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Saraswati5
16th Aug 2006, 2:39 AM
Using Gimp to Play with the Alpha by Saraswati

These tutes normally live on http://www.sublimesims.net/ and are being posted here at the request of the lovely and kind Tiggerypum.

1. Today we are going to learn some basics of playing with the Alpha, which is another part of a skin that allows you to control the shape of an outfit with some limitations.

Because meshes have bumps to them, there are times when you canít make an outfit any smaller than it is, because it would look weird. A good example of this is boots; the boot meshes of Sims are thicker across the top to make the boot look more realistic. This means you canít change the alpha around that are because it wouldnít look natural. What we can do is change how much of an outfit shows in areas where it would look natural to do so, such as giving the outfit sleeves or a feature point or changing the shape of a neckline.

This tutorial continues using the project we altered in my Clothing Texture Tutorial (http://www.modthesims2.com/showthread.php?t=183370) and as such, please attempt that tutorial before you try this one. This tutorial will make a lot more sense if you do so.

2. Open up our texture_tute project in Bodyshop and your texture_tute folder in The Gimp.

For anyone whoís forgotten how to find it in your Gimp files, the path is

My Documents/EA Games/The Sims 2/Projects/texture_tute

Below we can see the texture_tute project folder. It has three files. Today we need to open up

body-stdMatBaseTextureName_alpha.bmp

This is the Alpha file. It will look black and white and will look exactly the same shape as the dress youíve been working on in the last project. Open that image

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355535

3. At this point Iím going to explain to you how the alpha works.

Basically, any area on that Alpha that is in white is an area that will show up on the sim. Any area in black will block any of the coloured file (stdMatBasetexturename.bmp) from showing on the Sim. So all we need to do to make more of the coloured file show up is to make more white areas and make sure they are the right shape.

Ok, at this point Iím just going to step you through what weíre going to do with this project. Weíre going to give the dress a more modest neckline and we are going to give the dress sleeves.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355536

4. Add a new layer on top of the image. We do this by selecting the Layer menu and the New Layer choice on that menu.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355537

5. This brings up the New Layer box. Ensure Layer Fill Type Transparency is checked then click OK.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355538

6. On the floating toolbar select the dotted box, Select Rectangular Regions.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355539

7. Select the top third or so of the picture, approximately from about the outfitís waistline upwards.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355540

8. Select the Edit menu, then select Fill with BG Colour. the default background colour in the Gimp is white, so unless you have changed your BG colour, you should end up with the area you have just selected coloured in white.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355541

9. Like so! Ok, next we are going to begin to refine how much of our area is white by using the rectangular selection tools to cut some of the area away. To do that without going bonkers in the process, we are going to open up our layers dialog box.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355542

10. Go to the Dialogs menu and select Layers.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355543

11. In the Layers Dialog box, leave the mode as Normal but use the Opacity slider to change the Opacity to 80 percent.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355544

12. As you can see below, changing the Opacity on the top layer to 80 percent allows you to see the original picture beneath your new white box. This is going to make editing much, much easier. Chose the Select menu and select the menu choice None

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355545

13. Use the Select Rectangular Regions tool to select the area of the front part of the neckline and part of the shoulders. Cut that area out.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355546

14. To make life easier for yourself, Zoom in on the area around the rear of the neckline and then use the Select Rectangular Regions tool to select the area of the neckline and part of the shoulders, as shown. Cut that area out also. Note: Be careful to not go below the white part of the picture below, or you will have a repair job to do on your Alpha in order for your outfit to look ok. Once you are finished cutting that area out Zoom out so you can see all of your picture again.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355547

15. Use your Layers Dialog box to change Opacity back to 100 percent. Save your project. At this point weíre going to take a look at how the alpha alterations weíve made have changed the outfit itself. Open up your project in Bodyshop and take a look at how the shape of the outfit has changed. Keep your project open in the Gimp, we are going to be doing more work with this image and we want it to retain itís layers.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355548

16. Our outfit now has a longish sleeve. I donít actually want the sleeve to be quite that long, so Iím going to go back to the Alpha and cut some more of the white box away.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355549

17. Use the Select Rectangular Regions tool to select from the bottom of your white box to roughly parallel with the bottom of your current neckline at the front. Cut that area away. Save your Alpha file. Ok, letís go take a look at how the dress looks in Bodyshop now.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355550

18. Ok, that looks a little better. I will come back later and take some more off the length of the sleeves but for now, letís play with how the neckline looks.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355551

19. Go back to your Alpha. To make things easier on yourself, Zoom in on the front of the neckline on your BMP. Use the Select Rectangular Regions tool to select a square area from the point at the bottom of your neckline, selecting around a third of your neckline at the front. Go to the Edit menu and select Fill with BG colour. This will fill the area you selected in white.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355552

20. This squares off your neckline. Ok, letís take another look at how our neckline looks in Bodyshop.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355553

21. Ok, this is getting much, much closer to the shape I want to achieve. Finally Iím going to go back in and take a little more off the sleeves and then our project will be finished. In order to play with your sleeves without in any way interfering with the neckline, add another transparent layer to your Alpha.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355554

22. Use the Select Rectangular Regions tool to select an area between the bottom of the neckline and reaching to the bottom of the sleeve.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355555

23. Click on the Edit menu and Select Fill with FG Colour. The default FG colour for the Gimp is black, so unless youíve changed it, this should fill your selected area in black. Once you have done so, click the menu choice Select and click None.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355556

24. Use the Select Rectangular Regions tool to select the area of the black rectangle where the torso of the outfit is, both on the front and the back and then cut the selected areas out. Once youíre finished, save your project and go take yet another look at it in Bodyshop.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355557
http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355558

25. Ok, the dress now looks pretty much as it needs to. Finally we need to go in and take a look at our outfit in Create-A-Sim. Sometimes Alpha flaws donít always show up in Bodyshop, so itís good to go in and make sure your creation doesnít have any issues that will mar your experience when you use it in game. Quit Bodyshop and look at the dress in your game.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355559

26. And this is why. This flaw at the rear of the dress didnít really show up in Bodyshop. Now need to go back to my game and go through a process of elimination to figure out exactly what I need to do to correct the issue.

