Design Sketch

Sketch Art Concept to Reality with Inkscape

Turning some abstract sketches into reality with Inkscape.

I am back at it again with Inkscape. I have regularly sketched these interesting layered art concepts where it looks like each layer has been cut away to reveal more depth. Below are just a few I had on hand.

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I used Inkscape to make a new one that reveals a paper heart. I created several layers of increasing darkness as they go down to help provide some depth. For each layer, I drew paths and smoothed the curve to make a nice cutout. I then added some drop shadow to each of the layers to give it a little more depth.

To accomplish this, I filled the layer with a rectangle the size of the canvas (we call this the plane). Then I drew shapes using the bezier. I then selected the points and used the smooth option to make them nice and smooth. Then I selected the plane and the shape together and used the Path > Difference (ctrl -) to cut the shape out of the plane.

The heart I drew using the bezier curve with an outline of each shape stacked on top of each other. Then, I filled with red and used a paper filter to give it some texture. The shape of the heart is a split between realistic and metaphorical with the twin peaks at the top and the point at the bottom.


Layers of depth down to the heart. See through me.


In this one, I experimented with just circle cutouts, but with more layers. I did them all independently and then rearranged the stacking and changed the colors.


Clean lines and an array of colors. This one makes me wonder how deep it goes.

Overall, this technique was pretty simple to do in Inkscape. Once I got used to the keyboard shortcuts things got a lot quicker.


By joshuarlowry

Designer, Data Vis Expert, Tinkerer

The opinions expressed are my own and not that of my company.

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