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Renzatic

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Everything posted by Renzatic

  1. Renzatic

    Hand Painted Textures

    My biggest problem right now isn't that I have sloppy lines. I'm fairly decent at doing quick strokes, and drawing from the elbow. It's my hand-eye coordination that needs a lot of work. When I'm drawing on paper, I pretty well know where my strokes will go, probably due to the fact that everything is within my field of vision. With a tablet, I've got it down below me, and my eyes are aimed away from it, up towards my monitor. The end result is that I'm all over the place. Things I can easily do on paper, like drawing a random shape, then tracing over it without any huge variances in my strokes, I CANNOT do with a tablet. It annoys me to no end, though I am getting better at it. ...slowly and surely. There's also the fact that I cheaped out, and opted for the itty bitty Intuos Art. It doesn't bother me much, though I am starting to see how a larger tablet would serve me better. Like if I'm drawing a long line, and I start getting towards the edge. My strokes get shakier the closer I bring my elbow in towards my body. With a larger tablet (and a better all around general setup, honesty), I wouldn't have to worry about that. As for screens with what to draw upon, I actually had a Surface Pro 4 up until here recently. It was...eh, alright. I never drew on it much, because desktop applications felt crowded on a screen that small, the pen felt floaty, and the screen would flex inwards when I put pressure on it. In contrast, I tried out an iPad Pro-Apple Pencil combo a little while back, and loved every second of it. The only complaint I had was that drawing on glass feels a little too smooth, but getting a paper texture screen protector like gdenby mentioned above would probably fix that. Moreso than getting a larger Intuos, or opting for a Cintiq, I'm deeply tempted to grab a Pro for myself.
  2. Renzatic

    Hand Painted Textures

    My justification for doing it in 3D is, well, that's where most of my skill set lies, and I thought that posing 3D characters in 3D environments, treating it like I'm taking pictures in a panorama with little characters in it, would allow me so, so much more flexibility in how I set up my scenes, while taking only a 10th of the effort. The effort comes from building all the individual assets, making them look good. But once they're done, they can be used, reused, endlessly tweaked, then shot from any angle I want in any scene I plot them into. The sky's the limit. Doing it all purely by painting would require me to do every single frame from scratch. That'd take forever, especially considering I'm pretty shaky on my feet at that particular affair. It might be nice to do that one day, but for now... Oh, and selling it? I'm nowhere near quick enough to consider that route just yet. For now, it's a hobby project. Something to work towards, and build up my skills. So, texture! It's been a minute since I last updated, I know. Besides watching more tutorials, I've been spending a lot of time practicing my hand control, spending an hour a day drawing circles, ellipses, loops, and basic shapes to address the fact that I'm considerably sloppier with a tablet than I am with pencil and paper. Showing that off every day would bore everyone to tears. But I did finally do a texture! It's another wood floor! At least I now know I can do these like a mad mofo.
  3. Renzatic

    Hand Painted Textures

    I always wanted to play that game when I was a kid... I could probably make RPG maps like that, but my eventual goal is to make something like a cross between this: ...and this: I've been working on this one big idea for a comic for a good while now. It's something I'll do in 3D, which'll give me a lot of flexibility without as much overhead as drawing everything piece by piece. I recently started to really pick up steam on it, but after hours upon hours of experimenting with the style, I came to the realization that my mix of solid, bold colors paired alongside more realistically shaped assets just wasn't doing it for me. I thought that something a little more painterly would do me better. Something like the examples above. It'd allow me a lot more detail, and still help maintain my intended style. It'd also be a lot cheaper on my polycount. Doing EVERYTHING with flat shaded polygons looks neat, but it's a drag on the old computer. This shot, the one that finally made me decide to branch out in style, is over 15 million polygons. I could cut this down to tens of thousands of tris easily by relying on textures more. The only problem with it is I'm only so-so with painting textures. Which leads me to where I'm at right now. I'm still doing it. In fact, I bought a tutorial this last Friday that I've been working on. Upside? It's teaching me quite a bit. Downside? It's got me working on the same texture day after day. My one-a-day plan has changed into a more open ended practice everyday affair. But I'll have something to show soon, I swur!
  4. Renzatic

