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Offline madinmex

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Which Program ?
« on: May 18, 2009, 05:20:39 PM »
Some advice please. I am making a football forum (European) . Now I have to wait untill next week to, end of season, before I request some help with a logo or header as there are some big changes about to happen. However I must get into learning graphics as I may need to change the logo frequently  :'(  or  :D  whichever the way the season plays out. Can someone please point me to an easy(ish) program to either buy. It will be mainly used for headers or logos, i really do not want to get to involved in photo manipulation in a big way. I cannot afford Photoshop. For some stupid reason layers still confuse me and yet I do understand that it would probably be the best way to go. PS ultimate is affordable and I will download Gimp. Also any pointers to good video tutorials would be great.

Thanks for any help

Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2009, 05:46:45 PM »
I do not think any of the graphics software is really easy to use I  have been using Corel Paintshop Pro x2 for a little while now and  I am still learning new ways to use the different functions . Some say Adobe Photoshop is the best but I could not say because I have never used it but I can tell you it is not cheap . It all comes down to practice makes perfect the more you use the software the easier it gets it also helps to have some artistic talent . There are free ones like Gimp & Paint.net you can also get free trial versions of Corel and Adobes software . One of the first things you will need to learn about no matter what software you use is layers and layering . :)
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Offline Shortie

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2009, 05:49:23 PM »
Now that is a tough one

you really only have two choices if Photoshop is out the question

1. Corel Paintsop pro Details Here... you can pick it up at the moment for around 70 Bucks 45 UKP and value for money you cannot beat it - If you have a browse around here look for NerdBoys stuff 90% of that has been created with PSP

2. GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) Deatails Here...and it says in the title it is part of the GNU project ans is free it takes a little bit of getting used to but again is a powerful option

If it was in your shoes I would start with GIMP now and see how you get on - just down load and try BUT if you have a few pennies spare go for PSP as it will do all you want and more with the additional aspect is that it is a recognized product and in the long run you will only have to learn one app

Just my thoughts

Shortie

P.S. once you have more details let us know about what you are creating and we should be able to help with technique and style

EDIT:-

Tutorial....

Here is a tutorial on layers and gives a good explanation of the principles it is based on Photoshop but can be applied to any Graphics app and the technique is the same - The way I explained it to my little one was draw on lots of sheets of tracing paper then hold them up to the light and move the sheets around until you get the picture you are after.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2009, 05:57:40 PM by Shortie »

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Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2009, 06:01:36 PM »
I agree with with Shortie try one of the free ones or download the free trial version of PSP Pro x2 it is the full version is not limited in anyway and play with it and see how it goes before you spend your hard earned money . :)
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Offline DMHolt57

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2009, 06:32:54 PM »
The reason I suggest PaintDotNet for a freebie is the amount of online info and plug-ins at the forum.
2. Microsoft pays the bills for the PDN project...no flames please...  >:D
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Offline madinmex

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2009, 07:47:24 PM »
Thanks very much to you all  :wave:   I see PaintShop pro has a special offer so will get in touch with them tomorrow. Although from the UK I live in Mexico and they keep trying to give me the Spanish version but sure I will be able to get round that.I'll also try the freebies.

 Layering .. I'll just have to get my head round it and hopefully it will click one day. Thanks to you all, hopefully one day soon I can exhibit my progress   :thumbsup:

Gracias !

Offline SoLoGHoST

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2009, 08:00:24 AM »
Layering is simple if you think of it as a stack of see-through paper, you know like the tracing paper you used when you were a kid, or maybe not.  Each sheet of this paper is a layer.  So you draw something on 1 of these sheets, and place it down on a table, than draw something else on another sheet and place it right on top of the other sheet, the result is 1 drawing (but in actuality it is 2 peices of paper creating 1 drawing, or 2 layers creating that 1 image).

Well, hopefully this helps you to understand layers a bit.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2009, 08:11:42 AM by SoLoGHoST »

Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2009, 10:49:06 AM »
I almost always with a few exceptions use a new layer whenever I add something new to the design I am creating it just makes things easier like if you add something and then decide you don't like it just delete the layer and it's gone . :)
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Offline DMHolt57

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2009, 05:58:32 PM »
Here is an obvious example...one house image then a second image of same with a duplicate layer with glass style added and merged...

   
* housnogls.png (8.64 kB, 256x256 - viewed 71 times.)
* housglsd.png (69.34 kB, 245x232 - viewed 107 times.)
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Offline madinmex

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2009, 08:57:28 PM »
Thanks peeps. I understand the theory of layering but just never seem to get it right  :)  I've now bought PSP plus so will have no option but to keep at it untill it finally sinks in. It's strange that paintshop are giving a lot of 'extras' (video tutorial etc.) but mention very little of layering description wise. I must admit having a quick look, I like the painter photo 4 essentials ! however first things first.....

Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2009, 09:35:17 PM »
A word of caution from a fellow Paintshop pro user make sure that as you progress through your design that you save it as a .PSPimage do this every so often while your designing your logo or whatever the reason for this is that on occasion PSP PRO will crash it does not happen often but it does happen and you will lose your work if you don't save it as a .PSPimage I do this every time I start a new layer just to be safe there is nothing worse than working on a project for hours and then losing it all .  :)
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Offline madinmex

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2009, 07:43:42 AM »
Nerdboy  ;D  (sorry to be a pain in the butt) I have spent hours looking through various vids and tutorials. I have just (a zillion times) watched 'micheles making an avatar' vid . Now I am after making a banner for the forum and have a few experimental photos. I create the first rastor layer. I then open another rastor layer and add the picture and so on. Now everytime i try to add a new picture or logo all the layers merge, in other words I have no separate layers ! Whats worse is if I try to save the complete banner only one picture remains saved. Can you give me a clue as to what I may be doing wrong!

