Artistic Imposter Design http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog Brad's Creative Blog Sat, 04 Mar 2017 21:33:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.5 Creating a Stereographic Projection in Photoshop http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/creating-a-stereographic-projection-in-photoshop/ Sat, 04 Mar 2017 21:33:45 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=1002

Several years ago, I came across a way to create cool and unique pieces of art from a photograph in Photoshop. This type of photograph is known as a stereographic projection or “little planet” and, while you don’t see too many people doing it anymore, it seems like it was kind of popular a few years ago. I made a few of these back then, and since I’ve always liked them I’ve recently started making them again.

To make this kind of art is actually pretty simple and requires only a couple of things: a great photograph and a copy of Adobe Photoshop or a similar image-editing program. The best stereographic projections use a type of picture called a 360-degree panorama. This means that the edge of one side of the panorama could be placed next to the opposite edge of the panorama and the two sides would form a continuous scene. These types of pictures are often created by standing in one place and taking continuous photographs while panning the camera in a 360-degree circle, then stitching the photos together in Photoshop or a similar program. Many smartphone cameras now have a panorama feature that makes this easier.

So what do you do if you can’t get a 360-degree panoramic photograph? There are two options: either fake it by editing the image you have, or mirror the image. I have done both, and both options can provide great results.

Faking It

First, I want to show you how to fake it. I’ll use a copy of my photograph, Hovenweep, taken at Hovenweep National Monument.
Hovenweep by K. Bradley Washburn

Photoshop Offset Dialog Box

After opening the photograph in Photoshop, I will go to the “Filter” menu, scroll down to “Other,” and choose “Offset…” from the pop-out menu. In the “Horizontal” text field in the dialog box that pops up, I will type “1000” and click the “OK” button. My image will now look like this:

Hovenweep Offset

I can now use the Clone Stamp tool to replace areas of the image along the seam so that the offset sides flow into each other without a noticeable difference. Since we are creating a stereographic projection the seam doesn’t have to be perfect, but I will still make it look really good. Once I am finished with that, my image will look like this:

Hovenweep Clone Stamped

You can still see a couple of places where I could have tried to make it look better, but it will be fine in the final result. Now that I have erased the seam, I will go to the “Image” menu, scroll down to “Image Rotation,” and choose “180°.” Back in the “Filter” menu, I will scroll down to “Distort,” and choose “Polar Coordinates…” In the dialog box, make sure the “Rectangluar to Polar” radio button in selected and click “OK.” My image will now look like this:

Hovenweep Polar Coordinates

The last step is to resize the image so that is a square. Some people do this step right after using the Clone Stamp tool, but I prefer to do it last. When I do it earlier in the process, I occasionally get weird artifacts in my final image. To complete this step, I will go to the “Image” menu again and choose “Image Size.” In the dialog box, I will make sure the “Resample” check box is selected and the link icon between Width and Height is not selected. I will choose “Pixels” from the drop down menu next to Width. Then I will change the value in the text box next to Width to match the value in the text box next to Height, and click “OK.”

Image Size Dialog Box

My final image looks like this:

Hovenweep Stereographic Projection Tutorial Final

Although not perfect, my seam is now not even visible. It’s a little different from my first version because the Offset value in my first version was different, but that’s how it’s done!

Mirroring

For this example, I will use a different image. I’ll open up a copy of my photograph Cottonwood Creek in Photoshop. The first thing I will do is go to the Layers panel, click the lock icon on the Background layer, right-click on the layer, and choose “Duplicate Layer.” I now have two layers, each with the Cottonwood Creek image.

From the “Image” menu, I will now choose “Canvas Size.” In the dropdown box next to Width, I will choose “Percent.” Then in the text field next to Width, I will change “100” to “200” and click “OK.” This will double the width of the canvas while keeping the height the same.

Cottonwood Creek Canvas Resized

Using the Selection Tool, I will drag one layer clear to the right of the canvas and drag the other layer clear to the left of the canvas. Then, with just one layer selected, I will go the “Edit” menu, scroll down to “Transform,” and choose “Flip Horizontal.” This creates a mirrored landscape and my image now looks like this:

Cottonwood Creek mirrored

With the top layer selected, I will now press “CMD+E” (Mac) or “CTRL+E” (Windows) to merge the two layers, and follow the steps I took above to rotate the image, map to polar coordinates, and resize to a square. My final image will look like this:

Cottonwood Creek Mirrored Stereographic Projection

That’s all there is to it! With a nice photograph and a decent image-editing program anyone can create a stereographic projection.

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DeviantArt and Fine Art America http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/deviantart-and-fine-art-america/ Sat, 22 Oct 2016 19:03:22 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=987 A couple of months ago, I created a Deviant Art profile to begin showing off my artwork and photography, and hopefully to begin selling a little bit as well. Since then, I have added over 70 works of art and photographs to my profile, most of which can be purchased as either prints or art gifts. Check out the slideshow below to see some of these works:

Shortly after creating my DeviantArt profile, I also created an account with fineartamerica.com, where I have begun uploading only the photography and artwork which I consider to be the very best. I also have prints and other items available to purchase from my Fine Art America profile.

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New DeviantArt Profile http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/new-deviantart-profile/ Sat, 13 Aug 2016 04:26:25 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=979 Last night, I decided I needed to create a DeviantArt portfolio, so today I did something about it. I have actually visited DeviantArt many times over the years, but I have never felt the need to create my own profile.

Last night while researching ways to sell art online, I discovered that DeviantArt has an option to list art for sale. Unlike other options I have considered in the past, I am actually familiar with DeviantArt so I decided it’s as good a place as any to get started. Of course, had I joined years ago, I would have more of an artistic network than I do now. Hindsight, right?

To make a long story short, I created my profile today and added some information about myself. I haven’t yet added any artwork to my portfolio, but I expect to start adding some of my old stuff shortly.

Check out my profile, and stay tuned as I add my artwork.

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Wolf Illustrations http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/wolf-illustrations/ Mon, 28 Mar 2016 19:08:09 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=945 I’ve been working on some illustrations for a game idea that has been bouncing around in my head for a while. They’re pretty simple, but that’s kind of the look I’m going for.

I’m not sure if they’re final yet or if I want to play around with them more. I still need to decide which one I like best, but I thought I’d share them out for your viewing pleasure.

Wolf Illustration 1 Wolf Illustration 2 Wolf Illustration 3

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Free Treasure Tomb and Wolf In The Fold Computer Wallpaper http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/free-treasure-tomb-and-wolf-in-the-fold-computer-wallpaper/ Mon, 21 Mar 2016 18:45:01 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=963 Last week, I decided to repurpose the game art from Treasure Tomb and Wolf In The Fold and turn the art into computer wallpaper.

The wallpaper is now available from my Online Store in three sizes each: 1600×1200 pixels, 1920×1080 pixels, and 2560×1440 pixels. While there are many other screen sizes I could have created, these three sizes can be effectively scaled for use on either a 16:9 or 4:3 computer monitor. Users with 4:3 monitors will want to download the 1600×1200 file, while 16:9 users should choose from either of the other two sizes.

Visit my online store and download your free wallpaper now:

Treasure Tomb Game Art Wallpaper

Treasure Tomb Box Art Wallpaper

Wolf In The Fold Wallpaper

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Florida Photoshop Training Workshops http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/florida-photoshop-training-workshops/ Sat, 13 Feb 2016 19:22:52 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=933 A couple of weeks ago, LearnKey sent me to Jacksonville, Florida, to help a group of teachers become certified in Adobe Photoshop CS6. I also had the opportunity in October to visit the same school district to train a different set of teachers in Photoshop CC. I had a great time, and I wrote a couple of articles about my training experience on the LearnKey blog:

October 22, 2015: Certification Training in Florida

Last week, I took a trip to Jacksonville, Florida, with LearnKey Sales Champion Scott Walker to train a group of teachers from Duval County Public Schools. The purpose of the three-day workshop was to help each teacher earn their Adobe Certified Associate certification in Photoshop CC. Most of the teachers hold certifications in previous versions of Photoshop, but had not been able to pass the CC certification test. Florida law requires that teachers be certified in the software they teach, so having a certification in a previous version is no longer enough.

