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Frosty_theOzzie
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Texturing - How do you guys do it?
      #1950820 - 11/11/03 03:57 PM

G'day. Please don't flame me or anything too bad. I'm a veteran when it comes to modding - having worked on several maps for HL1 & DX - but there is still one aspect of modding I'm stumped on: texturing.

How on earth do you guys make such cool textures. All I can manage is something that looks like it was made in paint. I've got PSP and Adobe Photoshop, as well as NIFTexture and the DDS Exporters.
I was just wondering if any of you Texture people can tell me how you make original ones (not recolors, I can do that, no sweat ).



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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Frosty_theOzzie]
      #1950826 - 11/11/03 03:59 PM

me too! mine looks like someone spilled the paint or something awfill

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xBloodHoundx
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950837 - 11/11/03 04:04 PM

lol i dont even try
exept i was thinking of making a tc
"Stick World"

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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: xBloodHoundx]
      #1950839 - 11/11/03 04:05 PM

lmao!

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TSBasilisk
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950844 - 11/11/03 04:06 PM

Wander the Internet and look for trial versions. Use them up on textures. I have one that allows me the same functions as Photoshop, but gives 50 uses before ending.

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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: TSBasilisk]
      #1950849 - 11/11/03 04:07 PM

I have Paint shop pro, just no skill, know were I can download some of that?

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TSBasilisk
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950857 - 11/11/03 04:11 PM

Yeah, it's on the same page where they store the functioning left hand Wraithguard model and a copy of Space Quest 6.

My suggestion is to mess around with the various gizmos and gadgets. Texture, airbrush, distort. Work for something you like. It may take a loooooooooong time, though.

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Frosty_theOzzie
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: TSBasilisk]
      #1950858 - 11/11/03 04:11 PM

Quote:

Wander the Internet and look for trial versions. Use them up on textures. I have one that allows me the same functions as Photoshop, but gives 50 uses before ending.




I've got the tools, I just need to know how to use them. I stated I have Photoshop 6.0 and Paint Shop Pro

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LadyLuck
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950863 - 11/11/03 04:13 PM

When I do details I zoom up really close, then I zoom out to see if it looks good, if not I zoom up close again and tweak it. Repeat until satisfyed. Oh, and it can be wise to set the opacy of your brush low, do more strokes to get the right colour rather than set opacy to max and hope that it will look good the first time around...

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950865 - 11/11/03 04:13 PM

well I don't know if I am one of the "guys" you refer to, but I use PSP 7 and all I do is use the tools it provides as well as various textures available around the net. Then it is just a matter of making sure sizes are correct and playing with the tools until I get a look I like.

I don't really know how else to answer the question asked but that is pretty much what I do. Primary tools I use in PSP are ,Freehand selection, Retouch, and Clone brush, Also the menu pretty much everything found under Effects, and Colors. Then it is just a matter of piecing together the look you want.

Don't know that this helps any but figured I would offer it anyway. Take care!





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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: TSBasilisk]
      #1950867 - 11/11/03 04:13 PM

heh

well I was pretty good, had alot of plugins that i could make things look good (my avatar) but I lost all the plugins (forgot how that happend been awile) as now I'm not good at making much of anything

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Frosty_theOzzie
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1950869 - 11/11/03 04:15 PM

I use PSP 7.0 as well, but how. Like, what base do I start off with? I don't even know where to start. I know basics though, like selections, cloning and effects.

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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1950880 - 11/11/03 04:19 PM

yes you are one of the guys (modest )

look at zippy I just made a new layer it's it's transparincy to like 50 and filled it with white

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Frosty_theOzzie]
      #1950887 - 11/11/03 04:21 PM

LOL I usually pull the graphic that I want retextured up and "whipe the slate" so to speak then save it as a blank (I use black as a blank) one. Then I pull up the original graphic as a guide to what lines are where and begin building the new look on my blank one using the old one as a point of reference....I can put the mouse on the old one and in the bottom left corner it tells me coordinates withing the graphic. I can then begin to plot map the new graphic with those coordinates marked in "lime green dots" for me this gives me the basic points of the texture that are "warped" or otherwise distorted by the mesh that they go on and helps me have a better idea of how to make the texture....

for me this seems to work the best, but everyone will have a different way of doing things so really you just need to give it a whirl and find the method that works best for you

Good luck with it, I am sure that you can get the hang of it in no time


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Frosty_theOzzie
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950888 - 11/11/03 04:21 PM

Isn't it a re-color ? I'm confused as to how that was done .