The moral is, itís always fixableÖ What I will usually do is go through and experiment until I find the point in the project where the problem is.

In this case I discovered that my Alpha was fine but I had not flood-filled my coloured layer (std-matBaseTextureName.bmp) to the very edge with the lavender fabric, but it had only shown up now because previously the project didnít have sleeves.

I flood-fill the coloured layer, and import another version of my dress from BodyShop, quit bodyshop, and go take a look at my project in Create A Sim again.

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355560

27. And here we have a finished, perfect project with a more demure neckline and sleeves. I hope this tutorial encourages you to experiment with the Alpha yourself and not be afraid to make mistakes. If itís a disaster, you just delete it and if it works out well, you might end up with something beautiful and useable. I also hope you enjoyed reading this tutorial as much as I enjoyed writing it. Kind wishes Saraswati.

The next tutorial in this series (Creating Shadows and Highlights) is now available here. (http://www.modthesims2.com/showthread.php?t=278762)

http://thumbs.modthesims2.com/getimage.php?file=355561

whiteswan1688
17th Aug 2006, 11:08 AM
Thank you for the great tutes!!! Although I am using Photoshop but I still find them very useful, especially on the alpha part. But I got a quick question though. What do we use the layer for? Why is it necessary to create layers on eding clothes?

~~WhiteSwan~~

Saraswati5
17th Aug 2006, 11:20 AM
Hi Whiteswan

Yep it is necessary sometimes to create layers when you're editing clothes. It makes the process easier by seperating out bits, so you can use different effects on each layer and do different things to each layer. Take for example the bit where we change the rear neckline. By creating a different layer it allowed us to drop back the opacity on that top layer. That then allowed us to partially use the back neckline as a guide to make it easier for ourselves so we didn't have a messy repair job.

:-) and thank you so much for the compliment.

Kind wishes

Vashti

whiteswan1688
17th Aug 2006, 3:47 PM
also i am glad that you created the tute on the alpha file because i was having problems with it before.... there are tons of tutes out there but none of them actually teach you how to edit the alpha. since i am new to sim editing, i really need a tute which explains all the details to me and i just wanna say thank you to you again for the great job done!!

btw it's about time for someone to come up with tutes other than photoshop...

cheers,

whiteswan

:) :king: :rofl: :beer: :bunny:

Saraswati5
17th Aug 2006, 10:33 PM
Hey Whiteswan if you get stuck at any stage, come find me on my forum and I'll see what I can do to help. Tig and I will be doing two more tutes though, on creating shadows and highlights and creating details..

And thank you for telling me that because you're one of the people I write tutes for hun, my thing is to write something that helps people take their first steps doing something :-) So it means a world of difference to me when you tell me that stuff.

Cheers

Kath

whiteswan1688
19th Aug 2006, 3:42 PM
cool i can't wait for the new tutes to come out! by the way, do you happen to know where i can find the hard light command in photoshop? i know you guys use gimp but just thought maybe you might know...

tiggerypum
19th Aug 2006, 9:49 PM
WhiteSwan, it's a filter. To apply filters in photoshop (I have 7), click on that layer in the layer window, and on the top of the window is a menu that you can use to apply filters to any layer EXCEPT for the background layer.

Photoshop also has additional fun effects called 'layer styles' that let you do even more things to your layer graphic w/o actually changing the original.

jason7871
21st Aug 2006, 12:57 AM
hey vashti71 your tutorials using Gimp have helped me a great deal 5*'s for you by the way can you do 1 for doing skintones with GIMP it would help me if you wouldn't mind thanks :)

chinkigirl_anner
21st Aug 2006, 7:49 AM
how do you cut out areas of the clothing ? (step 13) .. sorry i've never made any clothing before.. i'm new to it [=

tiggerypum
21st Aug 2006, 5:30 PM
Chinkigirl, you need to start with the first tutorial in this series (and use the editor GIMP, if you want to easily follow step by step)

http://www.modthesims2.com/showthread.php?t=182614

Saraswati5
22nd Aug 2006, 3:36 AM
Hi Jason

I am so glad to hear that hun. :D Ok, the only difference with skintones is that they have multiple files and you need to recolour all of them the same way so you get a consistent skintone no matter what. The principles are identical other than that..

Cheers

Kath

whiteswan1688
23rd Aug 2006, 4:03 PM
tiggerypum,

tks again for the great help! btw, i am still waiting for the new tutes to come out... you guys taught me how to do recoloring, texturing and playing around with the alpha and now i am ready for shading and highlighting...

^ _ ^

whiteswan

shniveshnive
25th Aug 2006, 4:26 PM
Thank you Very much For making this tutorial!! it was great

Simguy182
26th Aug 2006, 4:16 AM
tiggerypum,

tks again for the great help! btw, i am still waiting for the new tutes to come out... you guys taught me how to do recoloring, texturing and playing around with the alpha and now i am ready for shading and highlighting...

^ _ ^

whiteswan

I really learnt alot from Vasthi tutes too, without em i would still be really lost with GIMP.

