Step by step tutorial: create vector stickers on the Ipad Pro

Recently, I started the new line of products - character planner stickers and wanted to make them in vector, so that they will be great for digital planners and for printing.

Pin me:)

So I started to look for Apps for Ipad to create vector illustrations on the go. (Since there are hours of commuting and waiting at the airports, this is an ideal pastime activity). Plus, with a pen tool, I can draw even in shaky trains and buses :)

I found this cool app Vectornator Pro, which is Free by the way. The Pen tool is absolutely amazing and super easy to use with Apple pencil. I also like layer management system and that app saves images in png, svg and ai formats.

I've tried a couple of different vector apps such as Bez, Concepts and some more, but Vectornator Pro is so far the winner. It has some drawbacks tho, that's why I use Adobe Draw as an additional app to add finishing touches and details to the illustration, but we'll get there.

After hours and hours of experimenting with different apps and workflows, I finally found one that works for me best. So I thought I would share it with you in case you have the same needs and want to create vector stickers on the go with just Ipad.

A little introduction to the app tools

Layer system

You can add layers, rearrange them, delete, make invisible and lock unlock.

Pen tool

The most awesome tool in the app, for me at least.

I'm using Apple pencil to create the shape, which works pretty smooth. You can set stroke, fill color, gradients and more.

There is also full control over curve: you can add/remove points, double tap on the point will switch to the Convert tool.

Step by step workflow for creating stickers on Ipad Pro

First, I make a rough sketch in Procreate.

Then I trace it with ink brush to have more clear lines.

Then I export the image to Photos so I could import it to Vectornator as reference. I place it on the top layer, lock it and reduce opacity. I draw with Pen tool on the layers below.

How to save files for Adobe Draw

Next, I save two files to the Photos.

Hide layer with the background, so that illustration will be on the transparent background. Then select Export, choose png format and Save image.

For another file that we'll export, hide top layer with the sketch and save it as well.

The first image will be our reference image and the second one - the main base.

(sorry about buggy colors. In order to reduce the size of the gif, I had to reduce the colors and it somehow showing grey as purple ^_^).

Importing files to Adobe Draw

In the app, select Add new image layer On my Ipad and place our base file. Add another image layer and choose the file with reference sketch (reduce opacity if needed). Select Transform All layers by taping on the image layer. Enlarge illustration to fit the frame. (Important thing: at the beginning make sure that you create the file in Vectornator and in Adobe Draw with the same resolution. In my case, it's 4000px x 4000px).

Then, add Draw layer and start to add details to the illustration.

There is also Brush tool in Vectornator, but I don't like it because it doesn't have pressure sensitivity. All lines have the same width. If that's what you are looking for, then you can make the whole thing just in Vectornator. As for me, I prefer this hand-drawn, sort of calligraphy type of lines in illustration, that's why I use Adobe draw.

Saving sticker to use with digital journals

Make the background layer invisible. From share options select Image - Save image. Now you have sticker on the transparent background in your photo library.

To have more control options over the file, I sent it to Illustrator on my laptop. For that, you need to be signed in into your Creative Cloud account on the Ipad and on the laptop. After you choose sent to Illustrator, your image will appear on the laptop screen. Super nice feature. From there, I can set different image resolution or make corrections to the illustration if needed.

I hope this post was helpful and you found out something new for yourself.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in comments. I always answer :)

Talk to you soon,