A place to share color separation techniques (Read 9381 times)

Started by Nedflandeurse, April 08, 2011, 11:02:53 am
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A place to share color separation techniques
#1  April 08, 2011, 11:02:53 am
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I would like to share my way and surely the way most of us use to make color separations for a character.
Don't hesitate to share your personnal way of making them even if it's a variant of the ones I post here.

The fist one is really simple
Using Paint you just have to select the color to replace as main color (grey in this exemple), and the color who replace the older as second color (green in this exemple), then use the rubber / eraser to replace the color. Repeat the action for other colors.
Fot me it's a precise way to do whay you want, but take a lot of time.

The second-one uses Photoshop or equivalent.
Select all the area you want to change with manual selection tools.
Then apply a color change to it.
It's less complicated, but you have to select all the areas with no mistakes, or you have to restart again.
The good thing about this way is that you can use it with sprite sheet easily, and make color change faster.

Fo me both of these techniques are unperfect.
So if you know a better technique, please share it her.


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Re: A place to share color separation techniques
#2  April 08, 2011, 11:25:36 am
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Why do you use manual selection? Wouldnt it be easier to use colour selection?
Re: A place to share color separation techniques
#3  April 08, 2011, 06:41:22 pm
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Why do you use manual selection? Wouldnt it be easier to use colour selection?

Color selection will select all the parts using the same color.
But the idea is to select only some particular parts using this color

In my exemple, I don't want the boots laces to be red too.

Is there a better / faster way to do it?

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Re: A place to share color separation techniques
#4  April 16, 2011, 07:03:16 am
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Re: A place to share color separation techniques
#5  April 18, 2011, 07:12:24 pm
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Good! Thanks for the link.

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Re: A place to share color separation techniques
#6  December 31, 2011, 02:38:39 pm
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I have a rather effective technique. I'm bumping this topic because I don't think it's necessary to make a new one.

What I use is paint, Paint shop pro (anything that can work with color palettes will do), and Fighter Factory. I've never been good at explaining things, so bear with me.  :P

1. Make multiple palettes of your character and make every color different. This makes it easier to replace the original color with the one you want. Take a sprite and save it as is (make the default palette sprite a png).

Default    2nd
For this, I didn't make the skin different, but this is just for show.

2. Next, open Paint Shop Pro (or whatever you use) and open the ones that don't have the default palette. For whatever it is you want separated, change the colors you don't need to the masking (zero) color (I suggest you save the palette after removing the unneeded colors to save time for later sprites). Save the images as png (I don't know if bmp works).

3. Then, open MS paint and open the 2nd/3rd palette sprites. Select the part you want to separate and copy it.

box = selection

4. Open the default palette sprite (on MS paint). Make sure your second/right side color in paint is the masking (transparency) color, and make sure that transparent selection is checked (to do this, go to Select > Selection Options > Transparent Selection). Paste your part on top of the segment your separating. Save the image.

If you already have the separated palette saved (or if you can organize palettes in your PSP), you can skip the next two steps.

5. For the sprite you just saved, open it in PSP. Reduce the colors to 256, and save the image.

6. Open that same sprite in the palette section of Fighter Factory and organize the palette (if your PSP can organize palettes, you can do it there instead).

7. Open that same sprite in PSP (reopen it if you had to do the two above steps) and load the palette you're using as the color separated palette (save the palette if you haven't yet). Save the sprite as pcx.

From there, you good to go. Just add the sprite like you would do for any character.

It takes a bit of time when you first start, but it becomes quicker one you have the palettes established. oh, and...

Also I guess step 0 would be firing up a media player. 8)
Last Edit: December 31, 2011, 02:46:24 pm by NitrousNemesis
Re: A place to share color separation techniques
#7  January 02, 2012, 10:54:42 am
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Interesting way!!
I'll try it too.
It works mostly the same way but make it more easy to visualize!!
Nice method!

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Re: A place to share color separation techniques
#8  May 21, 2012, 04:38:48 am
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Didn't want to start a new topic, so I figured I'd share a few tips I use for color separation here.  I use Photoshop and Fighter Factory Classic to do most of the work.  Here's a few tips I've learned along the way.

  • First, you'll want to go through all the sprites of the character, noting the number of shades per piece that you're separating.  There's nothing worse than getting about 200 sprites in and noticing an extra shade to add.  This will give you an idea of how many colors you'll need to add to the palette.
  • Next, you'll want to make your new palette with all the new colors you're adding.  I prefer to use Fighter Factory for this, but any program should suffice.