Im sure there are several tuts on highlights and shading on the net, actually ive noticed that several of the photoshop tuts sometimes work for the GIMP, not always but anyway :) Only difference for shading and highlighting with Gimp is probably that the dodge and burn tool are joined in one, so you wont find a "Dodge" and a "burn" tool separated, they are the same tool but you can change the options to set it to highlight or shadow. I played with them some days ago, and its not really hard to turn a single colored thing into a nice texture with great shadows and such

Gimp might not be as great as Photoshop, but its quiet good to start to recolor with :king:

Miggs1123
22nd Sep 2006, 12:19 AM
Wow i just learned how to recolor, retexture, and and change the alpha all in 3 hours! Thanks a bunch Vashti71 for all the help and i really really appreciate it! I can't wait till i can actually use gimp without looking back at your tutorials lol.

wayneout
13th Nov 2006, 11:46 PM
I have heard that you can use gray to make something
transparent with the alpha channel. I tried it on a formal
gown hoping to have transparent sleeves but all I got
was gray sleeves.I used rgb of 128,128,128.
Did I miss something?
Thanks,
Bill

Simguy182
14th Nov 2006, 2:56 AM
Gray color makes clothing basically see-through. Neutral gray (the one you used) basically creates semi transparent clothing, the darker the gray tone is the more "see through" it is (once it reaches black the texture cant be seen), the lighter the gray the more you can see the texture.

This trick mainly works on skintight clothing as other kind of meshes (like pants, skirts, etc which are not alpha-editable) wont have a nice result with these changes as the alpha just decides wether the texture shows or not. So if you make the alpha of a long skirt dark gray the only thing you will get is the texture being semi transparent once applied on the mesh, and the skintone seen below it adjusted to the skirt.

tiggerypum
15th Nov 2006, 12:59 AM
Also, just to be clear - seeing the phrase 'alpha channel'.... for sims clothing, the alpha is stored in a separate bitmap file (which I believe should be clear from this tutorial).

And as simguy stated, you can only change the alpha on skintight areas of a mesh as a rule - because there is no 'body' beneath the clothing on a mesh - there is only the one shape that includes the clothing shape and then whatever part of the hands/legs that show beyond the clothing.

It is different if you are working with what is called an 'alpha mesh' where part of the mesh (like an extension of the skirt) is in a separate group and has its own graphics (much like hair has multiple graphics for the different layers of hair). Anyway, those meshes would be designed to have legs under the skirt (or a second underskirt).

roguesheep
2nd Dec 2006, 8:17 PM
Another great tutorial....Thank you, Thank you and Thank you again...Very nice, clear instructions...Wonderful!!!

TrevorKidd
3rd Dec 2006, 5:24 AM
Thank you very much i just started making clothes and this helped me a great deal i ahve read others but they were all for photoshop and i dont have photo shop and it was hard for me to understand. You ewent through every step and it helped me a lot i cant wait to see your next tutes but i have a question. How can i get like Logos such as reall companies on my clothing? thanks, Trevor

Simguy182
4th Dec 2006, 1:25 AM
Getting a logo to show up requires you to use the texture image file, not the alpha file which is the focus point of this tutorial/thread :)

You will only need to play with the logo (in a new layer preferably) in the texture image, placing it on the right place you want, etc. Not that hard to do. :)

bebealles
5th Dec 2006, 12:21 AM
I have made it ok, and it makes me soooo happy cause I did think it was as hard to make that I was never able to do it!!
Well, but when I make the neck of my dress as a square, it looks as u can see its old form on the body program and on game....
Like I had put the color, but I still can see the old form of the dress, anyone understands me?
How can I fix this??
Thanks a lot again!!!
Im going for more!!!

tiggerypum
5th Dec 2006, 2:27 AM
bebealles, there are two possiblities which vashti didn't cover here.

1) if your outfit has a bumpmap file - usually named:
body~stdMatNormalMapTextureName.bmp
then you might want to take it, pick a medium shade of gray, and cover the whole thing with all solid gray.

2) your mesh might have the collar area as part of the _shape of the mesh_ (that should not be the case if you're doing this particular tutorial). If it is part of the shape of the mesh, then you cannot move the neckline/sleeves/etc

Shelly1991UK
17th Jan 2007, 8:19 PM
I follow your tutorials, yet i still end up with blurry edges on my projects, i followed your first gimp tutorial on the dress and it went fine except for the blur!! Do you now how i can solve this???

tiggerypum
17th Jan 2007, 11:48 PM
HP already told you where to find your answer, in the FAQ (stickied at the top of this forum)

The faq (frequently asked questions) is here:
http://www.modthesims2.com/showthread.php?t=147479

and it contains:
My custom clothes are blurry / pixelated!
For some people, the resolution on their projects divides in half when they upgrade. Your image size for your clothing projects should be 1024 x 1024 pixels. Callum91 has also explained how to do a fix here.
http://www.modthesims2.com/showthread.php?p=799603#post799603

angel_hugz
22nd Jan 2007, 7:26 PM
hey! thanks alot for this tutorial it is very helpful!! .. however i was wondering how you can get a lower neckline instead of a higher one? i tried to experiement and it sort of worked but you could still see the original neckline shape above it! i got very confused and wondered if you could give come input?! thnks again i rele appreciated such an easy step by step tutorial well done :D! ! xxx

tiggerypum
23rd Jan 2007, 9:03 AM
angel_hugz -- if it's the dress in _this_ tutorial, it shouldn't have a 3d neckline that would cause that problem. Does it have a bumpmap? If you change the neckline or outfit on the texture, the bumpmap needs to match. (or be colored all one solid medium gray)

angel_hugz
23rd Jan 2007, 1:54 PM
oh ok so if the piece of clothing has a 3d neckline (such as a shirt) you cannot change it? xx

tiggerypum
23rd Jan 2007, 2:37 PM
Yes, when you recolor an outfit you are only changing the _coloration_ on the outfit. The shape doesn't change. If the outfit has skintight/bare sleeves or a skintight neckline or smooth legs, then you can alter the looks by simply changing the texture (alpha and the normalmap texture to match) You can't generally raise or lower a hemline or change the length of wide pant legs or wide sleeves.

