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Easter Girl + Burn Tool

Easter GirlThis is an illustration I made last April 2010 for Easter, thus the title Easter Girl. This illustration holds a lot of memories for me, one of which is that it’s my last mouse-made illustration; My Wacom Bamboo Pen tablet, which I named Cola, came May 5.

Easter Girl looks a lot like a cross between Little Red Riding Hood, the Easter Bunny, and Alice of Alice in Wonderland. Yes, I do love Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass a lot – the story, although made for children, was so surreal and twisted that my mind was boggled. It still didn’t beat Peter Pan out as my Number One favorite classic story of all time, though.

Illustration Tip: To add a sense of depth and dimension to your vectors and textures, try burning the edges. I used Adobe Photoshop CS2 for this illustration; This is how I use the Burn Tool:

  1. Choose the Burn Tool at the Toolbar – it’s with the Dodge and SpBurn Tool, Adobe Photoshoponge tools, right beside the Blur Tool (the one that looks like a teardrop).
  2. Choose a circle brush with feathered edges.
  3. Duplicate a vector layer and label it as “sample vector”. Use this sample layer for trial-and-error setting. I always duplicate the layers before burning so that in case I don’t like how it turns out, I still have the original untouched vectors.
  4. Toggle with the exposure and the range on the top toolbar.
  5. Trace along the edges of the sample vector. Make sure that you are working on the layer of the vector you are burning. Sometimes it doesn’t work on certain textures – this is when you use the Dodge Tool, which more or less functions the same, the way I use it.
  6. If you like how the sample vector turned out, you can do it on the rest of the vectors you wish to have edges burned.

Note: You can burn a texture layer as well. Sometimes it is more visually effective than burning the edges of the underlying vector; Just make sure that your texture layer is set as a Clipping Mask to the vector assigned to it. The range and exposure settings, and the colors have different effects, so don’t be afraid to toggle around.

I am sure the Burn Tool have a specific use designed for it, but creative minds can always discover new ways of utilizing the tools in a software. The secret is to not be afraid of exploring styles and settings.

The textures and brushes (bamboo, dandelion, grass, and pebbles) used in this illustration are from deviantArt.com.


About klacenklai

Klarizza Jose is a landscape architect by day, dreamer and digital artist by night, and is in an on-again off-again relationship with coffee.



  1. Pingback: The Bunny Girl « Hey Klacenklai - 05/30/2012

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All illustrations, drawings, photos and content are © Klarizza Jose unless otherwise stated. Please do not download, copy, alter, distort, and use without permission. For inquiries please send me an email at klacenklai@gmail.com.
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