Seeking advice about vectoring ^_^'

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kyokujitsu

kyokujitsu

Without Purpose

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I'm not an artistic person, and I've always had a knack for doing poorly in tasks related to anything visual. I compared a drawing I did last year with a drawing I had on the wall that I did in kindergarten, and I couldn't see any difference. But I've always wanted to try vectoring, so I tried, and I'm stuck already. I've got a few questions that I'm hoping some expert out there can help me out with, but first off, the original picture:

here

and my vector so far:

here
(Sorry if the file is big, I'm new to uploading images ^_^')

Before anything, I suppose I should establish that I'm using Adobe Photoshop CS2.

As you can see, I'm using an anime screenshot, and I haven't gotten very far in the vectoring process. So first off, I was wondering if I should bother trying to continue vectoring the picture. Being new, I was completely stumped at the eyes, nose and ears, as I couldn't vector them without them being unrecognisable. I'm following Unmei's Tracing Tutorial (recommended by a friend and found easily off google), and it does say that the eyes are the most difficult bit, but I'm beginning to think that the eyes of this screenshot, especially being an anime screenshot, are too difficult to do.

And another question, I was wondering if it was possible to save paths. Since I'm not too serious about turning this into a wallpaper, but rather just doing it for the fun and experience of vectoring, I didn't bother changing the canvas size from the original screenshot. But in case I did want to, I wanted to try and save the paths so that I can change the size whenever I wished. But whenever I had to turn off the computer, I was forced to fill in the stroke path (by the way, I'm using method one as outlined in Unmei's tutorial). So I'm open to any advice I can recieve on what to do for this problem, even if it's suggesting an alternative method ^_^'

"What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?"
- Dr. Robert Schuller

GoodTree - The homepage that supports charities ^_^

  • Oct 11, 2006

kuroimisa

Retired Moderator

kuroimisa

Wizard of Darkness -under a rock

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I think perhaps with the eyes, you may want to trace the outline of the say top eyelid part and then fill the path in instead of stroking the path. I say this mainly because I find anime eyes seem to be outlined much heavier than everything else. I don't know what the original looks like, so I can't really comment much on it ^^;

The outline so far looks pretty good. There is a bit of a wobble on her arm (perhaps you can stretch the line out more and lessen the number of anchor points), but these things will improve due to practice. ^^

As for saving paths, I think that it should be possible (there's a paths palette where your layers are- if I'm correct it should be the tab on the top right of that little window), but I've never saved a path before so I have no idea XD I'm sorry I can't help you on that >_<

And seeing you need more advice, I might shuffle this over to the Sandbox. More people will see this thread, hopefully >D

merged: 10-12-2006 ~ 02:51am
And I forgot the most important thing :P Yes you should definitely continue. Vectoring and using the pentool doesn't come with overnight success, but you've got the hang of it and it looks pretty good. A few more lines and so on- things can only get better :D

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kyokujitsu

kyokujitsu

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Thanks for the tips ^_^ I wouldn't have noticed the shaky vector of the arm unless you had pointed it out. I found the paths palette, but I don't understand how the save path option works ^_^' I'm sure I'll figure it out in time though, so thanks for pointing it out.

I have one more question that I forgot to ask yesterday. I showed the same thing to a friend (who has no vectoring experience either), and he suggested that I try varying the line thickness. I was wondering if this was a matter of trial and error, something that I can only learn through experience, or whether there was a way to learn. I'd love to recieve some tips on that ^_^'

"What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?"
- Dr. Robert Schuller

GoodTree - The homepage that supports charities ^_^

  • Oct 12, 2006

sillymoogle

sillymoogle

Vectoring back to school

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Pen tools take a lot of getting used to, but it is well worth it if you can become proficient in using this tool. Personally, my hand isn't that steady to draw using a mouse (or now even a tablet... :( ) and find it super useful.

When using the pen tool, there are some techniques I find particularly useful and they are universal with Windows/Mac and Illustrator/Photoshop. First is Alt-clicking. If you "Alt-Click" one of those bars from the anchor points, you can stretch and shrink them to adjust the curve/arch it makes. These bars do not have to make a straight line.

If you "Alt-Click" an Anchor Point, it removes those bars, and you can adjust them to make a curve again. Or, you can "Undo" (Ctrl-Z [windows]/Command-Z[Mac]/Edit menu option...) and you will have that anchor point selected and you can Alt Click the bars. Another intresting thing you can do with while Alt-Clicking the anchor points is to keep the mouse button pressed, release the "Alt" key and press your spacebar. While the Spacebar and mouse button are pressed together, you can actually move that particular Anchor Point ANYWHERE without moving the other anchor points!.

I personally think this School Rumble image is hard to use for Vector Tracing because it's blurry and has... rather washed out colors... This just makes the process more difficult for you.... :(

For people interested in getting a good feel in using the pen tool for vector tracing, I'd recommend warming up with images like Akari page1 or Akari page2. There is no color to distract you with tracing. Manga images ARE NOT good for this... they have shades of grey. It should be line art.
I hope these tips help.

kyokujitsu

kyokujitsu

Without Purpose

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Thanks for the advice ^_^ I already use some of the techniques that you mentioned, but some of them are new to me. I'll try them out soon ^_^

Since the guide I used doesn't really mention what kind of images are vector-able, I wasn't sure if I should begin by trying the anime screenshot, so thanks for clearing that out and confirming my doubts ^_^ I'll try vectoring those images that you suggested soon ^_^

"What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?"
- Dr. Robert Schuller

GoodTree - The homepage that supports charities ^_^

  • Oct 13, 2006
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well, as long as you can get definite lines, all images are vectorable.
you really should have blown that image up though, it helps so much when you need to get detail and such.
I usually go about vectoring by outlining one part with color at a time, then filling in that color with a shape layer. then you can change the color at whim. (until you rasterize it)
my first vector looked a lot like this, I had all the outlines on one layer, and then I used the brush tool to color them in, it took forever and it didn't turn out to be useable.
I have 3-4 layers in any given vector for just one colored part, 1 for outlines, 1 for color, 1 for shadows, and another for any possible highlights. it usually adds up to be a lot of layers, but the finished product is always more desireable.
and 90% of my vectors are from screenshots, so I think you're ok to be doing that. ;)
as for saving paths, I'm really not sure on that one, but remember when you stroke a path, it's on a path layer, being rasterized already, you can always go back with the eraser and re-stroke it if you see it's undesireable.
keep working at it, you've got a good start!

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