Welcome to another edition of Art of Eorzea. This is the sister column of "Echoes of Eorzea" and is dedicated to the artistic side of Final Fantasy XIV. In this article I give you 10 tips on creating images with only the Grouping tool without ReShade.
As a long-time user of both pure GPose and ReShade, I have found great pleasure and challenge in making both for creating images. During my time in FFXIV, I met many great screenshot enthusiasts using different combinations of GPose, ReShade and other tools to edit and create their images. However, on various occasions I have been contacted by players who have told me they believe they are not a & # 39; good & # 39; can make screenshots without the use or ReShade to which they do not have access. That's why I decided to to attempt to eliminate this misconception and give some advice on how you can take photos that look like ReShade without you not needing it at all. Please keep in mind, as always, I am not an expert, these are just a few of the methods I have picked up by trial and error. I did my best to explain the placement of the light, but I apologize if it doesn't make sense. It is something that is much easier to show than to explain in words, because you have a 360-degree field to play with. Light sources can create very different results with fractional movement and adjustment. If you have questions about a certain image, do not hesitate to leave a comment below and I will try to explain further!
No image in this manual contains edits from ReShade or third parties.
Pure GPose Related articles:
10 tips for GPose
Metallic dyes and armor
When you use a light source or filters within the GPose tool, it works in different ways with the surrounding textures and colors. Adding metal dyes to your most important equipment can really change the dynamics of an image. It not only emphasizes the equipment itself, but creates a new surface for the light to work with. It adds an extra focal point to the image, along with contrasting and marking tones. Dyes can be manufactured, purchased from the market board or purchased with Chocobo springs from the Calamity Salvager in major cities. Some armors already contain unique details and metal features, so it is worth playing and seeing what results can be achieved when emphasizing reflective or metal surfaces.
On usage items
About usage items, such as Magicked Prism (wings), Magicked Prism (flowers), Magicked Prism (confetti), etc., can create unique shadows, lighting, and effects that are not feasible in the standard GPose system. Before entering GPose, first use the on use item, then emote, then expression, and type / gpose. The effect will then play while you execute your emote and will be repeated. In the image below, for example, Novi uses the wings, which offer a lot of focused light that gives me the freedom to use the amplified effect filter and three other light sources to adjust the image to how I would like to see it. The wings provide extra lighting and shadows around her and her dress.
Enhanced effects is one of the GPose filters that I use the most to replicate the presentation of ReShade. Although it initially seems "too strong" in its natural form, you can use the light sources to nullify the filter's gravity and color the image again without losing contrasting tones. This filter in combination with the status effect & # 39; wet clothing & # 39; can produce a nice smooth result (if you are not yet in the water).
Light sources and markings
Placement of lighting can be important to emphasize a subject in an image, whether it is water, structure or a character. For a portrait photo, I generally set all sources to level one and place a light source directly behind her head or neck (perhaps between the shoulder blades – don't be afraid to scroll to the right). Bring the camera back forward, zoom out a few scroll-backs on the mouse, and then place the second light source diagonally down to the left and the last diagonal to the right or vice-versa, depending on the composition and emote. There is a video linked below that explains and shows this a little better. Minor adjustments can be made at any time to ensure that you define your character in the best way without overexposure. If the light effects seem too strong, try adjusting the natural color to a slightly warmer / different tone that will soften the light a fraction.
If I want a strong set of highlights (as shown above), I will use a slightly different method by placing two type 1 light sources behind her around the head and ankle area. I will then adjust the placement and color of this, depending on the pose. If the functions need to be more visible, I zoom out (with the camera facing her) and place the third light source back, up and diagonally from her face so that it is illuminated, but not enough to highlight the highlights and contrast ignore made by the back lighting.
Note: Even using a black and white filter, remember that light sources with different colors still influence the outcome of the image, you see the biggest changes between green light and red light, emphasizing different tones. When using a black and white filter, you can use the Brilliant 1 screen effect to brighten the image a little further.
Particle, Sakura and status effects
The status effects can be a powerful addition to an image. By using the particle effect, you can add a more ethereal and calmer feel to an image, enhancing any spell animations that may have been used as an action. The Sakura effect is a nice addition to the environment for some Samurai action effects or in combination with environments with similar colors / themes. The character status effect & # 39; wet clothing & # 39; can also provide a more & # 39; shiny & # 39; surface to work with, making the image and structures look smoother. This effect makes the character darker, so make sure you put this on before you light up your character.
As a general rule, framing can really change the dynamics of an image. It usually dictates the stream in which you want the viewer to read the image. There is of course the general rule of the third photography principle to keep in mind.
