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In Painter 11 Essential Training, John Derry, one of the original Painter authors, demonstrates basic and advanced creative techniques that can get beginners up and running. He also shows old hands the new features that can get a creative vision out of the head and onto the canvas. John demonstrates how to establish an easy workflow in Painter by using a Wacom tablet, and he explains how to create, edit, and publish projects. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download the Painter/Photoshop Consistent Color Management PDF and the Brush Troubleshooting Checklist PDF from the Exercise Files tab.
Well, we've seen how to control the Image Hose. What I want to show you now is probably what is actually the most useful part of this combination of Image Hose and nozzles and that is how to create your own nozzles. It's great to have always little example nozzles that come with Painter but the ultimate power over this tool is that you create the nozzles. We were talking about leaves earlier. So I'm going to go ahead and I'm going to create just maybe half-a-dozen leaves quickly and show you how I can incorporate that into the Image Hose.
So, the whole secret behind creating nozzle files is that each element that you want to come out of your nozzle has to be created on a layer. So I have got my Layers palette open, and I can tell you from my experience it's really easy to forget to always create a new layer but that is the one rule you've got to follow here. So, even though I've got a big image area open here, whatever the only area of a layer that has pixels on it, Painter is smart and it's going to figure out that that's the only area that it wants. So, I'm going to start by creating a new layer.
What I'm going to do here is just use the Scratchboard tool in the Pens category and I'm going to be changing its size a little bit here so that I can draw in a couple of different line weights. So I'm going to start off and to be honest, what angle I draw these at is not important because I'm going to want these to come out randomly I suppose. So, I'm just going to go in here and just start kind of drawing a bit of a maple leaf like pattern and it doesn't have to be perfect. It could be as perfect or as imperfect as you want it to be. I'm doing for the sake of brevity, doing it a little quickly.
But anything you want it to be, it can be. Now in terms of photographic information, anything you can cut out from a photographic source and put on to a layer is certainly food for the Image Hose. I'll be honest with you, sometimes I go over to Photoshop and actually use it because in terms of cutting things out from photographs and just kind of getting the photo exactly the way I want it, sometimes you actually have a little bit better control with Photoshop. So if you are a Photoshop user, the other thing too is just save all your layers in Photoshop as a Photoshop file, bring it into Painter and it works.
So you can totally do nozzle creation in Photoshop if you want to. Just save it as a Photoshop file and bring it in so that you have the layers there. That's a nice thing about the way this works. In fact, you'll see here another step we are going to do is it's going to require grouping elements together, and since Photoshop and Painter both know about groups, you can save the file in Photoshop as a grouped set of layers and Painter will understand that. Keep in mind as I'm going here too, it's important to always remember each time you are making a new element, you have to stop and make a new layer.
Otherwise what will happen is you'll have two layer elements on one layer and the Image Hose when it creates that into a nozzle, it's going to think of it as one element. Now, obviously, if you have the tools and they are separate elements, if these are both on one layer, I could select this, cut it out, and paste it as a new layer, so I still can kind of course- correct even if I make that mistake. But it's just best to try to keep in mind that you always wanting a new layer for each element, as I am here. New Layer, and I'll just go through here.
So you can see, I'm doing something kind of very rough and loose but however painstaking or casual you want these elements to be is entirely up to you. While we are doing this, I should mention that's one of the basis of Painter has always been to enable the artists to retain their own style. Painter does not impose a style through the look of tools at all. It very much retains the artist's style as they had it before because the tools ultimately are transparent.
They are just the messenger, the carrier of the message or so to speak. So what your style is and how you have drawn in the past, pretty much goes unmodified in Painter because the tools are so equivalent to natural-media tools. So it's pretty easy to keep your style within Painter when you are using these tools and I'm going to do one more element here. We're doing this kind of in red. So you can see it's just a matter of keeping track of the fact that you are creating things on layers or if it's photographic, you are excising them as layer elements as you go.
Okay, let's do a little bit of up-painting. Okay, so there I've got my six layer elements. What I need to do now is group them and in Painter, I can easily do that if I go to the little fly-out menu on the Layers palette. First of all, I have to say Select All Layers. So I've selected them all and now I can say Group Layers and now I've got a group with all of those layers in it. So here's where the nozzle making component comes into play.
I'm going to go over to my Nozzle Selector, which is down at the bottom of the Tool palette. I'm going to click to open it up and as we saw before, all selectors have a little fly-out options menu. I'm going to bring that up and right here it says Make Nozzle From Group. So I'm going to go ahead and say Make Nozzle From Group and this may look a little nonsensical right now but what it's actually done is it goes in and it measures the extent of what's making the pixels on each of those layers and then based on the maximum height and the maximum width combined in all of those elements, it creates a grid upon which those are laid into.
And then what it's going to do is use that grid as an element that is going to be able to pull out these various nozzle elements when it becomes the full nozzle. So we are going to go ahead now and save this file and I'm just going to save it on to the desktop. Now I didn't name it but I could have given it a name but Untitled is good enough for this. So let's go ahead and close and let's go ahead and we'll hide this so that we don't see it when we start drawing. So, now I'm going to go back to the Nozzle Selector, return once more to the fly-out menu and I'm going to go Load Nozzle now and here's my Untitled.rif, which is the file, and keep in mind you do have to save this in the RIFF format.
It's the only format that Painter will recognize as a nozzle. So I'm going to go ahead and open this and it would appear nothing has happened but what it's done is it's just loaded that nozzle into being the active nozzle. So, if I go in now to my Image Hose, and I'm going to do, let's see, Angle - Random, Size - Pressure and I'm going to also make this a little smaller. Let's go ahead and there are my leaf elements. Now I can control them in different ways. I mean this is kind of like, here, you want to do the illustration for, "it's autumn at the hardware store!" There's your background for falling leaves.
But I could also go in here and I could do something more like control size, but maybe I want to control angle from bearing. So let's see what we'll get there. Ooh! Let's make a cool leaf wreath. So, you can see that this is starting to be a pretty cool tool, the way that I can control what the content is and it gives me some amazing possibilities. Now another thing we could do here is, just kind of thinking out loud, is I can control the opacity. Let's turn the opacity and it might not always makes sense but you'll see now there's a little bit of opacity associated with this as well.
So it's just another mark-making tool. It just happens to be a mark-making tool that you control the content that is coming out of the Image Hose. You are creating the nozzle and you are controlling what it is. So, this is how you make your own Image Hose nozzles and you can see it's actually very easy. There's just, you got to go through a few short directions. The last thing I'll show you before we leave is right now this is just temporarily loaded as the current nozzle. If I click this, it's gone and I have to go reload it as starting from the RIFF file. I can also add nozzle to library.
So I'm just going to call this Leaves. Okay, and we'll save that. Let's go ahead and clear this out and now if I go in here, I've now got Leaves. So now this lets me switch between so I could go to Bay Leaves here, although now I've got the Image Hose, the opacity down, let's turn it up. So, now here, I'm painting with photographic leaves but I'll go back to my Leaves file and now I'm painting with my leaves. So that's kind of a cool trick you can do with the Image Hose and hopefully, through this chapter, you can see what a valuable tool this can be in creating your own content. So I hope you go out there and have a lot of fun with the Image Hose.
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