So I'm re-working all the painting textures from the little paintings you find in palaces, banks, and occasionally pawn shops. I'm about halfway through, with four basically-complete, small mods done, and one large mod about a third finished.
Some of the images are photographs of actual paintings, so there's nothing to be done here. But most of them are just photographs. Personally, I like high-resolution photographs, but I know a lot of people like the painted look. Especially for items called "paintings". Once I'm finished the photograph look, I'd like to go back and do versions that are edited to look like they were painted in an appropriate style.
The problem is, I suck at this stuff. I've tried several suggestions on various forums, but am not able to get a convincing look. I'm using Paint.Net, which is probably limiting me. But the best editing suite in the world won't make me a proper artist. So I'm hoping there's some kind of process that's semi-automatic I can use to get passable-looking "paintings" from the photograph images, so I can package those into a secondary set of mods.
I know some people are using AI programs for upscaling. Maybe something like that would work here?
I've been working with the images at 20 times their original resolution, then scaling them down to 10 times original (100 times the pixel count) for final output. If you're just clicking "info" for the popup message, this is way overkill. But my hope is to create a bunch of 3D painting objects using the painting textures as a modder's resource for a mod like Decorator. Then you could have a large, in-universe painting that could be viewed up close, and the extra resolution would be useful there.
The paintings are organized into .cif archives, labeled APAINT through WPAINT. Each archive has 8 images, except W, which only has 4 images. The images are labeled with a zero-based index, giving them APAINT0, to APAINT7, etc. to WPAINT3. For simplicity, I mostly just call them A0, K3, etc.
I've grouped the images into three categories:
- 142 "nature" images consisting of A0 through R4, as well as W3. They are photographs of trees, mountains, horses, cows, etc. There is an occasional building or fence, but they're mostly just nature, hence the group name.
- 29 "painted" images consisting of R5 through V0. They are photographs of real-world renaissance paintings from about 1450 to 1750 A.D. Images S1, T0, and U0 have mild nudity (codpieces aren't technically nudity, but I'm counting it that way). Images T1, T2, T3, and U5 have rather blatant nudity. I've found most of the paintings used in the base game, but there are several I'm unable to find: R7, S4, S5, T4, T5, and U7.
- 10 "nudes" consisting of V1 through W2. They are photographs of naked girls. There might be nudity in a couple of them.
I was able to alter the painted images with mild nudity to what I think looks passable without changing the overall image. I'm not good enough to edit the blatant nudity in a way that looks decent. My thought was just to put clothes over the naked people, but I couldn't find any images that are already censored, let alone public domain versions. So I replaced them with period pieces similar to those in the base game. I did the same with the images I simply couldn't match to a real-world painting.
With the nudes, I just did two completely different sets of images. With the SFW images, I was able to find a decent amount of fantasy-themed stuff, so I put those in. With the NSFW images, I made sure any genitals were shadowed out, and most of them are simply not visible, as in the base game.
With all the nudes and nature images, I'm just using brand new images that fit the theme of the original. I've made some attempt to make the image match, but I'm not going to kill myself finding an exact match for every image. I've been using Pixabay as a source, since there are plenty of good images that are all free, licensed for anything including commercial, and require no attribution (though I'm putting attributions in my readme file anyways because it seems kind of dickish not to).
I might do another version with more gratuitous nudity once I have the base images finished. It also seems fair to do a version with males instead of females, but I'll worry about that later too.
Trivia: A couple of the real-world paintings have scanned resolutions over 15k x 15k. At one point, I hit 4.5 GB of used memory creating an image that was compressed to about 6.2 kB in the original game (compressed, the full image takes 61.6 MB, and I've downscaled it to 1.1 MB).
If anyone can figure out what real-world paintings the following images come from, I'd appreciate it. I can track down a high-resolution base image and use it for the new textures.
Nude Paintings Need Clothes
If anyone wants to paint clothing on the nude paintings, that would be cool too. It's not required, but might make it a little more authentic to the original than different paintings. I dropped the Paint.Net files into an archive file and uploaded them to Google Drive. I added a secondary archive containing Photoshop files, but I can't confirm it exported properly as I don't have Photoshop. Obviously, the files at that link contain nudity, so CONTENT WARNING!!!!!
Modified Painting Titles
So I'm nowhere near this point yet, but I would like to re-write the descriptions in-game for the SFW "nudes" that are no longer nude. Is there a thread somewhere I can read to get an idea of how I might go about that?
We're Short a Painting
As far as I can tell, the painting I6 cannot drop. I've gotten every other painting in the game, but after all of that and an additional 200 runs (each run averages about 4 paintings) I still don't have I6. Additionally, I occasionally get a painting that can't be picked up, has no tooltip description, and can't be used. Does anyone know about this bug, and/or have an idea of how to solve it?
For testing, I did a bunch of numbered re-textures that have all the paintings numbered 1 to 180, and nPAINTx of y, where n is the letter of the .cif file, x is the index in the .cif file, and y is the highest index in the .cif file. I uploaded those to the same Google Drive folder I linked above, as HRP - Numbered.zip.