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 Transparent Sails

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Seahorse914
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PostSubject: Transparent Sails   Tue Dec 18, 2012 11:56 pm

HELP PLEASE Smile

I am using GIMP and have been pulling what little hair I have left out!!!

I have become very proficient at selecting adding color adding layers and so on.
I can sucessfully save to dds and put work into vsk and make it show.

My problem is I do not understand the procedure for working in the ALPHA CHANNEL.
I know where it is (I Think) In the hue tab( the little colored squares). But what do I do???

Please share the procedure, If you could please give me a step by step. Dan I am putting this out to Gazza or any one else that may have some insight to this. If you can share the procedure in photoshop that would be great.

Thanks in Advance Guys,
Seahorse :?: :?: :?: Rolling Eyes Very Happy Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Transparent Sails   Wed Dec 19, 2012 12:38 am

Hi John

check out the Northspace site its about photoshop but helped me

http://www.northspace.co.uk/skins_templates.html

when i can i will put up some screenshots for gimp

now some help from you Very Happy

you said you had the dds plug in for gimp, where did you get it and how did you instsll it,

Gazza
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Seahorse914
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PostSubject: Re: Transparent Sails   Wed Dec 19, 2012 12:45 am

Gazza,
Thanks ...been to northspace but am unable to figure it out. Just a little puzzled with the how to in the Alpha channel.

I will look back and get you the link to the download NO PROBLEM

See You Tonight Mate,
Seahorse Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Transparent Sails   Wed Dec 19, 2012 1:28 pm

Dear John

I found a web site that explains how to create a skin, manage alpha chanel etc... however it is in french.
So I can try to summarize what is written there.

The first step is from a .dds file, create .bmp files.
This is done with the free software DXTBMP.
When you open a .dds file with DXTBMP, you have the main file in front of you and the alpha channel in the small box on the top right of the window.
You have to separate the main file and the alpha channel by:
- save the main file in .bmp format by clicking in the menu file/save as/24 bit BMP image
- save the alpha channel in .bmp by clicking in the top right box on the button "export alpha channel as bmp" (4th button)
Then you have 2 bmp files, one colored and one black and white.
The black and white file is the alpha channel and it shall be understood that the more black it is the more transparent will be the final result and on the contrary the more white the more opaque.

Then you can work on your bmp files as you want with GIMP for example

When you finished and you have your beautiful files (both .bmp files) you need to combine them in a .dds file.
This is also done with DXTBMP.
In the menu you open the colored bmp file by clicking in the menu file/open and selected the file.
In the little top right window you open your alpha channel by clicking on the button "import alpha channel" (1st button) and selecting the .bmp alpha chanel file.
The merging of the 2 files into a .dds file is done by saving the file by clicking in the main menu file/save as/dds texture/save as type DDS DXT5.

Your .dds file is ready

Hope it helps
Cheers
SAF (Olivier)
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PostSubject: Re: Transparent Sails   Wed Dec 19, 2012 2:03 pm

Nicely done Olivier

Here is also a brief explaination of how I do it with gimp

First all my work is saved with psd extension, it makes editting a bit easier for me Smile
Unless you have worked from scratch ie no template I tend to make the base/original layer invisible.



Now open the channels tab in the top right


This will display your rgb and alpha channels. If you make the alpha channel visible and highlight it, you will see if any transparency has been added. For some reason its pinkish in colour on mine


To make it transparent colour the hole layer, i`ve been using colour code 993b3b



My understanding is the the closer the colour is to the basic layer colour the less transparent the finished product is.



Now make that channel invisible again and save work as usual.

I hope this makes some sort of sense :?: and GOOD LUCK lol!

Gazza
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AussieXII
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PostSubject: Re: Transparent Sails   Wed Dec 19, 2012 11:52 pm

Bloody brilliant!!! Glad guys are starting to make use of pictures now. Only so much can be relayed through text, I alwyas find pictures far more useful. Great explaination too SAF I already know how to make sails transperant in Photoshop but not in Gimp.

The last piece of the puzzle is still, missing however and that is to clear backgorund of graphics so they can be overlayed to the sail. At the moment its a painstaking colouring process that should be as easy as clicking a button to make the background of a picture transperant. Maybe I just need to open each graphic in Photoshop to do that I dont know.

Great post though guys and a very useful resource, thanks for working on it fellas.

Cheers Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy

Dan

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PostSubject: Re: Transparent Sails   Thu Dec 20, 2012 12:40 am

Dan

I'm not entirely sure of what you mean.

Are you using an old sail template and you mean that you can still see like shadows of unwanted details, like a cup or logo or like the batons on the above image for instance, if So then the only way I can think of is to highlight the alpha layer and colour the layer in, like you say.

Gazza
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