View Full Version : Spice Up My Watchtower

06-19-2011, 11:13 PM
Hey all,

I am pretty new to photoshop and creating stuff but i am creating a castle and i am pretty happy with my progress so far except my watchtowers. They look like what they are, a stone texture circle.

I was wondering what i could do that will fit my theme of the castle so far while spicing them up. The easier the better.

Thanks in advance. Below is an image of the castle for 8% zoom and then a watch tower from 25% zoom.

06-20-2011, 12:02 AM
Well what you have is the top of the tower...what's inside of it like the rest of the castle? I'm guessing a spiral stairway so just make some outer walls then put stairs in the middle part. If it's a non-functioning tower, and is indeed solid, then what you have seems fine to me but you need battlements (those square thingies that are spaced out so that archers can hide behind them and shoot down dudes trying to scale the walls).

06-20-2011, 12:06 AM
Once again thanks for replying,

I plan to have a spiral staircase on the second floor. Battlements i would *love* to add just, confused how. Should i use just simple black lines or texture or what? When it comes to this type of details the train goes off the tracks.

I know you gave me a nice tutorial on the other topic (For the battlements I made a selection of each layer, click the path tab, hit the "make path from selection" button, and then stroked them with a square brush. The brush settings are important, set the spacing at 200%, set the angle jitter to direction.
Back on the layers tab I made a selection of each layer, then inverted the selection, hit the delete key to erase the squares sticking out from the shapes, and deselected.) but i am still confused.

Also any way to make them seem less "flat"? I added some shadows and small effects.


06-20-2011, 09:54 AM
I would recommend looking up some aerial images of castles or watachtowers to see what they look like. That would likely give you some more ideas. Also, as far as making them "seem less 'flat'" it comes down to lighting. You can do a lot by making the lower areas darker and/or the higher points lighter. As far as I know there is no automatic filter that will do this for you. True, the drop shadow can help if you put it in the right direction and you aren't top dead center over the top of something.

06-20-2011, 04:55 PM
Thanks, i will play around with more lighting effects.

I know what the battlements look like, just cant figure out how to make them without them look completely incorrect.

06-20-2011, 06:33 PM
Ok, I had a few minutes to sort of show you what I was trying to say. This isn't perfect but I think you get the idea.

I created a scrap layer used to draw lines I could "save to a channel" to mark the 'square thingies' :) . That way I could select the high blocks and low blocks separately.
I created an overlay filled with 808080 gray and called it shadow. I next pretty much loaded the 'square thingies' with white and black alternating around the ring.
I then create a drop shadow for the basic ring of the tower.
Create another drop shadow after selecting just the high 'square thingies' and offset that more than the first shadow. That's what causes the shadow to have the up and down 'tooth' look (most noticed on the inner walkway in the SE corner of the image.

I know that's a pretty rough explanation but I'm hoping you already know how to do it.

06-20-2011, 08:31 PM
Hey, Thanks so much for helping. What i am confused is on how you created those squares.. I think i understood the effects and the rest but cant figure out how to add squares without drawing them using the paint brush and them looking like a 2nd grader did it.


by the way, that looks amazing!

06-20-2011, 09:44 PM
No problem. The easiest way to do this is to drop a grid down. Then line it up dead center over your turret or as close as possible.

Create a scrap sketching layer to draw on.
1)make a black horizontal line dead center from the outer edge to the opposite outer edge. I used 2 pixels wide for everything but you can do it however you want.
2)make another line vertical dead center. You now have a perfectly quartered pie like tower.
3) select the '+' you have created by selecting the ink lines you just made and copy/paste.
4) before you anchor the pasted image use the rotation tool to spin the '+' by 45 degrees. "Anchor" the rotated image down.
5) repeat using whatever degrees split the difference and however many notches you desire.

You then need to make the outer and inner circle. I just lined it up using the circle tool but you can use the select tool as well if you can select the right area. Then just stroke the circle with a 2 pixel wide black line. (you have the outer edge of the turret now)
Then just edit>shrink> by however wide you want the outer wall to be. I think I used 20 pixels. This will be the inner circle. Once again stroke it with the 2 pixel line.

I actually selected all the blocks and loaded them with a stone image that I then did some distortions on to look more like stones around the entire ring. Then I went back and selected every other one and brightened the ones I wanted to look higher and darkened the others so they would look lower.

Basically, you want to create the curved blocks around the walls of your tower so you can then select and use to modify things until it looks right.

I know I'm just having a drink here smelling dinner which is driving me crazy so this may not be a very good explanation but I hope it puts you on the right track. If not, I'll put some more time into making a mini tutorial unless anyone knows of one we already have?

I have attached the layer of spokes that I created to make this, as you can see it's just rough and all that matters is getting the "boxes" around the edge.

edit: One more thing to keep in mind. Someone will probably come by here and share an easier way to do this which would be great but unless I know an easy way already I'm not afraid to just put in the finger power :)

06-22-2011, 11:45 PM

Sorry for the delay, been super busy. Hm, that makes much more sense and i definitely think i can get a basic figure down.. Anyway you can post the rock image you use? I don't get how you made the lines in between the rock image, i understood placing the lines (2px) but then how do you get the lines over the rock figure without the whole line?

Ugh.. i need to hire somebody.

Thanks again!

06-23-2011, 12:18 AM
Oh, I think you are referring to not leaving a gap due to selecting within the black lines...easy fix, once you select all the blocks use edit>grow>1 pixel. Do the same for the opposite blocks and you have everything covered. (btw, I'm using Gimp lingo but it should be close to what you have in PS).

If you mean the actual texture I used I don't have one. I just loaded it with stones and used the mosaic filter on it then fiddled with it a little.

Hopefully, I answered your question, if not just ask again. I'm going out of town this weekend so if you are really stumped I'm sure one of the other folks around here can explain my gibberish :)

06-28-2011, 09:19 PM
I really appreciate all your work but i just cant seem to get it or even close.. it seems like everything i do has the oppsoite effect.. I am doomed! lol.

Maybe ill just leave it without those.. a little too advanced for me at the moment

06-29-2011, 01:10 AM
Well, don't feel too bad, I couldn't follow a tutorial to save my life when I started out. In fact, I'm still not sure I can :) Just keep banging away at it and you will gradually figure stuff out and it'll be second nature to you...well most of the time ;)