Topic: [WIP] RPG-ish(?) Character Portraits  (Read 1982 times)


MikMogus

« on: February 27, 2020, 10:09:54 AM »
Hi, this is my first post on these forums. I've been experimenting with digitally painting over a couple of the default character portraits and wanted to share one. I'm open to thoughts and criticisms on how to better make it fit the game. I'm mainly unsure of what I'm doing with the backgrounds. This one has taken about 2-3 hours. I'd love to have a go at all of them eventually but we will see.

Night

« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2020, 02:34:06 PM »
It's a bit subtle in my opinion, but the painted version is more appealing to the eye, in my opinion. Feels digitized and enhanced. However I think you need to make a bigger change in the art style some how, depending on what you're trying to accomplish. What you have going now feels like an enhancement mod, I think people who want the less realistic looking portraits will prefer this over the original, but still desire something a little more exaggerated in some form. Just from what I've read anyways. I think it looks great personally. 2-3 hours feels long, you may want to revise your process unless you feel you won't burn yourself out, depending on how many portraits you'd like to do. As for the background, I'd do it the same style but less detailed / worked, or make some cool patterns or symbols. Nordic / finish based stuff would be a plus for immersion of course.
Maybe I'll take this and prototype one for my own enjoyment... or disappointment xD.

Keep up the good work!
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MikMogus

« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2020, 04:44:59 PM »
Thank you Night for your feedback, what you wrote is very helpful. I'll see what I can do to improve the style. I know I can drastically knock the time down once I'm less focused on experimenting and get it down to a series of steps.

And hey, much luck with your prototyping :)

ineedcords

« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2020, 07:06:55 PM »
Hi, this is my first post on these forums. I've been experimenting with digitally painting over a couple of the default character portraits and wanted to share one. I'm open to thoughts and criticisms on how to better make it fit the game. I'm mainly unsure of what I'm doing with the backgrounds. This one has taken about 2-3 hours. I'd love to have a go at all of them eventually but we will see.
My personal take: Since I already know there are trees behind the character, seeing trees there in the portrait picture don't help me at all, quite the opposite it's distracting.
No trees is better so I like your work. Thanks for sharing it.

If you make a mini mod (or just upload your pictures) I would use it.

HUNterHUN

« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2020, 03:42:07 PM »
The original portraits in the game are really cool; I like to see people in trditional folk costume.
But, for me, they are out of place, because of the pixelart-style of the game, so I really like the idea of these RPG-ish portraits. Unforunately, they still looks like (as Night mentioned, too) a real photo but super-enhanced.
As for the backgroud, I like the idea of having somekind of a Nordic / finish patterns or symbols.

I donwloaded your photo and loaded it into GIMP and played with it a little. I managed to make it look more like a photoreaistic painting, istead of a enhanced photo.
If you like the result, just tell me, I can give you the steps what and how I done, or even I can do it if you like it.
(I have to mention that I hade to remove the entire background first, so the changes in the colors aren't affected by the colors of the background, this took the most time. After that I just pasted it back ontop of the original.)

Edit:
I forgot to mention that I ain't really good at drawing, especially with mouse, a.k.a I miserably fail if I try to draw anything with a mouse. I have only a bit of experience with some retouching photos, thanks to that, that our family have a pritty huge vintage photo collection, we can date back our and our anchstors photo collection, as far as photografy itself goes.
Anyway, your work is awsome MikMogus, I hope you come out with a mod or something, so I can play the game with (IMO) "cooler" graphics: I'm a big fan of oldschool RPG games, and I totally miss those cool hand-drawn portraits from modern RPGs.
I just played with the colors and scripts and filters (collected from the interweb) to get the result.
Without your hard work I never be able to make this graphic. Thanks!

PS to all:
Thanks for this cool game, I following it for severaly years now. From time to time I always come back to play with it.
Greetings from Hungary.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2020, 05:27:58 PM by HUNterHUN »

StefanPravda

« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2020, 04:14:22 PM »
Looks great mate. Really great.

MikMogus

« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2020, 11:36:12 PM »
HUNterHUN, that looks much better! I really appreciate your fresh eyes taking a go at it. It made me happy to see that, thank you. I think I will use your version as a reference to bring the few I've worked on a bit closer to that style, if that's OK with you.

I've made some progress on a couple portraits since the original post, but I'm not going to share anything new just yet. They aren't quite ready. I also have a nicer background that looks good in-game, though I want to do something more overtly "Finnish" to it eventually, as you folks suggested.

MikMogus

« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2020, 01:01:28 AM »
Here's another:

HUNterHUN

« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2020, 01:48:48 PM »
Thanks, for using my style as a reference!

Now this is really looks similar to what I like to see as RPG-portraits.
And the bacground is just perfect!
I only used some built-in and some custom filters, scripst form GIMP, and played with the colors.
Thanks to the forced home-quarantain, I now have alot of time, and I also played with the pictres.

But I realised that the oroginal portraits are very hard to make it to look like somthing the one, that I posted.
Without modifying them, without drawing, it is really hard to make them look like that.
The filters and scripts, and color-changing just does't work like I expected.
They need a good artist, like you, who can transform them, before it works.
I'm happy to see that the portraits will be in a style, that I like the most, if it comes to rpg-portraits.

Can I ask you, do you also changing the other pictures, or you just change the portraits?
Because, when I realised that my knowledge in digital painig isn't enought to do some serious work, I played with the backgrounds and such. And I think some of them are good enought to share them.
(See in my next post...)

