We caught up with Patrick Brown, where he discussed his work, why drawing fan art changed everything, and how he transferred from being a graphic designer to a full-time digital artist working for Marvel!

Watch full tutorial and find out more on Patrick Browns design process!

Can you give us a little background about yourself?

I’m an Australian artist living in Tasmania. I’ve been drawing all my life and am a big fan of video games, TV and movies so I had a lot of material that I wanted to draw. I built up a gallery on DeviantArt and started to build a following over time

I put up a piece of fan art for Guardians of the Galaxy, and not long after that I got an email from Marvel offering me a job! I jumped at the chance and eventually left my graphic design job to become a full-time digital artist. I’ve now been working for Marvel for 6 years. It really is a dream working on lots of exciting projects

Can you give any tips on how to improve your drawing skills?

Make it fun and exciting so that you stay focused and motivated. I get really excited about fan art. If I’ve finished playing a video game and it’s got me hyped and I’m in the zone, I’ll put that energy into my art. I make sure what’s happening in the picture is exciting and dramatic. I don’t find still poses very exciting so I prefer to use intense action poses. Fan art keeps me really interested and it’s also great knowing you’re creating something someone else is going to love.

Looking to get into the creative industry
but feeling a little lost? Don't worry; we have your back

Can you explain how you go about sketching?

A good sketch is integral to creating good art. Digital sketching works for me as I find it more efficient and easier. To get the setup and composition, I start in Photoshop where I complete all the rough sketching. When everything needs to be polished and made sharper, I move to Clip Studio Paint.

There are 3 stages to sketching:

1. Rough stage – I’ll start with a really rough sketch getting the proportions right and creating the dynamic pose.
2. Refinement stage – I’ll create new layers and just keep adding details and cleaning it up with every layer. I keep building on the rough sketch until I have something more solid and clean. I’m a perfectionist so I don’t like it messy and just keep tightening it up. 
3. Ink stage – This is where I refine and create perfect outlines. I transfer it into Clip Studio Paint because it’s crisper and cleaner. I look at every single stroke and make sure it’s smooth and clean and has the right motion. I use undo a lot until I’m totally happy that one stroke is perfect before moving on to the next.

How long would a piece take to create?

The fan art clash piece of the Witcher going up against Hellboy would take one day from complete sketch to fully inked. Rendering, colouring and shading would then take about the rest of the week. The Last of Us Part II picture below took about two weeks in total.

You can check out Patrick’s work on Patreon:  where he shares the stages of his work including sketches and timelapses.


Learn how to stand out on crowdsourcing sites and win clients from the talented Graphic designer and lettering artist Andrea Stan!

Click here.


from Adobe Certified Instructors and industry professionals

About the author 

Shumi Perhiniak

Shumi is a self-taught graphic designer and illustrator who has worked for Toni&Guy, Renaissance Learning, Baker Ross, and many others.

Additionally, she owned a brick-and-mortar stationery shop selling her art prints and now sells wholesale to retailers and online shops under the brand name www.herdesignworld.com.

Related topics you might be interested in

Top Graphic Design trends that will shape the creative industry in 2024 and beyond!

Continue reading

Get familiar with Type Anatomy, today we want to introduce you familiarise you with some odd but very useful typographic terms!

Continue reading

Are you looking for a fun, creative and affordable gift for your artist friends and family? Don’t worry; we’ve got you covered!

Continue reading

Having a hard time finding the perfect gift for your creative friends? We can help! Take a look at these 18 brilliant gifts for designers!

Continue reading

We will cover the basics of graphic design theory and explain everything you need to know to start creating beautiful designs!

Continue reading

Discover office inspiration and go behind the scenes of our own garden studio!

Continue reading

Find out how generative AI tools are reshaping the creative industry and how they will affect the jobs of designers!

Continue reading

The ultimate guide to becoming a Graphic Designer

Continue reading