Replicating alu skins in graphic programmes

Discussion in 'Gallery & Designs' started by Leif Oh, Jul 10, 2005.

  1. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Leif, Boris,

    Boris is right..., I took a look at the edges after further work was not yielding adequate looking panel lines. What I found was fairly "ragged" pixelated boarders which are not conducive to the "crisp" look necessary to render convincing looking panel lines. Boris got the jump on this and Leif followed up with his revelation.

    Photoshop beginners do need lots of empathy as the software, although powerful, has a user interface that leaves much to be desired. The most important aspect of it is the ideas of layers and masks. Everything else either makes content in these or modifies them. I'm now redoing what's been done to include vector masks and selections.

    And Leif, we are all duncing our ways through life (sorry).

    This is turning out to be a very useful thread as Ash prophecised...,

    Gil
  2. RyanShort1

    RyanShort1 Member

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    Interesting and useful topic indeed! I've been playing with paths in GIMP a bunch lately with the redraw and have been finding them exceedingly useful. You can do most of the stuff described above if you play with it enough.

    Ryan
  3. Leif Oh

    Leif Oh Member

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    Ryan, as an aside I'm very happy to see you back and active on the forum since a while. Have been meaning to ask you, how's things been going with your real life enterprises?

    Gil, I may have phrased my frustrations over not understanding how you achieved your very good effects in a less than courteous way. What I wanted to get across is that I - and many, I believe - are really looking forward to a description of how to replicate that.

    Tim, and many other sworn vector enthusiasts, I am particularly happy about Boris' tips because they might provide some common ground between bitmap and vector adherents. I, for one, am so happy that a door into vectors has been opened for me, and I just hope that this thread will contribute to opening a similar crack in bitmap techniques for those who have been as shy of them as I've been of vectors.

    Leif
  4. wunwinglow

    wunwinglow Active Member

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    Hi Leif at al,

    this sort of thread always leads to some enlightenment for someone, that is the wonderful thing about such forums. I must say lots of things that have been discussed here regarding bitmap editing strike me as being almost magical, and yet other aspects which seem hard work as bitmap edits would be a matter of a click or two as vector elements. It is noticable that many of the image editting packages are merging, vector progs can often do basic bitmap tweaks without dipping out to a full-blown paint program, while bitmap software can often do some basic vector editting, as we have seen here.

    Fundamentally, I think the two styles of editting appeal to different personalities. Bitmap editting is more approachable if you have a painterly, scultural approach to making things, things are right when they look and feel right. Subtlety matters. Vectors appeal to the engineers amongst us, who crave razor sharp precision, to whom the ragged edges of pixels is an afront to their desires!

    Obviously, the best way is the middle way, taking the best from both, and if this sort of thread can open the eyes of some to the benefits (and, to be fair, the problems) of alternate techniques, that can only be for the best.

    And that is why I love cardmodels.net so much.

    Tim P
  5. RyanShort1

    RyanShort1 Member

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    Ok I guess. I'm not sure I'm going to finish the GIMP tutorial as I just haven't had the time to devote to it that I ought to. Still hope to finish the P-51 redraw though. Am starting to study for an instrument rating soon.

    As far as GIMP goes you use the path selection tool almost exactly as described above with Photoshop. Just looks a bit different, but it's there.
    Will have to see if I can tweak GIMP to do the nice aluminum look above for the P-51!

    Ryan
  6. Boris

    Boris Member

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    Hi All
    I personally stick to the idea that "somewhere in the middle" is the right approach ,as wunwinglow mentioned. I'm glad I could help in some way

    I use both stiles - bitmap and vector, in Photoshop, sort of speak, enjoy both worlds. And yes, I do agree that user interface of Photoshop isn't exactly frendly. For example you have to use both hands while working , so no cigarette or coffee LOL :D :D :D
  7. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Hi All,

    Had to go and dig into the why and wherefore on paths in Adobe's Photoshop..., I'm now convinced that Adobe purposely made the interface nearly unuseable to insure that users would be inclined to purchase Illustrator for vector work as it is fairly simple to transfer paths to Illustrator. This is, of course, a belief derived from rereading the manual and other books several times to even achieve a basic understanding of how it all works together. The purpose is to provide a user tutorial on how to use Photoshop Paths to "redesign" scanned models to their satisfaction. I decided that after assessing what was involved that a "quick and dirty" tutorial wouldn't accomplish the goal of teaching others how to use it. Have just one or two open ends that need closing before starting. Please have a little patience as it has taken a lot more work than it should to ferret out the details.

    Gil
  8. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Quick Update:

    The following is where I left off this evening. I'll write up the process tomorrow for the first installment of using Photoshop Paths for cardmodeling.

    Gil

    [​IMG]
  9. Leif Oh

    Leif Oh Member

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    OK. Watching... . There's a layer for each path, then. And paths are saved as paths, i take it, not as selections. It is unavoidable I suppose. Have tried to get around that necessity for days now, but not succeeded either.