Now this is the case for... most of the Maxis body meshes. SOME Maxis meshes, like the hula girl, and some user-made meshes are built in two parts - the 'body' shape, which will show skin wherever the alpha is black, and an alpha section which will go 'invisible' instead of turning skin color. Those project folders will have 2 sets of graphics in them - if you look at the hula outfit, you can see that there's recolors that look like a fabric wrap, and other than looks like a grass skirt with a jagged edge. Both use the _same mesh_ (shape). But the alpha graphics (texture and alpha and normals) are different, and thus cut up the skirt shape differently. Kind of how hair has different parts (Faylen's hair tutorial at one point colors each part a different color so that one can figure out which is which) These meshes with a special second part (some have 3) we call 'alpha' meshes, because they have an _extra_ set of graphics that are much more alpha editable than the typical body.

moppyXD
9th Apr 2007, 12:36 PM
Thanks! :) :) :)
I can't wait for your next tutorial. :help: BTW, do you know how to make meshes?
Again, THANKS!
:p :p :lol: :) :king: ;)

leiamary
10th Apr 2007, 4:21 PM
Great tutorial! Really helpful :) can't wait for the next one... I was having trouble with shading. Also, will you be doing one on making an outfit from a picture? If you were, I've been trying to figure it out but keep having trouble... anyways thanks for the tut :D

Draven1313
17th Apr 2007, 11:46 AM
Thanks Vashti. Great Tutorial.. I've been through a few other tutorials online but none of them seemed to make as much sense as these three did. I am new to the computer world and it was nice to see an "Idiots guide" as it were. I can't wait till I can play with all the tools you have given me. Thanks again

krazyk_kokunut
24th Apr 2007, 12:02 AM
:gjob: I love the tutorial, it helped me out so freaking much!!! =D but I have a question. I've downloaded clothes meshes from internet sites, and I wanted to make clothes off that mesh, how do I do that? I tried to open a mesh and it said "Yada yada yada this this file has failed to open: Unknown File " Why? and how can i get around it?


Thanks So Much!!
Toni :turtle:

tiggerypum
24th Apr 2007, 4:20 AM
Uhm, you need to have a recolor of a mesh, so that it shows up in your game. Then you go make a recolor of the recolor -- but if it is an original outfit, you must plan on replacing the _entire_ graphic with graphics of your own creation -- artists are fussy about not having their textures used unless they give permission. The Maxis stuff, use all you want ;) You might find that you can try various maxis textures on the mesh you downloaded to get some basic graphics to use.

krazyk_kokunut
24th Apr 2007, 10:49 PM
Oh, I see! Thanks a lot Tigg! Hah I'm such a retard! Thanks for all the help! And thanks, Vashti, For the tutorial again!!

Thanks!
Toni :bunny:

krazyk_kokunut
24th Apr 2007, 11:48 PM
Wait, i get the whole recolor part, but what would i have to do if i just downloaded the mesh file, like this one :http://www.modthesims2.com/showthread.php?t=127591, it said i can download the mesh only, so if i did that, would i be able to recolor the mesh file?

Let me know! :)
Thanks
Toni

tiggerypum
25th Apr 2007, 12:36 AM
You MUST have a working recolor to access the mesh. Downloading the mesh without any recolors does you no good. She included the mesh only because there are _many_ recolors available of that mesh (look on the left column) and perhaps you downloaded someone else's recolors.

krazyk_kokunut
25th Apr 2007, 1:01 AM
Oooh... Okay i get it now! So you would...Yeah!! Ok thanks so much, again! lol ( hope I didn't sound like a loser :P


Thanks A LOT!
Toni

proguitarist8878
6th May 2007, 5:22 AM
Nice tute.... now i can start making recolours and meshes of clothes.... Thanks!!!!!!!

Teary
21st May 2007, 6:45 PM
Hello, i would first off really like to thank you for sure lovely tutorials, really makes things easy to someone that doesnt know her way around a computer that well.

Second off, in the recoloring one, it shows how to make an outfit a basic color, but what if the outfit you are recoloring different colors? err, i understand the 2 colors, ie boots and light purple dress we made, but i was thinking of going harder, as in the cute raver wear, I added a picture that i found of it. I would love to make that outfit, black white and grey, but im simply lost as in how to do so with so many different colors, and with keeping the designs on the front of the shirt, and back of the shorts. When i do try, i keep the black at 90% in dialogs, but i can still tell there is a hint of color, plus that doesnt add white or grey on anything, just fully colors it black. I can change the color of the leg mufflers (thats easy it has a seperate mesh) and the leg warmers, i guess i am more concerned with leaving the patterens on the shirt and the strips on the shorts so that they remain a different color.

if it is too much to describe here, maybe make an advanced tutorial to help me, and people like me :lovestruc

thank you again,
Teary
PS. if this is your image, sorry, its the only one i found with this outift on it

http://thumbs2.modthesims2.com/images1/MTS2_445574_frillen_Frillen-StackableBoxes01-Repository.jpg

tiggerypum
22nd May 2007, 1:15 AM
you could try look at some of the things done in the photoshop tutorials on site, that might help with your questions some, assuming you did all 3 gimp tutorials. The programs have many similar features, it's just a matter of being able to kind of follow along.

For clothing in general ideally you'd find a light solid colored garment and then desaturate it (turn it grayscale) and use that as your base. You could then layer colors/textures over it with different layers and try layer settings like 'multiply' or different opacity/transparency settings.

You might also find yourself increasing the contrast on the grayscale layer to make the wrinkles/folds/etc show more on your final version.

If the clothing in question has too many colors or patterns to it, you can either look for another garment and try it's texture on your mesh - and if it looks good, steal that part of the texture to use as your base... Or make a new layer for highlights and try drawing them on with white or a lighter version of your final color. Use some blur and/or smudge, and then bring the tranparency of the layer way down, to like 10-30%. Make another layer for the dark parts, and do the same thing.

