Difference in Opacity

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  1. #1
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    Difference in Opacity

    Opacity is a big grey area for me, as far as digital painting goes. Personally, I always start at 50% opacity, but I think that's me being overly cautious. It seems to me that blending would be easier on a lower opacity, but I don't know which is best.
    What do you think?

    The pen is mightier than the sword, but the minigun does more damage.

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  3. #2
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    I change the opacity for brushes all the time (most used hot key next to color picker and brush size). I also change the opacity for the layer when it is an effect (color shift, lighting, etc). Sketching I sometimes start at 30% but sometimes it is 100%. Blending is much easier when you change the opacity of the brush. For blending I go between 5% and 40% depending on how smooth I want it to be.
    Don't be afraid to experiment. There isn't a set rule about blending or opacity.

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    I learned to paint with 100% opacity and now I'd never do it any other way. Mainly beacause when picking from a palette I want exactly this or that value and with 50% it looks different on a painting. After some time I see that something is wrong. Everything looks very desaturated and dim.

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    i disagree with farvus.....im cosntantly changing the opacity. for darn near every stroke (wich is, i admit, a pain)

    the idea being that in traditional painting, im loading a brush differently all the time...more or less terps/paint ratio

    i think of the opacity as terps

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    when you're working with 100% opacity, what is the best way to blend colors? is it just about gradually changing the color ever so slightly, till they merge?

    The pen is mightier than the sword, but the minigun does more damage.

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    kingshaj - Hehe. It's just how I paint. I can already get wide range of strokes from tablet pressure. There are some exceptions. Sometimes I need for example subtle haze in my environment so I set the opacity to about 10 or 20%. Once in a while I use 60% opacity but never at the beginning.

    Rhythmus - There are few methods.
    First one is putting two colours next to each other so they slightly overlap and create new one. I Alt click with colour picker to choose this new colour and paint between them.
    Other method is the one you mentioned. For this I often use Photoshop's RGB sliders. When painting shadow I for example move slightly B (Blue) slider to the right to make the colour cooler and then slightly decrease the brightness.

    Last edited by Farvus; August 5th, 2007 at 05:37 PM.
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    Excellent tips there, Farvus. Thank you very much.

    The pen is mightier than the sword, but the minigun does more damage.

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    I never alter the opacity, too much of a hassle and interrupts my workflow too much. I use pressure to denote opacity, and when I hit the right opacity, I color pick that spot and use it to bend between different hues or tones.

    So rather than me doing calisthenics with my fingers, I have my finger on alt unless I need to change brush size. Keep it as simple as possible, or else you'll be spending more time pressing keys than actually painting.

    - m

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    Quote Originally Posted by Farvus View Post
    kingshaj - Hehe. It's just how I paint. I can already get wide range of strokes from tablet pressure. There are some exceptions. Sometimes I need for example subtle haze in my environment so I set the opacity to about 10 or 20%. Once in a while I use 60% opacity but never at the beginning.

    Rhythmus - There are few methods.
    First one is putting two colours next to each other so they slightly overlap and create new one. I Alt click with colour picker to choose this new colour and paint between them.
    Other method is the one you mentioned. For this I often use Photoshop's RGB sliders. When painting shadow I for example move slightly B (Blue) slider to the right to make the colour cooler and then slightly decrease the brightness.
    I use this exact same method.

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  11. #10
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    I'm trying it out on a small WIP I'm working on right now. I'm not used to it, but I like it a lot better, probably due to what Farvus said about the values and how at a lower opacity you don't get the value you might have wanted.

    The pen is mightier than the sword, but the minigun does more damage.

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  12. #11
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    Are you using Painter?... I never change the default opacity of the brushes in Painter... It screws me up big time on most occasions...

    LONG LIVE YOKO KANNO!!!
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    I'm using Photoshop, though I plan to start using Painter soon.

    The pen is mightier than the sword, but the minigun does more damage.

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  14. #13
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    First one is putting two colours next to each other so they slightly overlap and create new one. I Alt click with colour picker to choose this new colour and paint between them.
    Wait, if you're at 100% opacity, and you overlap colors, wouldn't one color completely block out the other, thus resulting in no intermediate color?

    The pen is mightier than the sword, but the minigun does more damage.

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  15. #14
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    That would happen if I use my mouse which has two levels of pressure - no click with 0% and click with 100% opacity . My wacom has 512 levels of pressure so I can get 512 different opacities from complete transparent to completely opaqe.
    You can turn it on here.

    Difference in Opacity

    Last edited by Farvus; August 6th, 2007 at 06:15 AM.
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  16. #15
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    Alright, now I understand. Thanks, Farvus!

    The pen is mightier than the sword, but the minigun does more damage.

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  17. #16
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    food for thought

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