuster tool), then click the 
500 x 500 pixel painted Canvas to make it active.

22.In the Edit menu, click Paste, Normal (or Ctrl/Command+V), then use the Layer Adjuster tool (Floater Adjuster tool) to position the pasted image where you want. (Once a copy of your pencil sketch is pasted into the painted image, you may close the original pencil-sketch file to clear your work area.) 

23.In the Objects palette, Layers list (Floater list), note that you now have one Layer (Floater). This is the pencil sketch you just pasted into the image.

NOTE: If it's too large to fit on the Canvas, highlight the Pencil Sketch Layer (Floater)  in the Layer list (Floater list) and, in the Effects menu, click Orientation then click Scale and type in a horizontal and vertical percentage, then click the OK button.

24.In the Objects palette Layers list (Floater list), check to see that the Pencil Sketch Layer (Floater) is still highlighted. To do the final step, the Layer  (Floater) must be active (highlighted) and above the painted Canvas and any other Layer (Floater) you want affected, as the Composite Method applied to a Layer (Floater) affects only what is below that Layer (Floater). This should not be a problem if you have only one Layer (Floater), since it will automatically be above the Canvas.

25. Click the Layer Adjuster tool (Floater Adjusters) and if the Controls:Adjuster palette is not already open, in the Windows menu, click Show Controls (or Ctrl/Comand+5).

26.From the Controls:Adjuster palette, Composite Method Popup, select Difference.

Jinny Brown, April 4, 2000 
Last modified on April 13, 2001

©1994 - 2001, Jinny Brown

All Corel Painter screen prints on these pages are used with permission from Corel Corporation.

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