How to Make a Picture Into Manga

Written by nikolas goodrich
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How to Make a Picture Into Manga
Take a real-life photo and turn it into a panel from a manga. (Michael Buckner/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images)

Amaze your friends when you turn a photograph of them into a quality manga image using photo-editing software. Manga is a style of drawing created by Japanese comic books where the characters have large eyes and simple features such as small noses and mouths. Draw your picture as realistic or cartoon-like as you want. It takes a great deal of drawing skill to make a professional drawing from a photograph.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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Things you need

  • Photo-editing software
  • Scanner

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  1. 1

    Scan or upload your photograph to your computer and open it with your photo-editing software. Create a new layer on top of the photo and select the "Pen" tool.

  2. 2

    Use the "Pen" tool to select the outline of the photo. These lines include arms, legs, facial features, and any other basic forms of body. You control the pen tool by clicking on various points of the outline and bending the line by holding the mouse button as you move it. Select the "Brush" tool, click the right button on the mouse and select "Draw path" to draw the line according to the thickness of the brush. You should now have an outline of your figure, just like a drawing.

  3. 3

    Fill in the remaining areas with colour by using the "Magic wand" tool. Take the "Magic wand" tool and click on an area to colour. It will select the area within the already drawn lines. If you click on an empty area inside of the head, it will select that particular area and not the rest of the body or the hair. Click on the "Paint bucket" tool, then the colour you wish to use, and click on the highlighted area to finish colouring the box.

  4. 4

    Use the other paint brush tools to add last touches to your manga painting. Change the style of the eyes to make them more "manga" or hand draw more lines for a natural approach.

Tips and warnings

  • Use the photo as a guideline, but don't outline it exactly on the line. A manga style is very cartoon-like, so proportions change as well as the shape of body parts.

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