Hand Drawn into Digital

Hello! Years ago (5+) I used to mess around in gimp, but havent touched it for some time now. I wanted to start getting back into it and need some guidance. I have checked out a few starter tutorials but tbh I kind of learn best when I have a specific task to tackle.


Can anyone give me some direction on where I can find tutorials (text or video) that could help me convert some of my hand drawn sketches into clean cartoon style images? I imagine I will be needing to use a variety of gimp’s tool to achieve this; so it should be a pretty good learning experience. I will attach an image I plan on converting into a digital cartoon style.

Any other tips or suggestions on how to best achieve this/what tools i should become familiar with would be much appreciated!

I also noticed that inkscape exists now (dont remember it existing back when i messed with gimp). Would using inkscape be more appropriate for what im trying to do? I think the idea of having easily resizable vector images is appealing.

@Ambedo Welcome to the forum! Your question is still quite general. The best way to attract help is to provide examples of your work. If you are concerned about sharing or licensing, we can give you recommendations on how to do it according to your comfort level. Even a crop will do nicely.

Without much context to go by, I would suggest using G’MIC to clean up the image. @David_Tschumperle has collaborated with artists to provide tools for that.

Inkscape does indeed have a good tracing engine. I tend to have to clean up the nodes, shapes and gradients afterwards but for sketches with clean lines, fills and gradients it should be fine.

Alternatively, you may consider using GIMP, Inkscape or Krita to draw over your scan (set as the background layer). In this way, your image will be entirely clean and in the digital space. Watch time lapses / real time drawing videos online for more guidance on that.

Hello, using G’Mics Comic Book filter in Gimp gives the following. Is that what you’re looking for?


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Same photo processed in Inkscape - Trace bitmap.


… convert some of my hand drawn sketches into clean cartoon style images?

The most appropriate methods will depend on what you want to achieve. You might want to smooth colours (replacing colour that has detail with flat colour or gradient colour), or to spatially smooth drawn lines, or to add lines where there are boundaries, and so on.

I show some examples, using ImageMagick, at Cartoon and texture and Flat-colour cartoons. They may help you define what you want to do.