    Leif

    PS. Do you really need all four tool windows to the right open? Or perhaps that's the secret...
  10. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Leif,

    The only way to obtain smooth, anti-aliased contours in Photoshop is to use Paths (it's stated this way in several texts on Photoshop). As you'll see in the upcoming tutorial that paths are saved in the vector path format and are used as "masks" to obtain coloring effects. Perimeters are paths turned into selections using a preset brush as the line type. Conquering how the brush or pen must be setup is the bane of many newcomers including myself which brings up why so many of the menu items are open on the right side of the menu. Try hitting the tab key, this toggles the display of the menus on the screen allowing full access to the screen for drawing. When drawing paths it's recommended that the "Navigator" panel be kept open as it allows ease of zoom and pan of the screen graphic for editing.

    For those that need help beyond the Photoshop help function the following site provides access to an online "Teach Yourself Photoshop in 14 Days":

    http://docs.rinet.ru/PhotoZh/


    Working on the tutorial now, Gil
  11. Boris

    Boris Member

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    Hi guys!
    I've noticed that creation of new layer each time while working with path bothers you.
    So here's the way to cancel the creation of new layer:
    1.Open your Photoshop
    2.Pick Pen tool
    3.On second attached picture you can see that there are two buttons on the upper toolbox( button # 2 on my picture)
    4.Press the right button - It's called "create new work path"
    5.Pick the shape tool- rectangle or whatever
    6.On first attached picture you can see three highlighted buttons - press the middle one
    7.Close and open Photoshop
    8. Here you go - each time you work with path, only the path gets created , not a new layer

    It works with my Photoshop 6.0 but I believe that it works also with later version of Photoshop

    Hope it helps
  12. Leif Oh

    Leif Oh Member

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    Yep, got that Boris. But saving the path? I'll investigate, too. - Leif
  13. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Boris, Leif,

    What Boris has shown is in the tutorial but it doesn't cancel the need for separate layers it allows unfilled paths to be drawn. I'll explain, a separate layer is required for each "filter" effect. One for gradient, another for cloud render and one more for the boarder. Transparency adjustments between layers fine tunes the effect of the cloud render "peeking through" the gradient. These can be combined when the work looks right.

    Gil
  14. Boris

    Boris Member

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    To Leif Oh
    Why save the path? Unlike the selection you can move the path itself wherever you like, so if you need to create, let's say, same five elements, you just create one path, fill it, stroke it(you can do these actions in different layers), and then move the path to a needed location and repeat your actions

    To Gil
    Yes, sure, Gil, you're right if you want to create some effects. But in some cases (for example camo spots) I want only to stroke some contour or fill it with color. But I guess it's up to one's habit to work in certain way. After all Photoshop is a powerfull tool and can fit to anyone's habit.
  15. Leif Oh

    Leif Oh Member

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    Boris, yes, you are probably right. It's just that I feel most safe when I can save a selection for something that's going to be filled with gradient or feathered patterns.

    If you want to do redo it, as you are almost sure to want to when experimenting, it is not easy to pick up what you did by selecting it manually or by the wand. You are likely to loose or leave some edges behind, I've found.

    But I agree that this is a minor objection.

    Leif
  16. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Pseudo-Aluminum Panels in Photoshop

    The following is a short and not too elegant tutorial on using Photoshop Paths to make vector mask panels.

    Gil

    [​IMG]
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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
  17. Leif Oh

    Leif Oh Member

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    Great! Will try to replicate - and understand as I go along. - Leif
  18. Gil

    Gil Active Member

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    Aluminum Skin No Vectors

    Leif,

    I took the challenge of painting the skins aluminum without using vector paths using only one layer. The cloud render was left out as it requires a separate layer to make the effect work. The results were suprising.

    Gil
  19. Boris

    Boris Member

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    Gil!
    It looks very very nice !
    I'm affraid, though, that we're flooding this thread . Lets start another thread in "Tips" maybe.
    If it's OK with you and with Leif , maybe we can ask our moderator to move this thread to "Tips and techniques" or to "Tutorials" section

    Leif , I'm sorry for filling your thread with my ideas ,but I just wanted to add something to your knowlage, which is absolutely awesome!!!

    To all guys that were writing and reading this thread :
    Do you agree with my suggestion? The problem is that this was originally Leif's thread about his work on his FLORA, and it became list of Photoshop tutorials. Would you agree that this thread (or part of it) should be moved?
  20. Leif Oh

    Leif Oh Member

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    Boris, thanks for the offer, and I agree. I have changed the title of the thread to "Replicating alu skins in graphic programmes". I can do that, since I started the whole thing. And now we can ask for the whole thread to be moved.

    Ron, Rick - you can take this as a formal request! If you have another suggestion for a title, just go ahead and change it.

    The fact that it got started with the Jak-23 is just incidental. When I continue working on that, I'll just start a new thread. For now, the work on alu skins is the main thing.

    Leif

    PS. Gil, did I just miss out on something there? I hope you'll repost!