HUNterHUN

« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2020, 02:29:56 PM »
Here is one of the pictures from the game that I changed.

This picture is my favourite from the game. The death scene. Not just that, because this is the one that I saw the most.  ;D  ;)
Somehow, simply I lust love this. When I look at it, I feel calm, peace. They are positive feelings that almost make me happy.
But, wait a minute! This is the picture that we see, when our character dies, when we loose the game.
Aren't we supposed to feel that we lost something, tha somthing ended? Aren't we supposed to feel a bit sad?
So I played with the picture. Now with it's fainted-old looking, it gives the impressin of somthing that it is old, that it is no more. A thing from the past that is lost, that doesn't exists anymore.
Now, with it's weird coloring, it gives me the vibes of: this is a scene from an un-real world!
I think fits more the name "death scene":

MikMogus

« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2020, 04:13:32 AM »
Can I ask you, do you also changing the other pictures, or you just change the portraits?

I'm just going to do portraits for now, I think.

No promises, but maybe when I have some time I could see if I can write up some steps for what I do when making the portraits, so you might have an easier time using your scripts and stuff. And your death scene looks much more moody, I like it.  :)

HUNterHUN

« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2020, 04:57:19 PM »
Can I ask you, do you also changing the other pictures, or you just change the portraits?

I'm just going to do portraits for now, I think.

No promises, but maybe when I have some time I could see if I can write up some steps for what I do when making the portraits, so you might have an easier time using your scripts and stuff. And your death scene looks much more moody, I like it.  :)

Thanks!
I already worked on and finished a few backrounds. I already have a concept about how I like to change those backgrouds; and it's namely: the color tone of those pictures. I'm a guy who really doesn't like cold, and I hate winter, and the snow - I hope the finnish guys now didn't get mad at me ;)

So what it means that I prefer warm color-tones. So, while I try to keep them as "nordish-winterish" as possible, I bend the colors to add a bit "warm" feelings to those pictures. Or changed the mood. I'm really happy to hear, that you get that mood-change when you looked at my variation of the death-scene, beause that wa my intention!

But! Not every time this "warming-up" gives a good result, in my opinion. Sometimes I had to change the tone into the cold blues, to get that "far-north" feeling. Tho, it isn't really a big thing when it come to the backgrouds, but it can have a drastic effect on portraits!
What I like to tell you, is that, I'm not sure why, but for me, those peoeple who have that pinkish-reddish color to their face (like lot of those with ginger hair) they give me the impression of "nordic-people". When they took a sunbath, their skin get that bright reddish taint to it and not that well tanned brown.
See the "fem5.png" portrait! That lady is a very good example to what color tone I prefer, if I think about someone nordic.

So, if you don't mind I played with your last picture, because that is somehow looks like a very well tanned man, like someone from a warm climate.
Another thing; If I think about pictures, portraits from a game, I really like to see when all the different pictures has something similarity in them: they are from the same game, the game must have it's own style, and to me it also means; they use the same color tone.
Your first portrait (fem3.png) give me the base: that lady, too, has that little bit of (IMO) nordic-reddish taint in her face. The man in your second portrait is just too brownish, so I changed the tone to somthing like the lady in your first portrait. To give it that more "nordic" tone and to achive the similarity in the colors. While I prefer warm color tones, in this case I had to change it to more cold.
And of course, if all the portrits has the same color-tone; it also means more consistency in the art-style of the game.
(P.S.: I also changed the color tone of another portrait, just to showcase to you, what I talking about.)

Of course, simply changing the tone of the whole pictures it can ruin the background or the cloths.
Like it did with the green shirt and with the forest backgroud, and also drasticly changed the background on your portrait.
Definitely must do the color changing only in the skin, so skip the background and such, I just didn't want to spend time with that for no reason.

MikMogus

« Reply #12 on: March 29, 2020, 05:50:58 PM »
If I think about pictures, portraits from a game, I really like to see when all the different pictures has something similarity in them: they are from the same game, the game must have it's own style, and to me it also means; they use the same color tone.

I kinda want to make them stand out from each other color-wise. Maybe I won't make them as saturated as the previous one I posted, but I will color each portrait a little differently on an individual basis, sticking to seasonal tones. For variety, but also for fun. When I use more realistic or uniform colors, I just get a bit bored with them. I could color them based on region (north, west, ect.) but I really prefer doing them individually. Also I don't know how to region-ize the female portraits.

HUNterHUN

« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2020, 08:35:12 PM »
Ah,I understand...

Coloring them based on region I think is a good idea. But, yes, the female portraits are just "region-less". You had to choose which one goes to which region. Maybe some players like to see other woman in that region. On a seconud thoght, stand out more from each other is the better idea, than making them similar (in color tone like me) or "giving them " a region.
P.S: I kinda like the saturatad colors in your portrait, vivid colours look fine (IMO) in RPG-portraits, only the color-tone (well tanned brownish-yellowish) that I found a bit off.

What really metters: just have fun drawing, your work is really cool!
« Last Edit: March 31, 2020, 09:14:18 AM by HUNterHUN »

Night

« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2020, 04:24:34 AM »
Decided I'd take a shot at it for fun.
URW Character Menu - Cheating menu by a player, for the players.
URW Character Designer - Design your characters sprite!