Anyone have any tutorials. I've been searching in Google and Altavista to no avail.

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950890 - 11/11/03 04:23 PM

LOL I thought you did great with zippy....guess that means your one of the guys too eh? hehe

Thanx Rolach




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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1950896 - 11/11/03 04:26 PM

yes it was just a recolor, just pointing out how bad I am now.

TW I couldn't make a stick figure look right

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950903 - 11/11/03 04:29 PM

hmmm... I wonder if fraps can capture video from something other then a game...going to go check it out. IF it does I will try and make a couple little video things the next time I do some retextures.... if you think it would help in any way?

EDIT: Bah it doesn't capture video from paintshop....is there anything that would capture video from normal operation of a windows program?


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Edited by ThreadWhisperer (11/11/03 04:33 PM)

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Wizzy
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950905 - 11/11/03 04:30 PM

questions:

what are textures exactly? - i'm assuming they're the ground tiles, and weapons and stuff?

if i have Photoshop 7 - can i make my own?

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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1950908 - 11/11/03 04:31 PM

a video tutorial? that'd be neat I could do it, just have to hook the VCR up to my computer

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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Frosty_theOzzie]
      #1950909 - 11/11/03 04:33 PM

First off, I use Photoshop 7.
Secondly, I ALWAYS have both Photoshop and the TESCS open at the same time to check on my progress.

It depends on what you are trying to do Frostie. If you are trying to implement a character from another game, or anywhere else for that matter, you just need source photos to work from. Its alot of trial and error to get things to look correct.

What I usually do is look for strong lines that stand out from the source picture and try to plot them out on my texture so that they are where I think they should go on my mesh. I then switch over to the TESCS and see where the lines sit. I then work back and forth to get the lines in the areas that I want them. Once I have my initial planning done I fill in between the lines, on a seperate layer, and slowly pull together what the piece is suppost to look like. I generally end up with ALOT of layers, (the last head I textured had something like 50 layers) most are not used in the end but are there for reference or incase I want to keep something seperate to pull from later on (the head ended up using 3 layers).

Its mostly trial and error, and time, alot of time. The above technique can be used for compeletly original works. Granted, its alittle harder unless you have what you want already planned out in your head. For anything totally original, I usually draw it out the best I can on paper. It doesn't have to be perfect, as long as you know what you are looking for and at.

Tip 1: First, drop the item you are retexturing into the render window. If its an original mesh you should only see the multi-colored poly map. When ever you make a change to the texture, save it as a .dds, .tga, or .bmp (whichever your mesh points to.) Then go into your TESCS and up to the view menu. Switch to the preview window (This usually shows animations of parts selected from one of the item menus). Wait a few secodns then switch back to the render window. This will make TESCS update the texture information and it should now show whatever changes you made.

Tip 2: I use bright colored lines to mark where bends in the mesh are when I first start doing the texture. This also works well on re-textures because they are easy to see on the previous texture.

Tip 3: HAVE SEVERAL SAVES. At the end of a project I generally have anywhere from 3-10 photoshop files saved serperately incase I mess something up and have to copy and paste a portion of texture from a previous save. I usually save a new .psd after each texturing session, no matter how small the change. Plus, you never know when something will go horribly wrong, like saving the flattened image as a .psd instead of the .bmp you meant it to be, and not realizing until next time you open the .psd to work on it. Or even worse, saving it, flattened, as a .psd and not realizing it until you have used the blend tool so many times that you can't back track to un-flatten the image. (I have done both too many times to count. )

Tip 4: BACK UP YOUR FILES. try to save the original mesh/texture and the modified texture to a disk of some sort. I can't count how many projects have gone ghost lately due to Harddrive crashes.

Good luck, I hope this helped alittle.

[edit - wow, it took me so long to type this that the thread went from 4 replies to 12...]

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Edited by UnScathed (11/11/03 04:36 PM)

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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Wizzy]
      #1950910 - 11/11/03 04:33 PM

textures are another word for pictures/graphics

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Wizzy
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950913 - 11/11/03 04:35 PM

but for what exactly? 2D, 3D?

can you just texture 2D things? or can you actually make 3D models with it somehow?

keep in mind i have absolutely no idea what you people are talking about - need to be more specific.

