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The Set Paper Color command, Eraser's Eraser, and the new Corel® Painter™ IX.5 Eraser tool
By Jinny Brown

"Erase to the other side of the world"

For new Corel Painter users, and sometimes artists who've been using Corel Painter for a while, the Canvas menu > Set Paper Color command and how it works can be confusing. When we use the command alone, nothing appears to have changed.

Before we continue, here's a little information to make the concept easier to understand.


Figure 1. New dialog box and Paper Color rectangle

When we use File menu > New to open a new Canvas, we have the option to click the Paper Color rectangle and choose a different Paper Color (default is white).

I'll use three terms to define color as it relates to this tutorial:

base Canvas color - the original Canvas color chosen (or accepted) when we opened the new Canvas
added color - other color added after the new Canvas was opened
new base Canvas color - the color chosen before we use the Canvas menu > Set Paper Color command

If we do any of the following, the base Canvas color is not changed. New color is only added on top of the base Canvas color:

Paint on the Canvas
Use Effects menu > Fill on part or all of the Canvas
Use the Paint Bucket tool on part or all of the Canvas

In all three cases, this is added color.

Now let's see what happens when we use the Canvas menu > Set Paper Color command.

1 Open a new Canvas and save it with an appropriate file name, such as set_paper_color_tests.rif. This is the base Canvas color I chose when opening my new Canvas.


Figure 2. Base Canvas Color

2 Choose a color different from the base Canvas color and then use Effects menu > Fill to fill the entire Canvas with added color. I filled my Canvas with this color:


Figure 3. Added Color using the Fill command

3 Choose a brush variant you like, then paint a few strokes on the Canvas using colors different from both the Fill color (added color) and the base Canvas color.


Figure 4. Contrasting brush strokes painted on the Canvas' added color

4 Choose the Erasers' Eraser variant and restore it to its default state by choosing Brush Selector menu > Restore Default Variant.

Then erase on a blank area of the Canvas, not where the brush strokes were made. Notice the base Canvas color is exposed where you erased.


Figure 5. Base Canvas color exposed

5 In the Brush Controls' General palette, read this Eraser variant's Subcategory name: Soft Paper Color.

This Subcategory option accounts for the Eraser's Eraser variant's ability to erase back to the base Canvas color (or, as Corel Painter refers to it, the Paper Color). Other Subcategory options would make this brush variant behave differently. Try them sometime to see how (but not now, we still have work to do).

6 Choose a new color, different from the current base Canvas color and not used in this image so far. I chose this new color.


Figure 6. New base Canvas color

7 Use Canvas menu > Set Paper Color. "Now what?" you may be wondering, since everything looks the same as before we used the Set Paper Color command.

8 Click the R key to activate the Rectangular Selection tool and draw a rectangle including some parts of your brush strokes (see Figure 7). Then use Ctrl+X (Windows®) or Command+X (Mac®) to clear the selection. Notice your new base Canvas color is exposed (see Figure 8).


Figure 7. Rectangular selection


Figure 8. Rectangular selection cleared

Now to learn about two more ways the base Canvas color or a new base Canvas color can be exposed:

9 Choose another color not used as the base Canvas color or a new base Canvas color. I chose this color:


Figure 9. New Color

10 Use Canvas menu > Set Paper Color.

11 Click the L key to activate the Lasso tool and draw an irregular selection somewhere on the Canvas.


Figure 10. Irregular selection

12 Click the F key to activate the Layer Adjuster tool, then click inside the selection to lift it to Layer 1. Depending on the colors you're working with, you may notice a faint outline where the selection was located before you lifted it to Layer 1.


Figure 11. Faint outline after selection is lifted to a Layer

13 In the Layers palette, click the Layer 1 Eye icon to make the Layer invisible. Notice there's a "hole" in your Canvas imagery and your second new base Canvas color is exposed.


Figure 12. Layer 1 Eye icon closed


Figure 13. New base Canvas color exposed when the irregular selection is lifted to a Layer.

14 In the Layers palette, highlight Canvas.

15 Use Ctrl+A (Windows) or Command+A (Mac) to select the entire Canvas.

16 Click the F key to activate the Layer Adjuster tool, then click inside the selection to lift the entire Canvas, to Layer 2.

17 Click to close the Layer 2 Eye icon and, with both Layer 1 and Layer 2 invisible, notice the Canvas is now entirely your second new base Canvas color.


Figure 14. Second new base Canvas color

18 With only solid color on the Canvas, another way to expose a new base Canvas color is to choose a new color, use Canvas menu > Set Paper Color, use Ctrl+A (Windows) or Command+A (Mac) to select the entire Canvas, then click the Backspace key to clear the Canvas.

Let's go over the ways you've learned to expose the base Canvas color after applying added color and expose a new base Canvas color after using the Canvas menu > Set Paper Color command:

Erase with the Eraser's Eraser variant (Subcategory: Soft Paper Color).
Select and clear (delete) a portion of the Canvas.
Select a portion of the Canvas, then lift the selection to a Layer.
Select the entire Canvas, then lift it to a Layer.
Select the entire Canvas, then click the Backspace key.

If we use the Eraser variant on a Layer, it only erases to the color directly below where we erase. In other words, color is exposed on either:

Underlying Layers (also Shapes and Text Layers)
The Canvas

Once we use Effects menu > Surface Control > Apply Surface Texture we can think of that texture the same way we think of added color. Both can be erased using the Erasers' variants because the texture is really just varying shades of grey pixels.

Impasto texture, or depth, is controlled on the Impasto Layer. To erase Impasto depth using the Erasers' variants or other non-Impasto Eraser variants, Impasto painting must first be "disconnected" from these controls by:

Using File menu > Clone, then working on the Clone
Saving the image in a non-RIFF format, closing, and reopening the file

To erase Impasto depth while it's still controlled on the Impasto Layer, use the Impasto's Depth Equalizer or choose the Impasto's Depth Eraser and, in the Impasto palette, move the Depth slider to 0%. We can erase color in Impasto brush strokes using Erasers' variants.

In Corel Painter IX.5, the new "universal" Eraser tool erases both color and depth in Impasto brush strokes without the need to first "disconnect" the image from Impasto Layer controls, just as it erases color painted with brush variants from other categories.


Figure 15. Erase both color and Impasto Depth or erase only Impasto Depth

We can also use the new Eraser tool to erase back to the base canvas color or new base canvas color!


Figure 16. Erasing on the Canvas to the original base Canvas color or new base Canvas color with the Eraser tool

For more information related to this tutorial, visit PixelAlley











   
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