Recently, in my private Facebook group, The Unexpected Letterers (you can request to join here), there was some discussion about how to create traceable, printable worksheets without using Adobe Illustrator. I thought this was an excellent discussion, because so many of my creative friends don't have the time or money to invest in programs like Illustrator or Photoshop.....but they do have an iPad Pro.
Because I create lots of worksheets (traceable and not) for my blog readers and students, I knew I could be of some help. So, in this week's blog post, I'm showing you how you can create a simple traceable printable using only Procreate and your Apple Pencil.
I highly suggest watching the video below, then coming back to read the extra information I've included on printing instructions, uploading to a website for download, etc. That's the important stuff that isn't so much fun to film ;)
This printable is a JPG and is sized to print on standard 8.5x11 copy paper. For tracing, print on a high-quality cardstock and use with the Tombow Fudenosuke Soft Tip Brush pen!
1. Open a HIGH RESOLUTION canvas in Procreate.
*Your canvas must must MUST be at the highest resolution possible since we are not digitizing in a program afterward. I use the automatic screen size option Procreate gives me, and it works just fine.*
2. Create your worksheet or printable using whatever usual sketching / finalizing processes that work for you (you can see mine in the video).
3. If creating a traceable worksheet, make sure all your content is in black, then bring the opacity of the traceable areas down to only 10%.
4. Export your finished printable or worksheet as a JPG, and save to your photos.
5. E-mail, text, Airdrop, or Dropbox the image to yourself/your computer for printing.
6. Print as usual. For a traceable sheet, print on a high-quality cardstock.
EXTRA NOTES on Creating, Uploading, and Printing your worksheets:
*Keep in mind the specific pen you want your worksheet to be used with. If you want to use a Tombow Dual Brush Pen, the size brush pen you use in Procreate matters. When printed, you want the strokes on the worksheet to match your strokes in real life! Do a test run with all the pens in your collection to figure out what size of brush pen you'll need to use in Procreate for future reference! (Hint: a Tombow Fudenosuke Soft Tip is a size 9 in the standard Procreate Brush Pen)
*If you want to give your worksheet away to your audience to download via blog post or email list, you want to provide clear instructions on how to download and what paper to use. If you have the proper programs, you can turn your printable into a PDF for your audience, but in my experience, a JPG (sized correctly) will print properly on a regular sheet of paper, and the file can also be uploaded back into Procreate for your audience to trace themselves within the program.
*I would NOT recommend creating printables this way to sell as instant downloads. The resolution, while fine for leisurely tracing, is simply not good enough to sell. The average buyer of a worksheet like this will want to have lots of printing options that will all result in high-quality worksheet, and without Illustrator or Photoshop, this just isn't a possibility.
Got any other questions? I would LOVE to answer them in the comments below so SHOOT! Will you be creating your first worksheet anytime soon? Would you like to see an Illustrator tutorial on this same topic? Let me know below...