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Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Banners by numbers - The tutorial no one asked for

Hi All,

No rest for the wicked, so hobby time has had to take the back burner again this month. I did promise I'd share how I did my latest banner, so here goes.

If you are like me and have lots of ideas but not the talent to execute them, making banners can be a frustrating task. As I was learning to use GIMP I realized that I was pretty good at cutting and pasting in the software and that I could build my banners from the elements that Games Workshop gave us to make banners in the Army books or White Dwarf Articles.

So I picked a banner from the Undead Army book.


You probably recognize this as one of the Skeleton banners presented in the Undead Army book p32


I did a lot of this first in Photoshop, I couldn't get it to look right, so I returned to GIMP. Turns out it was the final stages printing it out that were the issue, not Photoshop. So the main thing I did was get rid of the design, I just wanted the banner shape. I made a copy of the banner then erased the design and then painted in white to get a blank canvas. You could probably just skip straight to painting over the design in white.


I added a banner scroll that I belive I got from openclipart.org, as its own layer.


Then I added a trace of some artwork for the main banner graphic. In both of these cases I could have used elements from the other line drawings from that banner page in the Undead army book. I just had other plans.


So here's where you may not want to copy me. I latched onto the idea of doing a "Tarman" inspired banner. If you haven't watched Return of the Living Dead, stop everything and do this immediatley. Anyway, I found a T-Shirt and ran a filter on it in Photoshop to alter and simplify it a bit.

This is the original image. I forget what the filter was, but I think it was watercolor.


I then ran a greyscale filter on it because I was more interested in tones than actual color.


Then I selected areas with the magic wand and stroked the selection with a 1px black line on its own layer to give me my outline. I tried to figure out a simpler way to do this but ended up with this method. It just took a lot of time.


The final problem was that, no matter what I tried, the banner would print out in weird dimensions and very pixilated straight from either GIMP or Photoshop. So I pasted it into Open Office Writer, Set my ruler to mm, and scaled it there before printing out.

I then just painted in between the lines and used a tiny technical pen to write "more brains." As you can see the varnish smeared the lettering slightly.


Thanks for looking.

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