Procreate Gradients: Step-by-Step Creation Guide
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 7 min read


  1. Get started with Procreate
  2. Choose your colors
  3. Create a new gradient
  4. Adjust color positions
  5. Save and name your gradient
  6. Apply gradient to your artwork
  7. Modify gradient after application
  8. Export and share your gradient

Imagine you're crafting your latest digital masterpiece on Procreate, and you think to yourself, "This piece could use a gradient to give it a bit more depth". Great news! Creating a gradient in Procreate is not only possible, but it's also straightforward and fun to do. This guide will walk you through the process, step by step, demystifying the art of creating a gradient in Procreate. So, grab your iPad, open up Procreate, and let's get started!

Get started with Procreate

Before we jump into creating a gradient, it's essential to get a grasp of the basics of Procreate. If you're a seasoned Procreate user, you can skip ahead. If you're new to the app, don't worry, Procreate is user-friendly and designed with artists in mind.

First things first, you need to have the Procreate app installed on your iPad. You can download it from the App Store. Once installed, open the Procreate app. You'll be greeted with a gallery view of your artworks—if you're new, this will be empty. Don't worry, it won't stay that way for long!

To start creating a new artwork—and a gradient—tap on the '+' button in the upper right corner of the screen. A drop-down menu will appear with the different canvas sizes available. For this guide, let's choose 'Screen Size'. Now, you're all set to start creating a gradient in Procreate.

Note: If you want to practice along with this guide, I recommend creating a simple shape or object on your canvas. This will give you a clear visual of how the gradient affects your artwork.

Choose Your Colors

The first step in creating a gradient in Procreate is picking your colors. This is where you get to flex your creative muscles. But remember, a gradient is a smooth transition from one color to another, so choose colors that blend well together.

To select colors, tap on the circle in the upper right corner of the screen. This will open the color picker. Here, you can choose any color you like. For a smooth gradient, consider choosing colors that are close to each other on the color wheel. For a more dramatic effect, opt for colors that are opposite each other. Let's go with a classic combo: blue and green.

First, select blue in the color picker, then tap anywhere outside of the color picker to close it. Now, you have your first color. Tap again on the color picker and this time, choose green. Don't close it yet—we'll be back right here in the next step of creating a gradient in Procreate.

Quick Tip: You can save any color you like by dragging it into the color palette at the bottom of the color picker. This way, you can easily access these colors later—especially handy when creating gradients!

Create a New Gradient

Now that you've selected your colors, it's time to create your gradient. This is where the magic happens in the process of creating a gradient in Procreate.

Start by creating a new layer. Tap the layers icon—it looks like two squares—on the top right of your screen. Then, tap the + sign to add a new layer.

To start our gradient, we’ll use the soft brush tool. Click on the paintbrush icon to open the brushes library and scroll down to "Airbrushing". Select the "Soft Brush" from the list.

Now, draw a line on your canvas from left to right using the first color (blue in our case). Make sure the line is thick, covering a decent portion of your canvas. This will be the starting point of your gradient.

Next, switch to your second color (green for us) by opening the color picker again. Draw a second line underneath the first one. Now you have two parallel lines of different colors on your canvas. You're half-way through creating a gradient in Procreate!

Remember: The key to a good gradient is a smooth blend. Don’t worry if it looks a bit choppy now—we'll smooth it out in the next steps.

Adjust Color Positions

Now let's make your gradient smoother. For that, we’re going to use the smudge tool. It's the finger icon next to the paintbrush. Tap on it to select it.

Once you've selected the smudge tool, you need to choose a brush for it. Again, go to "Airbrushing" and pick the "Soft Brush". This brush is perfect for blending colors together smoothly.

Now, it’s time to blend. Start from the top line and gently drag down towards the lower line. The trick here is to not rush it. Take your time to get a smooth and seamless transition from one color to another.

As you do this, you'll notice the colors start to blend together and create a beautiful gradient. You might need to adjust the color positions a few times until you get the perfect blend. But don't worry—this is a fun part of creating a gradient in Procreate. You have the freedom to move and blend the colors until you're happy with the result.

