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I recently came across this picture and would like to replicate the effect. I have tried Illustrator's halftone effects, but the dots are too tidily arranged and I prefer it to be random sizes and positions.

enter image description here

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    Most likely a plugin or a totally different software. – Lucian Nov 23 '17 at 9:02
  • Well you could do this in a programming/mathematics system like say mathematica. Would that be okay for you – joojaa Nov 23 '17 at 11:35
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    Ooki dooki, made a test its not much of a coding job just slow. Heres a demo. The brighter the pixel the higher likelyhood of making round dot. Yes its vector but i can not ship the file easily. – joojaa Nov 23 '17 at 11:51
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I literally see myself drawing this manually. I don't deny the fact that (Just as Lucian said) this might be done in some other software or with a plugin but just look at it.

This can totally be done with a custom pattern brush (just repeating circles) for the main shape and hand drawing some of the particles.

When I initially said drawing by hand I didn't mean it literally. Just create a custom brush with dots, use the Pen Tool to give the main shape and apply that brush. Then simply click/tap with a mouse/tablet-pen to create the rest of the dots.

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    Call me a luddite but I'd find this so much quicker to hand draw on paper. Stippled patterns are something that a stylus is so much slower at than traditional ink as the beginning and end of a line is typically the moment where a stylus can get a little sloppy with precision. To ask it to rapidly stop start over the course of a drawing is something that will ultimately find yourself going a little slower to compensate. A fine tipped ink pen would sail through this (relatively). – biscuitstack Nov 23 '17 at 10:05
  • @biscuitstack When I say drawing by hand I don't mean it literally. Just create a custom brush with dots, use the Pen Tool to give the main shape and apply that brush. Then simply click/tap with a mouse/tablet-pen to create the rest of the dots. – Alin Nov 23 '17 at 10:07
  • @biscuitstack Updated my answer to make it clear what I mean. – Alin Nov 23 '17 at 10:09
  • Well doing a script that does this isnt necceserily hard just a bit tricky. – joojaa Nov 23 '17 at 10:22
  • @Alin Understood, thanks. As a follow on: if I got this in as a brief I wouldn't hesitate to do with an ink pen anyway. I'd be dubious of any automation (even a well made stippled brush pattern) coming close to the aesthetic of an ink pen for a job like this. Preference, I know, and I don't doubt there's some clever automation that can do a reasonable job. I think Tom Waits once asked why would someone spend all the time and money emulating the noise of a garbage can being kicked over as a drum effect when it's often quicker and sounds nicer just to kick over a garbage can. – biscuitstack Nov 23 '17 at 10:27
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I got the closest look with two layers: 1. Duplicate artwork set to Color Dodge in the Transparency palette. 2. Artwork with Effect>Pixelate>Pointilize applied.

enter image description here

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It is best to do this initially in Photoshop. Then convert to bitmap (50% threshold). You can then import the bitmap into illustrator and change to any spot colour you wish.

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