The banner advertisement for the Alchemy Mindworks Text Effects #4 plugin has received considerable comment since it appeared in the banner rotation at our various web pages – and no small degree of interest in how it was created. The procedure was elegantly simple, but perhaps not immediately obvious. You’ll probably be able to use it for your own banners.
Archive for September 2008
Depending upon who you listen to, there may be up to a billion people connected to the world wide web as you read this. Don’t get too excited – they have in excess of 100 million web pages to look at, according to a 2008 report by Domain Tools. If yours in one of them, you’ll need something more than a clever domain of your own to attract the attention of passers-by in cyberspace.
Attaching images consecutively – with a second graphic stitched to the bottom or one side of a first – is easy in Graphic Workshop, even if Graphic Workshop doesn’t strictly speaking have a function to do it. This “by hand” approach to the problem will allow you to fine-tune the results, and manually adjust the relative dimensions of the pictures involved if you need to.
Unless you plan animations with transparent elements very carefully – or you’re habitually lucky – you’ll probably encounter an unexpected halo of colored pixels around the object being animated. Transparency halos will trash the seamless appearance of animations against whatever they’re being animated in front of. They’re easy to avoid in GIF Construction Set Professional, but you’ll need to get them by the throat early in the design of your graphics.
One of the most mature applications on Earth, Graphic Workshop Professional can trace its ancestry back to 1986. It predates the Internet, iPods, digital cell phones and the births of a considerable portion of its current users.
Perhaps not surprisingly, it has acquired a considerable wealth of functionality in over two decades – so much so that almost nobody who uses it uses all of it.
Digital cameras – real ones, not the cameras that also place phone calls – embody a level of sophistication that makes even the best old-style film cameras look like cave painting. This having been said, they’re nowhere near as smart as the people who buy them. Human beings have much more sophisticated image processing software in their brains than any digital camera can aspire to.
You can usually improve the appearance of your digital photographs by switching on your image processing software, and then booting up ours. Graphic Workshop Professional‘s rich library of interactive image processing filters can give your pictures the subtlety and refinement of professional photography without requiring that you put up with a balding forty-something auteur who keeps saying “give it to me” and waving his hands incoherently.
One of Animation Workshop‘s best tricks is its ability to create conventional GIF animations, such as web page banners, which include multiple independent animated elements. While it’s possible to simply import several animated objects into Animation Workshop and then export a GIF file from them – and hope for the best – you’ll enjoy much more impressive results if you understand what the software is really up to.
When Electronic Greeting Card Construction Set was first developed, back in the late middle ages, the world was a friendlier and more innocent place – there were a lot fewer cybercretins writing phishing programs, viruses, trojans and other species of malware. Users of Electronic Greeting Card Construction Set could safely e-mail cards to their recipients.
The appearance of the animations you create in GIF Construction Set Professional‘s Animation Wizard can be optimized by selecting the appropriate option in the Palette combo. Doing so may require some understanding of what the little man behind the curtain is really up to.
In building animation with GIF Construction Set’s Animation Wizard, you’ll need to create source art as still image files. It’s not immediately obvious which of the formats imported by Animation Wizard will result in the most attractive final animations, and the two most obvious ones – GIF and JPEG – turn out to be the two worst choices.