Then test your texture in game lighting - and see if your highlights and wrinkles show up well, or if they are too much or too faint. You can go adjust them (remember you put them on separate layers) in gimp and then try again :)

Teary
22nd May 2007, 11:53 AM
thank you, i will try

again thank you for the tutorials, ive recolored so much already!

no_respond
9th Jun 2007, 8:40 PM
I don't understand it sry.

tiggerypum
10th Jun 2007, 3:01 AM
no_respond
Start with tutorial #1, and you are expected to know how to use the graphics editor - some tips are given but you also must go hit the web for tutorials if the tutorials on site are not enough for you to master how to use Gimp. The focus here is on the *sim specific* aspects of the task, not so much on learning everything about the editing program.

Here are a couple gimp links - the book is free to download or read online:
http://gimp-savvy.com/BOOK/
http://gimpology.com/browse/category/Getting+Started
http://www.gimp.org/tutorials/

Gimpology has a lot of other tutorials once you get past getting started, just click on 'browse' at the top of the page.

Taylah1234
16th Jul 2007, 8:01 AM
I don't get how to 'cut out'. I know that this question has already been asked but I looked (and I've done) the first tute in the series and couldn't find out. Could somebody please help?

ShakiRebel
16th Jul 2007, 6:00 PM
Firstly, I would like to say 'Thank you' for these wonderful tutorials. They are so clearly laid out and within a few hours, I had learnt everything!

I am only having one problem which I hope you can help me with.

Whenever I add sleeves or raise the neckline in the Alpha stage, the colour of the alterations is different to the base garment. I have made sure that I have done certain things (like putting the opacity level back to 100) but with no joy. Any advice would be greatly received!

Thank you.

Vicki

Mattius galacticus
16th Jul 2007, 6:00 PM
Hi i'm new to this sort of thing and i don't get the bit about the sleeves (you know taking them off or cutting them shorter

ameenshake
6th Aug 2007, 9:15 PM
I successfully read and completed all the available tutorial but now I am looking for GIMP clothing tutorial #4(shading and details). I have searched http://www.sublimesims.net/ but I didn't find anything. I know it is clearly written that it will come in the future but i have waited long enough. Please send a link.

TheOtherWoman
12th Sep 2007, 6:34 AM
wow! These are so great! Easy to fallow, and read. You're a great teacher, and I appreciate the help you've given us...however one must wonder if you are going to post a tutorial on how to add images too you're shirts and things like that. If you already have, could you point me to where?

tiggerypum
12th Sep 2007, 2:42 PM
ameenshake - #4 never got written. Vashti eventually took a long break from the game.

TheOtherWoman - if you've made it through all 3 gimp tutorials - then that's it in terms of gimp specific stuff -- but putting images on t-shirts is NOT that hard. Start with a fairly plain t-shirt from the game (or perhaps one of fanseelamb's textures, she shares) - and then get your t-shirt graphic. Delete the shirt from around it, scale it (on a separate layer) and get everything to fit, etc.

You can also look at the photoshop series (now that you've completed these). Faylen did slightly different projects - and you might be able to follow along with the general techniques using gimp.

Also, if you are new to gimp, do consider doing some assorted gimp tutorials from on the web - just to learn more editing techiques and to get further with your skills. Over time you'll want to add your own details and the more you know about how to use the graphics program, the more you'll be able to do. (I still sometimes learn something new about photoshop, and I've been using it for years!)

The_Unnamed_Sim
27th Oct 2007, 4:33 AM
Oh man I wish the next tutorial will come soon! but, Seeing as I haven't even started on #1 yet I shouldn't be so impatient. Besides, out of general discovery I think these are good enough to wait ;)

pinkctr13
9th Nov 2007, 3:32 AM
Your the BEST!!!!

THANKYOU!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rarebreed
27th Nov 2007, 5:17 PM
Thanks for this tutorial! I'm not there yet, but I will keep on practising :anime:

SerenityUsa
3rd Dec 2007, 9:05 AM
Great tutorial!, I finished the one you showed in the tute and then went on to do my very own, I now have the dress in the color and shape i have been trying to achieve for soo long now, Thank you! :)

ariesmoon
4th Jan 2008, 6:23 PM
it drove me crazy that strip of black on the dress. i had no idea what i had done wrong until i read thru the entire tute here. so i fixed it...or tried to - but i still have a crack of black in the back of the dress sleeve that i can't get rid of. it irks me. i have slid the pattern all the way over and still have it. what else can i try to fix this?
that aside, i love love love these tutes. i'm so happy to finally be able to use body shop. thanx so much for taking the time to write them. :)

kalynn06
4th Jan 2008, 10:35 PM
i have slid the pattern all the way over and still have it. what else can i try to fix this?


There are a few things you can try. The easiest thing to do for this project would be to open up the texture file, create a new layer and fill the entire layer with the pattern and then use the rectangular select tool to just cut away fabric over the boots. For something where you have more shading and stuff to preserve, I find it useful to open the alpha as a separate layer over the texture and use it as a guide while working.

eiphos1212
15th Jan 2008, 6:14 AM
I'm new to all this stuff but I've looked through all the other post's for this and the two previos tutorials and I cant seem to find anyone else with this problem. Everytime I got to save something it tells me that I can't save it because the game won't accept multipul layers or something like that... it wasn't working from the options that I was given (merge layers & flatten image) so i told it to merge down on the layers menu which worked fine for the previos two tutorials although I couldn't change the colours of the boots in the second one. but now that the tute says that we want to keep the layers and what I've been doing is making them all into one layer. And it doesnt work when I tell it to ignor either. What can I do to keep my layers but still save it properley so that it still works in the game?