When you use a piece of software on a near-daily basis, you come to think of yourself as an expert. The problem with this mentality is you fail to take into account that you are probably using the same tools day after day, never utilizing other features the software has to offer. You tend to forget how to use those features, and sometimes you even forget they exist. Our purpose was to re-introduce those features and help the teachers become comfortable enough to take the ACA exam.

(Read more…)

January 28, 2016: Duval County Public Schools Photoshop CS6 Training

A couple of months ago, Scott Walker and I took a trip to Florida to help high school teachers in Duval County Public Schools to become ACA certified in Photoshop CC. Last week, we found ourselves back in Duval helping a group of forty-seven middle school teachers become ACA certified in Photoshop CS6. When we arrived at the school Tuesday morning, we were also asked to introduce them to the IC3 training. By the end of the week, all but seven teachers had passed the Photoshop ACA exam, with several also receiving their IC3 certifications.

Unlike the group we worked with in October, many of the teachers in our training last week had never used Photoshop before. In fact, most of them were not even CTE teachers! It was a new experience working with people who were unfamiliar with the software, and it gave me a greater appreciation for what these teachers must go through every year when they are given a new group of students.

(Read more…)

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Artistic Imposter Design Now Mobile-Friendly http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/artistic-imposter-design-now-mobile-friendly/ Sun, 17 Jan 2016 05:22:12 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=917 By now, anyone who works in the web design industry should be familiar with terms like “mobile-friendly” and “responsive web design.” Well, I am proud to announce that Artistic Imposter Design is now both mobile-friendly and responsive!

While some companies create a separate set of pages for the mobile version of their site, others choose to use CSS media queries to add responsiveness to the design. While both approaches have merit, I believe media queries are the way to go. Using media queries allows the design of the pages to adjust based on the width of the device in use rather than having just two static designs.

About a month ago, I decided that as a web designer I should probably get with the times and I began redesigning my website in my spare time. Trying not to stray too far from my current design, I kept the color scheme, but rearranged the menu and added a couple of pages. I also wrote a new WordPress theme for my Creative Blog and Online Store, finally matching the design of the store to my website design.

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Coming Soon . . . Two Treasure Tomb Expansions http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/coming-soon-two-treasure-tomb-expansions/ Thu, 24 Sep 2015 18:10:09 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=875 Treasure Tomb Shop Backdrop

Four months ago, I released Treasure Tomb, a game of strategic tile-laying, dice-rolling, and card collecting. The game includes components for up to 4 players, allowing a small group to enjoy the wonders of the tomb.

Beginning October 1, 2015, you will be able to expand your games of Treasure Tomb to include up to 8 players! Add the new 5-6 Player Expansion to the basic game to play with 6 players, or expand even further with the new 7-8 Player Expansion!

Treasure Tomb 5-6 Player Expansion

The Treasure Tomb 5-6 Player Expansion includes the following components to expand your game:

  • 1 book of supplemental rules
  • 2 game board extension pieces
  • 48 tile cards
  • 54 treasure cards
  • 2 player pawns (meeples) in 2 colors (orange & purple)

Along with components for up to 6 players, this expansion also adds a new “Hieroglyphs” treasure card. The Hieroglyphs card allows a player to use a Hidden Passageway without attempting to roll a “1” on the die.

