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  1. - Top - End - #91
    Pixie in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Thank you RawBearNYC. That worked perfectly. Here's the finished gif...



    Raistlin1040: I would suggest using Inkscape instead of the GIMP and then using the GIMP to make it a gif like RawBearNYC told me to.
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
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  2. - Top - End - #92
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Are you sure the link is right because I am getting a Cannot Find Server page?
    Quote Originally Posted by YPU View Post
    Real life doesn’t happen, it surprises you like a trap of a CR way above your level.

  3. - Top - End - #93
    Pixie in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    the link works for me, but just search inkscape on google. It's an open-source vector drawing program.

    http://www.google.com/search?client=...8&oe=UTF-8
    its the first link
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  4. - Top - End - #94
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Okay I am at the downloads page, what do I click on to download it?
    Quote Originally Posted by YPU View Post
    Real life doesn’t happen, it surprises you like a trap of a CR way above your level.

  5. - Top - End - #95
    Pixie in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    download the one for your OS.
    If you are on a Mac, which you should be cause they're the best ;), get the one that says Mac OS X - .dmg.
    If you made a mistake while buying computers and got a machine that runs windows, get the one that says Windows - .exe installer.
    If you're on Linux, a better choice that windows, though not as good as Mac, download the one that says Linux Autopackage - .package.

    (Sorry about the pro-mac stuff ;D. I couldn't resist)
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  6. - Top - End - #96
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    So this can make things in the OotS format huh?

    This is confusing. How do I make the avatar?
    Quote Originally Posted by YPU View Post
    Real life doesn’t happen, it surprises you like a trap of a CR way above your level.

  7. - Top - End - #97
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Quote Originally Posted by Raistlin1040
    So this can make things in the OotS format huh?

    This is confusing. How do I make the avatar?
    We don't have specific instructions for using Inkscape. But we do have a post on using SodiPodi on the first page of this thread. The two programs are similar, so many people will be able to adapt the instructions to move from one to the other.

    Or maybe one of our Intrepid guide authors will write an Inkscape tutorial: http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/yabb...6717;start=0#4

  8. - Top - End - #98
    Pixie in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    I will this weekend, possibly before. No time right now

    [edit] sorry for the double post. The next one is gonna be Looooong
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
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    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  9. - Top - End - #99
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Amorelli’s Guide to Making Avatars with Inkscape and the GIMP

    This Guide is intended for use with Mac OS X, though Linux and Windows users should have no problem.


    I: Getting Inkscape
    1. Go to the Download Page

    2. Select the download appropriate for your system. (These aren’t links, since those change with new versions. I just included which to download for each OS)
    ---MACINTOSH: Mac OS X — .dmg
    ---WINDOWS: Windows — .exe installer
    ---LINUX: Linux Autopackage — .package (See autopackage.org for directions).
    ---OTHER OSs: Scroll to the bottom of the screen. You can download the source code and compile it yourself.

    MACINTOSH
    3. Drag the Inkscape application from the disk image to your application folder (or wherever you want it to go)

    OTHER OSs
    3. Follow the instructions on the website

    II: Getting the GIMP
    NOTE: The GIMP requires Apple’s X11 which is included in the “Optional Installs” Package on the OS X install disk

    FOR MAC:
    1. Go to the GIMP.app website

    2. Download it.

    3. Open the ReadMe and follow the instructions.

    FOR WINDOWS:
    1. Go to the GIMP for windows website and follow the instructions there for download and installation.

    FOR UNIX (Linux, BSD, Sun Solaris)
    1. Go to the GIMP for Unix website and follow the instructions for download and installation that are appropriate for the OS you have.

    III: Making the Avatar
    NOTE: I am doing this on a Mac. There may be slight differences in appearance and function with other operatic systems, but it should be the same overall.
    1. Open Inkscape. At this point, your screen should look like this (a large picture, so just the url)

    2. Go to File > Document Preferences (Shift + Ctrl + D). The window should look like this. Choose the Page tab, and in the custom canvas section set the units to px and each side to 117. It should now look like this.

    NOTE: If you hover the mouse over just about anything, a box will show up telling what it does.

