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Thread: [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.

  1. #11
      jfrazierjr is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by torstan View Post
    And here is the same map imported into maptool, given dynamic lighting and being explored by an adventurer who found a statue with ruby eyes and decided it would be a good idea to prise one out. The statue shudders to life, an infernal glow in those ruby eyes and the hapless adventurer wishes he'd had a bit more respect for those annals of D&D history.....
    Attachment 5111

    Heh... All töff has to do is run back into that 7(3??) foot wide corridor, and that big hugh monster can't get to him.

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      Ghalev is offline
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    Bravo. A question, though (my GIMP-fu is nonexistent): can the Gimp provide this map with a bit of finishing stress? As it is, it looks very aggressively digital ... perfectly-sharp/crisp lines, symbols and labels.

    In Photoshop, this could be amended pretty easily in the middle stages with a bit of screened noise, a soft blur, and a re-firming of the "spot ink" by adjusting the contrast - voila. What would be (if you have time) the comparable procedure for those of us just getting our toes wet in Gimp?

    S. John Ross Ghalev
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      torstan is offline
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    My guess is that it can, I'm just not sure exactly what you're trying to achieve. Could you post a before and after version of the photoshop effect and I'll see if I can patch together the same result in Gimp. I think I know what you're getting at but I'm not 100% sure.
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      Ghalev is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by torstan View Post
    My guess is that it can, I'm just not sure exactly what you're trying to achieve. Could you post a before and after version of the photoshop effect and I'll see if I can patch together the same result in Gimp. I think I know what you're getting at but I'm not 100% sure.
    Ah, of course. The overall goal is to use a perfectly-clean digital image to create something that evokes the sense of a perfectly-clean printed one, by introducing some (relatively subtle) random variables in the crisp edges, some gentle blotting on the fonts and so on to suggest the normal imperfections in a 1980s printing process (rather than anything heavy like actual weathering).

    I've assembled this sample pretty hastily (so hastily I forgot to add a grid - d'oh!) but it should get the idea across (especially the numerals).
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-dungeon-stress-ps-sjr.gif  

    S. John Ross Ghalev
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      torstan is offline
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    Yep. Very simple really.

    Take the final image which should really be a jpg file now. Open that up in Gimp. Now you want to use the colour select too, with a relatively high threshold - I used the following settings:
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-seelctacolour.jpg

    Now click on any white area, and you should get all the white areas selected. The threshold setting will determine how close the selected area is to the white/blue boundary.

    Now create a new layer to play with. This should be transparent as before. We want to fuzz up the lines a bit. So go to Select->Distort... Now in this box I used the following settings:
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-distortselection.jpg

    After running this filter, you'll get a slightly fuzzy version of your previous outline. Now, fill this with white (if white is the background colour still, this is as easy as pressing ctrl-.) and your map will now look something like this:
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-map8.jpg

    How's that for you?

    Obviously you can also fuzz the blue into the white areas. To do this, go to Select->Invert Selection (or ctrl-I). Then flood fill with our nice cyan colour (if cyan is still the foreground colour, this is just ctrl-,). I found that this was a bit too distressed so left that out of the above.
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      Ghalev is offline
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    How's that for you?
    Definitely close enough to start with; I can take it from there to get it exactly where I need it (more plate-blot/paper-bleed, mainly, to complement the grain and insure that no elements lose legibility).

    Thanks very much. I like the look of Gimp, I just need to set aside a work-week sometime and immerse myself in it, get the feel of the controls ...

    S. John Ross Ghalev
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  7. #17
      torstan is offline
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    Well Gimp has noise (in Filter->Render->Clouds->Plasma), blur (Filters->Blur->... lots of options here) and contrast adjusters, though what you probably want is threshold (Colours->Threshold).

    A combination of these would give a more fine-grained control over the end result than the crude selection distort I used above. In fact, you'd probably be able to carry the same method over from photoshop with no problem.

    When you do throw yourself into Gimp I'll be happy to provide whatever pointers I can, and others here will do the same I'm sure.
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    Torstan - Rep coming your way. Really appreciate the time that you took with this.

    Question: Is there an easy way (other than going in and manually erasing throughout) of stopping the grid lines just short of the walls?

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      torstan is offline
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    Yes definitely.

    In your xcf file you should have a number of layers, one of which contains your walls. Now what you need to do is right click that layer -> Alpha to Selection. That should now have all your walls selected. Go to Select->Grow and pick a number of pixels. This number will be the number of pixels that the grid stops at before it hits the wall - essentially your padding. Here I used 5 pixels:
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-padding.jpg

    Now create a new layer and move it between the walls layer and the grid layer:
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-padding2.jpg

    With this layer selected, fill your selection with white (Edit->Fill with background colour if you have white as your background colour, or ctrl-. for quick). This should give you a nice white padding around your walls:
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-map9.jpg

    Glad it was helpful.
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  10. #20
      RobA is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghalev View Post
    Bravo. A question, though (my GIMP-fu is nonexistent): can the Gimp provide this map with a bit of finishing stress? As it is, it looks very aggressively digital ... perfectly-sharp/crisp lines, symbols and labels.

    In Photoshop, this could be amended pretty easily in the middle stages with a bit of screened noise, a soft blur, and a re-firming of the "spot ink" by adjusting the contrast - voila. What would be (if you have time) the comparable procedure for those of us just getting our toes wet in Gimp?
    The three methods I tend to use (depending on what I want) are:

    Spread Filter (this was a 1px spread):
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-spread.png

    Displacement Map filter using plasma noise:
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-plasma_displace.png

    Displacement Map filter using cloud noise:
    [Award Winner ] Creating an old-school map in Gimp.-clouds_displace.png

    -Rob A>

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