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Jinbrown
05-16-2006, 06:58 PM
Draegthe,

In your post in pixelart's (John Derry) thread named Color Sets in Corel Painter: Part 2 (http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?t=356854), regarding the quote at the bottom of this message, can you tell us how you'd make use of the information as to which of these (traditional) watercolors are opaque, staining, or grainy considering the fact that Painter's Watercolors and Digital Watercolors are all transparent and grainy depeinding on the particular brush variant's Subcategory, the selected Paper, and if the Subcategory name contains the word "Grainy", the Grain slider setting?

It would seem that to paint opaque watercolor in Painter, one would need to use brush variants from another brush category other than either Watercolor or Digital Watercolor.

Also, not being a traditional watercolorist, I'm not sure what staining means so it would be nice if you could also explain that in case there's something special we'd need to do to simulate that effect. Or, if it just means something like glazing, that would be pretty easy I would think.

Thanks in advance if you feel like taking time to respond.


In case anyone is remotely interested, attached is a version of the default painter colours recast as a watercolour set. Each colour is prefixed by O if it is opaque, T if it is transparent, St if it is staining, and G if it is grainy. That data comes from a well-known watercolour manufacturer's brochure, but the RGBs are unchanged. Some colours of the original painter set are missing because I could not find data, could not infer the actual pigment, or maybe they just don't make watercolours from those pigments. There are a few more I would like--sepia is a noticeable omission--so at some stage I might scan some in and determine the RGB for it.

Anyway, cheers; maybe you'll find it useful. Save it and change the extension to .PCS before importing into painter.

Dreagthe
05-17-2006, 01:59 AM
Well, it is a work-in-progress, of course :).

So far as I understand things:

The (O) Opaque colours are made from sedimentary pigments. If you dropped some into a jar of water, I guess they would eventually all sink to the bottom. The pigment tends to be little particles that when on top of other paints tend to totally cover them. But it is not like opaque house paint--the more you thin it the more the particles allow colour to show through from underneath. The particles catch nicely in the grain of the paper. But when you mix colours with more that one Opaque pigment, things tend to get "muddy" (grey-brown and very opaque) pretty quickly.

The (T) Transparent colours are your perfectly behaved glazing colours. They would dissolve nicely in your jar of water. A classic transparent non-staining triad is Aureolin, Rose Madder Genuine, and Cobalt(?) blue. They make even thin washes and don't show up much grain.

The (St) Staining colous are just that--staining. If you put them on the paper you are never going to be able to completely wash them back off. They may or may not be Opaque or Transparent as well.

The (G) Granulating refers to pigments like French Ultramarine which tend to clump together as they dry, leaving an uneven wash which is also affected by the paper grain. How quickly or slowly you dry them may make a big difference to the results. They often react strongly with other pigments to create happy (or unhappy) accidental effects. If you wanted a smooth sky you would not use French Ultramarine.

Get some real paint and have a play!

As for which brushes to use, well I am still learning. I also play with the paper size and contrast to enhance or detract from the paper grain and granulating effect. I suppose ideally you could make a custom pallete and capture both brush and paper together in those little swatches the name of which escapes me. Then I could build an environment to closely match how the real watercolours work for me.

I guess the BIG QUESTION is whether I should try and make Painter act like the real world (which is of course part of its aim), or I should rejoice that I can paint in any colour with any effect I like.

I'm on the fence there. What do you guys reckon?

Mu
05-17-2006, 10:21 AM
Well, as a colour set the names are a bit misleading, aren't they, because they do not automatically behave like the name promises. This behaviour needs to be added in the brushes properties.

But I know you can save a brush along with a default color. I don't know if that can refer to a color set's color swatch, but in case it can, then:

You could create a set of 4 "realworld" Watercolor brushes (for O, T, St and G) and save them together with an exemplary swatch of the respective category from your colour set.

Or you could only create those four brushes to go together with the color set.

Anyway you do it, without the creation of those four brushes, the color set swatches do not live up to their names, as far as I understand the whole thing...:)

Dreagthe
05-17-2006, 12:20 PM
I really just intended the O,T,St,G codes in the colour set to be a kind of hint to remind me of the pigment behavior, Mu; sorry if I misled.

I didn't realize you can save a colour with a brush. How do you do that exactly? Oh, found it--a checkbox when you click "save variant".

I suppose if I create a brush look for each color then I can capture brush and paper grain and colour and have a nice little image to select it in a custom palette. Sounds like a lot of trouble!

I might try it on the weekend when I am not so tired.

Mu
05-17-2006, 12:55 PM
No need to say sorry, I just thought I'd point that out...

:)

If you packaged your brushes together with your colour set and zipped the whole thing for download somewhere, I and many others would definitely give it a try.

