2.2 The Pen Options

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Every slider has small mouse icon nearby. Change it to pen icon if you want that parameter will depend on pen pressure. The list of parameters:
Depth modulator. It is needed to specify the standard depth for each pen in use.
Rotation amplitude. The amplitude of addition random pen rotation.
Radius variation. The degree of random pen radius variation (in percent).
Depth variation. The degree of random pen depth variation in percentage.
Opacity jitter. Jitter of Opacity.
Jitter. Jitter of the pen.
Random flip X. Flip pen randomly along x-axis.
Random flip Y. Flip pen randomly along y-axis.
Draw by spots. By this option a moving pen will draw with separate spots, as opposed to stretching lines.
Rotate along motion direction. If this option is used, the pen slopes in the direction of motion. If you rotate the pen manually, the angle of rotation will be added to the incline angle as a result of pen motion.
Skip eraser. Don’t use eraser layer of the pen.
Use spacing. In case this option is used, drawing with pen movement will be done with patches placed at equal intervals from each other.
Spacing. Set spacing distance. By pressing RMB on any of nonstandard pens you will see the advanced menu which allows further editing and options.</p>

These options are:

Pen settings. Go to pen options tab.

-Delete pen. -Save to PSD/TIF. Store pen to PDS or TIF-16 bit. PSD is more intuitive, TIF is more precise. TIF file contains 7 channels - RGB, Alpha, Height, Specular and Erase mask).
Read about layers structure below.
-Load from PSD/TIF. Load pen from PDS or TIF-16 bit. TIF file can contain up to 7 channels. The table shows how different amount of channels will be treated:

1 channel: treated as Alpha and Height.

2 channels: 1 – Alpha 2 –Height

3 channels: 1, 2, 3 – RGB, 2 – Alpha, Height

4 channels: 1, 2, 3 – RGB, 4 – Alpha, Height

5 channels: 1, 2, 3 – RGB, 4 – Alpha, 5 – Height

6 channels: 1, 2, 3 - RGB, 4 – Alpha, 5 – Height, 6 – Specular

7 channels: 1, 2, 3 – RGB, 4 – Alpha, 5 – Height, 6 – Specular, 7 – Erase mask

NOTE: In case a PSD file has no structure, as described below, it will simply be unrecognized by the program.

Edit in ext. editor. Edit the pen in external editor (Adobe Photoshop by default). A PSD file will be saved and it will be loaded automatically after change. As soon as you save the file, 3DCoat automatically catches up the pen. In Adobe Photoshop pen has the structure as seen in this image. Each pen includes four layers. Color, Height Map (Depth), Specular Map (Specular) and an Erase Mask (Erase). Let’s take a look at these layers individually:

-Color. This contains pen color and transparency mask. The transparency mask affects specular channel as well (Specular).
-Height Map. This contains pen height map. Grey color RGB (127,127,127) corresponds to zero height. Darker colors correspond to cavities, lighter colors – to convexities.
-Specular. While color corresponds to maximum specular, black one – to absence of specular. Keep in mind, the color map transparency mask gets applied onto the specular map too.
-EraseMask. This mask allows erasing the layer contents on mask before pen drawing. This may be used to create pens which would not be colliding with each other when drawing. An effective application would be interstice, chaps on skin, fabric. Keep in mind the erase mask affects the lowest layer.</p>

A few other things that you can do:

-Edit as 16 bit TIF. Edit the pen as 16 bit TIF file in external editor (Adobe Photoshop by default). A PSD file will be saved and it will be loaded automatically after change.
--->NewFolder. This allows you to copy the selected pen(s) to a different folder.

Pen Tab Drop Down List. On the right side of the tab, you’ll see an arrow pointing down. By clicking this there will be many more advanced options:

  • Refresh pens preview.
  • Pen Settings. Goes directly to the “Pen opt.” tab.
  • Add new folder. Create a new folder. 2.2.4.jpg
  • Add existing folder. Add images from folder with pictures. New pens/strips folder with the same name will be created. You should select at least one file in the folder and all files from the folder will be added to list.

Note: In Folder menu you can switch between folders you have created.

  • Icon Size. You can also change the size of the icons, to a number of sizes. They are: Tiny, Normal, Large and Huge.
  • Create a pen from a 3D Object. By clicking on the Folder icon in the Pen Tab, you can import a number of file formats in to be used as a pen. In the image on the right, you can see the editing viewport for importing a 3D mesh. The model can be rotated and scaled. Rotate the model by pressing LMB, move the model while holding SPACE, scale it with RMB, rotate within the screen frame by using the combination of ALT+LMB.

You can choose texture size and the image proportions. The use of non-square pens is especially handy when creating strips as described below. Using slider in the right lower corner you can adjust the models level of dipping into the background plane which determines the zero pen level.