Artistic Sketches Ask painter artists and they'll tell you that all the tubes of paint in the world cannot replace the simple pencil when it comes to artistic potential. Through the centuries, the litmus test of an artist's ability was best shown through the medium of pencil drawing.
Today, thanks to Adobe Photoshop's creative offerings, there are numerous sketch filters beyond the simple pencil sketch filter, paint-by-number filter, watercolor filter, and pastel filter. Sketch options are limitless.
Sketch filters can add texture to images, whether for a 3-D effect or for creating a fine-arts or hand-drawn look. Many of these sketch filters use the foreground and background color as they redraw the image.
In the list below, you can find descriptions of 14 Photoshop sketch filters, along with examples of each effect. At the bottom of this page are four links to pages highlighting Warren's latest artistic sketch creations.
With a practiced hand, Warren Camp can transform regular digital photos into works of art, turning most photographed images into sketches that appear to be hand-drawn. As you'll see in the following images, using only the photo of the young model at the right, Warren created an array of attractive sketches.
Click these three thumbnail images to enlarge them so you can see the collection of detailed sketches. Click again to reduce them.
First Set of Sketch Filters
14 Popular Photoshop Sketch Filters
See examples of each sketch filter in this list.
- Bas Relief Transforms an image so that it appears carved in low relief; lit to accent surface variations. Dark areas of the image take on the foreground color; light colors, the background color. Made with the Bas Relief sketch filter See example.
- Chalk & Charcoal Redraws highlights and midtones with a solid midtone-gray background drawn in coarse chalk. Shadow areas are replaced with black, diagonal, charcoal lines. The charcoal is drawn in the foreground color; the chalk, in the background color. Made with the Chalk & Charcoal sketch filter Example.
- Charcoal Creates a smudged effect. Major edges are boldly drawn; midtones are sketched using a diagonal stroke. Charcoal is the foreground color; the background is the color of the paper or canvas. Made with the Charcoal sketch filter Example.
- Chrome Renders the image as if it had a polished chrome surface. Highlights are high points; shadows are low points in the reflecting surface. Made with the Chrome sketch filter Example.
- Conté Crayon Replicates the texture of dense dark and pure white crayons. The filter uses the foreground color for dark areas and the background color for light areas. Made with the Conté Crayon sketch filter Example.
- Graphic Pen Uses fine, linear ink strokes to capture the details in the original image. This filter replaces color in the original image, using the foreground color for ink and the background color for paper. Made with the Graphic Pen sketch filter Example.
- Halftone Pattern Simulates the effect of a halftone screen while maintaining the continuous range of tones. Made with the Halftone Pattern sketch filter Example.
- Note Paper Creates an image that appears to be constructed of handmade paper. This filter simplifies images and combines the effects of other styling filters: Emboss, Texture, and Grain. Dark areas of the image appear as holes in the top layer of paper, revealing the background color. Made with the Note Paper sketch filter Example.
- Photocopy Simulates the effect of photocopying an image. Large dark areas tend to be copied only around their edges; midtones fall away to either solid black or solid white. Made with the Photocopy sketch filter Example.
- Plaster Molds an image from 3D plaster, then colorizes the result using the foreground and background colors. Dark areas are raised; light areas are recessed. Made with the Plaster sketch filter Example.
- Reticulation Simulates the controlled shrinking and distortion of film emulsion to create an image that appears clumped in the shadows and lightly grained in the highlights. Made with the Reticulation sketch filter Example.
- Stamp Simplifies the image so that it appears to have been created with a rubber or wood stamp. This filter is best used with black-and-white images. Made with the Stamp sketch filter Example.
- Torn Edges Reconstructs the image so that it appears composed of ragged, torn pieces of paper; then colorizes the image using the foreground and background colors. This filter is particularly useful for text or high-contrast objects. Made with the Torn Edges sketch filter Example.
- Water Paper Uses blotchy daubs that appear painted onto fibrous, damp paper, causing the colors to flow and blend. Made with the Water Paper sketch filter Example.