    Hand Painted Textures

    Okay, I started late on Day 8, but it's coming! Since I'm already late, I might as well go for broke. Spend a lot of time practicing those tiny details, and learning a bit more refinement.
  5. If I were making the argument that it's not ideal, but you learn to live with it, I'd agree with you. But I'm not. I'm saying that, despite requiring another deliberate action to save your images as other file types, it's actually more straightforward. In PS, exporting and save as are all done within the same dialog box. It seems simpler at a casual glance, because the same keystroke brings up both, but the process itself is a little more complicated, and not quite as immediately transparent. It'll default to a .psd, and if you want to save it out as, say, a jpeg, you have to select .jpg from a long drop down menu, click save, which THEN brings up another dialog box with all your jpeg compression options. In AP, you get your export options laid out in a nice horizontal row, and clicking on each shows you the sub-options for that particular file type up front, all within the same dialog box. It's much better organized, and easier to come to terms with. The only downside is that it's accessed through another hotkey binding you have to become accustomed to. Though to play devil's advocate, you could play to the happy medium, and make it so that Ctrl+S brings up the export dialog box, but it includes .afphoto options in there alongside the rest.
  6. This is something that used to tick me off particularly strongly as well. It was something I hated when I first made an attempt at using GIMP to get away from Photoshop, and was far from being one of my favorite features when I converted to AP. It just seemed so much simpler for me to choose what file type I intended to target during the Save As dialogue. Though now that I've used AP for a good while, I've grown accustomed to exporting, rather than saving as. If I want to save my .afphoto file, Ctrl+S. If I want to save it as something to be used or displayed elsewhere, Ctrl+Alt+Shift+S. It's now committed to muscle memory, and I've come to accept that it is oh-so-slightly more straightforward than what I was previously used to in Photoshop, despite appearing to be more convoluted on the front end. All I can say is give it time. It'll eventually sink in, and become rote.
  7. Renzatic

    Affinity Word?

