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Clouds

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This tutorial is available as a PDF. Click here to view or download it

 

 

No, this is not going to be a tutorial on how to make a gradient with an overlayed layer of clouds.

We are going to make a cloud...we are looking at this cloud from the bottom. Sort of like what you see when you look up at a cloud above you when you step outside. I am still working on an aerial view of a cloud. Haven't quite figured that out yet...I'll post it here if I do.

You will need:

Crystalize-->available here

Outline object-->available here

I believe the rest is all built in to paint.net. If I missed something, please tell me.

IMPORTANT!!!: Do NOT make a big cloud and shrink it to use for a small picture. It will NOT look as nice as if you just make a small cloud (unless the things in the picture are also super small).

:LinearGradient: 1. You need a background so that you can see what you are doing. A blue gradient worked well for me.

:AddNewLayer: 2. MAKE A NEW LAYER!!! Just making sure you see that because it is extremely important.

:PaintBrushTool: 3. Using your paintbrush (make it 50-100 pixels. In your color window, make the color white. Then, click "more" and change the V to about 80.), paint a nice, fluffy cloud for yourself. I will be using a large cloud so that you can see.

4. Use the outline object plugin to give the cloud a white outline. The thickness depends on the size of the cloud and how dark the cloud is. On a large cloud, you need a thicker outline. On a dark cloud, you need a thinner outline. I will use a 25 pixel outline since my cloud is so big.

1-3.png

:GaussianBlur: 5. Use Gaussian Blur set to about 20 pixels. This setting may vary depending on the thickness of the outline. 20 pixels seems to work most of the time. lol...mine will be set to 30.

2-3.png

:? 5. Crystallize the cloud with the size set to approximately 15 pixels.

3-3.png

:FrostedGlass: 6. Use frosted glass with the maximum distance set to 7.00 and the smoothness set to 1.

4-2.png

:?: 6. Use dents with the size set to 30 and the amount at 20.

5-2.png

:GaussianBlur: 7. Gaussian blur at at least 3 pixels. Don't do too much...

You are done! Show your results! If you wanted to see what happened to mine, here it is:

Hidden Content:
6-1.png

Unfortunately, I made mine too light (I set the V in step 3 to 85) Make sure you don't do that! ;)

EDIT: Someone told me the end result was to...uniform. To fix this, simply add a new layer, render some blurry clouds, change the layer properties to "darken," erase the stuff that isn't on the cloud, blur with Gaussian blur at around 50 pixels, lower the layer opacity to something reasonable, and merge the layer down (or flatten the image)

==EDIT==

New part.

You will need:

Bevel Selection

Fragment Blur

Transparency

They are all out there...I don't remember where I got them.

:PaintBrushTool: 1. On a new layer (make sure you have a dark-colored background layer), paint yourself a white, narrow cloud with the paintbrush size set to 50 pixels. Look at the picture to see what I mean.

1-4.png

:MagicWandTool: 2. Use the magic wand (tolerance at 0%) to select everything that isn't white. Press "ctrl+i" to invert selection.

:| 3. Bevel selection with the depth set to 15.

2-4.png

:? 4. Deselect and feather the cloud with the "True feather" checked and the radius as 2 and the strength as 1. Do it again with the radius as 1 and intensity as 2.

:( 5. Fragment Blur with the count at 6 and the distance at 25

3-4.png

4-3.png

:?: 6. Use BoltBait's Transparency...adjustment...thing to make the blob totally opaque

5-3.png

:? 7. Feather again with the radius a 5 and the strength as 6

:DuplicateLayer: 8. Duplicate layer

:GaussianBlur: 9. Gaussian blur the new layer at about 30 pixels.

:!: 10. Crystallize at normal settings.

:FrostedGlass: 11. Frosted glass at normal settings

:P 12. Dents with amount set to 25

6-2.png

:GaussianBlur: 13. Gaussian blur at 3 pixels.

:MotionBlur: 14. Motion blur at 90 degrees

Select the bottom layer (not the background, the one above it)

:GaussianBlur: 15. Gaussian blur at 2 pixels.

:!: 16. Crystallize with the size set to 4.

:FrostedGlass: 17. Frosted glass at normal settings again

:P 18. Dents with amount set to 20 and size set to 30

:GaussianBlur: 19. Gaussian blur at 3 pixels.

Should look a little like this:

7-1.png

There are two ways to do the next two steps...

First method:

:Properties: 20. Change the layer properties of the TOP layer to multiply.

:BrightnessContrast: 21. Adjust the Brightness and Contrast of the top and bottom layer to whatever looks right.

You should have something similar to this now:

8.png

Second Method:

:Properties: 20. Change the layer properties of the TOP layer to color burn.

