b/g - in the library


It's another discussion of manips.  Sorry.  I can't help myself.  One of the things I see most often is a manip where the head is too big for the body (or sometimes it's too little).

There is an EASY way to make sure you're not doing this:  make sure your manipped head is only as big as the base-body's hand from end of palm to fingertip.

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but there you have it.  the hand test.

roudtable discussion: what are your favorite resource sites?

It's that time of the month again - the time to put your two cents into the community and talk the art talk.  This month, we're curious.  Sometimes it's not about methods of application, it's also about the resources you've got.  So we thought we would offer up some of our favorite resource sites, and ask you to tell us about your favorites.

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So where do you find the goodies? What are your favorites?

Please Allow Me to Introduce Myself...

Hello there. I was invited to be a guest speaker and today is my day so here it goes.
Names wickedfox. I have a website called Wickedfox.com where you can find photo manipulations for the fandoms Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Jekyll, Murphy's Law and general James Nesbitt appreciation. My primary graphic application is Photoshop CS3 and I use a Wacom tablet to do the dirty deeds I do.

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Photo manipulation ~ Fun With Pixel Torture

Let me preface this tutorial with my graphic credentials. I don't have any. No artistic or Photoshop training at all. I'm self taught and everything I do is a haphazard trial and error experiment that once in a long while manages to produce something I deem passable enough to share. I'm sure there are better, correct techniques and terminology for the "tricks" I do but I'm fairly comfortable with my chaos. That said, I think I do some things that help make my manipulations work for the most part and this is what I'll cover in a very general overview. If there is something specific you would like to know, feel free to ask.

A quick reiteration of things already covered but I consider very important to successful manips and that I follow as golden rules.

  • As katekat1010 covered in her post about choosing a base, choosing images with similar lighting will provide a great starting point. Sometimes you can cheat this by adding highlights and shadow but please note the more you manip, the more it looks like a manip. Less is better. Rather than forcing it, try looking for an alternative head shot to make work with that hottie base image you found.

  • Selecting an appropriate substitute body type for the subject is also important for believability. However, with some effort and insanity, you might be able to de-muscle an image to better suit your needs. I find myself having to revert to this all the time.

  • Black and white is always easier to match than color, the reason, you must match skin tone in color. When I can't get a color manip to work, I often check it in a desaturated mode just to be sure it's hopeless before I file it in the trash.

Moving on to the tutorial bit... (warning, not dial-up friendly)

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  • Current Mood
lady reading

Discussion: Fixing Source Images

Hello!  So, today is discussion day!  *G*

One of my favorite things is fixing up not-great images and getting something worth the effort.  Since source pics don't tend to just jump into our hands, I like to try to use whatever I have on hand, even when it's less than perfect.

So, what are your favorite techniques for fixing up an image that's just what you want, but lacking in quality?  Do you have a technique that works on a lot of different images?  Or do you find that you have to take each image individually?  What things make it impossible for you to work with an image (size, grainy-ness, bad coloring)?  And what are your favorite things to fix?
lady reading

Tutorial: Cropping, Leveling, and Sharpening

A Few Basics: Cropping, Leveling, and Sharpening
(in photoshop)
And Using Them on Less Than Perfect Pictures

Let's start off with a few links to other basic tutorials that might help:

How to Crop an Image in Photoshop

Image Resolution Tips  (helpful to know when cropping)




All of these techniques are well and good if your image is fairly sharp and clear and normally colored to begin with, but . . . Well, how often do you stumble across perfect images when you're working with screencaps or manip source pics?  Not often enough, damnit.  But there are ways to manipulate less-than-perfect images and fix them up using the above techniques, and that's what we'll be discussing today.

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b/g - in the library

Introducing Sueworld2003

Dear GSers,

I'd like to introduce you to our very first Guest Speaker:  sueworld2003!  She'll be posting on January 31st with a little discussion / sharing of her knowledge (so keep an eye out and please welcome her with comments/questions)!

sueworld2003 has been creating work in the BTVS fandom for years, and has recently been branching out / delving into Dr. Who.  Sue's art chops go beyond her fandom work, as her background in art departments in both the television and movie industry in England give her a profound sense of style and composition and great sense of fun.  She's also delved into an area of art media most of us don't really explore - modeling / puppeting.  Below the cut you'll find an example of her exquisit abilities (she's quite modest when she calls it "puttering around"), as well as some of my favorites of her other artwork.  Her manipulations are beautiful compliations of images.

And to give you just a little taste, here is my most favorite sueworld2003 piece (please click to see full size):

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Finally, some links for you to browse:
Personal LJ:  sueworld2003 (some of her "playful" pieces are found here)
Art LJ:  sueworld_art (livejournal art archive / some non worksafe posts locked)
Deviant Art Gallery
Her tutorial on "the evolution of Puppet Spike"
b/g - in the library

round table 1: what's your graphic perspective?

To get the discussion ball rolling this week, I have something to reveal.  For my larger artworks, I'm addicted to the rule of thirds.  

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So my question for you today, fellow designers, is what graphic perspective dominates your own artwork?  Are you more interested in creating/achieving perfect coloring?  Is texture the be-all and end-all for you?  Are you fascinated with the golden mean?  or more interested in lines and patterns?  What trend do you find dominant in your own artworks (or what art trend do you think you're always shooting for when you create)?

And so you see what I mean about my own dedication to this, I'm going to post some examples under another cut.  I'd also hope that all of you who join in the discussion today give us examples of your own work to illustrate your point!

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