Monday, August 8, 2011

Making a male skin - Starlight step 1

Hi everyone, I'm back!

I mentioned in the last post that there is an artistic or creative part to turning Eloh Eliot's Starlight skin into a male skin.  There's not any single part that is purely creative though and that will help.  I'll try to give you my feeling of the mechanical vs creativity score.  Most will be a mixture of both but some will be more mechanical than creative, and others more creative than mechanical.

First let's do a little preparation, this is 100% mechanical, so it should be a piece of cake, here are the steps I took in doing my preparation:
  • Download the starlight XCF files from here:
  • Once you have them, move them from the download folder into a folder that you will use for this work.  Mine is in my documents folder and has the name graphics/skins/starlight/male.  (or something close to that)
  • Now open up each of the files in GIMP, and one by one we will go through and de-feminize the files.
First starlight_upper.xcf... when you open it up it will be female but bizarrely sans nipples.  That is ok for our purposes though, it saves us turning them off.   The job now is to turn off the breast layers.
  • There is a large group about 3/4 of the way to the top of the layers... you can see them in the layers window.  These will start with breastA.... turn them all off (click the 'eye' making it disappear).
  • There is one more located near the halfway point in the layer list named 'breast shift'.  Turn this one off too.
  • Now go all of the way to the bottom of the layer list and you will see one named 'cmff base'.  Select it (click on it) and then press the shift key down AND HOLDING IT DOWN click the green up-arrow with the left mouse button.  This will send that layer all the way to the top.
  • Turn on the cmff layer (now at the top) by clicking the eye and drag the opacity slider to about 10%.
  • Now turn the cmff layer back off, we will have use of it later.
  • Now save the file and give it a new name.  I suggest including a date in the name.  I've named mine starlight_upper m 110807.xcf.   (110807 is the date I am writing this, yymmdd )
Now let's work on starlight_lower.xcf.  This one is fine as it is... like the nipples, Eloh has left the female genitalia  layers turned off, so just save it giving it a new name as you did above.
  • Find the "cmff base" layer as you did above and move it up to the top, setting the opacity to about 10%.
  • Save the file, the name I used is starlight_lower m 110807.xcf.
Now for the face: starlight_face.xcf.  The needs a few adjustment, in truth they are more choices than adjustments.
  • Near the top of the list of layers, turn off the freckles layers.  (You may want to leave them on if you're creating a child or teen skin.)
  • A little further down you will find some eyebrow layers, I have turned on 'eyebrows hair' and the eyebrowsb layers.  Leaving eyebrowsA off.  (Likewise here the thinner eyebrows are more more appropriate for skins intended for younger shapes.)
  • There is a choice to make for the nose and lips.  I have used noseB and lipsA for my male skin.  You may wish to choose differently.  If you choose the same as I did, turn the lipsB layer and turn on the lipsA layers.  (noseB is already on)
  • There is also a choice of eyesA and eyesB and you can choose either of course.  I have kept eyesA in this male skin.
  • Find the "cmff base" layer as you did above and move it up to the top, setting the opacity to about 10%.
  • Save the file, the name I used is starlight_face m 110807.xcf.
Now it's time to do something with just a little creativity. (About 90% mechanical and 10% creative) The skin color startlight has as 'base' is a good shade, but we will need to do something to give it some texture, I think it's too smooth for a male skin.

What we will do is create a layer of tiny random speckles, then spread the speckles out a little by blurring them.  We will use this as a layer mask to poke small blurry holes in the skin layer called base, and make a darker layer below base that will show through these holes.

Now create our layer below and the layer mask...
  • Select 'base' and press the copy button to make a copy of the base layer.
  • Move the copy below the base layer and choose the color picker tool (it looks like a pippette), sample the color of the 'base copy' to get that color as the foreground color.
  • Click on that color and move the cross-hair that define the color a good bit up and to the left to make a new darker color.
  • Now with the 'base copy' layer selected (and below the base layer) select the bucket fill tool and paint the 'base copy' layer with your new darker color.
  • Select the 'base' layer, right click and choose Add Layer Mask (choose White).
  • Still with 'base' selected, right click and check 'show layer mask' so we can see what we're doing.
  • Create our speckles with Filter->Noise->HSV Noise.  I set Holdness to 1 (whatever that is) and then HSV to 0, 160, 160 (other values are fine too - this is the creative part)
  • Use Colors -> Threshold to reduce the number of speckles and make everything a nice black and white again.  keeping the value of 50 is ok but others are ok too (another creative part)
  • Blur things a bit with Filters -> Blur -> Gaussian Blur, I set the number of pixels to 3, you may choose differently if you wish.
  • With our newly made blurry layer
  • Now right click the 'base' layer again and un-check 'show layer mask'
Now you should be able to use the mouse wheel to zoom in on the image window and see a slight variation in the skin tone.  It should be smooth with a little variation in color, going slightly darker where we made our little speckles.   How much variation is totally up to you.  This another aspect of the creative process.  If you want more variation, use the slider on Threshold to give you more speckles.  If you want the variation more defined you can blur them a little less, perhaps use a 2 pixel blur rather than 3.

This is a good start.  Next we will launch into some of the more creative things things to make the Starlight male skin.


No comments:

Post a Comment