I never liked the fact that many of the standard watercolor brushes are set to have a gravity effect (or wind as it is called in the german painter version, dunno about the english name) which I almost never used when doing traditional watercolor.

I never got round to adjusting this to my prefs, so a custom library of four simple brushes along with a standard color set, created by a watercolor enthusiast/connaisseur would be quite a treat....:)

don't mean to put pressure on you, but...:D

:scream:

Dreagthe
05-18-2006, 12:32 AM
If you packaged your brushes together with your colour set and zipped the whole thing for download somewhere, I and many others would definitely give it a try.


I will do that when I get it all worked out, but don't go holding your breath because I am very time poor :sad: .

I never liked the fact that many of the standard watercolor brushes are set to have a gravity effect (or wind as it is called in the german painter version, dunno about the english name) which I almost never used when doing traditional watercolor.


I would only use gravity in real watercolour when doing a really big wash, like a sky, to keep it in control and make it even, and since in painter there is no such problem, then I certainly agree.

The most important change I make to the painter brushes for watercolour is to set the minimum size down to its minimum value, to make them behave more like a sable watercolour brush, which gives beautiful control from huge down to a fine point. Whoever set them up originally was probably more of a oils artist (painting with mud:D). So if anyone knows good tricks for getting improved pressure control for brush size I'm all ears (yes I know about "brush tracking" in the preferences).


don't mean to put pressure on you, but...:D
:scream:

Even if you did it would not work:). Work, kids, etc have a firm strangle on my time.

Jinbrown
05-18-2006, 03:07 AM
Draegthe,

Thanks for a wonderful and interesting response to my questions!

I tried to respond yesterday but couldn't get the page to load and finally gave up.

Glad to hear you know about Brush Looks. I was going to suggest that 'til reading your post tonight.

You've given me a lot of ideas to play with.



Mu,

The English Painter versions also use the word Wind for the direction control in the Brush Controls' Water palette.

Dreagthe
05-18-2006, 05:44 AM
You're most welcome, Jinbrown.

Lunatique
05-18-2006, 06:24 PM
I guess the BIG QUESTION is whether I should try and make Painter act like the real world (which is of course part of its aim), or I should rejoice that I can paint in any colour with any effect I like.

I'm on the fence there. What do you guys reckon?

One of the major advantages of the digital medium is the lack of physical limitations of real paint properties. To purposely cripple digital tools in order to mimic traditional counterparts down to its flaws and shortcomings is taking it a bit too far IMO--unless those flaws and shortcomings are essential in the expressiveness of the medium in the first place.

ThePhotographer
05-18-2006, 09:18 PM
I totally agree with you, Lunatique.

Why should brushes suddenly get more and more dirty for example ? Wasn't that something that most of us hated when painting with oils and watercolor ?

I don't know .... I guess it all depends of the style each of us want. Perhaps as many options as possible to suit everyone's needs.

zerae
05-18-2006, 09:35 PM
Well some of those "flaws" are what makes watercoloring so unique, Painter mimics oils and acrylics quite well but watercolors are way, WAY off.

For the (Kolinsky) sable look and feel in Painter try using Metacreations :love: watercolor brush engine aka digital watercolors, just set size to pressure and you're done, make sure to adjust water fringe and diffusion. I'm also getting great results by capturiing a brush and setting random, great for the wet on wet look.

BTW would anyone mind posting a sample of your work where you used the watercolor brush engine? I'm refering to the more complex engine that Corel came up. I was never able to do anything and I mean anything with it so I'm very curious to check artwork done with this engine, thanks.

Mu
05-19-2006, 08:01 AM
@Lunatique:

I would not see it as crippling the tools down - it is merely a matter of simplicity.

Most traditional tools are far ahead of any digital tools when it comes to simplicity. That is something that occured to me while I was doing a pencil sketch. At some point I was just pausing and thinking about how simple an "interface" a traditional pencil provides and how amazingly complex it reacts. My tablet pen does not support tilt sensitivity so it's a completely different feeling.

Also, I remember reading an article about how digital tools are often too smooth in the creative process, so the painter/draughtsman does seldom encounter obstacles (like simple mistakes, the moment they happen you hit ctrl-z and do it again) and how that is something that actually limits you when painting digitally (no obstacles to overcome and embody in your final result a.s.o.).

I tried to keep that in mind two or three times and decided to not hit ctrl-z for fun and it was indeed a different process. Or, also supporting the simplicity idea, restraining myself to only the canvas (no layers) from time to time. It is different and fun. :)

All of this only applies for non-professional, or rather non-deadlined work, of course.

So, I'd simply be curious to use a simplified tool, mostly.

Dreagthe
05-19-2006, 09:34 PM
Now this is the kind of discussion I was hoping to stimulate!