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UnScathed
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Wizzy]
      #1950914 - 11/11/03 04:37 PM

The texture of something is the coloration/detail that is applied to the 3D mesh.

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LadyLuck
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1950915 - 11/11/03 04:37 PM

Can you do hex editing of heads?
Cause I can't, but I have a texture that I would like to use, only it's meant for a head mesh that I can't open with NifTexture

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Wizzy]
      #1950919 - 11/11/03 04:40 PM

Quote:

but for what exactly? 2D, 3D?

can you just texture 2D things? or can you actually make 3D models with it somehow?

keep in mind i have absolutely no idea what you people are talking about - need to be more specific.




I look at it this way...a texture is a 2 dimensional image that is used to "skin" a 3 dimensional frame.


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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Wizzy]
      #1950920 - 11/11/03 04:40 PM

textures are 2D pictures that wrap around the 3d image (mesh) 3D mesh and only be made in 3ds max or some other 3d modeling program

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Frosty_theOzzie
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950926 - 11/11/03 04:43 PM

I'm asking this because I want to make a full suit of Silver Armor and Mithril Armor, like the sets from Daggerfall.

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: LadyLuck]
      #1950927 - 11/11/03 04:46 PM

If you mean pull an embedded texture out of an NIF then I am sorry I have not been able to do so as yet, but believe me I have tried LOL. From what I can tell textures embedded into the NIF are actually no longer an "image" so to speak.

If however you want to re-assign a NON imbedded texture, that I may be able to help you with if you wish as I do use a hexedit program to get into some of the more stuborn nif files that for some reason niftex and skinner can't get to.

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Frosty_theOzzie]
      #1950930 - 11/11/03 04:48 PM

do you have a mesh set in mind for the armor's? or are you making some?


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LadyLuck
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1950933 - 11/11/03 04:50 PM

Well, the texture I want to use are a "tweaked" version of the texture the head mesh uses, so I suppose it's just one of those stubborn .nif's you talk about. What kind of program do you use? I only have NifTexture and Skinner.

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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: LadyLuck]
      #1950935 - 11/11/03 04:52 PM

Quote:

Can you do hex editing of heads?
Cause I can't, but I have a texture that I would like to use, only it's meant for a head mesh that I can't open with NifTexture




I had to do that with one of rheed's heads before dave upgraded his program, it came out all weird think I just saved the texture wrong

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Frosty_theOzzie
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1950936 - 11/11/03 04:52 PM

Well, I'm not much of a modeller. I've got 3DS Max 4.1, but no idea how to use it .

For the Silver Dukesguard armor, I was thinking Imperial and Imperial Chain for the other pieces. Not sure about Mithril.

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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: LadyLuck]
      #1950938 - 11/11/03 04:53 PM

then use a hex editor... just search for tga or dds ending and change it apporiately... keep in mind though that the name length has to be exactly the same when using this method....

as for creating textures

1)Find good reference pics
2)find existing textures that are similiar to what to you want
3)using copy, paste (layer the darn thing like crazy)
4)Clone, tweak, zoom, delete (merge)
5)repeat steps 3 and 4 until happy
6) throw what you just did and start again

hmmm - bigger is usually better for textures... if you have the oppurunity to use 3d max learn at the very least how to uvw map correctly - makes texturing soooooo much easier...

orginal morrowind textures are actually rather good but there are also a lot of images on the net that are even better

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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Daduke]
      #1950948 - 11/11/03 04:59 PM

I can't even make a simple weapon in make and it be able to export. Lady E has been fiddling with it for awile and she gets a tone of error messages. We have no clue were we went wrong.

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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Frosty_theOzzie]
      #1950949 - 11/11/03 05:01 PM

Lady Luck - I use HexEdit from... http://www.expertcomsoft.com/ great great little program and should do the trick for you!

FTO - Best I could say is follow the advice given above with plot mapping the mesh and seeing where the plot map is tweaked and bent etc. adjust your lines so you know exactly where the bends and such are THEN begin to texture the "grids" made by the plot lines until you get the look your after. Silver is one I have found difficult to work with at best but there are some options in the Effects menu of PSP that help to get the "silvery" look one is to make a BMP black and white image of the final texture you use then put it in the PSP texture folder... this makes it available as a texture in PSP which allows you to give the texture depth through lighting via the texture menu window.


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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950951 - 11/11/03 05:02 PM

Not to be rude or anything, but from that angle it sort of looks like something made by Echer

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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: LadyLuck]
      #1950955 - 11/11/03 05:04 PM

it is a popular type of weapon, (I have an actual one in my room) it's off a tutorial so I'm sure someone has made something that looks like it.

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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950977 - 11/11/03 05:20 PM

BTW, can anyone recommend a nice tutorial for handling TES textures? I need info on formats /color depths, usage of alpha channel and other such info/, tools /to extract, repackage for use etc./ and any other technical info on TES-specific texture usage.

Thanks in advance

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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: DenDee]
      #1950983 - 11/11/03 05:24 PM

Quote:

I generally end up with ALOT of layers




That is an understatement.



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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1950985 - 11/11/03 05:26 PM

Since I am actually working on textures right now I figured I would put up an example of the difference it makes when you use a black and white BMP copy of your image as a texture in Paintshop pro to texture your original piece with....

This is the original ground piece after a little "standard" tweaking...

http://www.rethan-manor.org/Image1-notexture.jpg

And this is the same piece only after using a black and white BMP of it as a texture tool in PSP....

http://www.rethan-manor.org/Image2-withtexture.jpg

To me it adds much more depth then not using it...though ground is a kind of poor example LOL it does work very well on metals


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Frosty_theOzzie
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1950989 - 11/11/03 05:31 PM

So did you make the original texture of the ground from scratch?

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Frosty_theOzzie]
      #1950994 - 11/11/03 05:39 PM

not that one I just borrowed it from the game


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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1951010 - 11/11/03 05:51 PM

bleh show off

So you took the ground made it black and white then set your points or err something?

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1951035 - 11/11/03 06:14 PM

no this one was simply to show what "double texturing" can do...

The first image is simply sharpened and slightly colored a bit....

The second image was done useing the one function under the PSP Effects menu called Texture.

Here is what I did for that one and have done for many others...Copy the "finished" texture ie the first one....paste it as a new image....click on color...greyscale....then resize the image to 100X100 pixels (note this only works perfectly with square images) (other shapes have to be compiled from seperate squares) Once it is black and white and 100X100 you then save it as a BMP image and save it to the PSP textures folder... Make the original image active again...Then you click on the menu Effects...scroll to textures...and find the texture you just added select it...the scale is the same as the current image size...ie if your image is 256 X 256 then you set the scale of the texture to 256 this makes it "fit" behind itself and allows you then to adjust the depth of the texture as well as light angle and shineyness etc etc...it works like a much more accurate "sharpen" feature but also allows you to set the depth and lighting as well as tweak the color a little etc

does that explain it better?

hope so

I honestly wasn't trying to show off I didn't think that one was a real good image to use but it was handy and quick to adjust etc...I just thought it would be an ok example of what double textureing can do


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Retrothe80sninja
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1951038 - 11/11/03 06:16 PM

2 words with Adobe Photosop, Blur Tool, it is wonderful for those things that you want to be visible but not jagged. Also, you should probably make a basic image type, like make the texture of a sword silver-ish then look at other textures and use styles you like. I personaly like the darker part in the center of the blade making it look even more 3D. All I do for that is make 2 rectangles with dark/black thing borders and one thick border in the middle. These 2 things help me skin alot of weapons. It worked great doing my Ruby Staff with 10 sided crystals instead of 6 on the regular glass staff.
Retro

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Lord Gabryael
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Retrothe80sninja]
      #1951374 - 11/11/03 09:32 PM

First off if you are unfamiliar with the programs that you will be using such as PS or PSP i would suggest picking up some books on the programs. They will have these books at most large book stores and the books range from introductory to professional levels.
For creating textures it really depends on what you are trying to do. As has been mentioned a popular way of making new textures is by finding good photos, images, or textures online and then messing around with them and altering to fit what you want. Then once you get the hang of that you start to mess around more and begin to chop up images and use only pieces of images and blend them together to make one thing. Then this leads to creating your own completely original images.
Basically the best advice that i could give is to just mess around and try to get comfortable with the program and eventually you get the hang of it.

