Easy vector illustration tutorial for beginners with Adobe Capture CC

Vectors are every designer’s dream as they are scalable and versatile. Vectors also make more valuable assets if you are looking to sell your work on Creative Market and image stocks.

My love affair with flat vectors started when I bought an iPadPro. I started working on Adobe Draw app, where I was mainly constructing an image out of flat shapes. However, I also missed drawing with outlines, which I found wasn’t as precise on the iPad as it was on paper.

I wasn’t doing much line art until my boyfriend showed me the shapes feature in Adobe Capture CC. I was already using Adobe Capture CC for capturing colour palettes from life, but not for vectorising shapes. After I tried this feature once, I was hooked.

Creating line illustrations with Adobe Capture CC is really easy and perfect for beginners. All you need is a mobile phone, pen and paper, and Adobe Illustrator to edit the final design.

In this blog post, I wanted to share how I used Adobe Capture CC to create illustrations for the “Contemporary Family” project.

Non-stereotypical gender roles is a trending topic in image search, according to the latest Shutterstock’s shot list. After doing some research, I found that there is lack of representation in media of men engaging in parental and caring activities and expressing emotions. I also came across gay parents on social media, who felt that there was a lack of picture books that represented same-sex couples raising children together. That is why I wanted to explore this topic further by drawing men in non-traditional gender roles.

I did the initial sketches really fast, with a simple black felt tip pen on ruled paper. I wanted the drawings to be quick and loose, as I didn’t want the final illustration to feel too rigid. Plus, I always found that there was more energy in my original sketches, which did not always translate into the finished artwork. A simple tweak like using ruled paper somehow helped me treat drawing less seriously.

Next, I used Adobe Capture to digitise the sketches. All I needed to do was simply point my camera at the drawing, and it was stripped down to a simple vector shape, similar to the “image trace” tool in Adobe Illustrator desktop app. I was pretty impressed that even though I did my drawings on ruled paper, with some tweaking, the app only traced the outlines of my sketch.


The shapes were automatically saved to my CC library, which was synchronised across all my Adobe Desktop apps. So, it was incredibly easy to access the files when I opened Adobe Illustrator on the desktop.

For a very quick and fun way to colour in the vector shapes, I used a live paint tool in Illustrator. It makes the whole process of colouring on Illustrator reminiscent of early days of computer painting games that I used to play when I was a child. I was able to colour my sketches in really fast, using a colour palette which I created with Adobe Capture earlier.

I’m simply amazed at how easy it is to vectorise any sketch with this app. The scanning feature is great and can be used for making vector hand lettering or line illustrations. You can experiment with many different pens, brushes and painting textures. It brought back my love of doodling and I like to know that all my design elements are in vector, so they can be re-used and changed as many times as I like. This process inspired me to start creating colouring books, patterns and hand-crafted lettering designs.

I suggest that you give this feature a go. Adobe Capture is a free app, and although having an existing Adobe CC subscription makes the process of synchronising all your vectorised shapes across all your devices, you can still use the app without paid subscription and export the shapes to your computer manually.

If you enjoyed reading this article, then head to my Behance page to view the complete project, and give it some love.


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