It says exactly "Your Image should be exported before being saved as a BMP for the following reasons:
BMP plug-in can't handel layers.
[option one] flatten image
[option two] merge visible layers

Furthermore, Does this have anything to do with my computer spefically? If it does could someone please tell me how i can get a better BMP plugin. Cause I think tha tmight be the problem.

tiggerypum
15th Jan 2008, 7:34 AM
eiphos1212 - what you should do is save your project (so as to keep all the layers) before exporting to bmp. I know gimp is awkward with that. I don't use gimp, but basically for the sake of being able to go back and rework things, you'll want to keep your layer separated version to work on if you need to make changes.

kalynn06
15th Jan 2008, 11:25 AM
It can be a trifle awkward, though clicking merge layers at the save to bmp prompt (in the newest version of Gimp at least) will not actually merge your layers it will just merge them in your exported bmp. Your project will still have all its layers on your desktop. To prevent confusion and make sure I don't lose my work what I usually do is:

-save my working file to my desktop in a working folder as an .xcf file with all my layers
-when I want to save my bmp for previewing, I go to File>Save a Copy and select the file in my projects folder I want to replace, then click okay to merge layers, etc.

This way every time I click ctrl s to save I'm saving my layered copy, and when I want to preview I'm intentionally updating my bmp by going to the menu. This helps if the program crashes, which it will :) even though the new windows version is more stable than the older ones. You won't be left with only a one layered bmp and lose your working file.

eiphos1212
16th Jan 2008, 11:52 PM
Thank-you VERY MUCH!

rockon44554
23rd Feb 2008, 6:21 PM
when i do step eight, it always cuts off the bottom of the dress in Bodyshop and makes the top like an ugly sweater. I do the rest of the steps and it dosn't do anything even when i save. Can you help me?

kalynn06
23rd Feb 2008, 6:36 PM
when i do step eight, it always cuts off the bottom of the dress in Bodyshop and makes the top like an ugly sweater. I do the rest of the steps and it dosn't do anything even when i save. Can you help me?

Take a look at the picture in step 9. Does your alpha look exactly like that? The only reason it would cut off the bottom of the dress would be if that area was black on your alpha. If your alpha does look like the picture, can you post a picture of what you're seeing bodyshop. That might help in figuring it out :)

JewelzEyes
26th Feb 2008, 12:29 AM
Thank you for your tutorials. They are very clear andeasy to understand. I only had one problem but figured out from reading posts.

Looking forward to future tutorials :-) Thanks again!

Saraswati5
15th Mar 2008, 7:28 AM
You're very welcome JewelzEyes.. Myself and a couple of others are actually working on a fourth tute as we speak, it will be up within about a month..

It will be more of an intermediate tute this time because it's going to cover shadows and highlights and that's a little more intuitive than this content. We figure the information needs to be out there for the guys who want it :D Expect it within about a month or so.

terecis516
18th Mar 2008, 6:20 AM
thanks alot, I didn't think i would ever find a program that would be free and help me so much. Thanks to all your toturials now I'll be able to make some more clothes for the guys and the boys. lol.

Saraswati5
18th Mar 2008, 8:52 AM
:-) you are very welcom terecis.. You are exactly the type of person I wrote these for.

Littlevargs
23rd Mar 2008, 1:13 AM
Thank you so much, I finally did it! I've been trying to create clothing since Sims1 and it never came out right! This was VERY helpful!!

Saraswati5
23rd Mar 2008, 2:11 AM
:-) you're very welcome Littlevargs.. and I've just posted tute 4 in the Bodyshop Skinning forum.. :D It deals with shadows and highlights. (It hasn't been moved to this bit just yet)

Littlevargs
23rd Mar 2008, 3:14 AM
:-) you're very welcome Littlevargs.. and I've just posted tute 4 in the Bodyshop Skinning forum.. :D It deals with shadows and highlights. (It hasn't been moved to this bit just yet)

Thank you, thank you, thank you! hehe I will have to get started on that now!

Lex917
15th Jul 2008, 8:40 PM
Thank you so much for these tutorials! They have helped me so much in understanding recoloring/editing the alpha better, and I've been able to help others.

maegan662
24th Oct 2008, 4:13 AM
All I can say is thank you, thank you a million times thank you. You don't know how happy you've made me!! :lovestruc

vandra2
24th Oct 2008, 5:53 AM
:help: Every Time i open up the alpha all i see is a white screen with a black triangle at the top. is one of my settings rong or something? :cry:

missimpatient
26th Oct 2008, 11:02 PM
Thank You so much for posting tutorials for all us gimpy girls out there!
Your hard work is very very very much appreciated! tytyty

kougazgurl
10th Jan 2009, 8:59 PM
Um, how do you cut the clothing out????? I've read your other tutes, but I still don't know how. Help!

Maddadsims99
14th Jan 2009, 12:17 AM
I have no idea how to cut out an area in GIMP. (Step 13) What do I do? :help: :help: :help:

I really need help! I have no idea how do to it!!!

applejuicey
19th Jan 2009, 10:21 PM
This tutorial was fantastic! Probably the first one I could properly understand.
Thanks alot for your help!

Dragosal
5th Jun 2009, 10:21 AM
these are great tutes, good work!

happyasabunny
23rd Jun 2009, 7:40 PM
When I edit an alpha I save and go back to bodyshop and refresh the page. After I refresh the whole thing goes like a gray/tan color. I go back and undo and re-save and it does the same thing. I would really like to edit alphas so does anyone know how to fix this problem.

amk222228
10th Jul 2009, 1:10 AM
I have gotten to the part where you add sleeves and one sleeve looks normal but the other one comes out black. If someone could tell me what I'm doing wrong that be great.

LaLa Shaknmu
4th Aug 2009, 1:34 AM
I have a problem. On my toolbar at the top of my GIMP program there is no Dialog. I've looked through all of the other catagorys but I can't seem to find that. Could it be possible that my computer didn't download that part of GIMP?

kmkrone
4th Aug 2009, 2:33 PM
thank you so much for the tutorials! I am good (I think) at paint and have recently been playing with GIMP, but what I really want to know is this: is there a way to remove peices, specifically shoes (more specifically, high heels). I edited the alpha to get rid of the shoes, and edited the grey texture file to get rid of the shoes, and i'm still getting flesh-colored spikes on the heels. Is this because of the mesh?

texasredclay
10th Oct 2009, 3:16 AM
Thank you so much!! All of your tutes are very easy to read and apply! I'm working on #4 off of your forum, and I am totally getting it! :lovestruc

TwilightHarryPotterDrWho
1st Nov 2009, 7:09 PM
Great tutorial!