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Rolach
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: ThreadWhisperer]
      #1952362 - 11/12/03 05:23 AM

oh duh, thanks T.W. I had no clue one could use other pictures as textures that way

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ThreadWhisperer
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Rolach]
      #1952603 - 11/12/03 06:43 AM

not a problem at all


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paschors
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Wizzy]
      #1952773 - 11/12/03 07:25 AM

This is for square/rectangle textures that wrap. Like floors, walls, boxes, bottles, rope, furniture, etc. Most things are textured like that. Some, like weapons and clothes and creatures and such have a lot of small texture files that you have to create by hand.....I think. I don't work with those much except to recolor.

Get the starting graphic.
If you are going to make your own it helps to have a digital camera. Take a picture of what you want to use as your texture. Things like steel don't work at all, too much reflection. Use wood, gravel, grass, fabric, carpet, your roof, whatever you can get a square of. Or you can pull something free off the web.

Make it the right size.
Pull that into the computer and cut down to one of the standard sizes and save as tga. Standard sizes are the multiples of 2's. 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, 256, 512....not much higher.

Make it wrapable
Use an addin like Flaming Pear's Tessalation to wrap it. This plugin allows you to pick the pixel size to use as a wrapping buffer. It kind of blurs the sides and tops and pulls a bit from the bottom and/or other side to the top and side.....make sense? This allows the texture to wrap seamlessly.

If you try to do this manually I can almost guarantee you will see the lines when you attach it to a mesh and pull it into the editor. Although, some with better skill than me might have a better technique. I was hoping to find some plugin or feature of paintshop that wrapped my brush. For example, when I drew a line or stroke and got to the edge it would automatically appear on the opposite side and continue painting. Not sure if this is out there.

Now resize again...
This will cut out some of your nicely resized graphic so you need to crop it to what is left. Then resize again to a standard size.

Other things...
You might need to play around with your textures a bit and maybe resize them before applying the wrapping. Different patterns wrap better at different points. Stipes need to be pretty close to wrapping before you run it through something like Tessalation. Otherwise you get some stripes that look all weird. Most look good. Some that with a lot of pattern you would think wouldn't work but they do. Others might have a different tool they use to make the wrappable texture.



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Fariel
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: UnScathed]
      #1973419 - 11/19/03 01:52 AM

Unscathed said most of what I wanted to say. Very nice!

I'm assuming mostly first timers are going to be looking to this thread to get started; so I'll pass on some advice that helped me get going.

I think almost everyone starts out with altering existing textures and then moves on to original ones. That's the easiest way to learn what you are doing. If you are trying to make an original texture and haven't done your apprenticeship on alterations, you'll be learning the hard way.

Here's one more tip for those interested in painting their own textures--not importing an existing image:

Begin your texture in Adobe Photoshop with a neutral tone, then add to that neutral background gradually with new semitransparent layers. This is how you can start without making it look like a paint spill. Keep checking your results in 3d renders. It might seem slow, but that's the only way you'll know the effect you're having. As soon as you start geting something you like, merge all the layers into the neutral background, making a base. Proceed gradually, little by little, from there, using the history function to go back when you screw up.

Subtlety is the key to a good (realistic) texture. If the mesh has been done expertly, it will do most of the work of defining the form in game. Of course there are textures, such as rocks, that are "deep" in terms of contrast; and there are deep features on items--cracks and carvings, etc. that are not normally done with the mesh.

For first timers, you'll probably get the best results for most surfaces if you approach the new texture as if you're applying stains or watercolors.





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Barabus
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Fariel]
      #1975612 - 11/19/03 01:55 PM

Make use of photoshops filters they are great for building texture and depth,but don't expect miracles straight away.Also for freehand work I recomend the dodge and burn tools(dodge highlights and burn shadows)before I realised that I used to use photoshop like I was using real paint and tried to shade in black.Thank god for internet tutorials!

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Arcana
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Re: Texturing - How do you guys do it? [Re: Frosty_theOzzie]
      #1977754 - 11/20/03 07:51 AM

rofl! Don't feel bad. I have the latest versions of Photoshop, Paint, and Corell Draw and still all I can manage is to recolor/tweak someone elses' work. Anything originial I try looks like a kindegardener drew it with finger paint. I've just learned to accept that I am a no-talent hack :P

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