Being new to painter late last year, I was keen to try both the digital and the "Corel" watercolour engines. I quickly decided that the Corel one had so much more flexibility that I would persevere with it, and I think I made the correct decision. Still, your comments here, Zerae, make me want to go back and try the old metacreations one again (I was an art-dabbler :love: fan!). Maybe I'll post up what I'm working on when it gets closer to finished.

I'm not sure they have watercolour "way off"--its more that they hid "ordinary, traditional" watercolour in a bewlidering array of rarely-needed brushes, and its difficult to pick out what actually feels like the watercolour the way you paint it. And that means choosing and zeroing in on the brushes and paper etc.

So I agree with Mu in that there is a need to increase the simplicity. I spend a lot of my time in Painter like the proverbial dog with two bones. Only there a hundreds of bones!

Yes, brushes getting dirty is annoying in real painting, except of course when you are using it on purpose to achieve some kind of effect. At least in painter we can use layers or other techniques to stop them from getting "dirty".

The old ArtDabbler had the simplicity thing pretty right. (Though it had no watercolor that I recall. :sad: But it quickly becomes as frustrating as real media: no layers, little "undo" flexibility.

When real media has a flaw it sometimes leads to a happy accident. When Painter has a flaw it almost always ruins things irrevocably!

Jinbrown
05-20-2006, 02:54 AM
Draegthe,


When Painter has a flaw it almost always ruins things irrevocably!


Certainly not always. ;)

This Painter "flaw" that can't be used in later versions, David Gell cleverly turned into collection of custom brush variants for Painter 6, and shared them in a library named Tile and Co.

It's unlikely anyone who mostly paints (doesn't do much graphic design) would enjoy what these brush variants do and might not even if they did do graphic design.

However, being the hopelessly determined to find something great to do with the most unusual Painter results sort of person, I hope one day to use one of my images painted with David's Tile and Co. variants as a design for a quilt (oh for the time to do quiltmaking again):

http://www.pixelalley.com/Painter7/jins-davids-P6-tile-brush02sm-opt.jpg

After all, quiltmaking qualifies as traditional media 'specially if the fabric is hand dyed with natural, home made dyes, and the quilt is hand pieced and hand quilted. ;)

Dreagthe
05-20-2006, 01:31 PM
Well, that's frustrating.

While trying to persue my ideas for a simplified traditional watercolour set of brush looks, all I'm getting from painter IX.5 is grief. I had them working once on painter 9.0 so what gives?

When I tried to make them with a custom paper library loaded, it kept complaining that it could not find the "fine hard grain" paper, even though I did not want that paper. So I switched back to the default paper library, which has that paper, and it stopped complaining about that.

I then remembered you can't save a brush look unless you select a rectangle on the canvas (not a layer), otherwise I just get a blank look icon.

But then, whenever I try to use a new saved brush look, I get an error dialog box saying "session_get_bytes: bad token length".

Are these new software defects in IX.5? Am I doing something wrong? Maybe I should try reloading the application, but I don't have the stamina for that right now.

:sad:

Jinbrown
05-21-2006, 03:34 AM
Well, that's frustrating.

While trying to persue my ideas for a simplified traditional watercolour set of brush looks, all I'm getting from painter IX.5 is grief. I had them working once on painter 9.0 so what gives?

When I tried to make them with a custom paper library loaded, it kept complaining that it could not find the "fine hard grain" paper, even though I did not want that paper. So I switched back to the default paper library, which has that paper, and it stopped complaining about that.


Brush Looks are scripts and scripts need to be able to find everything need in order to run properly. I don't know why, when we save a new Brush Look with our intended Papers library loaded, Painter IX wants a Paper in the default Painter IX Papers library.... unless, the brush variant used as the source variant for the Brush Look originally was created and saved when the default Painter IX Papers library was loaded. That's a wild guess but the only thing that comes to mind as a possible cause.

In any case, I don't think any of these issues you mention are bugs, certainly not in Painter IX.5 since the same things happen in Painter IX (what I'm using) and they don't feel like bugs to me, though we might like to ask the Corel Painter developers to make certain improvements. If you want to do that, write directly to:

painterteam@corel.com

Explain what you'd like improved and why you feel it would be a good improvement. First make sure, though, that it's not just being a new Painter user that's causing you frustrations. A lot of things that don't make much sense at first become easier to understand when we have more experience with, and knowledge of, Painter IX (or any version).

To avoid that "complaining":

1. Load the Painter IX default Papers library (that includes the Fine Hard Grain Paper).

2. Use the Papers palette menu command, Paper Mover.

3. Below the right panel, click Open, locate your custom Paper library, and click the Open button. Your custom Papers library icons appear in the right panel.

4. In the left panel, highlight the Fine Hard Grain Paper icon and drag it into the right panel to add it to your custom Paper library.