    After a couple of days of poking and prodding, I find you could almost use Publisher as a Word alternative, but a few missing features keep it from being straightforward enough to work as a standard no frills, no muss text editor. Granted, I could be missing something amazingly obvious here, but from what I've seen, the biggest stumbling block that prevents it from working as a decent word processor is that you can't currently define linked text frames from a master page. You can set them up, and they do appear throughout the rest of your document, but the program refuses to allow you to input any text into them. You end up having no choice but to define a new frame for every page you make. Even if this feature were in place, it'd still require more busywork on the front end compared to Word, Pages, and the like, but you would eventually get to the point where you could just start hammering text into it without any fuss or worries.
  8. I've searched for this, but haven't been able to find a topic on it yet. Is it possible to set the pages up in the editor so there's two per row, instead of the infinite column of single pages it currently defaults to? From what I've seen, facing pages seems to be my only option, but that isn't quite what I want. I'd prefer a gap between them.
  9. Not necessarily. Serif could do what everyone else does, and target a single well supported distro to develop from. More often than not, it's either Red Hat or Ubuntu that gets picked as the go-to distro for 3rd parties. Even that might not be quite so necessary anymore, since Snaps and Flatpaks negate the usual dependency woes that used to be so common between Linux distros.
  10. Still made me mad. Though in all seriousness, there were quite a few reasons why I ended up disliking GIMP as much as I did. Whenever I use a new piece of software, I go into it with the expectation that I won't be used to it, and my first few hours with it will be a clumsy experience for me. I've switched back and forth between multiple apps covering various things over the years, and I've long since come to accept that as a standard. Everything has a learning curve. GIMP didn't just have a learning curve, it seemed to actively fight me every step of the way. Even the simplest of operations ended up becoming an absolute chore to work through. It was so bad that after awhile, I started assuming it was doing it purely out of spite, as if it were aware, and it hated me. Compared to my switch from PS to AP, which maybe took me a matter of a few hours to fully come to terms with, it was an absolute nightmare. Haven't really liked it since.
  11. Ha! Awesome! Can you mail one? I'll name him Steve-Bob. He'll be my best friend forever.
  12. Darktable is a solid piece of software. It can come surprisingly close to Lightroom in output quality, with a price that can't be beat. But GIMP? Maybe I'm being a little too hard on it. I dunno. I've heard it's improved by a goodly amount over its past few updates. But from my experiences with it, it remains the only piece of software that's actually managed to make me angry. I remember the trials and tribulations I had to go through just trying to save an image as a .jpg file. You don't just hit Ctrl-Shift-S, and save it as a .jpg file. Oh no. It can't be simple like it is in PS. You have to export it, otherwise it'll always save it as an .xcf file. That just made me so mad... Now I'm using Affinity Photo, which pretty much does the exact same thing. Sometimes life is just unbearably cruel. Oh, and props for having what's easily the most awesomest user avatar on the site.
  13. Here in the States, Dell sells a number of them. There's also a few other manufacturers that cater specifically to Linux crowds.
  14. Linux will never be a basic, no frills, immediately intuitive end user OS. Even though it's been streamlined considerably over the last few years, it still requires a goodly bit of know-how to work with it. It gives you nigh endless amounts of ways to customize things to your specific preferences, and can be incredibly slick when you bend it to your will and tastes, but that openness does come with a few caveats that will forever keep it from being what your grandma would want to use. ...that's what iOS is for. Which Serif currently covers better than anyone. See, I think of Linux as a potential option. I don't necessarily NEED it. I have a perfectly functional Windows 10 machine with Photo, Designer, and the Publisher beta installed on that runs just fine. But it's something I'd LIKE to have. I've used Linux enough to see its upsides as well as its downs, and with all things considered, the only reason why I'm not over there on a more permanent basis is because it lacks a vector and photo program I like. Yeah, there's Inkscape and GIMP, but the former is a little too simple and clunky, and the latter makes me want to punch someone every time I've tried it. I want a good suite of image editors (and Publisher too, since I'm thinking of replacing Word with it now that I've got to see what it can do). I've got access to pretty much everything else I need over there. Those image editors are all I lack. If I had them, I'd make the jump, and be perfectly happy with the decision. I'm probably not the only person who thinks this way. I'm sure there are a fair number of web designers that'd be interested in doing the same, since Linux comes with a number of IDEs and code editors integrated into the OS directly. Though I can't tell you exactly how big this linux-considering demographic is, it might be big enough for Serif to consider leveraging at some point in the not too distant future. ...maybe. Possibly. Can't say this for a fact, but it'd be interesting to see how it'd go were they to try.
  15. Which, you know, is Serif's primary market. I'm sure they love having some normal non-geek folks buying their spiffy affordable software, but their major demographic is web designers and photographers who are, for all intents and purposes, big ole geeks. If you were to draw up a Venn diagram between Affinity users, and Linux nerds, you'd see some overlap. I mean comeon, we're arguing about Linux on an internet messageboard. We're the geeks among geeks, probably only a hairs breadth away from breaking out into a verbal fist fight over Doctor Who. Search your feelings, Toltec. You will know it to be true.
  16. It depends on the business. Linux isn't an also-ran out there in the real world. If you're running a company with a complicated intranet structuring, heavy internet presence, or a need to crunch a lot of heavy data, they'll be using Linux somewhere. On top of that, the entire CG industry is practically built upon Linux. Pixar, Weta, et al. don't use Windows or Macs for their modelling software and render farms. They're all almost exclusively Linux. Hence why most CG-centric packages like Maya, Modo, Houdini, the Substance suite, ect. all have a 'nix rev. The one area where Linux is weakest just so happens to be the one area Serif is most focused: photography and graphic design. They're the one company that's come closest to competing with Adobe on this front, which is why we're seeing so much pressure here for them to release a Linux rev of their software. If they did, the platform would be fully catered to.
