How to Draw Snowflakes in Procreate
If you walked in my door yesterday, you would have found me in the kitchen baking with my iPad propped up on the counter. Instead of a cooking video, though, I watching a Skillshare class about the iPad drawing app Procreate. As soon as the video started, I did one of those involuntary sighs of happiness that slip out when we feel content at the moment. Like that first sip of coffee in the morning- sip, relax into the moment and siiighhh. The moment kind of surprised me. I didn’t realize how much I enjoyed watching my Procreate videos until then. Do you have something like that? Something that you’re interested in and your mind will go to when it’s stuck in the carpool line? Something that you’re interested in and has no real practical application to your role as a wife, mother, grandmother, or chauffeur? My brain seems to unconsciously be circling around Procreate and design lately even when I’m focused on the other have-to-do-them things. For example, as I was thinking of Christmas projects, it was an easy mind jump to snowflakes, and from there to Procreate. Because Procreate is my fun thing right now. I was thinking about how hard it is to find snowflake designs that don’t look like your “typical” snowflakes. Snowflakes are unique, and should look unique. So I decided I was going to design my own one-of-a-kind snowflakes. And wouldn’t you know it was SO easy (and fun) to draw snowflakes in Procreate using the Symmetry Tool! Whoo-hoo fun in fact!
Procreate is a drawing app on the iPad that I love using with the Apple Pencil. And when I say love, I mean whenever I get to use it, I get that feeling I did when I was a kid, and the teacher called “time for recess.” There is just so much possible that I know that I don’t even know how much is possible with this app. If that makes sense. Every single time I sit down to play, or google a question or watch a video, I learn something new. It’s kind of like a feel-good drug. But a positive lower your anxiety and makes you a better person type of medication.
And because I bet you’re curious now and maybe are wondering what’s so amazing– I have a quick little video. Do watch this at home (maybe even while you cook).
ALSO- you’ll want to watch this blog next week for Gnome Craft Party Takeover Week. There be gnome projects galore, and gnome surprises aplenty right here on Well Crafted Studio. BUT I’m ALSO collaborating with 5 other craft bloggers who are creating their own gnome themed projects to share! I’ve gotten a sneak peek at what they’ve made, and each and every one of them is AH-MAZ-ING!
How to Draw Snowflakes in Procreate Using the Symmetry Tool Tutorial.
Tools and Supplies
Step One: Set up your Canvas.
Once you open a canvas in Procreate, go to the wrench symbol on the upper left side of your screen. Choose “canvas” from the menu that drops down. I often use Screen Size for projects like this. Then, toggle on the Drawing Guide. This will give you the option to select the “Edit Drawing Guide.” Once you do that, it will take you to a new page- the set-up page for the Drawing Guide.
Step Two: Set up the Symmetry Tool.
Choose “Symmetry” from the bottom menu. Then choose “Radial” from the choices that appear once you’ve selected the Symmetry function. This will give you a dot with lines that radiate out from it.
Step Three: Select a Brush and Color.
I like to use a pen tool, like the technical pen in black for basic designs.
Step Four: PLAY!
It’s kind of like making a mandala. And it feels a little like magic too. Just play around a bit so that you understand and feel comfortable with the tool. Remember that if you draw a line or a shape and don’t pick up the tip of your pencil from the screen that Procreate will auto edit it to be more uniform.
Step Five: Select a Photo for Inspiration.
This is totally optional, but I like to have reference photos that I can look at as I draw. To find the macro snowflake photographs, I used Pixabay. It’s a great resource, and the images are copyright and attribution free. I use them for reference images. To save them, just hold a finger on the picture until you see the option “Save Image.” Then save it to photos or wherever else you want it to go.
Step Six: Insert the photo on the screen.
Click on the wrench tool again. Then choose the + symbol that says “Add” underneath it. Choose Insert a photo. Then select one of your snowflake photos by tapping on it. Procreate will insert it on its’ own layer (that says Inserted Image) onto the canvas. To move it to the side of your screen, use the lasso tool on the top toolbar and circle it (you need to have the “Freehand” option selected on the toolbar at the bottom of the screen). Then touch the arrow next to the lasso, and you will be able to move and size the photo. To keep the proportions, you’ll want to have “Uniform” selected at the bottom of your screen.
Step Seven: Create a New Layer and Adding Drawing Assist.
Create a new layer to draw on by clicking the + symbol in the Layers panel. Tap on the Layer, and a side menu panel will appear. Touch the Drawing Assist to select it. This will turn on the Drawing Guide Options that we chose earlier. If you would like to adjust the setting or move the center of the radial around on the screen, you can do that. Just go back to the wrench symbol in the upper left corner and edit the Drawing Guide again.
Step Eight: Draw a Snowflake.
On this new layer, and using the photo as a reference start to draw. Don’t forget you can use the auto edit function by not lifting your pencil off the screen.
Step Nine: Draw MORE Snowflakes!
When you’ve completed a drawing, you can select it and then move it off to the side. Then go back to your layer with the image and use the symmetry tool to draw more. Once you’re done with one photo, you can go to its layer in the Layers panel and swipe left across it. This will give you the option to delete the layer. If you don’t want to remove it, but don’t want to see it, you can uncheck the box next to its name, and the layer will be hidden. Then follow the instructions in Step Six to insert a new photo. Each time I finish a snowflake, I will use a lasso to select it and then the arrow to make it smaller and move it to the side of my screen. Just be aware that when you size it down, you will lose some of the image quality if you try to size it up again later. If you are concerned about the image size, you can open up a new canvas for each design.
Step Ten: Save the Design as a PNG.
To save the design to use in a program like Affinity Design or Cricut Design Space, you’ll want a transparent background. To do this, go to your layers panel and at the bottom uncheck the box next to “Background Color.” This will gives you a transparent background. Then you have the choice to either save the final image as shown on your canvas, or to save each layer as a seperate image.
If you’re going to go with option number two then, go to the wrench tool again and select the up arrow that says “Share.” Then in the drop-down menu and under the category “Share Layers,” choose the PNG option. If each of your snowflakes is on a separate layer, then this saves each snowflake as it’s own image file. It’s absolutely slick. I love it!
Use your Hand-Drawn Snowflakes to Design One-of-a-Kind Projects!
While it’s a ton of fun to draw and play with the symmetry tool in Procreate, it’s even more valuable when you have your own hand-drawn illustrations and designs to create with. In the next month, I’ll be posting projects that use the snowflakes from this how to draw snowflakes in Procreate tutorial as part of the design. So when you check back, you’ll be able to see how many uses and design applications these snowflakes have. Everything from cut files, to gift tags, to shadowboxes, to stickers. The bonus of using images you made yourself is that your designs will be as unique and one of a kind as the snowflakes are.
For More Inspiration…
If you’d like to know more about Procreate, I can point you to the Procreate Skillshare Tutorials that I sighed over in delight. Winter Illustrations in Procreate by Liz Kohler Brown is my most recent favorite. But all of the tutorials that I’ve watched have been wonderful. If you’re not familiar with Skillshare it’s a learning website with literally thousands of courses on all kinds of subjects. Pretty much, if I’ve wanted to learn something I search Skillshare for courses and find more options than I’ll ever need.
I also have a few Procreate tutorials of my own that you can find on my YouTube Channel. The two most popular are How to Draw Stickers in Procreate, and How to Use Photos to Draw Stickers in Procreate. I’ve discovered I’m not the only one with a hand-drawn sticker obsession right now! So if you enjoyed this tutorial for how to draw snowflakes in Procreate I hope you’ll check these out as well!
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