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Blooper

PDN Tips and Tricks

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This is a thread for little tips and tricks for PDN you would like to share.

1. When drawing a line with the line/curve tool :LineCurveTool: , right-clicking the handles will make the curve a bézier curve (look it up on Wikipedia if you don't understand what it is).

2.To remove the white in a picture, use the alpha mask plugin without loading any image, with invert selection on. Duplicate this layer a few times.

Examples:

Circlewhite.png

You can see the background of the shape is white.(255 luminosity)

Circlealphamask.png

The white is turned to transparent. The dark an image is, the more opaque it is.

[Edit] If you're cutting out an image like the one above, that is pretty much black and white but with a gradient for antialiasing, you want to change the brightness to -100, then -100 again and contrast at 100.

If a technique you want to post is in the help files, don't bother - the idea here is to see how other artists here function. :wink:

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Duplicating an opaque layer and setting the blend mode of the replica to Difference will make the image entirely black. The more similar to the bottom layer the top layer is, the dark the image will be. This can be used to darken an image if you don't like Brightness/Contrast.

Duplicating an opaque layer, settings blend mode of the replica to Negation and inverting the colors of the top layer will make the image entirely white. The more different from the bottom layer the top layer is, the light the image will be. This can be used to lighten an image if you don't like Brightness/Contrast.

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I like this thread, but I'm not sure how well it'll fare...

16) Don't try creating new "official" threads for things. For example, "post all plugin requests here!" If the moderators want to reorganize or officiate things, then we will -- that's our job, not yours.

Anyway, if it sticks around :-) I do have one:

In photographs, a good way to fix color problems is to open Levels and turn the number on the left ("Input") from 255 to 245. It brings out a good deal of color and de-emphasizes the black. :-)

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Best tip ever:

Don't settle for cheap Magic Wand selections, feathering or using the antialias plugin. Use the process of alpha masking. That way, you'll always have perfect edges.

Second best tip ever:

Get Curves+.

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Best tip ever:

Don't settle for cheap Magic Wand selections, feathering or using the antialias plugin. Use the process of alpha masking. That way, you'll always have perfect edges.

Second best tip ever:

Get Curves+.

Agree!

The mods can close the thread, the idea was brought up and no one seemed to care. So...

When using feather, try duplicating the layer a few times. Gives better effects sometimes.

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I like this thread, but I'm not sure how well it'll fare...
16) Don't try creating new "official" threads for things. For example, "post all plugin requests here!" If the moderators want to reorganize or officiate things, then we will -- that's our job, not yours.

Anyway, if it sticks around :-) I do have one:

In photographs, a good way to fix color problems is to open Levels and turn the number on the left ("Input") from 255 to 245. It brings out a good deal of color and de-emphasizes the black. :-)

I thought of that rule, I think this is a bit border line.

But I don't think anyone would mind learning a few more tips and tricks for PDN.

I sure don't mind 8)

I think Rick, BB, CMD would agree too :)

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(next tip number). Use the keyboard!

a. I often use the arrow keys to move precisely the cursor and look at the x,y coords in the status bar.

b. Rotate the image : Ctrl+G or Ctrl+H and repeat the last effect Ctrl+F could make some interesting stuff...

c. You want to keep/copy the 14 layers image state into a new layer:

...Ctrl+A (select all)

...Ctrl+Shift+F (flatten)

...Ctrl+C (copy)

...Ctrl+Z (undo : flatten)

...Ctrl+Shift+V (paste in a new layer)

it's a tip, there is other ways to do that...

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a. I often use the arrow keys to move precisely the cursor and look at the x,y coords in the status bar.

It actually moves it? Awesome!

I believe you can have Windows XP do this by default (either that or I had a program for it). Anyway, it's very useful in PDN.

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If you use Paint.NET a lot and need only certain colors, make your own color palette. It'll take a long time to put together, but it's all worth it. The following link is the text file for palette I'm currently using. It has my most-used alpha values and light/dark values as well as some of my favorite colors (incomplete):

http://usedhonda.110mb.com/pdnstuff/palette.txt

In case you don't know, you should place it in ".../My Documents/Paint.NET User Files/Palettes".