5. Below the right panel, click the Close button, then click the Quit button to close the Paper Mover.

6. Load your custom Papers library and check to see if the Fine Hard Grain Paper is there. If it is, you should now be able to save and use your Brush Look without the "complaints" as long as the intended default brush variant and Paper or saved custom brush variant and saved custom Paper are selected before saving the Brush Look.

7. If that doesn't solve the problem and there are more missing Paper "complaints", open the Paper Mover again and add whatever Papers are missing to your custom Papers library.



I then remembered you can't save a brush look unless you select a rectangle on the canvas (not a layer), otherwise I just get a blank look icon.


I don't think this is a bug, just the way it's supposed to work and it works the same way in Painter IX.

You'll also need to make sure that if the selection includes Digital Watercolor, it's dried before saving the Brush Look. Use Ctrl/Command+Shift+L or use the Dry Digital Watercolor command found in both the Layers palette menu and the main Layers menu (at the top of the Painter screen).


But then, whenever I try to use a new saved brush look, I get an error dialog box saying "session_get_bytes: bad token length".

Are these new software defects in IX.5? Am I doing something wrong? Maybe I should try reloading the application, but I don't have the stamina for that right now.



I don't know the cause of the error message. If I recall correctly, this kind of error message is related to a corrupted script but I could be mistaken. You might try closing Painter, rebooting, using the Look Mover to delete the offending Brush Look(s) then saving your Brush Look(s) again.

Sometimes we use combinations of settings that Painter IX (or any version) just can't work with (rarely, but it does happen sometimes).

Maybe Steve Szoczei (from the Corel Painter team) can tell us if he reads this thread, or you can send a clear and concise report including the error message text directly to the Corel Painter team using the e-mail address I included above and ask if they can tell you what's going on.

Dreagthe
05-21-2006, 06:49 AM
Thanks Jinny for your calm and detailed response to my frustrated post. I'll try out some of the things you suggest. I am still newish to it; I'm sure you are correct, and I will need to jump through those sort of hoops to get it to work. Thanks!

However I am a software engineer myself, and because of that I guess I am a little less inclined to be so pragmatic. Software defects are not necessarily just "bugs", mistakes in the program that cause it to bomb out, but can also be problems in the design that cause the program to have poor usability. Like in this case where a user needs arcane undocumented knowledge to get the program to work as the documentation says it will.

I would never pop up a dialog box pops up that exposes jargon only understandable to the program's software developers, instead of a reasonable text that explains what is going wrong in lay terms. (Well at least not intentionally. :D)

But Painter is still a great fun application, and I've been able to create pleasing results with it, so I persevere! Eventually they might become the bugs I know and love. :)

Mu
05-21-2006, 06:40 PM
I would never pop up a dialog box pops up that exposes jargon only understandable to the program's software developers, instead of a reasonable text that explains what is going wrong in lay terms. (Well at least not intentionally. :D)

Next thing you say is you actually comment your code....:D

:scream:

seriously though, I hope you won't run into too many frustrating moments with Painter.

Just recently I complained publically about a mysterious line which turned out to be a guide line which I must have accidentially turned on...:D You see... You never know...:D

(or at least I don't)...:scream:

Dreagthe
05-21-2006, 09:39 PM
Next thing you say is you actually comment your code....:D

Er, embarraisngly enough, yes. And I even write documentation when the boss lets me have time to do it.:banghead:

seriously though, I hope you won't run into too many frustrating moments with Painter.

I tried again and painter kept bombing out, so I have put it all in the too-hard basket for the time being, because I actually want to get on with painting!

Just recently I complained publically about a mysterious line which turned out to be a guide line which I must have accidentially turned on...:D You see... You never know...:D

(or at least I don't)...:scream:

I too am ever ready to admit I am wrong (which is often::wise: ).

Dreagthe
05-26-2006, 06:14 AM
BTW would anyone mind posting a sample of your work where you used the watercolor brush engine? I'm refering to the more complex engine that Corel came up. I was never able to do anything and I mean anything with it so I'm very curious to check artwork done with this engine, thanks.

Hey Zerae

I put a couple of paintings into my CG portfolio done with the watercolour engine.

The one I am working on now is a more traditional watercolour landscape. I'll throw it up too when its done.

Cheers, Brett

zerae
05-27-2006, 02:37 PM
Cheers, I'll post some samples of artwork done with the DWC (metacreations), I can see that you control quite well that engine I found it too complicated with all those settings and the brushes strokes never came out smooth and the colors were too abrasive and not soft like real watercolors but now I can see that the settings needed some tweaking.

Here's a sample using Painter 6 watercolor brush engine, custom brushes and the simple water:
http://img64.imageshack.us/img64/355/watercolorsamples1vi.jpg

Dreagthe
06-05-2006, 03:34 AM
The one I am working on now is a more traditional watercolour landscape. I'll throw it up too when its done.


It is in my cgportfolio: Snowdownia Tractor.

:D

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