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I don't know what you call it, how do I do this?


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Hello, all. I tried getting into Second Life back in 2018 and it didn't really stick with me. I did buy some avatar stuff though, and I know it's possible to "customize" it. By that I mean, (you guys probably have a proper word or phrase for this) like, get the avatar skin (If that's what you call it?) or clothing items into photoshop or something similar and paint them differently. That's all I would really like to do, just mess around painting avatars lol. But because I don't know what doing that is called, I'm having trouble looking up how to do it. I'm finding some tutorials but they don't show where to find the files to edit in photoshop or how to see what it looks like on, once painted. 

Any advice is super appreciated! Also, if you can recommend any free software for doing this outside of photoshop, I'm always curious about stuff like that. :)

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   Making avatar skins is 'as easy' as downloading the UV maps for the appropriate head and body type, and draw the skin on there, then uploading it into SL and putting the textures in a skin.

   For free software, I'd suggest Gimp.

   The hard part is . . . Well, skins being hard to paint, and getting it to look good around the seams in the UV maps. I'd suggest looking around YouTube for some tutorials on how UV maps in general work and the tricks for working with them, and then just trying things out as you go.

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22 minutes ago, Orwar said:

   Making avatar skins is 'as easy' as downloading the UV maps for the appropriate head and body type, and draw the skin on there, then uploading it into SL and putting the textures in a skin.

   For free software, I'd suggest Gimp.

   The hard part is . . . Well, skins being hard to paint, and getting it to look good around the seams in the UV maps. I'd suggest looking around YouTube for some tutorials on how UV maps in general work and the tricks for working with them, and then just trying things out as you go.

Thanks! I have the Kemono body and whatever head came with it, should I just Google "Kemono body UV map"? 

And heh yeah, I know it will probably look janky lol. It'll take some practice and maybe some better software eventually, if I really get into it.

Do people here tend to mind if I wanted to start out by just re-coloring the normal Kemono skin? Is that a thing that's possible to do? 

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13 minutes ago, eatember said:

should I just Google "Kemono body UV map"? 

   Check with the creator's store. Some, but not all, offer free UV maps to allow people to make tattoos and makeup and the like - others require you to purchase a 'developer's kit' (although these mostly appear to be for people who want rigging information for mesh apparel and such).

14 minutes ago, eatember said:

Do people here tend to mind if I wanted to start out by just re-coloring the normal Kemono skin? Is that a thing that's possible to do? 

   It's not impossible, but I suspect you may have to start from scratch using just an UV map.

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As a starting point I would suggest downloading Eloh Eliot's PSDs - they are very old but still available here: https://sites.google.com/site/another/resources

You can open them in GIMP and you'll be able to see how skins are put together in layers (which makes modifying and adding to them much easier). Once you've got the hang of how they're arranged it's much easier  I've been experimenting with these myself to make body-mods that go with my pre-existing skins. At some point I'll get brave enough to actually make a whole one.

Orwar is right, the hardest part is the seams, especially where you have shading (under the arms for instance). Putting the shading and highlighting on separate layers and setting them to Multiply and Overlay helps ensure that the colour is consistent.  You need to use the template guides, which are included in Eloh's PSD files; they have a grid on them which is colour-coded at the seams, so you can tell where things need to match up. 

ETA: I just spotted you're using Kemono, in which case the Eloh Eliot skins won't fit. You'll need to find Kemono templates. But the principle will be the same so it's worth getting at least one to study.

Edited by Maitimo
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4 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

Although that home page is still alive, all the links in it are dead.

Oh thats a shame. I have the PSDs though so if the OP wants them, they can message me and I'll send them on

 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Maitimo said:

As a starting point I would suggest downloading Eloh Eliot's PSDs - they are very old but still available here: https://sites.google.com/site/another/resources

You can open them in GIMP and you'll be able to see how skins are put together in layers (which makes modifying and adding to them much easier). Once you've got the hang of how they're arranged it's much easier  I've been experimenting with these myself to make body-mods that go with my pre-existing skins. At some point I'll get brave enough to actually make a whole one.

Orwar is right, the hardest part is the seams, especially where you have shading (under the arms for instance). Putting the shading and highlighting on separate layers and setting them to Multiply and Overlay helps ensure that the colour is consistent.  You need to use the template guides, which are included in Eloh's PSD files; they have a grid on them which is colour-coded at the seams, so you can tell where things need to match up. 

ETA: I just spotted you're using Kemono, in which case the Eloh Eliot skins won't fit. You'll need to find Kemono templates. But the principle will be the same so it's worth getting at least one to study.

