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Instructor
Original Poster
#1 Old 1st Jan 2005 at 7:57 PM Last edited by Echo : 10th Sep 2008 at 1:37 PM. Reason: Added wiki link
Default Tutorial: Creating Templates for PhotoStudio
This Tutorial is not intended for Beginners. You need a certain knowledge about SimPE and how Recolors work in general to understand this. So please anyone who understands how this work, feel free to translate this into a "Version for everybody" :D

What you need
- SimPE 0.14a or above
- Color Enabler packages
- The attached File

How it is done
I will lead you through this based on the "Civic Idol" by Adora Wall Arts (Group = 0x7F6E1ED0).

Basically we extend a Recolor Package of the Painting with some data SimPE uses to decide where to put the new Image to.

So lets's get started:

1. Open SimPe, click on "Plugins->Object Workshop..."
2. Select "Civic Idol" by Adora Wall Arts. Open the "Clone Settins" Tab and uncheck the "Set Private Group ID" Checkbox.
3. SimPE will clone the File. Now select the Catalog Description in the left SimPE ListBox and extract the Catalog Description File. Do not save the package file itself, as it was only neede to get the Catalog Description.
4. Open Object Workshop again.
5. Select Civic Idol" by Adora Wall Arts again. Make sure the "Color Options" Tab is selected and that the "Make Color Extension package" is checked.
6. Hit Start and save the File somewher you can find it.
7. Add the previously extracted Catalog Description to the package and change the TGI Values to:
subtype=0xffffffff;group=0xffffffff;instance=0xffffffff
8. Import the Property Set file (EBCF3E27 - Property Set - FFFFFFFF-FFFFFFFF-FFFFFFFF.simpe.xml) stored in this attachment.
9. Open the Texture Image that contains the Canvas of the Picture. Remove the 128-Bit Key from the Filename (the Filename is something like paining_blabla_00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000_txtr, so remove the 00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000 part) then hit Commit and after that Fix TGI.
10. Copy the Filename of the TXTR File (without the _txtr extension), open the Property Set and paste the value to the Texture Property. Now hit Commit.
11. Open the Material Description and change the stdMatBaseTextureName value and the File List link to the TXTR Filename you have just copied.
12. Remove the 128-Bit Key from the MATDs Filename and Description as well. Hit Commit and Fix TGI. Copy the new MATD Filename (without the _txmt Part).
13. Open the Property Set again and past the copied Filename to the materialDescription Property. (hit commit)
14. Open the MMAT File and paste the FileName value to the name Property. (Hit Commit)
15. Open the Property Set again and make sure that materialOverride Property is set to the Instance of the MMAT File
16. Save the Package.

So far we now have a basic Template File the only thing that needs to be changed now are the left, top, width, height Values on the Property set.

Defining the Image Rectangle
1. Open the Template package again
2. Select the TXTR Image and Export the biggest texture.
3. Open the exported Image in the Graphics Application of your Choice and find out the coordinates of the Canvas. In this case it is rather Simple, as it is the whole canvas. So the rectangle is left=0;top=0;width=256=0x100;height=256=0x100
4. Open the Property Set File and set the left, top, width, height Properties according to the above Values. Commit the Property Set and hit "File->Save"
5. Close SimPE 6. Copy your package to the SimPE Data Directory and change the extension to template.
7. Start SimPE again and open Photo Studio, the new Picture should now show up as new "Picture Base"

The attached Files does alos contain the Template as an example of how it should look like.

Have Fun.





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Tutorials:Creating_Templates_for_PhotoStudiowiki
Download - please read all instructions before downloading any files!
File Type: rar Painting Template.rar (19.9 KB, 1060 downloads) - View custom content
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Instructor
#2 Old 2nd Jan 2005 at 1:19 AM
Nice work, Quaxi!!
i made some templates and works fine!
thanks for explain this :D
Lab Assistant
#3 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 2:23 AM
Started making templates as well. First 4 went fine - no problems. Then hit a brick wall. SimPE just would not save my input canvas size. Finally used my hammer on it and got it to save the damn canvas size (hit commit and then save after each co-ordinate). The extra work is worth it though. So much easier to make pictures. One thing that concerns me though is the enormous size of the files now. They went from something like 80k (importing with TXTR Extractor) to 600k or so when finished with Photoshop. Is this the norm?

"A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by." Mark Twain
Instructor
Original Poster
#4 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 2:24 AM
It was.

The new Photo Studio can use the NVidia DDS Tools too, so the Filesize should be back to normal.
Instructor
#5 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 3:22 AM
I'm happy with my evil ladies hanging on the wall! lol
And i don't have any problems with the canvas size. Remember that you need to set the right value at the property set.

And thanks, quaxi!! with the DDS compressor will left some more space in HD for more paintings! :D
i already made 70 new paintings and tapestrys.
Lab Assistant
#6 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 6:07 AM
Another question - is there a MAXIMUM size for an image beyond which PhotoShop does not work? I have been trying to create a painting using the SimCity premade template with an image that is 992x360 and just over 1Mb in size. The result in game is a white canvas with 2 red lines on it so it looks like the back of an envelope.

