Second Picarto Custom Emote

I was working on setting up another emoticon for my Picarto stream and I wanted to go a bit more through the process of what I created through that. First, let’s look at what the finished product looks like:

Yellow face, with tongue sticking out.
Final Version from Gimp

So, there is where things ended for me. I am not sure why I don’t see it, but I don’t know where I have the original sketch that I started with, though I have an idea (goes to look)…

Photographed sketch
Original Sketch as photographed (scanning is tricky, but I could try to do it).

As with the previous time, I photographed the image, and I end up getting this sort of thing. As you can see, the colour is not what you would expect unless the paper is degrading, so I do a colour correction.

Colour corrected sketch
Sketch colour corrected

Here I have colour corrected it. I do this once I have the pictures in digiKam, and I click on the edit. I try not to have to do too much that way, and this time I think I did a pretty decent job of it.

This is sharpened
Sharpened Sketch

Here we have that image after I have sharpened it. I’m not sure that it makes much, or any difference here, but it does enhance the finer details somewhat.

Then from there, I import it into Inkscape, and then start working on it in inkscape.

I have a few different versions of the SVG which I have available, but unfortunately I can’t display them in a post, and I *think* the only way to put them up would be to create an archive, and upload the archive. I am probably not going to do that until I really start to find good tools which I am really happy with (which probably won’t happen until I start to feel unhappy with the tools I am using, which in a way I’m unhappy with Inkscape, as it seems to run into a situation with how I’m doing things where it gets very sluggish on this computer).

So, after I have worked through the process with Inkscape, I have created the following images:

This is the version out of inkscape.
Full version out of inkscape

This is the picture as I start with things, and has everything all together (this is where I started in GIMP last time). This is very crude as you can see, it is a lot to get this to a reasonable place, as everything is on one layer. I realized that this doesn’t work to get my pictures in a nice editable form with the last one.

So this time, I had everything nicely in layers in Inkscape, and I exported those layers independently. I also made sure when I did that, that I exported the whole “page” so that everything lines up automagically when I import them into GIMP.

The following (out of order) is the layers individually (hmm… let’s try to fix that order). Let’s start with the topmost layer, and work down…

This is the tongue lineart
Tongue Lineart
Just the pink of the tongue.
Just the pink of the tongue
This is the main lineart.
Main lineart
Black from nose and eyes.
Black painting
White for teeth and eyes.
The white colours I use (I see they show up as grey here)
This is the yellow face colour
Yellow face colour

That is the stack as best I can remember it.  The order these are in is pretty important.  I may not have the order correct here, as I am working from memory and what I think makes sense.  There is a layer that I really think I am going to need to create in the future which is a layer of “white background” which will go behind everything else for two purposes.

  • To keep the background colours from bleeding through, as they do with this
  • Provide a light outline to the image, so it will work better on a dark background

After I did that, I started working on cleaning up the messy nature of the image at this point.  Even if you look at it all together:

All layers together before gimp editing
All the layers together

it is really very messy. It needs to be cleaned up.

I have edited this in GIMP, and likewise with my editing process in Inkscape, the saved files of the process do not really work here (I don’t think).


Nope, you can’t see it directly…

So, I’m not going to post those, as unless someone wants to work with them, they probably won’t want them.  I may put those files (or access to them) on my Patreon as a tier at the higher end, and they may not be as the usual CC-BY-SA that I use, but copyright, or something else.  Not sure…

So, there is an editing process that goes on in GIMP that is difficult to express without the multiple versions which I end up creating them as.

In the end, I export it as a GIF file, as that is what Picarto uses for emoji.  I think that animated ones will also work, but I don’t see myself creating any of those until I start to get the fairly extensive list of emoji I would like to use.  So here (again) is the final gif image.

Final emoji, it is decent...
This is the final emoji

So, thank you for checking this out. I am getting bits and pieces better together with each new emoji I create. Please check out my Patreon, and either support me there (was stepping away due to a poorly considered change, which then got rolled back entirely), or support me over on LiberaPay.

Picarto custom emoji

Today as part of my “Open Psychology” work stream, I ended up creating a custom emoji for Picarto, where I was streaming.  I have been in the process of setting things up there, and I was just playing around with some stuff.  So, I did a few different steps (that I can share).  I started by drawing a really simple drawing.

Big grinny line drawing of a face.
This is the photo of the sketch that I did to do a big grinning face for a custom emoji.

I thought that this was close enough to what I want, that I went with that image as my start. Then I went through a few different steps to get that to how I would like to start working with it:

Colour corrected smily face line drawing.
I did some colour correction to get it closer to the original colour.
Rotated smily face.
I rotated it, to get an image aligned the way that I think I probably want it.
Colour corrected, rotated, and cropped smily face
This was then cropped to get it with less extra space (especially with it rotated, it has some weird stuff showing up)

From there I was able to import that into Inkscape. And, let’s see what I still have hanging around to allow you to see my process…

Exported from Inkscape drawing of the grinning face.
Export from Inkscape. This is “really ugly” at this stage.

A lot of what I did in Inkscape I feel that I will want to do differently in the future. This is a very flat PNG, this doesn’t really work for editing in GIMP. But I imported the SVG, which worked much better, but still, it didn’t work the way that I would like as that got imported as a transparent raster graphic.

From there, I did a bunch of editing in GIMP to end up with this GIF file:

Gif of grinning face. Yellow face.
Final result of the editing. Gif file

This is what it ended up looking like before it went into Picatro, and it doesn’t look that bad. Well I don’t think it really looks all that bad…

I would like to in the future save more of the intermediate steps that I go through to produce these.  I like how files end up showing up when I am using digiKam as I can just “save version” as I am editing it.

Daily Sketch 2

Just doing another daily sketch.  2 days in a row.  That’s pretty good for me…

4 faces, looking sad, angry, anxious variously.
I am trying to draw a sad face. A lot of these (almost all of these) just don’t cut it. The closest I got was the bottom one, which looks “sad and anxious”.

I think that starting with these expressions right now is a decent place to start. I can see that things aren’t really all that easy even keeping them as simple as I am doing them.

sad/anxious face with greyish background.
Inkscape trace (with original behind it) of the sad/anxious face. I didn’t do too badly with this.

This turned out not bad at all. With the background from the original picture still there, it gives a bit of texture.

Line drawing of sad anxious face. Transparent background.
Dropped the background for this. This is just the inkscape file. Background is transparent (I think it is still).

The transparent background for this might end up being a bit difficult to handle in some contexts. I’m not sure if there is a good way to handle it better.