Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Making clothes - A tank top, part 3

Now its time to spiff up the tank top we've been working on.  We need to take it out of the freebie realm and into something that we would be proud to wear.  As I mentioned in the last post there are several steps we will go though to do this:
  • Straps and Trim:  Give them some shadowing, a small 3d effect.
  • Fabric:
    • Randomize the color
    • Add some stippling, a small 3d effect.
    • Add wrinkles to the fabric in appropriate places
    • Add a hint of nipples (blush!)
  • Fabric, Straps and Trim together:  Use the layers in Eloh Eliot's starlight upper skin file that we started with to add shadows and highlights
Let's pick off some of the easy ones first....

Randomize the color.

This is very simple to do.  Make the fabric layer active in the Layers window and in the image window choose Filters->Noise->HSV Noise.

The values you put in the dialog window are totally up to you.  I like to add very little Hue noise (changes in color), a little more Saturation noise (a range from dark red to pink to white) and much more Value noise (a range from dark red to darker red to black ).  Use the crossed arrows to move the window so you can see the preview and then play with the choices and see what you like.

If you'd like you can apply these changes to the straps and trim too.  Or make the randomization different.  Its up to you.

Add shadows and Highlighting al la Eloh Eliot

As I mentioned, it's really not complicated at all.  We turned off all the layers in this file earlier to concentrate on the new fabric layers we were adding.  Now we simply have to turn some of them back on.  Here's a list of the layers I would suggest - but you're free to try others if you want.

  • shade spine
  • shade back side lower
  • shade back side upper
  • shade shoulder blade 2
  • shade shoulder blade 1
  • light mid back
  • light shoulder blade
  • abs
  • waist
  • side
  • ribcage
  • underarm
  • abs side
  • abs highlight
  • breastB.upper breast
  • breastB.breast shade 1
  • breastB.breast lower
  • breastB.breast upper
  • breastB.chest light
  • ab crease
Actually with these two changes we've made so far, the top much more interesting and wearable. If you'd like to stop here that's fine.  Go ahead and upload it and try it out.
    Straps and Trim.

    Here we will use the Bump Map filter to add the appearance of shadows and highlights to the straps and trim.  Its not really very difficult once you have the hang of it.  There are two steps, broadly speaking.  First create the 'bump mask'.  And second use the Bump Map filter to apply that bump mask to the fabric.  The application actually changes the fabric layer, so its a good idea to make a copy and make your changes there.

    Let's step through it, first making the bump mask...

    1. In the Layers window create a new transparent layer just above the layer you will want to change (trim for example) and make that new layer the active layer.
    2. In the tools window, make the active color White.
    3. In the Layers Window click the paths tab and choose the path you want to work on first.  Make that path active, right click and choose Stroke Path.
    4. Set the number of pixels to 2 and press OK.
    If you have several paths for each of the elements of the straps and trim, repeat the above for each.  When you are done you should have something that looks rather like the image to the right.  Click on the image to get a closer view.

    1. On each layer with the 2 pixel white line we made above.  Go to Filters->Gaussian Blur and choose something like 7 or 8 pixels.  Press enter and  watch it blur.
    2. Now make the fabric with your Trim or Strap fabric layer active and choose Go to Filters->Map->Bump Map
    3. Now in the dialog that opened, select the bump mask we have created for this layer.  Use the pull down in the upper right to choose the bump mask. (it may be a good idea to give the layer a name you can find in the list)
    4. Also in the dialog - note the crossed arrows in the lower right of the preview panel.  Pick it with your mouse and move your mouse cursor to make your active straps or trim layer visible.
    5. Now adjust the 'depth' (see the image below) to get the amount of shading you want.  Also play with the other controls and see what they do.  You may fine tune your shadowing with these.
    6. Press OK to apply your changes to the active straps or trim layer.

    Repeat the above with each of the fabric layers (straps, trim) that you have and the appropriate bump mask layer for each.  And you should end up with something that looks like the picture below.

    Now with the straps and trim having some 'interest' too the top looks even better.

    Add stippling to the fabric to give it a 3d look

    This will be very similar to what we did above for the straps and trim.  But we will create the bump mask for our fabric in a different way.  We will create a simple seamless tile and use that as our bump mask, applying it to the fabric from a separate GIMP image in a tiled way.  That sounds complicated but it isn't really.