    3. There should be a small box in the lower left part of the screen. This is the canvas. Zoom in on it using the zoom tool (The magnifying glass). The box in the extreme lower left corner also controls zoom. I like to set it at between 200 and 225 for the basic drawing and zoom in further for detail.

    4. First, use the circle tool (guess which one it is) to create a circle. I generally make it about as big as a third of the canvas height. Now go to object > fill and stroke. You’ll want to always keep this window open, since it controls, surprisingly enough, the fill and stroke of whatever object you’re currently editing.


    NOTE: The anatomy of the fill and stroke window.
    Fill deals with the inside of the object and its transparency and color. Stroke deals with the outline of the object.
    Along the top are three tabs: Fill, stroke paint, and stroke style. They are remarkably self explanatory. In the fill and stroke paint tabs (the above picture), the X makes it no fill, the solid box makes it a solid fill, the linear gradient makes it a linear gradient fill, the circular gradient makes a radial gradient fill. Ignore the other ones. The slider at the very bottom controls the transparency of the entire object. The triangle and surrounding ring control the color, and the slider labeled “A” controls the alpha. Under the alpha slider is a box containing a value. This is the code for the color you are currently using. The stroke style tab doesn’t really need explaining, since it is already well labeled.


    5. Change the fill of the circle to an appropriate flesh tone, (I used ffd197ff) then select the stroke paint tab and make sure it’s black. Your canvas should look something like this.

    6. Now, select the straight line/Bezier curve tool (the pencil with a straight line and a curve). This tool creates nodes where you click and draws straight lines between them. Press enter to end the line. For this example, we will create a wizard type person. So, create a blocky outline of the robe. Remember to make the line 2 pts thick, and choose a nice fill for it. Then, select the robe, go to object > lower to bottom. It should look something like this:

    7. Obviously, we don’t want a blocky outline. This is when vector drawing comes in. Select the node tool (right under the arrow tool) and click on the object. Each of the nodes can have lines going off of it. These lines control the curvature of the lines between the nodes. However, right now the nodes don’t have any. So… hold shift, click and drag off one of the nodes. A line should come off of it and affect the curvature of the line. Play around with moving the nodes and creating more lines so you get the hang of them, and make a robe. Now, it might look something like this.

    8. Now, we make the face. Using the circle tool, create two small ovals, one slightly larger than the other, and make the stroke and fill black. Basically, make it look like the eyes on OoTS. They should look something like this.

    9. To finish the face, we make the smile. Use the freehand drawing tool (directly under the spiral) to make a smile. If you make it a little crooked or shaky, don’t worry. Remember the node tool? You can use it on this line too, so you can change the curvature and placement of the nodes, and even delete or add them. To delete click one and press delete. To add one, double click on the line. So, the drawing will now look like this:


    10. All we have left is arms and legs. Make them with the Bezier curve tool, similarly to the creation of the robe, except you need no fill. Generally, I use two lines per arm. The first line has a node at the shoulder, elbow, and end of the middle finger. The second has a node at the end of the left finger, wrist, and right finger. Use the lines attached to the nodes to achieve the right curves. The leg has a node at the hip, knee, ankle, and toe. Here’s a close up of the arm/hand (note that I changed the robe somewhat. This was easily achieved by moving nodes.)


    11. Now, you can add other things like a belt, etc.

    Another possibility, as Pop Goes the Banjulhu told me, is to make the lines in the drawing have rounded "caps", so the end of the line is not sharp. This is done by going to the stroke style tab of the stroke and fill window and choosing the rounded cap, as is shown in the picture of the stroke style window above.

    12. Once you are done, go to file > export bitmap. Choose the page tab and set the size to 117 by 117, which will be 90 dpi.

    13. Now, quit Inkscape and open the GIMP. Open the image you just exported. Create a layer and move it to the bottom, and use the paintbucket tool to fill in the lower layer with white. This functions to fill in something behind the transparent first layer so the anti-aliasing is preserved when converted to .gif. Your windows should now look like this.