I've done your previous two tutorials but I don't get how to cut out bits (step 13) I know this question has been asked before but I can't seem to find an answer. Please help!

kahvik
3rd Dec 2009, 12:14 AM
i have the same problem as happyasabunny does anyone know the solution for it please? :(

kittylve
4th Feb 2010, 5:54 AM
OK, I have a question about this and I hope I don't get my head bit off for asking them. It looks like I am the last to jump on the bandwagon to recolor clothing for Sims2. :)
The Good:
-I have every expansion and stuff pack.
-I have downloaded "The Gimp"
-I have read all of Saraswati5's tutorials on using "The Gimp" for recoloring/retexturing, etc., and I did the projects right along with the tutorial so as to make sure I did it right (and I had success).
The Bad:
-I'm trying to add a new texture to a custom mesh I downloaded online with "The Gimp" and the new texture goes on smoothly, but the bump file (with the shading, highlighting) does not show through so the new texture appears as flat. (the custom mesh bump file does have proper shadowing, and highlighting)
The Ugly:
-I have no idea what I'm doing wrong. I've looked through the tutorials several times, read the posts and replys to find out what I am missing and I can't find it.
-I don't want to be yelled at because I am a newbie at doing this and I may be asking a really dumb question.
Could anyone help me? Direct me in the path to go? Any tips would be helpful. Thank you.

casappellecomme
28th Feb 2010, 8:32 PM
Thank you so much for doing this. it really helped me a lot and with following the tutorial step by step it's so easy:)
thanx

Sixth
1st Mar 2010, 7:53 PM
I've been searching and reading all kinds of tutorials on recoloring and using Body Shop, but none have been so detailed and easy to understand. The process is very easy once you know what you are doing. Don't think I'll be editing alpha's anytime soon but I will be making new textures and recolours after reading this, I'm confident enough to play with it now. Thank you!

orchdork07
8th Jun 2010, 4:16 AM
OK, I think I solved the problem! If you right-click and go to edit then cut, it looks like the picture! Hope this helps you all...

tina_bella
7th Jan 2011, 8:58 PM
Thanks. This post helps a lot!

Anyway, if I want to make a ruffled balloon skirt, what would I do to not get the design wrapped on my sims like a tight mini skirt does? (I indeed export the tight mini skirt on the BodyShop). I've tried modify the alpha to be exactly the same shape as the clothing image I want to have. I even positioned it on the right place.. But still doesn't work. How do I create the suitable alpha? Or it is something we call the mesh? Any answer would be highly appreciated. Thanks :D -Jen ;)

kalynn06
7th Jan 2011, 11:58 PM
Thanks. This post helps a lot!

Anyway, if I want to make a ruffled balloon skirt, what would I do to not get the design wrapped on my sims like a tight mini skirt does? (I indeed export the tight mini skirt on the BodyShop). I've tried modify the alpha to be exactly the same shape as the clothing image I want to have. I even positioned it on the right place.. But still doesn't work. How do I create the suitable alpha? Or it is something we call the mesh? Any answer would be highly appreciated. Thanks :D -Jen ;)

It's definitely the mesh. To change 3D shape you need a different mesh, so you would export clothing that has the general shape you want and change the texture by modifying the alpha and the texture files. Unfortunately, the tight mini skirt does not sound like it is suitable for your project.

tina_bella
8th Jan 2011, 7:50 AM
Thanks so much kalynn06. ;)

Strawberrygrl78
15th Jan 2011, 5:56 PM
GREAT tutorial! I love how you actually EXPLAIN what does what and why we are doing it. I had read a tutorial last night that told how to work with the alpha, but didn't explain why it was black and white so I had no idea exactly how it was to be used and why actions were being taken, other than following what was being done and that wasn't really helpful. Is there a way you can make a tutorial on how to put logos or pictures on tops? I found one last night that was not helpful and it was for another program as well. Anyway, great job! I hope to read more!

jizz32
9th Jun 2012, 10:36 PM
Hi this tutorial has really helped learn how to do many things with Gimp. It also inspired me to want to make my on line of clothing but i don`t know how to do that yet. i am also a past paint creator which was really working out then i read this tut and i quickly went and got gimp when i do end up doing my clothing line i would def mention you in there and if you could maybe help me with it. I was hoping to do EITHER a under wear line of all ages or a child line of clothing!!!

starmusicfly
29th Oct 2012, 4:10 AM
Also, just to be clear - seeing the phrase 'alpha channel'.... for sims clothing, the alpha is stored in a separate bitmap file (which I believe should be clear from this tutorial).

And as simguy stated, you can only change the alpha on skintight areas of a mesh as a rule - because there is no 'body' beneath the clothing on a mesh - there is only the one shape that includes the clothing shape and then whatever part of the hands/legs that show beyond the clothing.

It is different if you are working with what is called an 'alpha mesh' where part of the mesh (like an extension of the skirt) is in a separate group and has its own graphics (much like hair has multiple graphics for the different layers of hair). Anyway, those meshes would be designed to have legs under the skirt (or a second underskirt).
THIS is exactly what I was looking for. I was wondering why on an AM shirt with sleeves, that I could not get the sleeves to disappear. THEN I read this. :faceslap: I forgot that the mesh might not be an alpha mesh. :gjob:

starmusicfly
29th Oct 2012, 5:08 AM
Okay, nope. I'm doing something wrong.
(I use paint.net which is very, very similar to Gimp. I've used that program, too. Paint.net is just my favorite. :D ) Okay, so....

