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malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-05-2003 23:15

back from vacation and back to work

anyway im finishing this site for warcraft and i have a problem with line smoothing

i made this pattern http://www.gatecentral.net/artist/WoWgate/PATTERN2.JPG
to put on the menu bars of the page.
its gonna have a gradient glow around it going down and to the middle. it will be a couple of shades darker than the menubar itself. hard to see but i figure its a nice touch.

anyway
i drew that by hand and scanned it in.
fooled around with it a bit today and ended up with this http://www.gatecentral.net/artist/WoWgate/run-031f.jpg
only using hte top part of it on the left hand menu as an example

jaggies!!!!

does anyone have any tips for smoothing out those curves without loosing the curves themselves?
i gave blur a shot but the jaggies were still there and a lost some line cohesion

btw
i dont have a wacom so i cant draw it in directly like i honestly wanted to
but had to sketch it on paper and then on the pc
if there is no computer solution
is there any tips for a paper solution?
like any tools i can use to make the lines smoother
im figuring a compass and a protractor might help with some of the curves but dunno

synax
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: Cell 666
Insane since: Mar 2002

posted posted 08-06-2003 00:19

The almighty pen tool is your best friend here.

DL-44
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: under the bed
Insane since: Feb 2000

posted posted 08-06-2003 00:56

Yup. the easiet way, and the way that will give you the best results is tracing the pattern out with the pen tool.

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-06-2003 01:01


i hate that thing
which of the pen tools should i use?
if its free form it will be pretty much impossible to get the curves to look good at all

or by trace do you mean trace over what i already have?

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-06-2003 01:07

hmmmkay
gave it a quick try
used freeform and magnetic
seemed to stick well but came out rather bumpy

i see a curve fit option there
ill play around with it

thanks guys

DL-44
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: under the bed
Insane since: Feb 2000

posted posted 08-06-2003 02:14

You want to start with just your plain straight up pen tool.

You want to plot your points at the base of each curve, and at each significant point.

Then you want to go back with your 'convert point tool' and grab and drag the handles on each point to actually achieve your curves.

The first thing you need to make sure of is that you don't think of the pen tool as actually being in any way shape or form a pen.
Whoever named it the pen tool should be flogged.

Steve has a fantastic introductory tutorial for the pen tool here - http://www.gurusnetwork.com/tutorials/photoshop/pen1intro.html

I consider it required reading.

=)

{{edit - oh, and make sure that up on the options bar, the "paths" option is active and not the shape layers or fill pixels...}}




[This message has been edited by DL-44 (edited 08-06-2003).]

docilebob
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: buttcrack of the midwest
Insane since: Oct 2000

posted posted 08-06-2003 02:33

I have never liked the magnetic option (too much trouble to fix the bumps), and the freeform, my mouse, and I just don`t get along, so that leaves me with the Bezier curves. They are the way to go. Complete control. Bit of a learning curve (or is that curve learning..) and Steve helped alot.

Raptor
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: AČ, MI, USA
Insane since: Nov 2001

posted posted 08-06-2003 06:01

I personally think the rubberband option is a good way to learn when you're first starting out as well...

edit: DB, looks like you got a few new sigs there. Very nice (the axe has a slight matte problem, you may want to look into that )!

[This message has been edited by Raptor (edited 08-06-2003).]

docilebob
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: buttcrack of the midwest
Insane since: Oct 2000

posted posted 08-06-2003 22:45

Ha. 2 points for paying attention, Raptor. (although most are really old ones) and I think some were for another forum at one time. I`m on the matte thing. Thanks.

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-08-2003 06:25

okay one big problem im encountering when using the convert pen tool

some poings that i make i want to move around
but
and this is whats happening
i click in the box and those lines come out
k i have that figured out
now i then click on the line segments inbetween the boxes and i distort those lines
while other times when i click on those same segments i move the box around

why does this happen some of the time?

Morph
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: The Soft Cell
Insane since: Nov 2001

posted posted 08-08-2003 09:54

the line segments will only distort when dragged if they are curved. If they are straight, then the line and the points will move to keep the line parallel to its original position.



~We're not here for long, we're here for fun~

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-09-2003 21:43

k guys tell me how this looks

worked on the curves for the last 2 days http://www.gatecentral.net/artist/WoWgate/run-031g.jpg

Morph
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: The Soft Cell
Insane since: Nov 2001

posted posted 08-09-2003 22:20

looks ropey. you have too many points in your curves. you should use the absolute minimum.


~We're not here for long, we're here for fun~

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-10-2003 00:46

okay this isnt working
so far every copy ive produced has come out with crappy curves that arent the way i want them to be as in the original sketch
the curves dont match each other which sucks

is there any other way of doing this?
such as taking the drawing i already have and smoothing it out somehow?


[This message has been edited by malachlite (edited 08-10-2003).]

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-10-2003 00:48

also what do you mean by looks too ropey?

docilebob
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: buttcrack of the midwest
Insane since: Oct 2000

posted posted 08-10-2003 01:52

Ok, two suggestions.
1) Read this. Learn the tool. It`s an invaluable part of your tool box.
2) Clean up the original sketch as much as possible. Copy it into a new channel, and use the Levels dialog to sharpen it. Open the Levels dialog (CTRL+L) and pull the sliders towards the middle. Play with them til it looks sharp. Select the sharpened channel (CTRL+Click) , open a new layer, inverse the selection, (CRTL+SHIFT+ALT+I) and fill with black.

