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How to Turn a Photo or a Video into a Sketch with Ease

Liza Brown
Liza Brown
Originally published Nov 08, 21, updated Feb 29, 24
Versatile Video Editor - Wondershare Filmora

An easy yet powerful editor

Numerous effects to choose from

Detailed tutorials provided by the official channel

The sketch effect is defined by a quickly executed hand drawing that is intended to be a draft and not a final work. It can be made with paper, pen, or even oil painting. It used to be not considered a form of art up until recently when sketches started to become more complex, and the general public became more aware of them. Nowadays, there are artists solely dedicated to that type of art. However, early forms of this effect can be traced back to the beginning of art itself. It is how artists used to draft the first impressions of a new project, and it is the foundation of many important art pieces that we see today in the world.

Part 1: What is Sketch Effect in Photo/Video Editing?

The sketch effect on a picture or video is usually a filter that turns your product into a pencil drawing version. Nowadays, many photos or video applications come with that feature included, and it has been exponentially growing in interest over the years. However, these sketch effects can be applied to any drawing medium. If you want a dedicated sketch effect, you can draw it yourself with some tools, but it is a very consuming way of making your photo or video look like a sketch.

Part 2: How to Turn a Photo into a Sketch?

There are many online tools that you can use to transform your photos or videos to sketch effects. For example, take Lunapic, an online website tool. It is very easy to use, and all you have to do is:

1. Open the URL of your picture or video or upload a picture or video.

2. Access the picture or video and from the upper menu, go to LunaPic, then Effects and then choose Pencil Sketch.

That is all you have to do to turn your photo into a sketch. There are other tools that can help you perfect your sketch.

Part 3: How to Add Sketch Effect to a Video?

Step 1: Download Filmora and open the video you want to change.

Step 2: Add a new layer over the video that you are editing and lock it on the timeline to be sure the video does not move around when you are editing it.

Note: You can draw an outline using the Pen or Pencil tool if this helps you out.

Step 3: On the upper side of the timeline, on the menu, click on filters. Scroll down to Materials. To your right, there will appear several effects that you can choose from. Pick the Sketch effect.

sketch effect filmora

Step 4: On the timeline part of your screen, drag the Sketch bar to encompass the totality of the video that you are using, so you apply the effect to the whole video.

sketch effect video

Step 5: Press play on the little screen you have on the upper right part of your screen to run the video. Check if the whole video has the sketch effect. There are other sketch effects that you can use within Filmora, and they are worth exploring.

Step 6: If everything is alright with the video, you can now export it. Just click on "Export" on the upper toolbar of the timeline menu and choose the desired format file you want to export your modified video.

Top 3 Tools to Turn Photos/ Videos into Sketch

1. Photofunia

This is a great app to make your photos come to life. It can be downloaded from Google Play or the app store, and it is extremely user-friendly. There are plenty of effects to choose from, including the Sketch effect. Just upload the desired picture or video and choose the desired effect on the menu, and that is all. You can then export it in any of the standard formats to be easy to send to your friends and family.

2. Lunapic

This is a free online tool that is very easy to use and is totally dedicated to turning your photos or videos into a sketch.

All you have to do is go to the website and pick the desired effect. There are plenty, from watercolor to Picasso style, as well as editing tools like cropping images or videos and filters like black and white.

Choose sketch, and then you'll have the option to upload an image or video or type the URL of the file straight away into a search box to upload it. You can then export it and send it to anyone you would like. It is perhaps an easier tool to use without downloading any software.

3. BeFunky

This app has a free version with many features that are definitely worth checking out. For example, photo editor, collage maker and graphic designer for webpages. It has an extremely vast library of effects and tools to help you modify your photos and videos the way you want them, as well as templates, to guide you through hard editing processes.

It also comes with many text fonts for you to apply in your photos or videos, photos overlays to give unique looks to your pictures, effects and also photo frames.

The sketch effect is easy to use, and all you have to do is upload or open the file you want to convert and apply the sketch filter.

There is also the option to share your photos or videos instantly with whomever you want, as well as share them or post them directly on social media.


There are plenty of applications and online websites where you can edit your photos or videos. As sketch effect is becoming more popular, most of these apps already come with that tool included, and so it is a lot easier to transform your photos or videos.

There are also plenty of tutorials to help you through the process of editing your photo or video in the most diverse application. So just choose the best app for you and start it out. One of the most powerful tools in the market is Filmora. Besides having a free version that allows you to have access to a huge range of effects and tools, it is also easy to use and has tremendous power. It is easy for beginners, but it also has a complex part for the more advanced people that want to give their photos or videos that professional touch. If you do not want to download any software, then I recommend LunaPic. In this webpage, you can instantly transform your photos or videos into sketches and download them to your computer or phone, depending on the device you are using.

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