Cartoonization Process Overview

Cartoonization Process Overview –
A Tutorial on Turning Photograph into Cartoon


A lot of people asked us how do we turn real photos into cartoon pictures, what software / program should be used, what tools we are using. A lot of requests asked us for a tutorial on creating a cartoon photo with amazing likeness to the real person (see some samples). Many curiosities arose on how to turn photo to cartoon (cartooning).

Let’s take a quick look on the step-by-step cartoonization process. More details and the drawing techniques will be explained in another tutorials.

In this tutorial we assume that you already familiar with your computer drawing software.


Step by step cartoonization process:


Step 1:

Open the photograph to be cartoonized with your computer drawing software (you can use gimp or photoshop, or any other good photo editor software).

Photograph to be cartoonized


Step 2:

Isolate the object. Clear out all unwanted parts of the photograph.

Select the object to be cartoonized

clear unwanted part of the photograph


Step 3:

Create the outline of the picture.

create outline


Step 4:

Add color to each part of the picture.

For this example, our first part to be colorized is the skin…

colorize: skin


next, the vest…

colorize: vest


and then the shirt…

colorize: shirt


neck tie…

colorize: neck tie



colorize: hat



colorize: hair


the eyes…

colorize: eyes


and lips.

colorize: lips


Step 5:

Now that we’ve done coloring the picture, let’s apply some shading to give depth to the picture.

apply shading to give it depth


Step 6:

Last step. Add a background.

cartoon photo final result


That’s it!
Now we have the cartoonized version of our photograph.



Now that you already understand the overview of photo cartooning process, would you like to know the process details? Would you like to know how to do those steps using photoshop?

If you’re still interested, let’s move on to the detailed tutorial.

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