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Thread: About Layers

  1. #1
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    Question About Layers

    So, I'm new to this whole digital art thing. From playing around in ArtRage 3, I know it's just a matter of experimenting with things, but the one thing that perplexes me is layers. From what I've generally heard and read, it works like transparent sheets of paper and essentially lets you paint without your paint bleeding into other areas, right? I may not be setting them up right, but this doesn't seem to be the cause when I make them. I can still paint in one layer while working on another. I guess they're transparent? As you can probably tell by my general newb-ness on this, I would like it if somehow could describe layers in details, perhaps even point me in the direction of some videos as I'm a visual learner. I could probably start searching on Youtube, but I figured I'd start from the source, you know? Thanks so much for the help!

  2. #2
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    it is easy...

    Actually, it is easy. You can just work and paint on one layer at time. By selecting a layer it is active and you can paint on it. There is also an option to lock a layer, in different ways, if you don't want to paint on it. But the simple rule is: select the layer you want to paint on.

    A good rule is to give all your layers different names so you easily can tell what is what. Like "Background", "Middleground", "Foreground" and so on. Happy painting!

  3. #3
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    It's a little complicated to tell you everything about using layers. But essentially you're right. Using them gives you lots of flexibility.

    You also have blend modes that will have the layers interact very differently when you switch one on and off.

    Others will doubtless tell you a lot, but I would say to look in the "Tips and Tricks" section of the Forums. And also rush over to YouTube. A number of people who have posted here have done video tutorials that were posted there.

    The fact about using them is you don't have to know absolutely everything about layers to use them perfectly for the functions you want. Just learn as you need otherwise like anything in learning computers, the complexity can be daunting. I usually have it down to a select few functions using layers and that's enough for my needs, mostly.

    Have fun. Play around and see what Layers do.
    "Not a bit is wasted and the best is yet to come. . ." -- remembered from a dream

  4. #4
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    You can access the ArtRage manual by opening ArtRage and clicking on 'Help' - everything you need to know about layers, etc. is there.

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    June.

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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agitoho View Post
    So, I'm new to this whole digital art thing. From playing around in ArtRage 3, I know it's just a matter of experimenting with things, but the one thing that perplexes me is layers. From what I've generally heard and read, it works like transparent sheets of paper and essentially lets you paint without your paint bleeding into other areas, right? I may not be setting them up right, but this doesn't seem to be the cause when I make them. I can still paint in one layer while working on another. I guess they're transparent? As you can probably tell by my general newb-ness on this, I would like it if somehow could describe layers in details, perhaps even point me in the direction of some videos as I'm a visual learner. I could probably start searching on Youtube, but I figured I'd start from the source, you know? Thanks so much for the help!
    The layers most basic function is acting as a 100% transparent tracing paper. Each new layer added, allows you to paint over (or under) the last. So if you drew a sketch of a anime character using the pencil tool on your first layer, you could make a cleaner lined version of that image, by creating a second layer over it and using the ink pen to outline your old lines. Because you would've done this on the second layer, you are then able to hide the first layer, so that only the clean lines are seen. However, as the others have mentioned, there is a lot more to layers (with some things being unique to ArtRage, like the Bump Blend Mode) that would take a lot of explaining to get into the details. Though, you mentioned a bit about paint bleeding (the area of your post I made bold in your quote above), which sounds to me that you're looking to lock your workable area to the paint you've already laid down, somewhat like a mask. This is possible using the "Lock Transparency" feature, shown in the screen shot below. The idea being, that you would first color in your initial coloring area with paint and then lock that layers transparency, so that ArtRage could no longer add more paint to any area of that layer where a certain amount of paint wasn't already preset.

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    Nothing is easy to the unwilling.

  6. #6
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    Wow, thanks so much for the comments, guys! They were all really helpful, especially Someonesane's. I'll definitely try out looking at tutorials and the like, too. Just wanted to see what sort of advice I could get here first, is all. Thanks again. ^-^

  7. #7
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    As an example of application of layers: Sometimes if I'm working with a very intricate or difficult part of the image I'll draw it on it's own layer to keep from messing up my main drawing. Then when I get it the way I want it I'll merge it down and move to the next part. That way once you get your drawing right it's right and you can't mess it up.

    Another thing I use them for is if I want something to be transparent. I draw it on a layer and then set the opacity to what I want.

    Another use, an the list could go on forever, is.... let's use a leopard for an example. I might draw the leopard on a layer, then select the contents of that layer, that makes only that area workable. Nothing outside of it can be used. I make another layer above it, leaving the selection turned on, and use a spray or splatter type brush and spray on the spots. The spots will only cover the actual drawing area. You could also do a lot by inverting the selection, making everything except the image useable. This process alone is enough to mess with one's mind (assuming one has a mind) when considering the possibilities.

    There is also the standard ways of using blending modes allowing the layers to be "interactive" and lastly but certainly not leastly [they rhyme] you can lock various things about a layer so that it can't be changed in any way.
    Last edited by Gms9810; 11-07-2014 at 01:23 PM.

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