:BrightnessContrast: 21. Adjust the Brightness and Contrast of the top layer so that the brightness is 25 and the contrast is -100. Adjust the bottom until it looks right. I raised the brightness to 25 and lowered the contrast to -30

You should have something similar to this now:

9.png

Continuing...

:MoveTool: 22. (after you merge the top layer down) I'm sure you've noticed this...the cloud is on it's side! Use the move tool to rotate it (Drag with the right mouse button).

You are done! Show your results! Here's mine:

Hidden Content:
10.png

I liked the second method better...

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Cool. I wonder what would happen if you applied a motion blur to the cloud - on some of my world maps I include cloud cover, but I'm having trouble making them look wispy, or mobile, or like anything else other than rendered white blobs. :|

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Cool. I wonder what would happen if you applied a motion blur to the cloud - on some of my world maps I include cloud cover, but I'm having trouble making them look wispy, or mobile, or like anything else other than rendered white blobs. :|

I don't recommend using this cloud for a world map, even if you do use motion blur on it. On a world map, you need a view from the top of the clouds. If you use the cloud render and mess around with it a little, you can end up with a good set of clouds for a world map. Before you try to make the clouds, look at the clouds in >>this picture<< so that you get an idea on how yours should look. I can't help you much there.

I've been working on a side view on a cloud...just wondering if my result is worth posting a tutorial on.

Hidden Content:
cloud.png

Should I make a tutorial, or should I work on it a little more?

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Cool. I wonder what would happen if you applied a motion blur to the cloud - on some of my world maps I include cloud cover, but I'm having trouble making them look wispy, or mobile, or like anything else other than rendered white blobs. :|

You should perhaps try out the Clouds plugin, not the clouds effect from render>clouds...I've always preferred it for genuine looking clouds

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...I'm having trouble making them look wispy, or mobile, or like anything else other than rendered white blobs. :|

You should perhaps try out the Clouds plugin, not the clouds effect from render>clouds...I've always preferred it for genuine looking clouds

Hmmm, for some reason I thought the clouds plugin *was* the Render effect. I've downloaded so many plugins that I've lost track of what comes with PDN straight out of the box, as it were.

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Hmmm, for some reason I thought the clouds plugin *was* the Render effect. I've downloaded so many plugins that I've lost track of what comes with PDN straight out of the box, as it were.
There are two cloud...thingys. The one that comes with Paint.net makes clouds out of your primary and secondary colors. The plugin takes the layer and turns it into clouds...I hope I explained that well enough so that you can understand...

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No, this is not going to be a tutorial on how to make a gradient with an overlayed layer of clouds.

We are going to make a cloud...we are looking at this cloud from the bottom. Sort of like what you see when you look up at a cloud above you when you step outside. I am still working on an aerial view of a cloud. Haven't quite figured that out yet...I'll post it here if I do.

pdnnoob are you trying to reach this effect of clouds?If yes, then I can give you some tips on how to do this.

sideclouds.jpg

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No, this is not going to be a tutorial on how to make a gradient with an overlayed layer of clouds.

We are going to make a cloud...we are looking at this cloud from the bottom. Sort of like what you see when you look up at a cloud above you when you step outside. I am still working on an aerial view of a cloud. Haven't quite figured that out yet...I'll post it here if I do.

pdnnoob are you trying to reach this effect of clouds?If yes, then I can give you some tips on how to do this.

sideclouds.jpg

Really? I'd love to have those tips.

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Excellent result, and easy tutorial to follow up, just in step:

4-It is good to mention this(deselect the cloud then Feather the thing with the "True feather"...)

9-Dents amount "30" is not the same in the screen shot(it shows 25).

But that doesn't affect the result that much anyways.

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Excellent result, and easy tutorial to follow up, just in step:

4-It is good to mention this(deselect the cloud then Feather the thing with the "True feather"...)

9-Dents amount "30" is not the same in the screen shot(it shows 25).

But that doesn't affect the result that much anyways.

Thanks. I meant to change those, but I forgot.

nice picture!

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This tute was done long before I was a member and longer before I was a lurker. I used this tute to make a signature for SOTW#111 Clouds competition, just thought I would share it here for those who don't drop by the competition thread. Really good tute pdnnoob with some nice add ons from yellowman :)

 

cloudstylesotw_zps60baff04.png

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This tute was done long before I was a member and longer before I was a lurker. I used this tute to make a signature for SOTW#111 Clouds competition, just thought I would share it here for those who don't drop by the competition thread. Really good tute pdnnoob with some nice add ons from yellowman :)

 

cloudstylesotw_zps60baff04.png

THAT long ago?!?!? goodness me, time flies tongue.gif b9d093d7.gif

 

OK  back to subject at hand; I like this tute because it is a clear, clean, presentation of how to make a cloud; even with all the individual steps there is a logic in the flow of information and great graphics to show us (OK, me) how to do it.

 bravo.gifpdnoob  

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