    14. Select the lower layer, and use the magic wand tool with the sample merged option (the settings for your magic wand tool should look like this) selected to choose the white areas and use clear (ctrl + k) to delete them. When you do so, you should see the checkerboard background again, not white. Then, go to file > save as. Erase the .png at the end of the name and replace it with .gif. Click save, then export, and unclick the comment part. Then, click export.

    15. Your Done! If you have any further questions, PM me or post them in this thread.


    [hr]

    FAQ
    Q: In Gimp, when you use the Fuzzy Select Tool, (to make the background trasparent) how do you keep it smooth and not choppy?
    A: First of all, make sure you export the image from inkscape as a .png. This image should look smooth: this is because of antialiasing to make the edges curved. However, this antialiasing is done by changing the alpha of certain pixels, which won't transfer over onto a .gif nicely, and produces results similar to what you have shown me. However, by putting the white background on a layer behind it, you make the antialiasing over white. Then, by using the fuzzy select tool with the sample merged option and selected the white areas (make sure the white layer is still selected in the layers section), you delete the non-antialiasing part of the white background. So, you should be left with an image that has anti-aliasing over white. However, your image does not seem to have this antialiasing.

    There are two things I think could be causing this problem.
    First, you may not have the sample-merged option selected. This would delete the entire white background, and thus render it useless. When you delete the white areas, the layer that was previously completely white should now have a white silhouette of your picture on the above layer.

    The second thing that could be causing this problem is if the threshold is set incorrectly on the fuzzy-select (threshold is how close the color has to be to the adjacent color to be selected. So, if the threshold is too high, for example, a grey would be selected along with the white.) The threshold should be set to 15.

    Here is a picture of what the settings should be: http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d4...ySelectBar.png

    If the problem persists, feel free to PM me.
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  10. - Top - End - #100
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Thanks for the guide. Couple notes

    The GIMP is, in fact, available for Windows, it's actually my primary raster graphics editor.

    One thing you might want to do is define what Fill and Stroke mean. Your guide assumes that the reader knows what they are, but that really shouldn't be a given.

  11. - Top - End - #101
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Nice tutorial! But, I would like to suggest that you cap the ends of the hands and mouth. This can be done via the stroke menu, and it really enhances the look.

    Another usefual tool for making avatars is Macromedia Flash. It is expensive, but it has a very unique, simple method for editing nodes (drag the line to curve, hold ctrl to make a new point). I might make a tutorial.

  12. - Top - End - #102
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    thanks for the feedback. I forgot about the rounded cap thing :-[. I made the changes you suggested, and if there are any more you'd like, just inform me.

    Also, I added more information for other operating systems, so it should be more universal.

    Pop Goes the Banjulhu: I do like Flash for making avatars, but I found that it doesn't export them in a good enough quality, which is why I now use inkscape.
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  13. - Top - End - #103
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Quote Originally Posted by Amorelli
    Pop Goes the Banjulhu: I do like Flash for making avatars, but I found that it doesn't export them in a good enough quality, which is why I now use inkscape.
    Yeah, I was having that same problem (I use inkscape).
    Mods, I don't know if I have the right to request this, but I think that if we removed all non-tutorial posts, this thread would be much easier to navigate. Just my 2 cents! :P

  14. - Top - End - #104
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    adding my 2 cents... or make a new thread just for the tutorials which you mods could lock after putting them there. This way, there's still a thread for avatar making questions.

    [edit] Pop Goes the Banjulhu: Your sig is messed up. Looks like you were using html tags in there. It's better now
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  15. - Top - End - #105
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Something I don't quite comprehend about this tutorial. I use Inkscape for mine, and when I Export Bitmap, I get a PNG with a transparent background, so no need to do any messing with selecting things in GIMP.

    Of course, I then went and made it into a GIF with a white background for some incredibly stupid reason, but that was very deliberate, I think I'd forgotten that GIF can handle (pathetic) transparency. But anyway, it is possible to export from Inkscape with transparency already in place. I just don't know how I managed it.
    eldhrin love
    fan

  16. - Top - End - #106
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    You are correct - the png is transparent. However, converting it directly to gif w/out using the method I included messes up the anti-aliasing.
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  17. - Top - End - #107
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    the PNG spec supports, iirc, alpha transparency, which fixes the anti-aliasing problem found with GIF's. Unfortunately, PNG isn't supported in Mac browsers, so you probably shouldn't use them on web pages.

