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How to make motion lines.

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You know how sometimes in animation and comics you'll see these blurry whiteness behind them as they move? I can't seem to replicate that. I've been just doing without any evidence of motion, but I just well twenty minutes ago had someone ask why something that was supposed to be tossed through the air, was instead floating. So apparently I need those motion lines.

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It's called "Motion Trail" and can be done a number of ways. You can for example duplicate the object layer and use a motion blur on the lower layer to make the motion trails. The top object will retain all detail.


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You are working with an image editor that can pretty much do anything with pixels. The only limitation lies between your ears. Experiment and learn from your mistakes.......


Remember a tool (any tool) is only as good as the craftsman that yields it. 


Good Luck.


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Hello. :)

Never-mind the whole good or bad craftsmen thing, don't let that get you down. That phrase is a common phrase, but I don't think it's an encouragement. However, you don't need to be discouraged. But, you will need some effort if you want to have the motion effects. :)

For the motion effect it is best that you cut your object out and put it on it's own layer. Here are some tutorials about cutting out objects:

-- http://forums.getpaint.net/index.php?/topic/13796-cutting-out-images/

-- http://forums.getpaint.net/index.php?/topic/28305-mini-tuts/?p=409110
Just as a tip, I often find duplicating the layer and then erasing everything but the object works well to cut an object out.
If you get confused on any of the steps, feel free to ask for help.

Once your object is on it's own layer, you will want to duplicate it. Then apply any effects to the bottom object layer.
You can try the motion blur effect. Menu Bar > Effects > Blur > Motion Blur.
Or, you might like these plugins :
The Jitter Plugin.

Glitch Effects

You can even try using all three options together, the blur, jitter, and glitch effects.


Or, you can actually try looking at pictures/comics that have the motion lines, as references, and try to draw the lines manually.


I noticed you said you scan your pictures in and then work with them in paint.net. In this other thread a person scanned a logo and wanted help re-coloring. The topic is different than yous, but perhaps the conversation and some of the answers will interest you. http://forums.getpaint.net/index.php?/topic/31608-need-help-with-magic-wand-tool/


If I think of anything else, I'll try to share it.

Edited by Cc4FuzzyHuggles
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I was putting together a collage of the things I've tried and failed. And I uh... noticed one of the main problems I had with the basic motion lines ,you know, three lines streaming out behind an object. Was that against a colorful background they just didn't work. Then I remembered a rule I heard that white text with a black outline works on all backgrounds. And today I just learned how to outline a white line with black in another thread. And embarrassingly it gave me the idea to make a white motion line outlined with black to see if that works. 


I don't know if it will until I finish a new page, but if it doesn't I'll finish the collage and get back to this thread. I definitely don't think that the cutting out process is worth the time. I'm not an artist, I just draw some fan art and monsters and characters and some scenes for my weekly D&D games I GM. So I have serious time limits to finish what I do. So any new techniques I add to my repertoire do have to be time efficient ones.

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Depending on what you are trying to cut out, cutting out objects isn't always as scary as you might think.
When I need to cut out an object I often dread the idea because I am lazy (yes, that's right, I'm lazy :D .). However, when I actually dive in and do it, it often doesn't take that long at all. The process can sometimes still feel long, but that's because I don't want to do it, when in reality, despite how I feel, the process actually goes pretty quick. And the more ways I learn on how to cut out objects, the more I can gauge which way will be the fastest for each object that I come up against. That's why I am always trying to learn new ways of cutting out objects, because I want the fastest techniques, but I also want techniques that let an object still look good (some techniques could be considered fast but sloppy.) At the moment I favor duplicating the image that has my object and erasing/deleting everything but the object. I also favor a technique that uses the Alpha Mask plugin, but I'm still learning that, so I can't share that technique in an easy and quick explanation yet.
I would like to encourage you to still try exploring how to cut out objects, because once the object is cut out, there is an entirely new fun world you can play with. But cutting out objects will take some learning in order to learn which ways are fast, and some ways might not be fast until you practice them. So, perhaps you can still continue to make your comics the way you do, to keep things fitting in your time limit, but behind the scenes, you could start to learn more ways to use paint.net on pictures and projects that don't have time limits. Like practice pictures.
This isn't about being an artists either. Paint.net is mostly a toy to me. I'm far from being an artist in real life, but then again, I don't try to be one. I'm not much better with digital works, as I often don't put in as much effort as I could with most digital art projects that I want to do (hobby projects). And my freehand drawing abilities both in real life and in digital programs look like something a lawnmower ate :lol:. However, it's because I'm lazy and it's because I notice where I skimp out on putting in effort, that I see how my actions actually get in the way of things that would be and could be fun :cry:. And I personally would prefer more fun, not less fun, nor missing out on fun possibilities.


But, I hope what you have found on the other thread works out for you, because that sounds cool too. :)

Edited by Cc4FuzzyHuggles
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