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Thread: Maptools/Gimp Help

  1. #1

    Post Maptools/Gimp Help

    Alright so, I am trying to make some textures/tiles for maptools, and I have so far done the first half right, I made the LOOK like textures/tiles. Now the only problem is, each and every one of them has a white or black background. So in order to correct that, I downloaded GIMP. Now the NEW issue is, I read the manuel to gimp, followed the instructions, and yet still cannot make the textures/tiles backgrounds transparent (or topdown or w/e it's called)

    So please, help. How do I make things backgrounds transparent on Gimp? (The simpler you can make it sound, the better. :p)

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMTibernius View Post
    Alright so, I am trying to make some textures/tiles for maptools, and I have so far done the first half right, I made the LOOK like textures/tiles. Now the only problem is, each and every one of them has a white or black background. So in order to correct that, I downloaded GIMP. Now the NEW issue is, I read the manuel to gimp, followed the instructions, and yet still cannot make the textures/tiles backgrounds transparent (or topdown or w/e it's called)

    So please, help. How do I make things backgrounds transparent on Gimp? (The simpler you can make it sound, the better. :p)
    File -> New

    - Advanced Options
    Fill with: Transparency

    Set the image size how you want it to be.

    Hit OK, then paste the image.

    Fuzzy Select Tool (hit U on your keyboard), select the white/black area, hit your delete key.

    Save as PNG or GIF.

    I'm not sure if there's a faster way to do it, I usually use PaintNET for simple stuff.
    Last edited by Cool as a Cucumber; 07-12-2009 at 08:10 PM.

  3. #3

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    *latches onto cucumber* *Hugs the FROCK out of him*

    Sorry man, but yeah. This "little" issue has kept me awake for 2 days now (well that, and my insomnia) and had me going out of my mind on what NOW became a SIMPLE task.

    So thankyou, thankyou, thankyou.... and also, by the way, THANK YOU!!!!



    Happy to be a member here at the cartographers guild.

  4. #4
    Software Dev/Rep Redrobes's Avatar
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    You can give him some rep with the little scales icon - which I shall do now too...

  5. #5
    Administrator RobA's Avatar
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    A little more streamlined is to just load the image, the right click on the "blackground layer" and use "Add Alpha Channel" then continue with the fuzzy select tool steps.

    A small tip (which I didn't realize for years) is that any layer name in bold has NO alpha channel (no transparency) and non-bold layers have an alpha channel (potentially has transparency)!

    If you select and delete a layer without transparency it is filled with the current BG colour, if it has transparency it is set transparent. The interesting side effect of this is you can use the eraser tool with the Alt key held down (or shift alt on some systems) and "anti-erase" or change the alpha (transparency) so that the erased stuff reappears!

    -Rob A>

  6. #6
    Community Leader Facebook Connected torstan's Avatar
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    You can also use Layer-Transparency->Set Colour to Transparency with the colour select set to either white or black to get the backgrounds to be properly transparent. This works particularly well after using fuzzy select with feathered edges.
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  7. #7
    Administrator RobA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by torstan View Post
    You can also use Layer-Transparency->Set Colour to Transparency with the colour select set to either white or black to get the backgrounds to be properly transparent. This works particularly well after using fuzzy select with feathered edges.
    Be careful with that, however, as will take ALL the white out of the image and turn it transparent, so anything white will be transparent, and anything partially white (i.e. grey) will end up black and partially transparent!

    -Rob A>

  8. #8
    Community Leader Facebook Connected torstan's Avatar
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    Ah, I think you've misunderstood what I meant there. The steps I'd recommend are:

    1. Use fuzzy select with feathered edges to get a pretty good selection of your background.
    2. Use colour to alpha from the Layer->Transparency->Colour to Alpha menu option.

    The advantage of using colour to alpha is that you can vary the threshold on your fuzzy select, but you'll never completely get rid of any colours you accidentally select. I find it gives me the smoothest edges when cropping images out to use as tokens.

    I entirely agree that using colour to alpha on the whole layer is a bad idea and definitely to be avoided.
    Fantasy Map Blog | My food illustration
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  9. #9
    Administrator RobA's Avatar
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    I see - colour to alpha on the fuzzily selected area. Exactly. In truth, that I often do is duplicate the layer, fuzzy select the BG colour of the bottom layer, grow the selection a few pixels (especially if there is a drop shadow/omni shadow) then clear, on the top layer duplicate do a colour to alpha on the whole image using the BG colour, then merge the two layers. A little script might be useful with parameters for the fuzzy selection amount, the pixel grow size, and a colour picker for the BG.

    -Rob A>

  10. #10
    Community Leader Facebook Connected torstan's Avatar
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    Actually that would be a great little script. Good thinking.
    Fantasy Map Blog | My food illustration
    Everything I post is free for use and redistribution under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 licence, except where noted otherwise in the thread.

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