  18. - Top - End - #108
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    can anyone tell me how to make Avatars in Pixia? its a free program that you can download. it is very powerful and need some instruction. i have some basic knoledge on it so you would need to tell me how to change the format to gif.

  19. - Top - End - #109
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Dont know Pixia, sorry.

    RawBearNYC: Could you change the title of this topic to just Guide to Making Your Own Avatars. A lot of people want to make their own but don't want to buy illustrator, and because of the title, they don't necessarily think to look here.
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  20. - Top - End - #110
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Hmm. If you open an image in Illustrator and then save it again, it becomes blurry. Is there any way to fix this? Sometimes I don't save the .ai files, so I just open the image file to add stuff on, but then it got blurry. I've done that before without it getting blurry though, but when I try now it seems to always go blurry. Any help?

  21. - Top - End - #111
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Quote Originally Posted by Sneak
    Hmm. If you open an image in Illustrator and then save it again, it becomes blurry. Is there any way to fix this? Sometimes I don't save the .ai files, so I just open the image file to add stuff on, but then it got blurry. I've done that before without it getting blurry though, but when I try now it seems to always go blurry. Any help?
    I have the AI 3 (circa. 1990) kit, so I'll look it up and see if I can find anything.

    speaking of which, anyone know if there's an adaption to allow older Mac programs to run on Windows?

  22. - Top - End - #112
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Quote Originally Posted by jacksquat3
    speaking of which, anyone know if there's an adaption to allow older Mac programs to run on Windows?
    Not that I know of, but you can generally find a different program that does the same thing.
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  23. - Top - End - #113
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Quote Originally Posted by nightfire8199
    can anyone tell me how to make Avatars in Pixia? its a free program that you can download. it is very powerful and need some instruction. i have some basic knoledge on it so you would need to tell me how to change the format to gif.
    Dude, I tried to check it out for you, but the site is incredibly confusing. It never even specifies if Pixia is a vector or bitmap program.

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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Quote Originally Posted by Amorelli
    Not that I know of, but you can generally find a different program that does the same thing.
    I have Access to Corel Draw, but I don't feel like learning it. I remembered Mac's release of Virtual PC and thought there might be some software out like that for windows.


    Sneak: The only thing I could find that might help was the Autotrace tool, it'll help redefine the borders, but I'm not sure if that's the extent of your problem.

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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    thats ok i decided to download Inkscape. so i no longer use pixia.

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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Quote Originally Posted by jacksquat3
    Sneak: The only thing I could find that might help was the Autotrace tool, it'll help redefine the borders, but I'm not sure if that's the extent of your problem.
    Well, it somehow fixed itself. Dunno what the problem was, but thanks anyway.

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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Quote Originally Posted by Sneak

    Well, it somehow fixed itself. Dunno what the problem was, but thanks anyway.
    yeah, software does that alot, I don't know how many glitches i've run into that later disappear. Being an amateur programmer I know two rules about programs
    1. There's what a program should do, and what it will do.
    2. If your program doesn't have any bugs in it, it doesn't work in the first place.

  28. - Top - End - #118
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    guaging interest: are there people interested in a tutorial to making animated avatars in Flash?
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

  29. - Top - End - #119
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    Ooh! I would be interested! I can use Flash, but I'm not great.

  30. - Top - End - #120
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    Default Re: Guide to Making Avatars with Adobe Illustrator

    for this one, it wouldn't be so much of a step by step thing from the beginning as a list of things to keep track of. I'll include a step by step for the one I'm doing for mortia, but I'm going to assume people are pretty good at flash already. I'm not gonna explain all the terminology (motion tween, shape tween, rotate, etc.). Flash is pretty easy to learn anyway, so it shouldn't be too hard to figure out.
    "Well, late at night, when the people were gone, he used to pick up my guitar
    And sing a song in a shaky voice that was real as the day was long."
    - Neil Young, Tonight's the Night
    ----------
    Original, animated avatar (because it's not allowed anymore )
    More avatars from back in the day

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