How to turn a photo into a pencil drawing

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Pau Monfort
@paumonfort
Author and references

Instant Photo Sketch (Windows / Mac)

The first among the resources to turn a photo into a pencil drawing that I want to advise you to try is Instant Photo Sketch. It is a free program available for both Windows and Mac able to fulfill the purpose in question extremely quickly and easily. In fact, a handful of clicks are enough to obtain truly amazing results. Oh, I forgot, it also allows you to adjust the intensity of black and white as you like. Let's see in more detail how to use it.



First, connected to the program's website and click on the item Download now! which is at the bottom then locate the section Other software in the new page that is shown to you and click on the button Download Now! on the right that you find corresponding to the version of Instant Photo Sketch suitable for the operating system in use on your computer.

When the download is complete, if you are using Windows open the file you just obtained, click on Yes / Run and, in the window you see appear, click on the button Next. Then accept the terms of use by placing the check mark next to the item I accept the agreement click her cousin Next five consecutive times and then on install and Finish to complete the installation process and start the program.

If you are using a Mac instead, open the package in .dmg format you just obtained and drag it into the folder Applications macOS icon of the program then click on it twice in a row to start it. If in doing so you see learn an on-screen warning indicating that the software cannot be started as it comes from an unauthorized developer, right-click on the Instant Photo Sketch icon and then press on the item apri in the context menu. So confirm your willingness to open the program and that's it.



Once the Instant Photo Sketch window appears on your desktop, select the item Open from the menu Fillet to load the photo you want to transform into a drawing and use the scroll bars located above the preview to choose the level of detail of the black and white of the latter. The more the bar sliders are moved forward, the greater the level of detail in the drawing.

When you are satisfied with the result, you can save your “artistic masterpiece” by selecting the item Save from the menu Fillet. In the window that opens, then type the name you want to assign to the drawing, select the folder in which to save it and click on the button Save but I will complete the operation.

You can also choose the target format of the image (between JPG and PNG), using the drop-down menu located next to the item Save eat.

AKVIS Sketch (Windows / Mac)

AKVIS Sketch is another great software available for both Windows and Mac belonging to the genre in question that can allow you to digitally make beautiful pencil drawings starting from your photos. In concrete terms, what it does is imitate the technique of graphite and colored pencils. By adjusting the various settings available, you can also add painterly effects such as watercolor, pastel and charcoal. Unfortunately this is not a free resource but it can still be tried at no cost and without limitations for a limited period of time. Personally, I recommend that you first try the program and then evaluate the possible purchase.


To start using AKVIS Sketch, connect to the software download page and click on the link corresponding to the version of the operating system in use on your computer. Subsequently, if you are using Windows open the file obtained, click on Yes / Run and then OK then accept the terms of use of the software by ticking the appropriate box and clicking on NEXT twice in a row. Then press on Install and to conclude on end.


If you are using a Mac, open the package in .dmg format downloaded on your computer, accept the conditions of use of the program by pressing the button Agree in the window that appears and then drag the AKVIS Sketch Inca into the folder Applications say macOS.

Now, regardless of the operating system used, start the program using its icon (on Windows you can find it on the desktop and in the Start menu, while on Mac you can find it in the aforementioned folder Applications and in Launchpad), indicate your willingness to start the free trial of the software and, once the AKVIS Sketch window is displayed on the screen, click on the button apri (the one with the folder and the up arrow) which is at the top left and select the image on which you intend to go to act.

So use the tools and tabs on the right to customize your photo transformed into a drawing. Via the menu Style: you can select drawing style, tab Traits instead it allows you to define in detail the characteristics of the drawing strokes, while from the tabs Bordi ed Effects you can, as can be easily deduced, do the same with edging effects.


The cards Background e Decoration instead they allow you to select a different background for the design and add text and logos to the image. On the left you will find the toolbar with the rubber and other useful resources.

All the changes made are directly visible in real time in the appropriate selection box on the photo. When you have obtained a satisfactory final result, click on the tab After which is at the top right, select the design template you prefer among those below, and then click on the button Save (the one with the hard disk and the arrow) which is at the top to save the image on the computer (the available formats are JPG, PNG, BMP and TIFF).


Il pulsating Print (I cheer with the printer) instead allows you to print the drawing directly, while that Share (with the globe) allows you to be your "work of art" on social networks.

Tjshome Image Editor (Online)

Don't feel like downloading special programs on your computer but still want to turn your photo into a pencil drawing? In this case, you can resort to the use of a special online service such as Tjshome Image Editor. It is a free resource, accessible from any web browser and surprisingly simple to use that allows you to apply many special effects to photos, including the one that imitates pencil drawing. Try it now and you will see that you will not regret it.

You ask me how to use it? I'll explain it to you immediately! To begin with, connect to the service's website and check the box next to the preview of the black and white image with the text below Sketch (it is the first of the third line). Then click on the button Browse / Choose File which is at the bottom of the page, select the photo on which you intend to go and press on Submit to upload them (images can have a maximum weight of 800 KB).

Then wait for Tjshome Image Editor to process the image and then you can finally view your photo automatically transformed into a drawing in the center of the page. To save on your computer, right-click on it and from the menu that opens, choose the item to download it locally. The image will be saved in JPG.

PicJoke (Online)

As an alternative to the above service I want to recommend the use of another excellent online tool useful for the purpose in question: PicJoke. It is free, very easy to use and allows you to choose between various types of pencil drawings to process your photos. Even then, this is a fully functional resource from any browser. The only thing to take into account is that a small watermark with the name of the service is applied in the lower left corner of the processed images.

To use it, first of all connect to the section dedicated to pencil drawings of the PicJoke website and then select the preview of the drawing you like best from those at the top, immediately below the search bar.

Then press the button to select the photo on which you want to go to act on the Web page you see appear and open the image on your computer. If you want, you can also take a new photo at the moment using the webcam connected to your PC or Mac by clicking on the appropriate icon. Then press the button Create your Picture and wait for the service to process the photo.

At the end of the procedure, a new web page will open with your photo transformed into a pencil drawing that you can eventually download as a JPG file by clicking on the link Save to disk which is at the bottom. If you want, you can then use the appropriate link that is provided to you and that you can always find at the bottom of the page to share the fake drawing online.

App to turn a photo into a pencil drawing

As anticipated at the beginning, if instead of resorting to the use of special online programs and services you prefer to transform a photo suit into a mobile pencil drawing, you can appeal to the use of special applications through which you can do everything directly and comfortably from the smartphone and tablet screen.

You ask me what are these apps? Well, for example the ones you find listed below, which in my opinion represent some of the best in the category. Check it out now and if you think there is something that might really interest you, download and install it on your device now.

  • Sketch camera (Android) - Application that allows you to transform the photos already present on the device and which to take at the moment into black and white drawings (and more), offering the possibility to choose between various sets of pencils. It is free to download.
  • Matta sketches (Android) - The name does not leave much room for the imagination: it is another application through which you can transform photographs into beautiful pencil drawings by selecting your favorite style from those available. It is free to download.
  • Clip2Comic (iOS) - Fun app that not only allows you to make pencil drawings starting from the chosen photos but also to transform the shots into comics, to create videos, caricatures and apply filters of all kinds. It is free to download.
  • ToonCamera (iOS) - Nice application that allows you to apply a cartoon style filter to photos. Various effects are available, both in color and in black and white, with simulations of pencils, brushes, etc. It costs € 2,29.
How to turn a photo into a pencil drawing

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