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Old 2004-12-16, 19:22   Link #1
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Join Date: Aug 2004
CG coloring discussion thread

Okay, I've been doing more coloring lately, and I believe I've found a good and simple method of coloring scanned images.

I've been experimenting the coloring method (for Photoshop) outlined in Niti's tutorial, but I've found it too tedious and lacking the flexibility I wanted. Instead, I've decided to ditch the whole idea altogether and I've found the best tools of coloring for simple black & white pictures such as the one below are just paintbrush, blur and coloring bucket.

What I do first is clean up the outlines and fill the different areas with different colors of my choosing. Sometimes, when the area's small/simple enough, I just paintbrush over it. I would always make the colors partly transparent ('bout 50%) so the lines I'm coloring over will still be visible. Below is the result.

Then I would choose some shading colors. I either get it from the color pallet, or I would simply play with color transparency. In the example picture below, I employed mainly transparency changes to acquire the darker shading colors. For the lighter colors (on the clothes and hair), I picked them from the color pallet.

Once I've done enough contrast, I begin to clean up the picture with the blur tool.
If I want everything to blend together more, I would use "median" under "filter"
Result below:

Plz, point out any way that I can improve me coloring, and feel free to share your methods of coloring as well.

Last edited by JERI; 2004-12-16 at 21:08.
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Old 2004-12-16, 21:19   Link #2
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Join Date: Apr 2003
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dont get me wrong, I am by no means a great CG'r. However I do feel like your image is to dull, it lacks that pop for me. I really cant tell if its because your background isnt white, or if its your colors themselves, but I dont see the colors stickign out from the background good enough for me, but thats just me, and everyone else might not see it my way, thats fine :-s

But, your coloring itself, I like it, and you should keep it up.
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Old 2004-12-16, 21:32   Link #3
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Originally Posted by Mundain
dont get me wrong, I am by no means a great CG'r. However I do feel like your image is to dull, it lacks that pop for me. I really cant tell if its because your background isnt white, or if its your colors themselves, but I dont see the colors stickign out from the background good enough for me, but thats just me, and everyone else might not see it my way, thats fine :-s
It's both, I've chosen colors belonging to the same family and I made sure there wasn't too much contrast. I did so because I wanted to the picture to have soft, fabric feeling.

As for the background, I did actually want to put in something. However if you've seen that picture where I tried to add a beach background to the forefigure, you'll know my photoshopping skill is still too disastrous for that kinda task. I could draw a background, but inking and coloring that would be such a chore.
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Old 2004-12-17, 05:09   Link #4
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I do like the soft natural feel to your CG here. If I remember correctly you don't scan in your inks but instead capture it with a camera that gives it that sepia tone look to the overall image, so the method you choose here I think works really good for that.

I assume the inks are on a seperate layer or channel before you tackle the colors?

Backgrounds are the bane of a colorist when there wasn't one in the original. Hmmm now that I'm looking at the BG, I think if it was lightened or darkened a touch, the characters would stand out more (ex: -27 Saturation in the Image -> Adjustments -> Hue/Saturation still keeps the warm tones but pops the characters out a touch imo).

The nice thing about CG is that there are so many different ways to achieve the desired goal. I may have to try your way, it seems a heck of a lot less more complicated than my approach and appears more like a 'traditional' coloring than the shiny CG llok so prevelant in mine. I personally use the heck of a lot of Layers method for my CG which I described about here (it's rather long). It's probably too many steps, but then again I don't CG for a living so I don't use the multitude of shortcuts the pros do.
"The Enrichment Center is required to remind you that you will be baked, and then there will be cake." - GLaDOS
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Old 2004-12-22, 12:22   Link #5
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: The Fields of High Attus
Age: 29
I think your style of CG is quite nice. It's different from the usual plastic looking CG that you see (which I tend to do because I've never tried anything else it seems)...

It has a really natural subtle feeling whicih goes very well with the sepia look of the digital camera photo. It's like a watercoloru at the same time. I really like it. Now I wish I could do creative things like that...

Usually when I CG something that is scanned in (when did I last do this...), I twiddle around with the levels/brightness/contrast so that I can simply create a layer underneat the scanned in layer, set the outline layer (yes with white and all) to Multiply, and then colour everything underneath. Manually! It's pretty damned stupid though. I sometimes used to just magic wand the particular space and then expand it by 1 pixel and then fill in the selection on a different layer. I've tried quick mask but I keep screwing it up..

I usually put different colours on different layers, so that if I want to change the colour of something I can just hue/saturation that particular colour layer.

After applying the basic colours then I see whether it all goes together well, then I start shading. If it's something I've scanned in usually I've already got the light source and shading in mind but sometimes I forget, then I just use my instincts and shade it.. somehow >_>;

I tend to have the flat colour on one layer, then have a layer grouped with it for shading - the group with funciton makes sure whatever is on the layer being grouped doesn't go otuside hte boundaries of the layer that is being grouped with. I.e. the shading won't go outside the flat colour. Smudging works well enough (same effect) and the bonus is you don't dirty your original colour. Downside is you cannot use things like screen/multiply brushes and burn/dodge brushes.

Plain old standard cg is easiest for me, just smudge everything together and put highlights here there everywhere, ... I need to start putting textures. Actually before that I need to start cging things again.

One thing I want to try is to find out exactly how they colour things in animation. I know when you do the drawings the lines are in black but you mark out the areas to be shaded/highlighted in another coloured pencil...
Thanks for the fish
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