    As you can see, I have highlighted the 13 new sections I'll be using to separate all the different parts.  (Once again, make sure you go through the entire spritesheet and ensure you have all the shades accounted for.)
  • Next, you'll want to add your new palette to all of your images.  The easiest way to do this is by batch automation within Photoshop.  Make sure all of your sprites are in their own folder, then create a new Action in which you add the new palette to one of your images.  (If your sprites look misshapen in PS, you may need to set the Pixel Aspect Ratio to "Square."  This can also be automated.)  Now, go to File > Automate > Batch.  Set the "Action" to the one you just created, then point it to the folder containing all of your sprites.  Finally, choose a folder to save them to then OK and let it do all the work.  Once complete, all of your sprites should have the new palette applied.  To check this, go to Image > Mode > Color Table.
  • Now comes the fun part.  I like to have a palette template on my workspace, which makes it easy to grab your colors. (make sure this image is indexed with the correct palette too!)

    Using the Lasso tool, outline the section you want to separate.  This can be extremely tedious, but once you get the hang of it, it gets easier.  Once you have your piece outlined, use the Bucket tool to fill in with your new colors.   
  • With the Bucket tool selected, holding ALT will bring up the Eyedropper tool, which makes it easy to grab your colors from your template.  Note that when you have something selected, you can "paint" another part of the sprite that is not selected to help you ensure that you have the right shade.  This is helpful on sections that are bunched up together, making it harder to differentiate the correct shade.
  • Another helpful tip is using the SHIFT and ALT keys when making your outlines with the Lasso tool.  SHIFT will allow you to add to your outline, even if it isn't connected to your original outline.

    ALT will allow you to remove part of your outline, which helps alleviate mistakes you may make.
  • Your finished sprite should have all visible sections recolored.

  • I like to add each finished sprite back in to the character once it's complete using FF.  I do this because it is easier to flip back and forth through the sprites to check for mistakes.  The key is consistency, as you may have to make some adjustments and guesses when doing an entire spritesheet.  I had to do this alot with Felicia's sprites, and remaining consistent was one of the hardest parts of her separation.
  • Now you just have to repeat this process another 400 times and you'll be done.  Fire up some music and grab some beer, cause you'll be here for a while.

That's about the jist of my process, if anyone has any questions/additions let me know as I'm sure I missed a few steps.
Re: A place to share color separation techniques
New #9  June 09, 2012, 11:43:51 am
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How i do this using Photoshop beware i suck at explaing stuff.

1) So to start you take your template or sprite a in this case, Duplicate the layer  then pick the magic wand tool and select a part you want to separate

2) now you switch to the rectangular marquee tool(or the box as i call it) and deselect the other parts that share that color for now in ash's case i only have to separate either his shirt or pants and i can leave the other alone

3) now pick a color and fill it in (Alt+Delete)

4) Now back to step one and selecting the parts to change

5) Since nothing was touching i skipped step two on this part and went to step three then i deselect what i just filled in and go to the next object and repeat till i finish with these colors

5) Now i do it again with the next shared color set

6) now that the only thing sharing colors are the things i want to i go to the layer blending mode and go down to layer.

7) Now the stuff i chose to separate is separated and has the shading done for it. this won't work on anything with straight white(255/255/255) or straight black(0/0/0) as they will stay the same and share with anything else as those colors so just change them to any other white black before hand.

8 ) Next go to image mode index to index it chose yes when it asks to flatten the layers have the palette be exact unless you have a palette template already done in that case you got to custom and load it then just leave it on previous on your next sprite as it'll take the last palette used.

9) now go back image mode go down to color table and you'll have your palette it just won't be organized and you'll meed to change it so it reads your background color as transparent so just follow step one here or if you want to make the palette from scratch and organized it follow the video here
and if any one wants to see it visually they can watch these

anyway here's your end result after all this
Last Edit: June 13, 2012, 04:35:28 am by Girard
Re: A place to share color separation techniques
#10  June 10, 2012, 01:52:51 am
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Here 2 ways for separation color:  :sugoi:

 the tools for work

-Photoshop (7 to CS6 )
-Windows Paint
-Digital Tablet (optional)

-Image with indexed color, I use a original Sprite Made with 4 colors and one for background...

Palettes and Paint

-So, Go to  Image->Mode->Color Table

-Edit the color gamma you need it.

-Use a gamma of base color and place in Paint, now place the new palette in paint

-Now cut the selection you need of the palete.

-Here the result, now place on the image

Done! one color separation

Repeat the process for the rest of char with new colors.

Separation on Photoshop

First edit the background and set white, copy the image to new file.

-now add new layer in the new file
-change Normal to Linear light
-opacity 50% (prevent high contrast)

Select any color you want, and starts coloring, use all colors you need it

No get worry about the background, you can clean later and in the easy way  ::)


-Now, let's clean the background, so do you remember the original file?, so its time to edit the palette again...

-change the colors to white

Now, go to :


and again,   Image->Mode->Indexed Color :   Set to Exact, appear only 2 color

-Now Go to Image->Mode-> Color Table, set transparency with the eyerdropper tool

Copy the Image with transparency and put in the file with the separation color and...  SEE THE MAGIC! LOL

Now you only, have to made the palette, and change the colors: