We sat down with CLIP STUDIO PAINT tutorial guru, artist, Official Influencer and creator of LearnCSP.com, Augie De Blieck Jr. and asked him to share a few basic tips on how to create successfully in this ever-popular drawing software program. Here's what he had to say:
The Trouble With Open Shapes
Let’s take a simple shape.
Now, let’s color it in with the Fill tool, (“G” is the keyboard shortcut for this.)
Oops! This rectangle isn’t complete. The black line doesn’t close on the left side. That small gap makes filling the shape in with color impossible. Or does it?
What if that small gap is part of your artistic style? You’re not drawing a coloring book. Everything doesn’t need to be neatly enclosed by thick black lines. How can you get CLIP STUDIO PAINT to stop at where the line should be, not just where it is?
There’s one obvious workaround for this. You can complete the line with the same color you plan on filling the shape with.
When you fill the shape, that line looks like part of the fill.
That will work, but it’s not necessary. Also, depending on other settings, you can sometimes see a tiny gap between your line and the fill.
Time to Close the Gap.
CLIP STUDIO PAINT has a setting in the Fill tool for just this case. It’s called “Close Gap”.
By default, it shows up in the Fill tool’s properties window as an Indicator. It has five boxes, which range in value from smallest gap on the left to largest, on the right.
When it’s not checked, the value is set to zero; CLIP STUDIO PAINT will not attempt to close any gap.
Once it’s turned on, the values start at 1 and range up to 20, incrementally.
That number describes the size of the gap, in pixels, that CSP will fill in for you. By default, the steps are 1, 3, 5, 10, and 20. If you need to cover larger gaps, you have two options:
1. Switch to the slider view. CTRL-Click on the “Close Gap” area and click on “Show Indicator” option. Now, all options from .1 to 50 pixels are available to you.
I’d recommend sticking with the Indicator, though. This isn’t the kind of tool that you’ll be looking for such fine-grained control of the values. Having five set numbers to choose from will likely be everything you ever need.
It might be worth modifying those numbers to fit your style. That brings us to the second option:
2. You can change the values of each of those boxes. CTRL-Click or right click on the “Close Gap” again and click on “Indicator Settings.” That will lay out the values of the five boxes. You can change those values to anything from .1 to 50. Don’t try anything tricky here; Clip Studio Paint will force you to choose numbers in ascending order.
Play with these numbers. Depending on your art style and the resolution you’re working in, you might not see much difference between 1, 3, and 5. Or you might need to close much larger gaps than 20 pixels. Experience with this setting will lead you to where those numbers should be.
Now for, The Solution.
When I tried the first block in the Indicator, it didn’t work:
The gap is bigger than one pixel.
In this case, I needed the third block in the Indicator. That covered the 5 pixel gap in the image. I could have used the fourth or fifth block, as well, to get the same results in this case.
Depending on the shape of the gap, you’ll sometimes get results that will require a bit of cleanup. The “fill” can sometimes extend out just a bit. Erasing that one little bit is still a lot less work than manually filling the whole space in the first place.
The “Close Gap” option will save you a lot of work when it comes to coloring in your art. It’s not complicated at all, but it will take you a little experience to get the feel for it. Trust me, it’s worth it!