Author Topic: Graphics Workflow?  (Read 2194 times)

Ekimneets

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Graphics Workflow?
« on: October 19, 2018, 11:20:47 AM »
Hey everyone,

My question is not so much about how to do something in any given graphics program. I am slowly figuring that out.

Rather, what steps do you take when creating your graphics.

I just feel like Iím making this way harder then it needs to be, although it just may be the program that Iím using (Graphic for Mac/iPad).

This is what Iím doing now.

1. Define a paper/canvas size
2. Define paper/canvas color
3. Choose create rectangle
4. Define Radii for rectangle
5. Create approximate size rectangle
6. Finalize rectangle size
7. Lock rectangle size


This is pretty much where my eyes glaze over and the drooling starts.

Is this standard fare that I just need to push my way through or is there an easier way to do this?

If this is normal then I have a few other questions.

Whatís next, do you populate your graphics with approximate sized knobs and switches or do you just measure off your exemplar enclosure and then base your labels and artwork off of measurements?

-Mike
Legion of one at Black Octopus Pedalworx.

EBK

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2018, 11:44:45 AM »
Caveat:  I'm very slow at actually finishing pedals.  Other folks may have a more efficient method.

I have found it useful to lay things out in Inkscape (free vector graphics software)
https://inkscape.org/en/
using the Pedal Builder's Vector Art Pack from OTRFX:
http://www.ontheroadeffects.com/vectorpack/
The vector pack has full scale parts and enclosure outlines.  Good stuff.

Basically, in my drawing I have separate layers for components (inside), components (outside), drill template, knobs, labels, graphics, enclosure outline, enclosure top, with everything aligned to a set of guides.

You can use this technique to see what fits where, create a drill template, and see a completed mock up of your design.


When you are ready to print a decal or make an etching mask, you can hide the layers you don't want and go from there.

An example (which is still on my to-do heap after two years  ::)):

This particular view shows all the visible stuff in the complete pedal, although my graphics have been adjusted a bit since I saved this image):


The drill template layer (and enclosure top outline layer):


The pedal sitting in my shameful pile of unfinished work:


"There is a pestilence upon this land. Nothing is sacred. Even those who arrange and design shrubberies are under considerable economic stress in this period in history." --Roger the Shrubber

Ekimneets

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2018, 12:07:05 PM »
EBK-thank you, so much. A pedal builders pack sounds like exactly the thing I am looking for. It sounds a heck of a lot better than starting from scratch.

Iíll check it out.

-mike
Legion of one at Black Octopus Pedalworx.

Ekimneets

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2018, 12:11:48 PM »
Follow-up for EBK.

Do you choose PDF or EPS version?

-M
Legion of one at Black Octopus Pedalworx.

EBK

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2018, 12:18:07 PM »
Do you choose PDF or EPS version?
Use whatever you can import into your graphics program.  I think I used the PDF version, importing the parts into a separate layer of my drawing, then ungrouping the graphical elements and regrouping them as necessary to keep graphics for individual parts together, if that makes sense.  Things might be already properly grouped in the EPS version (I don't personally know or recall).
"There is a pestilence upon this land. Nothing is sacred. Even those who arrange and design shrubberies are under considerable economic stress in this period in history." --Roger the Shrubber

Bio77

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2018, 12:21:13 PM »
EBK:  Please bring this Clippy inspired design to life!  Hilarious!

Ekimneets:  I usually start by bringing the enclosure drill template from the build docs into the software.  I use photoshop and illustrator so I can usually just open up a pdf.  Since you aren't, you can just scan a copy in.  After that I use the software to trace the enclosure shape and mark the switches and knob holes.  When that's done I delete the original template and I have my starting point.  These days I place the waterslide first and then drill (works ~75% of the time).  However, you can also drill your enclosure first and then scan the actual enclosure.  This is good if you are having trouble drilling your holes exactly where you wanted.  You can then adjust the graphics/labels to accommodate off centered knobs or switches.   It will look better than having the labels off center.

Ekimneets

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2018, 12:21:21 PM »
Thanks for putting up with my questions!

-M


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Ekimneets

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Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2018, 12:24:07 PM »
EBK:  Please bring this Clippy inspired design to life!  Hilarious!