BTW, I think this should be in the Tutorials section. This is the type of thread a lot of users would want to find, and the first place they'd look is in Tutorials.

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BTW, I think this should be in the Tutorials section. This is the type of thread a lot of users would want to find, and the first place they'd look is in Tutorials.

I agree. It's not really a tutorial, but more a large source of small, very-mini-tutorials. Should be stickied there, too.

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Kinda basic stuff this, but who cares?

Always put a line of text on its own layer, makes it easier to edit out and fix until PDN gets better text handling.

When compressing a file with the jpg format, always compare your setting to 100, not 99, not 95, not 90, 100. so you can see the exact different between 70q and 100q.

Always learn to use more "advanced" options such as twist and rotate, alpha masking and curves. Some are ridiculously easy to learn.

Its better to move an image with the mouse, rather than the arrow keys, if you move that image 150 times, then decide to undo the whole thing, you'll have 150 steps of moving to wait through.

Know a plugins limits, some like Gentree and other graphic generators can easily crash your computer if you put the settings too high.

Always make a picture larger than you need it, its easier to resize 500 to 350 than to size 250 to 350.

Experiment with generators, gradients and layer options. You'll always get something nice.

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1. Not really for Paint.NET, but for posting your work on the Internet, get into the habit of listing your source images. I almost forgot during the MSC :oops:

2. Know your blending modes. It really does help.

3. Learn how to use Levels. It can very much affect the outcome of your picture.

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Going off the trick from the previous page: When you're working on a larger image to resize down later, make sure it's the right proportions. What I do is create a new image with the size I want my final to be, Resize it 200% or 1000% (depending on how small it is), and then work with it, resizing as soon as I finish. You get better results if you resize an image in half or to a tenth of its size than if you resize it from, say, 440 to 310.

Also, make sure that you constrain proportions in this case! (Maintain Aspect Ratio). There's nothing worse than finishing a sig and realizing it's going to be ten pixels too tall when you've resized it.

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BTW, I think this should be in the Tutorials section. This is the type of thread a lot of users would want to find, and the first place they'd look is in Tutorials.

I agree. It's not really a tutorial, but more a large source of small, very-mini-tutorials. Should be stickied there, too.

I posted this here because someone posted a tip for black and white pictures, and it happened to be moved to GD&Q...

If you're having a hard time anti-aliasing an image (smoothing out the jaggy edges), try resizing it to 1000% then back to the normal size. It may or may not work.

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/.../Its better to move an image with the mouse, rather than the arrow keys, if you move that image 150 times, then decide to undo the whole thing, you'll have 150 steps of moving to wait through./.../

This is the reason I made the panelling plugin, to be fast and precise for moving image...

/.../Know a plugins limits, some like Gentree and other graphic generators can easily crash your computer if you put the settings too high./.../

About Gentree, let me know if it's really crash PDN. The fact is that high setting could require a huge of calculation and make you feel your PC is frozen.

And as mentioned in the Gentree topic, save your work before you use a plugin...

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Some of my favorites for drawing:

Learn to use the Bézier curve. It is just wonderful.

If you hold down shift, the mouse wheel scrolls sideways. Great when you work on something bigger then your screen.

If you hold down shift when you draw a line, the line will automatically snap to a series of predefined angels. Great for drawing a series of parallel lines.

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Some of my favorites for drawing:

Learn to use the Bézier curve. It is just wonderful.

If you hold down shift, the mouse wheel scrolls sideways. Great when you work on something bigger then your screen.

If you hold down shift when you draw a line, the line will automatically snap to a series of predefined angels. Great for drawing a series of parallel lines.

15 degrees each to be precise.

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Bump! I'm sure y'all know a trick or two...

*updating the first post*

Glass blocks with scale 2/6/7, quality 0 and amount 100 gives interesting results. Play with stretch to change the direction.

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Its better to move an image with the mouse, rather than the arrow keys, if you move that image 150 times, then decide to undo the whole thing, you'll have 150 steps of moving to wait through.

Actually, you can combine the two.

If you click and hold down the mouse button you can still use the arrows for precision. So long as you have the mouse pressed down you can press the arrows as many times as you want and it will only count as one step.

---

Experiment with different shades of gray and different blending modes. It can darken or lighten photos in very nice ways.

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