Techno Box, was my first serious experience with Adobe Photoshop and with computer graphics. I’ve learned quite a few things since that project. This page will feature a notes about techniques I’ve picked up in the past few years.
Working in High Resolution
One way to get finer details in your rebirth mod is to work with graphics at a Higher resolution. After you’ve finished the graphics, then reduce them.
A recommended method in Adobe Photoshop is to open the standard component image then change the “Image Size” Resolution settings from 72 pixels/inch to 720 pixels/inch using the “Nearest Neighbor” setting. This will expand the image so that one pixel is now 10×10 pixels.
Now create your new graphics then save the file as a .PSD keeping your layers intact. “Flatten” the image, then change the “Image Size” back to 72 pixels/inch and save the image as a JPG in your new Mods Component folder.
This works well for getting some fine details in those button and indicator actions as well as creating detailed knobs. Also, this allows you to add text labels clearly without the anti-aliasing over blurring small font sizes.
One Thing I’ve recently had success with is defining a range of working luminosity. Rather than using 100% Black or 100% white, limit the range of brightness from 10% to 90% white. This allows an extra margin of brightness for shadowing and glowing effects. This adds a lot of depth to the Interface Graphics.
Non Standard Image Sizes
One little trick i’ve stubled on was that Graphics do not have to be exactly the same size as the standard components. You can Over Size and Under Size the images. This is a clever trick for making those knobs with numeric displays as well as oversized buttons and indicator lamps/switches. You can increase the size on just about everything to generate some cool effects.
The images are anchored by the top left corner (0,0) so if you increase the size they will overlap to the right and bottom of the image.
For example, If you increase the width of the image 12057.jpg (Top Transport Bar) it will overlap the right side panel - so you can create a continous looking solid piece along the top of the entire window.
Silence at the Start of a Sample
This little trick can alter the feel of the pattern playback. By adding a few ms of silence at the beginning of the kicks will give them a slight delay. This will make the snares feel slightly rushed. You can use this trick on any sample to alter the timing.