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 Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.

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What would you like to learn in the next tutorial?
A) I like what I learned, and I'd like a more in-depth overview next time.
40%
 40% [ 2 ]
B) I'd like to know more about font and how to smoothly implement it in my Sig.
60%
 60% [ 3 ]
C) I'd like to learn your most advanced stuff. I know all of this like the back of my hand.
0%
 0% [ 0 ]
D) Um... I need help with installing GIMP and/or Brushes. I'm a bit of a Noob when it comes to learning how get started my first project, and a simpler tutorial would be nicer.
0%
 0% [ 0 ]
Total Votes : 5
 

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3D
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PostSubject: Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.   Mon Nov 29, 2010 5:24 am

Hello, fellow GACer's,
(Ladies and Gentlemen)

Upon the request of Bean & Naboo9, I'm creating the Signature thread, as I thought it much more sensible to not have to repeat myself if anyone else wants to learn how to make a Signature in GIMP.

I'll be attempting to keep your attention during this rather lengthy, I'm afraid, tutorial.
Now, before letting your head skyrocket to complex, detailed Signatures with around 348 layers, Dodge & Burn compilations with Grunge & Splatter brushes downloaded, you might want to get acquainted with some of the terms I plan to use, and some basics.

The Terminology:

*Dodge/Burn Tool:

One of the favorites of most Signature Artists, this tool, when set to "Dodge" Lightens the area on which it is selected when on "Burn" it (Oh the suspense, what's it gonna do?) darkens the area, and acts like a brush, which means that it's shape, size, and opacity can be tweaked. One thing to note that is quite exceptional about the Dodge/Burn tool is that it can be used to darken/brighten certain areas in particular, such as shadows, midtones, and highlights.

*The Brush:

If you don't know with this is, why, I'll eat my head! A brush is used to pain or can be tapped once to create a pattern when working with more complex brushes such as "Grunge" or "Splatter". Brushes can be made opaque or transparent on a scale of 1 to 100.

*Layer: When making a project, and you open the file, select "Open as Layers" (Hotkey = CTRL+ALT+O). Layers can be made transperant, or opaque, as brushes, and can be moved. If you wish to make a portion of the layer invisible when you delete it, right-click on the layer, and select "Add Alpha Channels" and you will get a "Render" I.E. and image which has a figure, person, house, vehicle, etc. already cut out neatly for you.

* Gaussian Blur: This is one of the most useful techniques, in which Layers are used. If you're not sure what a layer is, look at what you just read above. Gaussian blur is probably most famous, in my mind, not for it's inventor, but the fact that this effect is used to create the famous "Lightsaber" from Star Wars. Gaussian blur disperses the picture with a fuzzy, almost "Glowing" effect. If you use it at 20, with the original layer at 0, and put the Blurred Image underneath, you will get something like this:



Note the fuzzy blur around the edges.

That’s basically all you need to know right now, so I’ll proceed with the tutorial.

"When making a Signature, take into account first your images, and make sure they go well together. A handy trick with this, is to select the background, and adjust it using the "Colorize" Function (Menu/Color/Colorize) and adjust the hue to match that of your subject. Demonstrated Here:



Note that the backdrop behind the render is slightly purple, and thus fits in with the "Purple" "Nature" if you will, of the Signature. This is all part of flow. Flow means that the image has a focal point, and flows from dark to light, in my opinion. Here's an example of flow:



Now, after you've mastered the Dodge/Burn process, let's move on to brushes. Brushes are one of the most important parts of Signature making, and I find them very useful. They add an instant feeling of anger, grime, foreboding to your Signature. Remember that you should NEVER cover your picture all over with brushes, because even though it might have a real sense of "foreboding" we can't see the stinkin' picture under all that mess!

Here's an example of what I mean by using your brushes, but not too liberally they obscure the picture to much to see what's going on.




So, here's some brushes that might help you on your way:

Grunge (1)
Grunge (2)

(More brushes to come upon request. Meanwhile, browse Deviant art, and you'll find more excellent brushes)

Brushes are certainly important, and so is text. If you're looking for some font websites, "Dafont" and this site: http://cooltext.com/Fonts-Techno are both excellent font resources. I can give more tips on making your text more impressive, but for now, I hope I can satisfy your curiosity with a picture:


(The text on this had been "Difference Clouds"
Layer Duplicate, "Sharpen" Select bottom
layer "Gaussian Blur")

If you need help installing fonts or brushes, inform me. It shouldn't be hard at all, so I'm hoping I can save some typing and instead send you on your way to creating some awesome Sigs.

I'm hoping this tutorial has helped you, and if you'd like a more advance tutorial, (this one was pointed to first-timers), I can make that. If you had trouble with anything, feel free to post here.

Signing off,
3DBlenderRender


Last edited by 3DBlenderRender on Mon Nov 29, 2010 5:42 am; edited 1 time in total
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Dark_Plague
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PostSubject: Re: Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.   Mon Nov 29, 2010 5:41 am

Awesome :D I'll be sure to put this on my favorites whenever I need help. Thanks 3D!
Btw, is this okay?
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PostSubject: Re: Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.   Mon Nov 29, 2010 6:21 am

It's fine, but you should add a focal point to it. The explosion draws my attention, but then all the dark is behind the explosion, so my gaze falls on the Grey dirt, not on the text, which I quite like. You'll probably be wanting a text tutorial so that you can turn that (excuse me) rather plain text into something quite neat. I'm not sure if I made what I mean clear to you, so I'll post an image to illustrate my point:



Notice how you look at the eyes of the robot immedietly, then dart to the lightning, which makes a nice transition to the text. The focal point is basically where you'd like the viewer to look for the longest, or the first. I've used a theme of Cyan in my picture, with high-contrast dark brown and black to create an eerie, cold feel.

I want to stress the use of the "Dodge/Burn" tool, as it's well used when you darken the corners, which I've also done in the Signature above, in an attempt to bring your eyes to the middle, where the lightening streaks down, directing you to the eyes and text.

Signing off,
3DBlenderRender
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PostSubject: Re: Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.   Mon Nov 29, 2010 6:26 am

Hello, I'm having a bit of trouble with adding pic.'s off the internet onto the pallet...Can you help?
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PostSubject: Re: Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.   Mon Nov 29, 2010 6:55 am

Lazer: Yes. First, though, I need you to state your question more clearly. Do you mean that the "Location" Import option, I never use that, it stinks. However, if you're having trouble getting an image into the Pallet, then here's how: Select the image with the right-mouse-button, and then select "Save as" and save. When in GIMP, simply CTR-Alt-O and select the file.

Signing off,
3DBlenderRender
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PostSubject: Re: Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.   Mon Nov 29, 2010 6:17 pm

I'm way to lazy to make sig.. Not my thing.

But if i ever want one, i will check this out. happy.

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PostSubject: Re: Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.   Mon Nov 29, 2010 11:04 pm

These are some very good tutorials, Blender! I see you've taken a liking to graphic art.

Unfortunately, I haven't the slightest clue what you're talking about, since I use Paint Shop Pro instead of photoshop or Gimp. But it's okay, since I'm experienced.

Keep up the good work!
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PostSubject: Re: Make your Own Signature: It's fast, free, and easy.   Tue Nov 30, 2010 6:24 pm

Thanks, Gelatino. I had an excellent lesson written, but something happened and I lost it, so my next tutorial might be later than expected. It was ready yesterday, but as I said, I lost it.

Sorry about that.

Signing off,
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