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How do you properly matte images?

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  • Computer Chat How do you properly matte images?

    So, suppose I want to do a number of CSS color edits to the default vBulletin skin. How do I get the icons to look proper with, say, darker colors? I know they have to be matted, but I'm not quite sure how to do that. And I can't find any useful tutorials. Any tips?
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  • #2
    You can't (practically) do anything with the icon set that comes with vB; it's matted to white and looks like crap on any other backgrounds. Whose bright idea that was (not to at least offer a black-mattted set too, or one with transparent background, which would make the most sense) I don't know. Sensibly, the full psd for the icons would be included or offered as a separate download so that everyone could adjust them as needed, but given that vB graphics as a whole are a non-uniform collection of icons and buttons gathered from several sources (=something that you see programmers doing, but not any proper designer in their right mind), that's probably the reason why. I can but hope that Jelsoft employs a proper designer to offer a uniform default set of properly background-transparent icons for 4.0, because what you get by default now is (with a few exceptions), only usable as placeholders until replaced with something else.
    Former endorsement revoked. You know the saying - one rotten apple spoils the whole barrel...

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    • #3
      Okay, that's good info and all, but I'd still like to know how to do it with other images. I usually try to make transparent backgrounds, but I can't always do this.
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      • #4
        Graphics where you'll be able to do it easily will be prepared in such a way; the norm is Photoshop's psd files. Probably the easiest way to do it is via File / Save for Web. There you'll see a number of options; Matte is one of them.
        Former endorsement revoked. You know the saying - one rotten apple spoils the whole barrel...

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        • #5
          The most ideal way is to save the image as a png with alpha transparency. Gif format really doesn't support different levels of transparency, and leaves you with off-color splotches like you see around the VB icons.

          Many people are hoping VB4 comes png by default.

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          • #6
            That would certainly make the most sense.
            Former endorsement revoked. You know the saying - one rotten apple spoils the whole barrel...

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