Tip: If you want to make finer adjustments, you can play with the settings of the smudge tool. Just click on it again and you'll see sliders for size and opacity. Try different settings and see what works best for your gradient.

Save and Name Your Gradient

Once you're satisfied with your gradient, it's time to save it. Procreate makes this process pretty straightforward.

First, you'll want to tap on the "Actions" menu, which is the wrench icon located at the top left corner of your screen. From there, select the "Add" option. Within that menu, click on "Create new palette". This will open a new window where you can name your gradient.

When naming your gradient, it's a good idea to choose a name that reflects its color scheme or the project it's intended for. This will make it easier to find later on when you're working on different pieces of artwork.

After you've given your gradient a name, tap "Done". Your gradient is now saved and ready to be used in your future projects!

Remember: Your saved gradients are stored in the color palette section. To access it, tap on the color circle at the top right corner, then select "Palettes". Here, you'll find all the gradients you've saved, organized by their names.

Apply Gradient to Your Artwork

Now that you've mastered creating a gradient Procreate, let's apply it to your artwork. Exciting, right?

First, open the artwork where you want to apply the gradient. Then, select the layer you want to add the gradient to. If your artwork has multiple layers and you want the gradient to affect all of them, simply group the layers together.

Next, tap on the "Magic Wand" tool at the top of the screen. A dropdown menu will appear. Select "Gradient Map" from the list. When the Gradient Map interface appears, select the color palette that contains your saved gradient. And just like that, your gradient is applied to your artwork!

But what if you want to adjust the intensity or direction of the gradient? No worries! You can adjust the gradient's position and intensity using the sliders in the Gradient Map interface.

And that's it! You've successfully applied your gradient to your artwork. Experiment with different gradients and layer combinations to create unique and stunning visual effects. Happy creating!

Modify Gradient After Application

After applying your gradient, you may feel the need to make some tweaks. That's perfectly okay — and Procreate makes it super easy!

Start by selecting the layer with the gradient. Access the "Adjustments" menu again, only this time we're looking for an option called "Hue, Saturation, Brightness". Tap on it, and suddenly you're in control of your gradient's color properties.

Slide the 'Hue' control left or right to shift the colors of your gradient. This can give your artwork a completely different vibe. Try sliding the 'Saturation' control too. This will affect the intensity of your colors — left for less intense, right for more. And don't forget 'Brightness'! Slide left to darken your gradient, right to lighten it. Easy, isn't it?

Remember, creating a gradient in Procreate is an art, not a science. Feel free to experiment with these controls until you achieve the look you desire. The best part? You can modify your gradient as many times as you need, without affecting the quality of your original artwork.

So don't hold back. Fine-tune your gradients and let your creativity run wild!

Export and Share Your Gradient

Once you've finished creating a gradient in Procreate and made all your desired modifications, it's time to share your masterpiece with the world!

Begin by tapping on the wrench icon in the top left corner of your screen. This will open Procreate's 'Actions' menu. Here, you will see a multitude of options, but the one we're interested in is 'Share'.

In the 'Share' menu, you'll find various options for exporting your gradient. You can save it as a Procreate file, a PDF, a JPEG, a PNG, or even a TIFF. The format you choose depends on how you plan to use or share your gradient. JPEG is typically best for sharing online due to its smaller file size, whereas TIFF is great for high-quality prints.

Once you've selected your preferred file format, your iPad will generate an export and give you a variety of ways to share your gradient. You could save it to your device, send it via email, or even post it directly to your social media accounts. It's that simple!

Creating a gradient in Procreate is a fun and rewarding process. Whether you're designing a stunning piece of digital art or simply experimenting with new styles, gradients can add depth and complexity to your work. And with these step-by-step instructions, you now have the knowledge and confidence to create, modify, and share your own gradients. So, what are you waiting for? Get creative!

If you enjoyed our step-by-step guide on creating Procreate gradients and want to expand your skills even further, we recommend checking out our 'Daisie Original Animation Course' with none another than Alex Jenkins who will you take you through his complete animation process. Dive in and take your animation skills to the next level!