Thanks! Do I just search "Kemono PSDs"? 

Also, I'm a bit confused. When you have a skin or a body that comes with one, can you not get to the files and see how they did it? Or are they not accessible? I used to paint stuff to use in sims games all the time, usually from in-game content or other people's mods. So I'm used to being able to export and recolor darn near anything lol. 

EDIT: I just peeked at the store. Apparently it came with UV maps! That's good news, now all I have to do is find them, ha. :)

Edited by eatember
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7 hours ago, eatember said:

Thanks! Do I just search "Kemono PSDs"? 

Also, I'm a bit confused. When you have a skin or a body that comes with one, can you not get to the files and see how they did it? Or are they not accessible? I used to paint stuff to use in sims games all the time, usually from in-game content or other people's mods. So I'm used to being able to export and recolor darn near anything lol. 

EDIT: I just peeked at the store. Apparently it came with UV maps! That's good news, now all I have to do is find them, ha. :)

You won't be able to look at and re-colour anyone else's skins; one of the features of SL is that creators can control what other users do with their creations and skins are one of those things that nearly every creator limits. You can only use ones where creators have chosen to distribute their files, and these are very rare. That said - the furry community is keen on moddable content and Kemono is very popular with furries, so you will likely find more than you would if you were using a regular human body and skin.

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As the Kemono uses it's own custom UV map, the SL UV maps won't help you there. It'll take a bit of experimentation to figure out what is what on the map, but iirc from what I was told back when I first started SL, the Kemono uv map is from the side.. so the right side of the body will be the stomach, left will be the back. I suck at making sense, lol. I didn't end up going with Kemono, but some still use it.

Edited by RitaCallisto
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10 hours ago, eatember said:

Thanks! Do I just search "Kemono PSDs"?

EDIT: I just peeked at the store. Apparently it came with UV maps! That's good news, now all I have to do is find them, ha. :)

if you haven't found already

the link to the resources is contained in the notecard "- Textures and UV maps -" which is in the "Kemono - Bonus Items" box which comes with the body

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6 hours ago, RitaCallisto said:

As the Kemono uses it's own custom UV map, the SL UV maps won't help you there. It'll take a bit of experimentation to figure out what is what on the map, but iirc from what I was told back when I first started SL, the Kemono uv map is from the side.. so the right side of the body will be the stomach, left will be the back. I suck at making sense, lol. I didn't end up going with Kemono, but some still use it.

I actually ended up finding a rar of the default skins, so I see what you mean! 

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5 hours ago, Mollymews said:

if you haven't found already

the link to the resources is contained in the notecard "- Textures and UV maps -" which is in the "Kemono - Bonus Items" box which comes with the body

Thanks! I never really got used to the SL controls and such. ^^'

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8 hours ago, Maitimo said:

You won't be able to look at and re-colour anyone else's skins; one of the features of SL is that creators can control what other users do with their creations and skins are one of those things that nearly every creator limits. You can only use ones where creators have chosen to distribute their files, and these are very rare. That said - the furry community is keen on moddable content and Kemono is very popular with furries, so you will likely find more than you would if you were using a regular human body and skin.

Ahh okay. Thanks for cluing me in. 

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Posted (edited)

Hey, so idk if anyone is still following this thread?

But to get a skin into the game, does it cost money? Even if you're just checking to see if it looks janky and where it needs fixing/improving? I don't understand it very well yet, lol. I'm still watching tutorials and such. I'm just a little confused. 

EDIT: I now see that 10 linden is like 5 cents lol so $5 American would go a long way but I'm still a bit confused. 

Edited by eatember
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1 hour ago, eatember said:

Hey, so idk if anyone is still following this thread?

But to get a skin into the game, does it cost money? Even if you're just checking to see if it looks janky and where it needs fixing/improving? I don't understand it very well yet, lol. I'm still watching tutorials and such. I'm just a little confused. 

EDIT: I now see that 10 linden is like 5 cents lol so $5 American would go a long way but I'm still a bit confused. 

It costs L$10 per texture upload, but if you use Firestorm instead of the official viewer, you can upload a temporary "local" texture for free, so you can see how it looks and whether anything needs changing before you pay for the final upload. A local texture is visible only to you, only for your current login session and only as long as you remain on the same region. 

I'm assuming that with a Kemono body, you'll rez the body on the ground and edit it there, rather than wearing and editing a base avatar skin like you do with standard SL skins.

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