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Thread: Question - making an area transparent

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    2

    Question - making an area transparent

    Hi all

    New to the forums - I've searched for the answer but haven't been able to find it yet. I'm on Artrage 3.0.7 studio pro on windows vista.

    I have been working on an image - the layer was fully transparent at the start. At some point I have filled in the background in white using the fill tool - so the background has lost its transparency. I have then saved and come back to it, meaning I can't just go back and undo the fill.

    Is it possible to make the white background transparent again without having to use the eraser tool to carefully remove all of the white?

    Any help appreciated.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    142
    There is a free filter designed by Mark McLaren (outside source), called "Mac's Remove White". I love it and use it a lot. It will remove ALL white in a layer, which is usually exactly what I want. Somewhere else in the forum is a description of how to download it-- I remember I had to download some kind of "download helper". I use Windows 7.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    2
    Thank you for that - hadn't realised I needed to download a filter. MAC's Remove White didn't work on mine, but I found another one called KillWhite which does the same thing. I can't post a link as a new member, but googling "KillWhite filter Mike" should bring it up.

    Cheers

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    124

    Gimp

    This is really simple to do in GIMP (which is opensource software and therefore free). You can turn any colour to transparency, not just white, by selecting from your image with an eye dropper.

    layer>transparency>color to alpha

    GIMP refers to 'transparency' as 'alpha' for short. It all made a lot more sense once I realised that.

    (Bear in mind that the window to choose the color can open behind your other layers, which may make you wonder why your clicks aren't working.)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    142
    Okay, wow. I had no idea. It will take me some time before I can work with GIMP easily and reliably, but I've just messed with a bunch of old picture files and had a lovely time making transparent areas. Thanks.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Canberra, Australia
    Posts
    124
    I use GIMP all the time for that. I used it again just now and realised I forgot to mention (although you, and maybe everyone else here already know) that you need to change the file extension to .png to retain the transparency.

    Oh yes, and the other trick. Often the part of the picture you want contains white too, which means you end up with a semi-transparent object, even though the white background is gone. I duplicate the layer then merge down, as many times as necessary to get it looking opaque again. You can sometimes end up with a very nice effect, which imports well into Artrage. You can do this process either in GIMP or in Artage, it seems to make no difference.
    Last edited by Slap Happy Larry; 09-23-2012 at 04:40 PM.

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