“The third-party rule means that you divide your image mentally using 2 horizontal lines and 2 vertical lines, as shown below. You then place the important elements in your scene along those lines, or at the points where they meet. – Photographymad.com
"Studies have shown that when viewing images, people's eyes usually go to one of the intersections most naturally rather than to the center of the photo – using the third-party rule works with this natural way to View the image instead of working against it. " – Digital Photography School.
Although the use of framing options (tilting and zooming) can result in a more interesting image and make good use of negative space, it may be better to choose how you want to frame and present your photo. Photography principles are precisely that, principles, not rigid rules laid down in stone. Art is subjective. I personally frame an image with my subject and focus in mind, aware of the superfluous unnecessary space in the image.
Try using the zoom and tilt camera options to give your image a more interesting dynamic.
Depth of field
As discussed extensively in the DoF guide, the field depth can be used to create more focus on your image and adds, well … Depth! With the more recently added DoF options within GPose, a player now has more options to create a good depth of field without ReShade. Both of the images below are created using the Depth of Field Adjusted option to focus the object in the foreground of the image with the Pastel 2 filter on.
Emotes, Actions & Spell Effects
Study your emotes frame by frame, note useful and use the favorites list. Because of the beautiful FFXIV motion capture used to create emote animations, any frame can dramatically change the image, including actions and spell effects. Spelling effects can greatly control the feel of an image and dictate, as well as a combination of lighting that influences the image in multiple ways.
Note: Press keys 1 and 2 quickly to view the emote frame by frame (or as close as possible).
One way to make your image stand out is to match or contrast the lighting based on the tones of your characters. Lighting is a powerful tool as it is, but if you take color theory into account when lighting or creating a background for your character, you can achieve improved results. Each light source has an RGB slider. You can use similar light colors (monochromatic) as your character to adjust or improve your equipment, or choose a range of complementary colors to make your character stand out. For example, if the natural hues of Novi are more focused toward the yellow end of the spectrum, I would use blue and purple hues to provide a more dramatic contrast. If I wanted to improve her natural coloring, I would strive for light yellow. If there is a specific part of your character that you want to highlight, for example blue eyes, you can add some items to the image that match the accent color or use blue lighting to put extra emphasis on it. Orange tinted background can be used to provide contrast if blue is the accent color.
Within certain parts of the game you can see a relatively unique effect on the environment and your character, for example the Ifrit arena and the Umbrian islands. These locations offer a smoother texture over the character surfaces, increased shadows, smoothness and metallic enhancements. Combining the effects of the location with the gpose tools can create a powerful image, especially with the use of metal dyes that we discussed earlier in the guide.
Weather conditions must also be taken into account, because the position of the sun or moon can provide a nice extra marking and contrast with the area or character.
For portrait photos, there are now many beautiful and inexpensive options in the game to create a clean background for your image. The "Stagepanel" can be purchased from home sellers for 4000 Gil and placed in a house, apartment or FC room. Rectangular partitions are available via crafts or the market board, although they cost a little more. Both are paintable and can therefore be used as a black or white background, or as a complementary / monochromatic color based on your character hues or outfit.
- Place your light sources after select filter. This way you can color the lighting better to improve the filter. You can always browse through other filters to see how the lighting works with it, sometimes you will find a better combination!
- Due to the effect & # 39; wet clothing & # 39; to use, your character will be shinier and smoother. This surface works better in combination with lighting and depth of field effects.
If you move the manual depth-of-field slider one click closer to your character, you get a softer outline, creating a slight Gaussian blur effect.
- Try not to over-saturate, overexpose, or create extreme contrast in an image. The exception for contrast is for black and white images with noir / dramatic theme. If you find that your image is overexposed, move the light source back a little or swivel the camera slightly up or down to place the light at a slightly different angle.
- If you want to add more or less natural lighting to your character, you can do this by pressing Escape, navigating to System Configuration and under the Display Settings (scrolling down) there is a slider for & # 39; character lighting & # 39 ;.
- Avoid visible cutting of weapons, hair and tails.
- Be proud of the images that you take. Your creative journey is yours and we all learn and have different levels of experience. Constant comparison with someone who you think & # 39; better & # 39; will only hinder your journey and reduce your creativity. That said, if you surround yourself with work, you'll find inspiring (without creative comparison under pressure) that can help you strive to learn more and try more. However, it is a strange scale to balance!
If you are interested in becoming more involved with the screenshot community & # 39; s of FFXIV, check out FFXIVSnaps and Eorzean idols For more information.
Thank you for reading, I hope some, if not all, of these tips may be useful to you! If you have questions or need clarification about what is mentioned in this article, you can leave a comment below or contact us via here, Screenographic or Twitter.
May you always walk in the light of the crystal.
See also: Art, Art of Eorzea, Column, Final Fantasy XIV, MMORPG