Mastering Line Work: 3 Secrets for Dynamic Inking

Mastering Line Work: 3 Secrets for Dynamic Inking



You know, sometimes we make things way more complicated than they need to be. Take line work, for example. It's the backbone of our artwork, and sometimes we get caught up in thinking it's this super complex thing.

But guess what? It's not that tricky! In fact, there are 3 simple rules that can help us make our art pop, and that's what we're diving into today. We're going to demystify line work, break it down into easy-to-follow steps, and see how it can take our art from "meh" to "wow."

You can get all the brushes I use for my inking in my new LP Inking Brush Pack.


My 3 Secrets for Dynamic Inking

Today, we're diving into three essential techniques that will transform your art without overcomplicating things.

  • "T Overlaps" for depth.
  • "Line Variation" for dynamism.
  • "Inside Lines" for realism

These are your secret ingredients to elevate your creations from ordinary to exceptional. Ready to explore the magic of simplicity? Let's dive in!

T Overlaps for Depth: 

Now, let's explore one of the coolest tricks in the art world: "T Overlaps." Imagine you're drawing a character standing in front of a tree, and you want to show that the character is closer to you. That's where T Overlaps come in handy.

Here's the deal: When you have an outline of your character overlapping with an object like a tree, you draw a little "T" where they meet. 

By giving a bit of thickness to the lines in this “T” you create the illusion of three-dimensionality. It's like saying, "Hey, this part of the character is in front of the tree." Simple, right? This technique instantly adds depth to your art without making it complicated.

The magic of T Overlaps is that they make your artwork come alive. Viewers can easily tell what's in the foreground and what's in the background, giving your art that extra pop. So, next time you're sketching, give T Overlaps a shot. Whether it's characters, scenery, or anything else, this trick adds that extra oomph to your art, making it more dynamic and fun.

Line Variation for Depth: 

Now, let's dive into another fantastic art technique: "Line Variation." Imagine you're sketching a scene, and you want to make certain elements stand out and give your artwork a more dynamic feel. Line Variation is your ticket to achieving that.

Here's the deal: Instead of using just one thickness of lines throughout your artwork, you play with line width. For instance, if you're drawing a character, you might use thicker lines for the parts that are closer to you and thinner lines for the parts that are farther away. 

But, if I’m begin honest, I think that the tip of drawing with a thicker line the things that are closer to you is a bit overrated and sometimes even abused.

Instead I prefer to put my focus on the shadow lines. By making the lines in the shadow side of an object thicker and darker than the ones in the light you can achieve a more interesting result than if you would have all your lines the same width. 

Texture Lines for Realistic Detail: 

Now, let's talk about "Inside Lines." These subtle strokes play a key role in adding depth and realism to your artwork without overwhelming it.

Think of it this way: Real life isn't outlined with bold, definite lines but shaped by how light and shadow interact. Inside Lines help bridge this gap by describing small form changes without being too heavy-handed. They're like soft indications in your artwork, adding depth by gently hinting at textures, shapes, and plane changes without overwhelming the whole drawing.

The technique is very easy to understand. I call them Inside Lines because you would normally have them inside your subject. These lines that help you express mostly plane changes in your subject should be done with a thinner line. The softer the plane change, the softer and thinner the line. Easy right?


 Remember, art is about expressing yourself and connecting with others. By embracing these techniques, you can simplify your creative process, making it more enjoyable and less daunting. So, whether you're gearing up for Inktober or working on your everyday art, these techniques are your trusty companions on your artistic journey.

Level up your Inking with my LP Inking Brushes

Happy creating! 

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I truelly truelly truelly love your style you’re style is like Powell of the Goon fame and that is a compliment. I love how your tutorials have step by step guides especially for someone like me that just doesn’t watch YouTube tutorials and grew up with books from the library

Ryan Payne


Jose Alfredo Rojas Morales

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