View Full Version : Custom Painting tutorial

John D.
2nd Sep 2004, 16:28
I've seen various threads regarding paintings and how to get new ones in your FM, some people use the reskinnable painting in DEDX but if you're interested in making your own paintings I've created this little tutorial based on my own experiences, there are other ways but this is what has worked for me.

New paintings the John D. way! :)

Tools used

Thief Media Edit
Adobe Photoshop Limited Edition
Paint for XP
A bin editor (the hex editor XVI32 in this case)

Special thanks to Frobber, YcatX and others for helping to enlighten me on this issue. :)

1. Take the picture you want, make sure it's in JPG
(I always start that way)

2. Adjust the size to 128x128 or 256x256(seems to work now)

3. Open adjusted painting in Paint and save as a gif (there will be a slight degredation of the image)

That puts your image in the proper format you need.

4. Now find the .bin name of a portrait in dromed-In this case I chose the Truart portrait, look under shape and you'll get the .bin name you need-in this case it would be sherpor

5. Use Thief Media Edit to look up and extract the sherpor.bin file.

6. Open the bin file with the bin editor-dont panic you'll see a bunch of numbers and symbols but you'll soon find the picture's name in the mess-in this case it would be SherTruS.gif

7. Now be careful and replace the name of the gif with a new name (What you'll rename your adjusted new painting). You have to replace each character of the name without subtracting or adding to the number of spaces or you'll screw up the bin file. I named mine JohnDD01.gif

8. Save the bin file under a new name (in this case I saved it as JD1.bin)

7. Put the new bin in the obj folder and rename your painting gif to the new gif name and place it in the obj/txt16 file.

8. Now fire up dromed, and put the truart painting in your level, change the shape to JD1 and you have your new painting! Of course the image will look a little distorted, but you can change the height/width to compensate (it will distort the frame a little though)

I'm sure there are better ways but hopefully this will get you started!

2nd Sep 2004, 19:48
How limited is your edition of Photoshop if Paint can do a better job of assigning a 256 colour palette? :eek:

I know of a way to ensure that your image does not appear distorted in Thief, and you won't have to resize (and distort) the frame.

It's just a question of aspect ratios ( Width/Height)
Before shrinking the image to Thief compatible dimensions, you need to make its aspect ratio equal to that of the object.

Create the object in Dromed, and work out Width/Height. One or two decimal places should be precise enough.

Open your image and find the window to reduce the canvass size (ie to change the size of the image without squashing/stretching things).
Reduce either the Height or the Width (whichever does the least harm to how the image looks) until Width/Height is approximately equal to the aspect ratio of the original object ( W<sub>Object</sub>/H<sub>Object</sub> = W<sub>NewImage</sub>/H<sub>NewImage</sub> = Aspect Ratio).

Now resize the image (which squashes/stretches things) to match the size of the texture of the object you're modifying.

Dromed will now stretch your image back to its original proportions.

John D.
3rd Sep 2004, 01:13
How limited is your edition of Photoshop if Paint can do a better job of assigning a 256 colour palette? I dont know, when I've tried to save as .gif from Adobe Photoshop I've always spotted numerous holes in the canvas. But when I save as a .gif from paint, there arent any-strange.

3rd Sep 2004, 12:08
That's because it leaves some pixels with palette index 0 assigned to them. The Colour Replacer tool (in PSP, don't know what it is in Photoshop) is a really quick way to fix that - it can change all Pal 0 pixels to any other palette index you want. For some reason, I guess Paint doesn't use Pal 0.

Also, I have no problems using a 256x256 texture for my paintings. What problem were you seeing with it?

The main problem with using the reskinnable painting is that your texture has to go in \obj\txt, which means it gets the default Thief palette. Alot of painting graphics don't look so great with that palette.

For my upcoming mission Death's Cold Embrace, every painting is a custom object. I know it's overkill maybe, but it allows me to change the frame texture (I have 3-4 new ones) as well as specifying the custom painting texture and being able to put it into \obj\txt16. I have base horizontal and vertical models (taken from obj.crf) which I just open in Visual C++ and change the names of the frame and picture GIF to the new one and save as a new model.

John D.
3rd Sep 2004, 13:42
Also, I have no problems using a 256x256 texture for my paintings. What problem were you seeing with it? Seemed like it was completely distorted without any recognizable picture. Setting it at 128x128 seemed to solve the problem.

John D.
3rd Sep 2004, 19:22
Okay, I must have screwed something up the first time, because trying a 256x256 gif seems to work fine for me now, although I dont see any quality
improvement after switching to .gif format. I still had to use paint to switch to .gif because trying it in adobe photoshop left some holes, does anyone know what the tool to make it work might be? Also, before I try-has anyone ever tried to set the .bin for the new portraits to take a .jpg file or any other format that would allow for some more detail?