Treasure Tomb 7-8 Player Expansion

The Treasure Tomb 7-8 Player Expansion includes the following components to expand your game:

  • 1 book of supplemental rules
  • 3 game board extension pieces
  • 24 tile cards
  • 54 treasure cards
  • 2 player pawns (meeples) in 2 colors (black & white)
  • 1 mummy pawn (white)

Along with components for up to 8 players, this expansion adds a second mummy, a second Burial Chamber treasure card, and rules for two players to score a dual victory in the new Throne Room.

Order the Treasure Tomb 5-6 Player Expansion and 7-8 Player Expansion on The Game Crafter now, and watch for their official release on October 1!

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“Treasure Tomb” – Evolution of a Game http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/treasure-tomb-evolution-of-a-game/ Mon, 01 Jun 2015 23:09:23 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=749 Treasure Tomb Shop Backdrop

Treasure Tomb

Over the past couple of months, I have been working on a board game, Treasure Tomb. Several design and rule changes later, Treasure Tomb is ready for final publishing and went on sale today at The Game Crafter.

Treasure Tomb is a game of strategic tile-laying, dice-rolling, and card collecting. Players lay tiles to construct pathways through the mummy’s tomb, drawing treasure cards each time they pass a treasure token. When a player lands on a sarcophagus token, the mummy enters the tomb, blocking treasure card icons. Treasure cards are either event cards or gold, and the first person to collect 50 gold wins the game.

Treasure Tomb actually started off many years ago as a much, much different game named Ziggurat. My first prototype was an 8.5″ x 8.5″ game board created in Microsoft Paint with Legos for game pieces. I was at the height of my Mesoamerican obsession phase, so the original idea was a Mesoamerican trivia game with the difficulty level of questions increasing as the players travel deeper into the pyramid. Each player had four stackable pieces, which moved in separate “lanes” from the other players. The goal of the game was to be the first player to get all four of your pieces stacked on top of each other on the finish space in the center of the pyramid.

Enter European board games and The Settlers of Catan.

In the early 2000s, I was introduced to The Settlers of Catan, which opened up a whole new world of board gaming. My borderline obsession with Catan soon led me to discover other European-style games like Ticket to Ride, Zooloretto, and Carcassonne. When I discovered The Game Crafter a few months ago while trying to make custom Catan tiles, the idea of Ziggurat resurfaced.

While I plan to go back and revisit at least some of the original game mechanics from Ziggurat some day, I decided to give the game a complete makeover. I wanted to create a tile-laying game similar to Catan, but with a build-as-you-go mechanic like Carcassonne. By the time I was finished, the end product had evolved into a cross between the original idea and the new idea, with some of the newer mechanics discarded. Those discarded mechanics soon evolved into an unrelated micro-game, my recently-released Wolf in the Fold.

Check out Treasure Tomb at The Game Crafter and get your copy today!

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New “Wolf in the Fold” Microgame http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/new-wolf-in-the-fold-microgame/ Tue, 21 Apr 2015 23:25:32 +0000 http://www.artisticimposter.com/blog/?p=815 Wolf In The Fold Shop Header Image

Wolf in the Fold

In March, I began working on a couple of concepts for games which I have had floating around in my head, and I am pleased to announce the first finished game went on sale today! Created from unused concepts from my upcoming Treasure Tomb board game, Wolf in the Fold is more of a microgame than a full game. The rules are simple and the playing time is short. Most test games have clocked in at around 15 minutes, although games could be longer if other players take a long time to consider their tile placements.

The game was originally inspired by the tile-laying game Carcassonne, in that I wanted to create a tile-laying game where the players build something. While working through my ideas, I ending up with Wolf in the Fold, a game of tile placement and player cooperation. Players build fences and hire shepherds to protect sheep from the wolves. Points are gained when sheep are fully-enclosed within fence tiles. Also included are rules for competitive play, where players compete to see who can enclose more sheep inside fences.

Although designated as for ages 8 and up, the rules are simple enough for younger players to understand. Care should be taken around younger children who may choke on the game tiles.

Download the Game Rules
Like Wolf in the Fold on Facebook

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