"A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by." Mark Twain
Instructor
Original Poster
#7 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 1:42 PM
Hm? I used a 5MB Image for testing.

Which quality did you use? Which Version of SimPE? Because this souns like the MipMap Levels are messed up.
Lab Assistant
#8 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 3:09 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quaxi
Hm? I used a 5MB Image for testing.

Which quality did you use? Which Version of SimPE? Because this souns like the MipMap Levels are messed up.


I was using version 0.14a and at the time I did not select ANY quality as there was no choice on that side.

I have since updated to .14b and pointed to the DDS utility and while that does bring down the file size the final image in game is not as good as it had been. And doing the same file that was giving me a problem with Photo Studio (finally got it right :howdy: ) now appears no problem - just the quality issue. I am going to redo the same pictures I just ran a test on (using some of the premade templates and 1 using my own) without using the DDS and see what that does.

"A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by." Mark Twain
Instructor
Original Poster
#9 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 3:46 PM
Just in case you don't know.

If you want quality instead of compression, you can change it manually in Photo Studio.
Lab Assistant
#10 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 4:35 PM Last edited by glacier1701 : 4th Jan 2005 at 3:23 PM. Reason: Move screenshot to another thread
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quaxi
Just in case you don't know.

If you want quality instead of compression, you can change it manually in Photo Studio.


Yes I have been messing around with the options available there with the following results:

High compression = low quality
High quality = HUGE file size


So there is a trade off - which is nice to know.

Anyways am now back with the same problem with that one image I had problems with. As mentioned its 993x336 and just over 1Mb in size. I am using the premade SimCity template. If I use the DDS Utility in Photo Studio to bring it into the painting it works BUT its low quality. When I try to use RAW24 I get the white canvas with 2 red lines (see screenshot).

Edit: Am now seeing this problem with a template I made for the Engineered Angst Poster and ONLY if I use the RAW24 option in Photo Studio. (The one posted here works fine its the other poster I have the problem with now.) Another of my templates is exhibiting the same behaviour. It works fine IF I use the DDS option but if I go to RAW24 it displays the red lined envelope. This is one for the Posionous Forest. So thats 3 templates now - your SimCity one and my Engineered Angst and Poisonous Forest (as I said the one posted here works fine). I have tested Pinhead's Poisonous Template and if I use RAW24 it to fails and shows the red lines. I tink I broke it :smash:


And I am not sure if you want this but have been testing this template and it works and you do not seem to have it as a premade one. Its for the Engineered Angst in Red poster. If its useful you can include it in the next update of SimPE for Photo Studio. (I am testing other templates but they are not quite ready yet.)
Download - please read all instructions before downloading any files!
File Type: rar EngineeredAngstRed.rar (13.7 KB, 88 downloads) - View custom content

"A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by." Mark Twain
Lab Assistant
#11 Old 3rd Jan 2005 at 5:12 PM Last edited by glacier1701 : 3rd Jan 2005 at 7:02 PM.
Not sure that this is possible but as you know the way some of the paintings work you actually see a mirrored imaged in game. The Lady on Red and the 4th Element Tapestry in particular do this. Under most circumstances this is not a major problem unless you have text in the image. Then it becomes really noticable. So is it possible to get Photo Studio to mirror these images first so that they would look fine in game?

"A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by." Mark Twain
Lab Assistant
#12 Old 4th Jan 2005 at 2:37 AM
Been banging away at templates and have created several more now of various sizes. They all seem to have the same problem and that is using the high quality setting results in a white canvas with 2 red lines on it in the game. Its frustrating in that its not only my templates but 2 of the premade ones as well. What has to be done to fix them? You mentioned something about mipmaps but that doesnt give me any clue as to what might need to be done to fix the problem. Any help here would be greatly appreciated.

"A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by." Mark Twain
Instructor
#13 Old 4th Jan 2005 at 6:00 AM Last edited by pinhead : 4th Jan 2005 at 6:14 AM.
i think that you have to use RAW32 and not 24. I didn't tested with RAW24, but if you said that corrupt the image i think that is not good to use. The old version of Photo Studio (SimPE 14a) was using RAW32 and all images worked fine for me.

Maybe this is the problem. Good that you notice and informed here.

EDITED: I forgot to mention, about "low quality" of DDS compression, I didn't have any problems with quality after creating paintings using DDS Utilities in Photo Studio. All of them are with good quality. Make sure that your settings in-game are with High Quality Textures or your painting will be blurry.
Screenshots
Lab Assistant
DELETED POST
4th Jan 2005 at 2:51 PM
This message has been deleted by glacier1701. Reason: Posted in another thread in another forum
Field Researcher
#14 Old 5th Jan 2005 at 3:50 PM
One bad thing I've noticed about some of the templates is that the creator's title that shows up in the window is sometimes so long that you don't know what the size of the picture is because it is hidden in the UNSIZEABLE window.
Instructor
Original Poster
#15 Old 5th Jan 2005 at 3:53 PM
The Window is sizable.
Field Researcher
#16 Old 22nd Jan 2005 at 11:36 PM
I've got the template tutorial almost down pat. The only thing I don't understand is the width and height values in the TXTR image. After exporting to photoshop, I can get almost every size available (ie. inches, columns, percentage, etc.). I'm not sure how you figure out the dtInteger. I'm trying to make a template of Rainy Day, and the frame is included so I know there is going to be some type of dtInteger width of 0x0000015A (or something like that). Does photoshop (or any other program) give a dtInteger value? :confused:

Thanks
Lab Assistant
#17 Old 22nd Jan 2005 at 11:45 PM
It's hex , simnuts101 (each column goes to 16 [0 to F] instead of 0 to 10 like normal numbers). To figure out the pixel size you have to convert it to a normal decimal number.

