Adobe Illustrator Tutorials wings - Skin Investigation

Adobe Illustrator Tutorials wings

Create a Feather Brush and Set of Detailed Wings in Illustrator

In this tutorial I'm going to show you how to create a feather art brush. You'll then learn how to use it to create a set of angel wings, which can be added to your illustrations.


It's a common element in fantasy style art to have a set of wings. Ranging from bird like wings to epic angel wings, they can communicate a sense of freedom. Let's learn to create a feather art brush, then use it to create a set of angel wings, which would work great in your next fantasy, vector illustration.

Step 1

Create a new Art Brush by creating a slim black triangle with the Pen Tool (P), and then drag and dropping it into your Brush Palette. Select New Art Brush, change the Colorization Method to Tints, and click on OK.

Step 2

Using the Free Transform Tool (E) rotate the triangle 90 degrees so the flat base is at the bottom. Change the fill color to a medium gray (C=0, M=0, Y=0, K=30).

Copy (Command + C) and Paste in Front (Command + F) the triangle. Using the Direct Selection Tool (A), move one of the points in the base of the triangle and change the fill color to a light gray (C=0, M=0, Y=0, K=10).

Repeat this process while creating a darker triangle on the other side of the shape with a darker gray (C=0, M=0, Y=0, K=60). Once you have the three shapes, Select All (Command + A) and Group them (Command + G).

Step 3

The next step you're going to need to Draw Behind. You can either click on the circled button below on the toolbar or hit Shift + D on your keyboard. While selected any future strokes and shapes will be drawn behind the previously drawn object.

Using the Paintbrush Tool (B), select your triangle brush and set it to 0.25pt stroke weight and set the stroke color to medium gray (C=0, M=0, Y=0, K=30).

Imagine the three tone triangle as the spine to the feather. To help make it easier to draw the strands of the feather, draw the bottom of the feather just above the bottom of the spine. Repeat the same strands towards the top, however not placing them at the very top. Then to assist further, draw some strands in the middle.

Step 4

Using the same stroke settings, draw in further strands between your guides. Don't worry if they are not completely uniform as it will look more organic if there are some strands which are close to each other or even cross over.

Step 5

Back to the Pen Tool (P), change the stroke color to null and the fill color to light gray (C=0, M=0, Y=0, K=10). Starting from the bottom strands of the feather, draw around the strands, connecting as many as you can to create a background to the strands.

Step 6

While the background to the feather shape is selected, go into the Appearance panel. Set the stroke as 2pt and align to outside of the shape. Change the Opacity to 10% and the Blending Mode to Multiply.

Step 7

Copy (Command + C) and Paste in Front (Command + F) the feather shape and remove the stroke appearance from it. Using the Rectangle Tool (M), cover half of the feather where your highlight line on the stem is at. Drag the shape above the copied feather shape.

More about Adobe Illustrator Tutorials wings

There is alot of online tutorials out there.

by Travel124

Hi Meatie,
I too am a graphic designer. I designed my website and I design design digital designs. I do some real paper scrapn as well. I am self taught on the digital side. I bought Photoshop CS2 and Adobe Illustrator.
They both are a good source for never ending creativity. Put them together with a creative mind, and it will never end in what you can create.
However, I would not recommend the above two for beginners because of the high learning curve. They can be very overwhelming for someone starting out.

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