BTW.  If I use the presets then I do get separate layers ? 

I am trying  :'(

Offline Shortie

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2009, 07:58:04 AM »
Hi madinmex

Yep Nerdboy is your man

But we also have a Olivia who pops in too and She is a bit of a wizz we believe with PSP so there is more support coming So there is no stoping the PSP'ers from taking over the world

I am afraid I cannot help at the moment as I haven't PSP installed but will have soon once I make some disk space

All the best

Shortie

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Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #13 on: June 03, 2009, 08:22:17 AM »
Madinmex I am working on an answer for your 1st problem i am trying to recreate it to see if it happens to me as for second problem. If you want to save all your layers intact you must save them as PSPimage when you save as a .png or .gif or jpeg and so on it automatically merges the visible layers . :)

P.S iwill get back to you on your other problem as soon as I can . :)
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Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2009, 09:04:10 AM »
Okay you can not add to pictures to a layer that already has a picture you must create a new layer if you want to move layer so a picture is on top of another drag that layer over top of the other layer . I load load a screenshot  so you can see how you should have paintshop pro palettes and toll bars set up for ease of use at least this is the way I like mine. :)I don't know If I understood your question and provided you with the right answer But I can tell you there is a huge learning curve when it comes to graphics software and practice makes perfect right now you should be acquainting yourself with all the different functions just play around I did not have any help figuring it out I think it took me almost a month before I started to really get the hang of it so be patient and goodluck. :)Here is a screen shot that might be of some help I am just not really good at putting directions into words .
* 2009-06-03_095637.png (386.55 kB, 1440x900 - viewed 33 times.)
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Offline Shortie

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #15 on: June 03, 2009, 09:12:02 AM »
Must admit the PSP interface is one of the coolest apps I have seen bit like Lightroom

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Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #16 on: June 03, 2009, 09:24:00 AM »
Yeah it is nice to look at and while it may not be as easy to use or able to do everything Photoshop can I don't think you can beat it for the price I actually picked my copy up on ebay for less than $50.00 . Okay I have things to do today so I will be popping in and out today and lurking in the background . :vampire::)
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Offline madinmex

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #17 on: June 03, 2009, 11:16:13 AM »
Thanks Nerdboy and Shortie.

I wrote that at a very early hour this morning and just had an hours kip so will clear the eyes and try. I understand the saving as bit .. I assume you can actally load photos of different formats into layers and then save the whole thing as pspimage first and then as a png, jpeg or Gif (and so on) for publication ? 

Just one other thing that I have noticed watching some vids, all seem to start of with the first layer with a flood fill (all have been to do with graphics) For my background layer I have been using as a transparent (no fill or picture) box. Not sure if there is a problem there ? Anyways thanks a lot and will get back to the drawing board  ;D


Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #18 on: June 03, 2009, 11:29:51 AM »
You can start with a transparent background layer and if you decide you want a colored background you can add it in at anytime .

Also I am still learning myself so try to be patient with me LOL. I may not always be able to help I am not good at putting what I mean into words I am more of a doer not a teacher I am the kind of guy who has no fear and never reads instructions I just roll up my sleeves and dig in . :clown::D
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Offline madinmex

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #19 on: June 03, 2009, 09:00:21 PM »
Thanks for your time Nerdboy.  It really is pictures with layers that i am still having trouble with not graphics) . However I shall spend all day tomorrow till I find an way  :)  As you say trial and error and lots of patience!

I must say though from all the other things I have tried am really imprssed and believe it or not (so far ) no problems  :-X

Gracias

Offline NerdBoy

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #20 on: June 03, 2009, 11:03:57 PM »
Good to here there is still allot I do not know about this software I actually just figured out a few weeks ago that I could make my own picture tubes there are also plenty of free ones just google paintshop pro picture tubes . The is also a folder in your documents called PSP files you can load all your brushes tubes textures what ever to the so named appropriate folder in this file and you can save this folder and transfer to another computer with paintshop pro loaded on it but fist you have to delete the original . There is allot to remember and my aging brain forgets easily . Have fun and no fears just roll up your sleeves and dig in . :wave::)
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Offline Olivia

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Re: Which Program ?
« Reply #21 on: June 04, 2009, 11:54:48 AM »
I have a site that I put my PSP tutorials I write. Many of them are full of screen shots because new users do not understand how to use the tools. You may not like the stuff I create but it is for all levels of users and I am still writing more tutorials.

It teaches you more on layers too and if you don't want to do the tutorials and just read and observe the shots I think you all can benefit from it.

My tutorial site is www.bepsphappy.net and if I spammed it was for a good cause. Delete if I was wrong for doing it this way. Writing tutorials is time consuming and to write them for each forum I belong to I would just go crazy.

If there is anything you would like to learn just let me know and I will get to writing some. I register all my tutorials with an agency called TWI so that no one can claim them as their own. All I ask is that you don't copy and paste them somewhere else.

Layers are very simple once you understand the concept. Also if you copy and paste an image and you don't want it on the same layer you are on, just paste as a new layer. When you want to finish you can merge your layers or flatten them, but make sure your background is the color you want or it will be white by default when you save it as a png, jpeg or gif.

Tutorial writing for new users is my passion and sometimes I forget newbies don't grasp the concept so if you have any questions about it just hop back in here and ask away.

Love,
Olivia

 


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