    Let's make the tile:

    • On the GIMP Image window choose File->New and choose to create a 12 by 12 pixel image.
    • Use zoom to increase the image size - roll the wheel on your mouse with control pressed.
    • On the Layers window create a new layer and make it transparent.  Delete the original layer that GIMP created for you.
    • On the Tools window select the Paint Brush and choose one of the Fuzzy circular brushes.
      • Hold the brush over the image and note how big the brush is in relationship to the image.  You'll want a brush whose edges are about the same size as the Image.
      • Keep trying different brushes until you find one of the right size.
    • On the Tools window make the foreground color White, and centering your mouse pointer on the Image window tap the left mouse button once or twice.  This will apply a nice fuzzy circle in this layer.
    • Now make a duplicate of the layer you have created and make select it, making it active
    • In the Image window choose Layer->Transform->Offset and click the button in the dialog that comes up that says "Offset by x/2, y/2" and click the Offset button.
    You can see the result to far in the image below.  Notice the two layers and how they are different, and how they combine in the image window.

    We need to make this into one layer to make it a bump mask for the fabric, so go to Image->Merge Visible Layers and choose Merge.

    Now we're ready to use this as a tile on our fabric.  Make the original Image window active and go to the Layers window and make sure the fabric layer is selected.  Then choose Filters->Map->Bump Map and in the bump mask selection pull down, find the layer we just created in the Bump Mask file.  As before you might want to have given it a name to make it easier to find in the list.  Then move the image preview window to and make adjustments to the values.  I found that one that is good to change in this case is the Azimuth.  The Azimuth is the angle at which the imagined 'light' is striking your bump mask to create highlights and shadows - move it around and find an angle that gives you a result that you like.  You can see my results in the  image below.

    Add Wrinkles

    We'll be using the Bump Map filter again to add wrinkles.  I would bet that by this time you will have guessed the procedure, and you would be right.  We're going to create a bump mask layer and then apply it to the fabric using the Bump Map filter.

    *takes a deep breath*  ...... However!  ......*pauses*

    Making the bump mask for wrinkles is pretty tricky.  I'll tell you right now, be prepared to make about 10 or so before you finally have something you like.  So you will want to plan accordingly and make copies of the layers you'll be applying your changes to - so you can back up as needed.

    The problem is that the wrinkle is largely free-form and will require a steady hand.  If you're on a laptop and have a mouse pad of some sort, you're in luck.  That has been the best way of making wrinkles that I have been able to discover.  My approach usually uses a combination of mouse pad and mouse.  It can be done with just your mouse, or just a mouse pad, but it will be more difficult.

    I'm going to just sketch out how to do it in words here and show you how it should look when you're done and then leave you to your own devices.  If you decide this is just too much for now, I do understand.  But.... Wrinkles really add a lot to the realism of the top, so if you can figure it out you will be very pleased with the results.

    First - think of one wrinkle at a time, not wrinkles as a group.  Each wrinkle, as we create it, will be in a separate layer. When we're happy with all the wrinkles we can combine them into one layer for use as a bump mask.

    So here's how I create a wrinkle.  We will create one between the breasts on our top as a starting point.

    • Create a new transparent layer
    • Set the foreground color to White in the Tools menu
    • Choose the Paint Brush in the tools menu and select a fuzzy circular brush.  (probably somewhere in the mid-rage of brush sized)
    • In the lower portion of the Tools window click the box for Fade Out and note that its set to 100 pixels.
    • Position your mouse in the center between the breasts, click the mouse and 'stroke' the mouse toward the right nipple (center of the breast) with a slight up curve as you move.
      • You will notice that the fuzzy white line fades as you move the mouse - and it will probably be either too long or too short.  Press ctl-z to undo.  Change the number of pixels and try it again.
    • Once you are happy with the shape of the wrinkle to the right, repeat the process (on the same layer) to the left.  Starting in the center and moving with an up curve.
    • Now you will probably want to edit your wrinkle and smooth it, perhaps make it a little narrower.  To do so select the erasure tool on the Tools Window.  Choose the larges fuzzy circular brush and then set the scale to something very large, like 6.
      • now use the edges of your 'erasure' to nibble at the wrinkle you have made, smoothing it out, tapering it more and making it narrower as you wish.
    I've not found an easy way to do this - if you do let me know.  :)  Once you have a series of wrinkles made you can right click on teh top one and choose 'merge down' from the menu.  That will merge the selected layer with the one below it.

    Then apply your bump mask to the fabric with your bump map filter and you'll see something like this as an end result.

    Whew! That was difficult!  But fortunately the last is not.....

    Adding Nipples

    This is really pretty simple and I would guess that by now you could figure it out yourself.  I just tell you how to do it and show you the result.

    We'll create a transparent layer to hold our bump mask (appropriately named for this step *grins* ).  Then we'll make sure our template is visible and make the fabric a little transparent.  Select the paint brush and choose a fuzzy circle, you'll have to experiment to get the size you want.  Then center the mouse pointer on the nipple portion of each breast and click.  That's your bump mask.

    By now you're an expert in using the bump map filter so go ahead and use your bump mask and apply it to the fabric.  At the end you should see something like the image on the right.

    OK! We're done!  How do you like it?


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