Morph
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: The Soft Cell
Insane since: Nov 2001

posted posted 08-10-2003 02:01

English term. means rough or of poor quality.
perhaps you would be better producing it in Adobe Illustrator or Macromedia FreeHand. both have a simplify option for lines which will remove un-needed points
FreeHand might be better as it has a better trace tool for this type of work.


~We're not here for long, we're here for fun~

DL-44
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: under the bed
Insane since: Feb 2000

posted posted 08-10-2003 06:10

I have to stress the most important point that has been made so far here -

use the least number of points possible.

Bad curves happen from trying to match curves at an anchor point, which is a result of having an anchor point where there shouldn't be one.



vogonpoet
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: Mi, USA
Insane since: Aug 2000

posted posted 08-10-2003 06:44

post the image your trying to isolate, let one of us come up with the 'right' path, and then use that as an example.....

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-10-2003 17:14

ive already posted the image

and 2ndly for most of those curves i made in that one
took my 4 hours btw
i used only 4 to 5 anchors per curve
less for the small ones
so i have no idea what you guys are talking about for using less

the problem that i run into is that the curves dont bend the right way

either the curve is facing one direction and loops into itself when i try to make it change direction
or the anchor points dont align properly

DL-44
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: under the bed
Insane since: Feb 2000

posted posted 08-10-2003 17:19

4-5 points per curve?

What do you mean by 'per curve'? What constitute one curve?

Depending on how you mean that, 4-5 could be far too much.

Remember also that you can drag the handles independently from each other. You can also select just one of the handles on the first attempt by holding down the ALT key.

If you still have the PSD with the paths, activate the paths and take a screen shot so we can see what you have going.

{edit - the other thing to keep in mind is that this tool will make much more refined curves than you've drawn by hand. I would not focus so much on making the paths follow your lines exactly, but rather use them as looses guide, and utilize the natural curve that the tool creates.

[This message has been edited by DL-44 (edited 08-10-2003).]

[This message has been edited by DL-44 (edited 08-10-2003).]

Morph
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: The Soft Cell
Insane since: Nov 2001

posted posted 08-10-2003 21:45

ok, I didnt really want to get into this but we're getting nowhere talking about it so I knocked this up from your image. see what we mean by as few anchors as possible? Although it still needs a little tweaking I only spent about 20 minutes on this. I reduced the opacity on your original image to better show the lines I drew. It was all done in photoshop using the pen tool.




~We're not here for long, we're here for fun~

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-10-2003 22:16

hmmkay from observation thats very good
and also from observation thats about the same amount of points i used on that part
but how did you get the corners to curve like that?
everytime ive tried i end up with these bumps on the edges of curves as the lines bend in on themselves

where i put the anchors is
lemme make an analogy
if there is a hill
i put one anchor at the top of the hill a one at the bottom
same for a curve
i put one at the start
one at the tip
one at the end
then if i need to i add in 2 more for the middle areas

i guess it just takes a lot of time to get used to this =\

Morph
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: The Soft Cell
Insane since: Nov 2001

posted posted 08-10-2003 23:06

if you click and hold on the pen tool you get your list of options. the bottom one shaped like a ' V ' is the convert pen tool, or, when the pen tool is selected, just click and hold the alt key to change to the ' V ' tool.

As DL-44 pointed out, if you select this tool and click on the end of one of the handles, you can move it without moving its opposite handle. you can bend it or alter its length which is what you must do to produce inside or outside corners.
You will never achieve a nice point on a corner by inserting more anchors. examine the position of the handles on the corners I have done and try to duplicate this

as far as curves go, you can stretch either of the handles but if you choose to bend one of them using the convert point tool then you wont have a true curve anymore and it is likely to show a bump


~We're not here for long, we're here for fun~

[This message has been edited by Morph (edited 08-10-2003).]

malachlite
Obsessive-Compulsive (I) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jun 2003

posted posted 08-10-2003 23:29

i know what the convert tool does
im not a retard

my point is i dont have the time to learn how to do this well enough to pass muster on the site
ive already wasted a week trying to do this
and i have to get this site done in two days

i dont have a lot of time to play around with these things
so if they dont work after a few tries i go and do something else

Morph
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: The Soft Cell
Insane since: Nov 2001

posted posted 08-10-2003 23:35

wtf???
you mean after all the advice, help and time people have spent here trying to help you, you come back with a reply like that??
well I've got one more suggestion for you

FUCK OFF


~We're not here for long, we're here for fun~

DL-44
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: under the bed
Insane since: Feb 2000

posted posted 08-10-2003 23:42
quote:
my point is i dont have the time to learn how to do this well enough to pass muster on the site
ive already wasted a week trying to do this



Well, then, give up now.

Many of us have spent years learning this ype of thing, so forgive me if your week of effort doesn't impress me much.

Your attitude really sucks. Morph is trying hard to help you, and you give him shit for trying to spell it out for you after you fail to understand it???

Don't be too surprised if people aren't very eager to help you from now on....

Rinswind 2th
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: Den Haag: The Royal Residence
Insane since: Jul 2000

posted posted 08-11-2003 00:21

<edit > Removing a stupid remark</edit>
__________________________________________
"Art has to be forgotten. Beauty must be realized."
Piet Mondriaan

[This message has been edited by Rinswind 2th (edited 08-11-2003).]

[This message has been edited by Rinswind 2th (edited 08-11-2003).]

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