Just downloaded GIMP to create skins. Tips and tricks needed!

Discussion in 'Skins' started by Mitewing, Jun 1, 2014.

  1. Mitewing

    Mitewing Level 9: Spike Top

    Hey guys! I FINALLY downloaded GIMP and ready to make some skins. However, I feel ovrwhelmed since I haven't used a program like this (Illustrator and Photoshop) in many years. I would appreciate any assistance my fellow forum members can provide. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Faruga

    Faruga Level 12: Super Mod
    Patron

    Many years ago Crazy and I made some thingies. Here's one of my pieces of shit:

    I personally don't like the newer versions. I prefer 2.6. Anyway though, in the newer versions you need to ctrl-e rather than ctrl-s to save to png/gif/anything other than xcf. Also it took me ages to figure out how to paint. The square in front in the toolbox is the foreground colour, and painting tools do what they say they do. For pixel art, I recommend the Pixel brush, with the size thing dragged all the way to the left.
    That's the basic stuff you might've already known. Tell me if you need more.
     
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  3. Mitewing

    Mitewing Level 9: Spike Top

    Thanks a lot. This is a good start. If I have any questions I'll be sure to ask here.
     
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  4. Rey D

    Rey D Level 12: Super Mod
    Patron

    You'll need tools like:
    Pen/brush/whatever they call it. Make sure to adjust the size.
    Eraser. Same as pen.
    Selection tools: by color will be especially useful.

    You could also use:
    Layers. Not mandatory as a skin maker, depending on how complicated your skins will be.

    That's all I can think of, right now.
     
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  5. Faruga

    Faruga Level 12: Super Mod
    Patron

    Don't use the brush. Use the pencil. The pencil snaps to the pixels, the brush doesn't.
     
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  6. ThomasMink

    ThomasMink Level 5: Spiny

    I'd set the eraser to hard edge as well, which also in turn makes it snap to pixels. No reason not to for skinning purposes, really.

    As for layers, it probably varies from person to person. They became an obscene habit for me.. and most of them are likely unnecessary.
     
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  7. Mitewing

    Mitewing Level 9: Spike Top

    So do you just make the template the background layer then add additional layers for the things you wanna change? I'm still trying to get back into my Photoshop mentality.
     
  8. ThomasMink

    ThomasMink Level 5: Spiny

    Essentially, yes. I open the template and then copy/paste things from sprite sheets and such over to that. When I paste them, I paste them as a new layer.
    Frankenspriting is always done with layers for me as well. Makes it easier to move things around and position them before adding in the needed pixels to complete the look. Even then, if I feel like changing it later I can just easily reposition things and edit the added pixels as needed instead of needing to re-copy/paste the individual parts.

    In the end, the entire sheet.. save for the purple template lines and some common-between-skins sprites.. is usually comprised of individual layers for each sprite, and more for custom posing/frankenspriting. 60+ layers is normal for me.. 100+ being more common than you might think. ..Hence my comment about them being an obscene habit.
     
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  9. Mitewing

    Mitewing Level 9: Spike Top

    I think for my first skin, it will be a recolor with minor edits to try to learn everything. A Battle & Fighters styled Quint comes to mind.
     
  10. Faruga

    Faruga Level 12: Super Mod
    Patron

    good luck
    with that

    i started a helmetless megaman in b&f style, then gave up because i realized i had to be able to draw to finish it
     
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  11. TheomanZero

    TheomanZero Level 9: Spike Top

    I can't draw, but I still managed to make some skins. It's mainly a matter of changing one or two pixels at a time, then scrutinizing it at different zoom levels for a little while and trying to figure out if it was an improvement.
     
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  12. Mitewing

    Mitewing Level 9: Spike Top

    So when does one create a transparency?
     
  13. Faruga

    Faruga Level 12: Super Mod
    Patron

    One uses a transparency as a background.
     
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  14. Mitewing

    Mitewing Level 9: Spike Top

    Is it too late to make once I started making additional layers? I went to layers to select transparency but everything is greyed out.
     
  15. ThomasMink

    ThomasMink Level 5: Spiny

    I don't use a funky, bright background color like others do, but I do understand why people might.
    Anyway, I'd imagine the transparency thing is saved till the end. Depending on the color you're using.. you can just color select that color and either erase it in a couple swipes or cut it. If you want to preserve your layers, it'll take a little longer.. but eh.
    If you're using black or white, or another color shared with a sprite, things are more tricky.

    For slight convenience in the future, you could make a new layer the same size as the template and fill it in with your background color of choice, drag it behind the template, and then just hide that layer before exporting the image.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2014
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  16. Rey D

    Rey D Level 12: Super Mod
    Patron

    There's no use of layers without transparency, so if you can see your different layers without having to fidget around, then there's already transparency.
    The background layer ThomasMink mentioned is essential if you want to keep th BG non-transparent until the head. Else you just apply transparency to the bottom layer and deal with having to see the bicolored grey pattern (indicating transparency at the bottom). But transparency has no use until the upload to the wiki.
     
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  17. Mitewing

    Mitewing Level 9: Spike Top

    Thanks for the info about transparency. Good to know since I have to start from scratch again. @Rey D Any ideas how and why my file was saved so small? I just made duplicates of the png files I got from the Wiki.
     
  18. Rey D

    Rey D Level 12: Super Mod
    Patron

    until the end *
    Not sure how I made that mistake.

    No idea. Just double check when saving, or make backups.
     
  19. Mitewing

    Mitewing Level 9: Spike Top

    But what would I be looking for when I'm saving?
     
  20. Rey D

    Rey D Level 12: Super Mod
    Patron

    Making sure you put the right things in the right layers, and in your case checking the zoom.
     
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