Hello folks, I forgot to comment on who is my target audience with this tool! My main focus is people that need to do repetitive work, and do not know much or anything about image editing. So the idea of the tool is to be “one click”. To this end the tool will have some presets options, ie. this tool is basically a preset for creating normal maps (it still doesn’t have an interface, now it runs as a script).
For this to be viable and functional I am spending many hours testing to refine the presets and to get good results for all scenarios.
When I compare my tool with others that already exist (please do not understand this comparison as a negative point), I analyzed item quality and ease of use.
The nvidia generator and the xnormal (plugin for photoshop) are for normal map as desaturation is for bump map.
Now, crazy bump, nDo2 (I have much respect for these tools, I think they’re fantastic) and shader map, allow you to make finer adjustments in the image, but users with little knowledge (which is my target audience) may not get the best result these tools can provide.
But to my surprise the nMaker provided superior results to these tools without requiring the user to edit the map after it’s generated.
I would also like to say that I’m not a programmer, I am an artist. An artist creating a tool for other artists. Maybe that was my advantage!
So, I did not use one single line of programming (not directly) to generate the base for my tool. I used techniques that are present in my work and I adapted them to my needs.
This tool runs in photoshop (CS5 <), and has been made from the recording of actions that then were turned into a script.