thomas edison

Imagine a graphic or web design project, in which the client designs artwork on a napkin or scrap of paper. How do you make it work? Here’s a quick and easy way to turn a napkin doodle into useable black and white line art:

  1. Scan the napkin art at 600 dpi or take a picture of it, using high resolution
  2. Rotate and crop the art
  3. Original Napkin Art – Scanned, Rotated and Cropped:


  4. Go to Levels: Image/Adjustment/Levels
  5. Original Level should look similar to this:

    levels 1

  6. Adjust Levels by moving Black arrow to the Right and White arrow to the Left. Move arrows to correspond to the active part of the graph/bell curve. Use your judgement and adjust the arrows for the best results. Preview your work. This technique should produce black line art with a white background.
  7. Adjusted Level should look similar to this:

    levels - black line art, white background

  8. Use Dust and Scratches to clean up unnecessary dots and specks: Filter/Noise/Dust and Scratches
  9. Embellish and Enjoy! Hope this enlightens you on how to use chicken scratch as a design element.

Finished Product Black and White Line Art:

lightbulb black and white lineart

To validate the Thomas Edison quote, in the graphic at the top of the page, click: Inspiration vs Working Hard: Why Working Hard Always Wins. Hope this inspires you to work hard on your web design projects. Your efforts will be rewarded. But, remember to have fun, as well!

Share →