Ekimneets:  I usually start by bringing the enclosure drill template from the build docs into the software.  I use photoshop and illustrator so I can usually just open up a pdf.  Since you aren't, you can just scan a copy in.  After that I use the software to trace the enclosure shape and mark the switches and knob holes.  When that's done I delete the original template and I have my starting point.  These days I place the waterslide first and then drill (works ~75% of the time).  However, you can also drill your enclosure first and then scan the actual enclosure.  This is good if you are having trouble drilling your holes exactly where you wanted.  You can then adjust the graphics/labels to accommodate off centered knobs or switches.   It will look better than having the labels off center.
Thank you, that gives me a much better idea of the workflow.

I have a completed pedal that just need graphics. Itís been sitting around for a couple of months because I just wasnít ready to take the bull by the hornís. It would be great to actually post it.

Thanks again.

-M


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« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 12:27:07 PM by Ekimneets »
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EBK

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2018, 12:27:45 PM »
EBK:  Please bring this Clippy inspired design to life!  Hilarious!
I'm trying!  There is even a mostly complete and working circuit in that box.

Quote
Ekimneets:  I usually start by bringing the enclosure drill template from the build docs into the software.
VERY good tip, especially if you are building something with board-mounted pots/switches.

"There is a pestilence upon this land. Nothing is sacred. Even those who arrange and design shrubberies are under considerable economic stress in this period in history." --Roger the Shrubber

pickdropper

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2018, 01:46:01 PM »
Caveat:  I'm very slow at actually finishing pedals.  Other folks may have a more efficient method.

I have found it useful to lay things out in Inkscape (free vector graphics software)
https://inkscape.org/en/
using the Pedal Builder's Vector Art Pack from OTRFX:
http://www.ontheroadeffects.com/vectorpack/
The vector pack has full scale parts and enclosure outlines.  Good stuff.

Basically, in my drawing I have separate layers for components (inside), components (outside), drill template, knobs, labels, graphics, enclosure outline, enclosure top, with everything aligned to a set of guides.

You can use this technique to see what fits where, create a drill template, and see a completed mock up of your design.


When you are ready to print a decal or make an etching mask, you can hide the layers you don't want and go from there.

An example (which is still on my to-do heap after two years  ::)):

This particular view shows all the visible stuff in the complete pedal, although my graphics have been adjusted a bit since I saved this image):


The drill template layer (and enclosure top outline layer):


The pedal sitting in my shameful pile of unfinished work:


That Clippy pedal is both the best and worst thing Iíve ever seen.
Function f(x)
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Ekimneets

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2018, 02:09:26 PM »
EBK and Bio77,

Huge thanks,

I'm just barely into this and I can already tell that this is what I was looking for with the added bonus of drill templates and planning and placement of components.

I've been doing all of that by hand with old drafting templates. Welcome to the modern world. Now if we only had an information system that connected everyone!

-Mike
Legion of one at Black Octopus Pedalworx.

EBK

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2018, 02:32:30 PM »
Happy to help.  8)
"There is a pestilence upon this land. Nothing is sacred. Even those who arrange and design shrubberies are under considerable economic stress in this period in history." --Roger the Shrubber

Willybomb

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #12 on: October 20, 2018, 03:02:43 AM »
I'm similar to the above, but I do mine in Photoshop.  I snaffled out the artwork template from Mammoth's UV printing guide and use part of that to do my layouts in conjunction with the hardware vector libraries and/or the pcb drill templates if available.  The template is basically my top layer and everything else goes under it.  The layout is slightly smaller than the top face of the enclosure, I imagine that this is so things aren't attempted to be printed on the curves.

After I print that up, I tape it to the box, square it up with a right angle, and then drill it on a drill press with a step bit.

The box gets cleaned, sanded, and primed with etching primer.  The laser datapol sticker goes on top of that, and the whole thing gets hit with 1k clear coat.

So:
Template,
Art,
Square,
Drill,
Sticker,
Clearcoat,
Box.

Hope that helps.

Willy.

Ekimneets

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Re: Graphics Workflow?
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2018, 03:30:03 AM »
That helps tremendously. Right now Iím reading the users guide to my graphics program.  144 pages of it.

Iíve got the pedal vector pack.

Iíve got to go find the laser label paper that was recommended, canít remember if it was pickdropper or someone else. I ordered the wrong stuff. Sucks.

Iíve got the acrylic, bolts, taps/counter sinks

Now, Iíve got a workflow.

Sounds like things are coming together.

Really appreciate your help.

-Mike


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