  17. That, and we don't really know Serif's internal structuring, nor the rough amount of effort required for them to port their software to Linux. The most anyone outside the business could do is try to convince them that there is an audience interested in their wares.
  18. The problem is that Microsoft has this weird tendency to do everything in extremes. One of the major reasons why malware was so prevalent in Windows post XP is because your average end users rarely, if ever update their machines, leaving them vulnerable to various exploits that have long since been patched out. MS recognized this, and thought "well okay, let's release a version of Windows that makes it so people have no choice BUT to get the updates." ...and hey, it worked. Windows 10 is fairly secure and solid these days. The issues arise due to being MS so freaking aggressive with these updates, providing you two big OS updates a year that can take anywhere from 30 minutes to gawwww amount of hours to install, alongside tons of smaller patches that sometimes necessitate a lengthy reboot in between them. You can't opt out of them. The most you can do is defer them, which requires a proactive stance on your part, and is only an option if you're using Win10Pro. If Windows has decided to start the upgrade process, you have no choice but to hop along for the ride. I'm fortunate in that I've never been caught unawares by it before. But I know people who have, and I can totally understand why it'd tick them off.
  19. Yeah, the thought of that's gotta sting a bit. Though it might be a bit selfish for me to say, it is at least somewhat reassuring knowing that we're not the only English speaking country going through some political craziness at the moment. If our little trade war keeps escalating, the end result will probably end up making Brexit look like a pancake breakfast in comparison. Australia's also going through some of its own weirdness too, I hear. What's up with the Anglosphere, yall? When we go totes cray? Why'd it happen all at once?
  20. You didn't know? I've already starting buying pallets of canned ravioli and bottled water in preparation for the apocalypse. This is the type of stuff you need to keep up to date on, man. You really don't want something like this sneaking up on you. If you don't, you're gonna end up like everyone else, out fighting in the streets over the last bag of beef jerky.
  21. It really depends on the machine, and the whims of fate really. Whenever I feel the urge to dip into Linux Land, I almost always go for Ubuntu or Antergos. They're both solid from my experiences, and have tons of support. On my computers I can get them up and running from first booting off the thumb drive to ready to use, proprietary drivers and all, within 20-30 minutes or so. ...but then I decide to do the same with some random computer, and the whole process is like beating my head against a wall. That 20 minutes becomes 3 hours minimum as I read through forum post after forum post after forum post of why version X of the Linux kernel that's used in distro Y doesn't like random piece of hardware Z, and then figuring out why the usual recommended fixes for this problem don't work with distro Y's setup, and have to search through forum post after forum post for a workaround. It'd be more fun pulling my teeth out of my head with a pair of rusty pliers. This is why I usually say that there are no small problems in Linux. Most people take that as me saying that it's easy to use, and always bug free. No. I'm saying that it either works perfectly, or your computer's on fire. There are no in-betweens. Guess you just happened to have the bad luck of landing on the bad side of that coin whenever you tried it.
  22. How long has it been since you've last fired it up? While I won't deny that there are still the rare occasional moments where you just want to reach through your monitor and backhand it, the whole Linux user experience has improved by leaps and bounds over the last few years.
  23. That's about what I did too. The moment I saw it Publisher was finally available, I rushed through to get to the download. Ended up stumbling on the tutorial link from the splash screen the 2nd time I loaded it up.
  24. And grabbed! Though unlike with Photo and Designer, which I had previous experience with using PS and (a tiny bit of) Illustrator, I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing here. I might watch some InDesign tutorials, and see if I can replicate what I learn here. It'd be a great way to beta test too, since I'll be stumbling through everything, and will likely end up doing something wrong over and over again. edit: just found the tutorials, which should also help out Mr. Sch├╝lke above.
  25. Okay, these are some of my first vectors, so please, be gentle with the criticisms. :P Besides making random shapes in Inkscape a couple years back, I've never dedicated much time to learning a vector program. It was always something I had a vague interest in, since I do have previous experience with Photoshop, and some 3D work, which makes for a solid foundation for it, but I've never taken that extra step. Well, after buying Affinity Photo in December and liking it quite a bit, I figured I'd go ahead and try out the Designer trial. 10 days, some tutorials, and a bit of goofing around later, I bought it too. So anyway, here's what I've done. Since I'm still shaky on my feet, I figured I'd try aping something simple before going whole hog. Thought Zelda 3 looked kinda cool back in the day. it's style isn't too complex, and it might vector well, so I gave it a try. This is about 4 days worth of work right here. First, I did the tree. I threw the original sprite in there for comparison. Next up, I did the pot free hand in a similar style. Then, I tried out the little witch's hut. I've actually managed to bring Designer to a crawl on this one. Gaussian blurs on top of gaussian blurs on top of drop and inner shadows on top of a bunch of other stuff...yeah, I'm probably not being too efficient here. It's still a WIP, but it's far enough along to show it off. Plus I went to town detailing that little cow skull, which is probably one of the reasons why the program is being bogged down. So there you have it. My first tutorial free foray into the world of vector art.
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