Open windows calculator, in view switch to scientific. Click hex and type in the number after the x: 15A in your example. Click dec and it will switch to a normal number (the number of pixels).
Field Researcher
#18 Old 22nd Jan 2005 at 11:57 PM
THANK YOU WDS BriAnna!!!
Field Researcher
#19 Old 25th Jan 2005 at 8:48 AM
Welllllll I thought I almost had it down pat!

I have created a few new templates. My new template shows up in the list of template available. I can select it and preview it also. When I select texture image the pic is there, in the correct position, everything looks great! Here's the interesting part. When I save the pic, the only file types that show up are the Material Override and Texture Image. The Material Definition is completly missing, make the pic show up in the game completly blue. I'm not sure what I'm missing in the tutorial. :confused:
Any help or thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks!
Lab Assistant
#20 Old 31st Jan 2005 at 5:47 PM
I cant find anything with TGI. Where is it or what is it?
Lab Assistant
#21 Old 31st Jan 2005 at 8:20 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by simnuts101
Welllllll I thought I almost had it down pat!

I have created a few new templates. My new template shows up in the list of template available. I can select it and preview it also. When I select texture image the pic is there, in the correct position, everything looks great! Here's the interesting part. When I save the pic, the only file types that show up are the Material Override and Texture Image. The Material Definition is completly missing, make the pic show up in the game completly blue. I'm not sure what I'm missing in the tutorial. :confused:
Any help or thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks!


Hmmmm interesting - never had the problem when I've been making templates. Everything that is supposed to be there is there. The only glitch I have had is when creating an actual image - then occasionally it goofs up. Right now though it seems to be fine. BUt just to make sure that I understand what is going on this is a problem within the painting you are trying to created? It a created pic thats giving you the trouble right? All I can suggest is that you try again - templates should have 5 seperate packed files - while the actual image should have 3. If its missing one then you might want to check the template to make sure it has all 5 files and then redo the painting.

"A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by." Mark Twain
Lab Assistant
#22 Old 31st Jan 2005 at 8:25 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by gameplayer
I cant find anything with TGI. Where is it or what is it?


Fix TGI is an option that will come up at certain points during the creation process. It will be normally on the lower left part of the SimPE screen hi-lited in blue and underlined. To give you a quick idea of whats it like open up a painting package (any will do) and then select the texture image. To the left of the image squeezed inbetween FILENAME and FORMAT are 2 selectable headings FIX TGI and ASSIGN HASH provided you have PLUGIN VIEW tab selected. It is not always available since it depends on what actual part of the package file you are looking at. And of course it may move place a bit as different screens present different information. But its something that should automatically display when it appropriate.

"A man who keeps company with glaciers comes to feel tolerably insignificant by and by." Mark Twain
Test Subject
#23 Old 23rd Apr 2005 at 12:33 PM
Hi. I'm here reading this tutorial to try to learn how to make templates for photo studio and find that I cannot download either one of the templates here for download. I'm getting "page not found".

I will try to go through all the steps without them, but thought you should know that the 2 downloads are not working for some reason.

Thanks.
Test Subject
#24 Old 24th Apr 2005 at 2:39 AM
OK I was able to finally get the downloads. Not sure what was up with that. And I went through the steps of the tutorial. Did OK until I got to instruction #10. "Copy the Filename of the TXTR File (without the _txtr extension), open the Property Set and paste the value to the Texture Property. Now hit Commit"

Problem is, I cannot find or figure out where is the Texture Property. I also could not find any place that would allow me to right click and paste. I did click on Property Set, and came up with a list of things, Texture being one of the things on the list, and there was a box that showed the texture value, but it would not allow a paste. And since it said "value" and not "property" I wasnt sure if I was in the right place anyway. I did go ahead and just retyped the value, but then I lost confidence that I had done the right thing, and I wasn't sure if the entire value needed to be replaced or just the description after the numbers, or what.

I looked ahead in the tutorial at step number 11: "Open the Material Description and change the stdMatBaseTextureName value and the File List link to the TXTR Filename you have just copied."

I am fairly confident about the value change, but couldn't find the File List link - couldn't figure out what that was.

So I seem to be stuck. I would really appreciate some help with this. Please??
Test Subject
#25 Old 29th Jun 2005 at 10:15 PM
This has nothing to do with this but how do you use The Sims 2 homecrafter..
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