Jump to content

Alpha Mask Tutorial Request


Recommended Posts

The name says it all really. I've been trying to wrap my mind around what the Alpha Mask Plugin is capable of, and people are always talking about how they used it on something amazing... :shock:

So what I'm looking (hoping) for is someone (bb00? boltbait? jake2k? Helio? uH?) who is experienced with it to sit down and create a "alpha mask basics" tutorial with pictures. I think this would help clarify a (imho) complex feature of PDN (and be stickied?) for the new people and introduce a good tool to the world at large. :D

Or perhaps I'm just too stupid to figure it out. (and use too many parentheses) :P

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So what I'm looking (hoping) for is someone (bb00? boltbait? jake2k? Helio? uH?)...

<_<

*coughCMDcough*

>_>

I am not a mechanism, I am part of the resistance;

I am an organism, an animal, a creature, I am a beast.

~ Becoming the Archetype

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm just giving you a hard time. :P

I don't blame you for leaving me out, though. It's been a while since I've made anything new...

If you would do it... :)

Working on it as we speak. :D

I am not a mechanism, I am part of the resistance;

I am an organism, an animal, a creature, I am a beast.

~ Becoming the Archetype

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't want to step on anyone's toes here, but it's not often I can help anyone with PDN. I keep a PDN. hints and tips document that I add to as and when appropriate and the last thing I added a day or two ago was instructions on how to use the Alpha Mask plug in. There's no pictures and I'm sure CMD's instructions will be be more comprehensive, but maybe what I've done might point you in the right direction meantime. They work for me anyway, so here they are:

How to use the Alpha Mask:

Making an Alpha Mask and applying it to an image gives the edge(s) of the image a blurred effect. Since the final image will be saved in the .png format, the blended edges will be transparent and so will blend nicely into any background you want to place it on.

a) Open an image. If it is large, use the ‘Rectangle Select’ tool to cut the image down to a more manageable size and save it in the .png format. Make sure the cut down image contains all of the part of the image you want to use plus some more. Otherwise just open an image and carry out the following:

B) Add a new layer, move it below the image and fill it with black.

c) With the image layer highlighted, use one of the selection tools to select the area of the image you want and move the image layer below the black filled layer.

d) With the black filled layer highlighted, press ‘Delete’ to reveal the part of the image you want to keep, surrounded by the remainder of the black filled layer.

e) Fill the part with the image showing with white and apply Gaussian blur to blur the edges of the white into the black.

f) In the ‘Layers’ window, delete the layer with the image in it then save the Alpha mask in the .png format.

g) Re-open the image and go to ‘Effects’ > ‘Alpha Mask’ and navigate to the Alpha Mask you’ve just made. Open it and let it apply itself to the image and press ‘ok’ to render.

h) If there is an excessive transparent (checkerboard) area around the image, use a selection tool to reduce this.

h) Save the image in the .png format. If required, re-size the image before saving.

i) If you saved a cut down version of the original image as in a), delete it along with the Alpha Mast for that image to save disc space.

PS - I forgot to mention that I based the above on instructions given to me by Helio in another post, so thanks to Helio.

Sig1500x145-PDN.png
Link to comment
Share on other sites

^^Long post alert!^^

IMO, the Alpha Mask is something that is uncommon common sense. It's like you used to have no idea what it does, then all of a sudden it clicks and you realize that this can solve 65% of the feature requests posted here.

Now that I think of it, I'll make a tutorial on how to make it like a brush-- a cool blending brush (hard to explain)!

"The greatest thing about the Internet is that you can write anything you want and give it a false source." ~Ezra Pound

twtr | dA | tmblr | yt | fb

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't want to step on anyone's toes here...

Don't sweat it! You're not stepping on any toes by offering a solution when a request is made.

My tutorial should be completed this evening. I was working on it, and I had it all written up last night, but in the process of making the images, I realized that I wanted to take it in a different direction. My original thought turned out to be a sizable project involving the creation of about six layer masks. I'm instead going to focus on basic functionality of masking, with shorter examples organized into categories that showcase not necessarily every possible project, but the basics behind using a mask for [insert effect here]. It will explain cutting out shapes / portions of an image with masks, making irregular and faded glass-like highlights, and will even touch on how to use the Erode / Dilate plugin to make an outline for an existing mask shape.

Great fun!

I am not a mechanism, I am part of the resistance;

I am an organism, an animal, a creature, I am a beast.

~ Becoming the Archetype

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Because I'm irrational and crazy this is what I would do:

Create a new image the same size as the avatar.

Create a black circle in the middle.

Save the image.

Go back to the avatar and execute the Alpha Mask plugin.

Click browse and selects the white image with the circle in the middle and OK.

Enjoy.

I want to know how to use the Alpha Mask Plugin. It now has my attention. Thanks all :!:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes yes, I apologize. Life has this uncanny and rather annoying habit of punching you in the face when it's least convenient. Currently on my plate:

Work - as always

School - this is Finals week

Work - Extra duties moving to the new office this week

Personal - 2 websites, this tutorial, an informative flier, actual personal leisure time

Sorry guys, but work and school come first. As I said, this week is finals week, and I get a week off school next week, so I'll have some free time. I was planning on losing myself in Morrowind (yes, I know it's old, but I just finally got my XBOX to almost recognize the disk most of the time), but I guess I could take some time away from the BOX and get a little Alpha Mask-on!

I am not a mechanism, I am part of the resistance;

I am an organism, an animal, a creature, I am a beast.

~ Becoming the Archetype

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes yes, I apologize. Life has this uncanny and rather annoying habit of punching you in the face when it's least convenient. Currently on my plate:

Work - as always

School - this is Finals week

Work - Extra duties moving to the new office this week

Personal - 2 websites, this tutorial, an informative flier, actual personal leisure time

Hey, I'm just got through that. Sucks. You're excused. Take as much time as you want... :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Wow... I let this fall to page 3? ...

*hides face in shame*

Anyway, I figured I'd give you guys an update. I have the cutting-out-people style tutorial finished. The creating-cool-things-from-scratch side of the tutorial really really wants to be finished by the end of today (Friday). There are a few issues with my site and the CSS sheet right now, so I will not be taking the tutorial live at this time.

Somewhat Techy explanation:

I'm using Thickbox, a JQuery image gallery, on my tutorial pages. This gallery uses JQuery, a Javascript abstraction language, to display the larger version of a thumbnail on the same page. When the thumbnail is clicked, the large image loads in the center with a description underneath it and gallery navigation built-in.

This allows me to display summarized versions of each step along with the large image for that step. Someone who is PDN savvy may be able to follow along just by clicking through the full-size gallery.

The problem again is IE6. When the full image is loaded, the JQuery calls re-write the Thickbox stylesheet, and when the image is unloaded, the JQuery calls write the old stylesheet back. Somewhere in IE6, the body width:; declaration is lost in translation, and the layout breaks. I've had to work around this before, so it should be a quick fix.

It is my hope that, if you don't see them Friday evening before sleep claims your consciousness, you will find them awaiting you bright and early on Saturday.

Cheers!

I am not a mechanism, I am part of the resistance;

I am an organism, an animal, a creature, I am a beast.

~ Becoming the Archetype

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 14 years later...
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...