I went and opened up my body~stdMatBaseTextureName_alpha on this short sleeve shirt for Adult Male. It extends past the arms(not skin-tight). When I select the sleeve to remove it, I can either paint it with black, or erase it. If I paint it and save it as the original.bmp, then everything turns grey, including his pants and shoes. Now, if I erase that part, then I am left with a .png image because it now has transparency below it, but I would have to save it as a .bmp, which in doing so turns that part of the shirt back to white on the alpha. So, the question is how to remove the sleeve.

Also, please note that it has three files in it: the body~stdMatBaseTextureName_alpha and the body~stdMatBaseTextureName and thebody~stdMatNormalMapTextureName.
The last file I do not understand what it is for but it looks grey. I have tried to alter that, just to make sure that didn't have anything to do with it. It didn't.

Anyway, as I said every time I try to alter the alpha, everything turns gray. I tried to resave it back to the original, but to no avail. I have to delete the project and start again every time. :cry: I would appreciate any help on this. It gets kind of frustrating. :help:

fakepeeps7
29th Oct 2012, 6:43 PM
I went and opened up my body~stdMatBaseTextureName_alpha on this short sleeve shirt for Adult Male. It extends past the arms(not skin-tight).

There's the first problem right there. If it's not skin-tight, then you can't get rid of the sleeve just by erasing the alpha. What you need to do is change the mesh.

When I select the sleeve to remove it, I can either paint it with black, or erase it. If I paint it and save it as the original.bmp, then everything turns grey, including his pants and shoes. Now, if I erase that part, then I am left with a .png image because it now has transparency below it, but I would have to save it as a .bmp, which in doing so turns that part of the shirt back to white on the alpha. So, the question is how to remove the sleeve.

If you paint the sleeve black, it will turn grey (I'm not sure why the whole outfit is turning grey, but the sleeves should). On a Body Shop mannequin, any part of the clothing that's invisible will look grey. If you put this outfit on an actual Sim, the grey areas would be skin-coloured.

I don't know about Paint.NET, but other graphics programs give you the option of flattening an image with a different colour as a background. Right now, it sounds like you've got the background set to white, if the white reappears when you save as a bitmap.

Also, please note that it has three files in it: the body~stdMatBaseTextureName_alpha and the body~stdMatBaseTextureName and thebody~stdMatNormalMapTextureName.
The last file I do not understand what it is for but it looks grey. I have tried to alter that, just to make sure that didn't have anything to do with it. It didn't.

The grey file is a bumpmap texture. On certain computers, it helps give an illusion of texture/depth to the clothing. Not all computers can display the bumpmaps, though, and the expansion packs didn't use them. You can colour the whole image with 50% grey and the bumpmap will no longer show up in your game (which is important if you change the texture or alpha... if you don't change the bumpmap as well, the outfit might look like it has bumps or ridges in odd places).

Anyway, as I said every time I try to alter the alpha, everything turns gray. I tried to resave it back to the original, but to no avail. I have to delete the project and start again every time. :cry: I would appreciate any help on this. It gets kind of frustrating. :help:

If you can, try redoing your alpha with a different program, like the GIMP. People who do a lot of recolouring tend to use programs like that or Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. They'll give you the best results, and they're known to work well for Sim recolouring. :)

starmusicfly
30th Oct 2012, 11:36 PM
There's the first problem right there. If it's not skin-tight, then you can't get rid of the sleeve just by erasing the alpha. What you need to do is change the mesh.



If you paint the sleeve black, it will turn grey (I'm not sure why the whole outfit is turning grey, but the sleeves should). On a Body Shop mannequin, any part of the clothing that's invisible will look grey. If you put this outfit on an actual Sim, the grey areas would be skin-coloured.

I don't know about Paint.NET, but other graphics programs give you the option of flattening an image with a different colour as a background. Right now, it sounds like you've got the background set to white, if the white reappears when you save as a bitmap.



The grey file is a bumpmap texture. On certain computers, it helps give an illusion of texture/depth to the clothing. Not all computers can display the bumpmaps, though, and the expansion packs didn't use them. You can colour the whole image with 50% grey and the bumpmap will no longer show up in your game (which is important if you change the texture or alpha... if you don't change the bumpmap as well, the outfit might look like it has bumps or ridges in odd places).



If you can, try redoing your alpha with a different program, like the GIMP. People who do a lot of recolouring tend to use programs like that or Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. They'll give you the best results, and they're known to work well for Sim recolouring. :)

Thank you so much for helping me to understand about the gray in bodyshop means transparency. I also appreciate the knowledge that you can recolor that other file image 50 percent to get rid of the bump map (or control it, hehe). :cool:

Okay, so after reading this yesterday, I went back in to my (favorite and not giving up on just because it has so many plugins and well... it's easy and I can be lazy at times :D ) paint.net program and took a closer look.

:report: I could open my alpha file and I found that I could make the picture black and alpha with one of my plugins in the adjustments tab. After doing that I could paint the sleeves black and when I saved it, it worked to remove the sleeves texture. It made just the sleeves gray. I saved it in bodyshop and opened it in the game and found that the texture was transparent on the sleeves like they were suppose to be, but I found out that the mesh was the issue, because it just put the skintone on top of the sleeve mesh. :faceslap:Needless to say, I don't want to mess with the mesh at this stage, but it was good to know what exactly was going on. I appreciate the help and the input.

lanaisabella
22nd Nov 2012, 9:06 PM
so i edit it using gimp, and i have tried all methods of saving it (export, save as, overwrite original etc) but every single time i try to refresh in body shop, the application crashes and terminates! what can i do? :(

fakepeeps7
22nd Nov 2012, 9:32 PM
so i edit it using gimp, and i have tried all methods of saving it (export, save as, overwrite original etc) but every single time i try to refresh in body shop, the application crashes and terminates! what can i do? :(

First, you must overwrite the original. That's the file that Body Shop will display, so if you make a new file, it just won't work.

If Body Shop still crashes, try searching the help forums. It may be a fairly common problem with an easy fix.