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How to create photoreal scenery for FSX

Tiberius K.

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yes- looks good. But follow my instructions and you can change that funny color to the surrounding area. Also - that looks like a square.


Take your bmp to your paint program and color everything white you want the user to see and everything black you DON'T want your user to see ( i.e. default) Then take your smear or smudge brush and smudge the sharp line between your black and white... use a large brush... hardness about 46 and opacity about the same.


When done save as a TIFF file (TIF) and leave the file name the same but tag it with _B


This is what is called a blend mask. You will be ecstatic at your results. Bob

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Wow, thank you so much. Sorry for not replying, I was away for the weekend.


Now it's quite clear to me. One more thing. Maybe I just did not read your tutorial carefully, but you didn't mention how to make the different seasons.

I guess then for winter I should whiten the downloaded satellite image, right?

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Raziz- That is the usual problem - tough to find the latest google dll. Often when I find one it is not the latest.... and so on... anyway we finally find one but it has the same problems as the others, then a few months later it doesn't work anymore!!


VE is decent, but as with others sometimes you get that purple-ish gray tint.


I use Metrix for that. Now- I am not sure if it will work in GIMP. Metrix is a 32 bit thing and will work only in 32 bit paint programs.


Even though GIMP comes in versions of 32 bit I am still not sure if it will work in GIMP 32, but you can try.


download from the link I sent above unzip and follow instructions. Then take that plug in and put it in your Gimp plug ins (if you are using GIMP).


it is so very easy to use!!!


To make sure the color in my photoreal matches the default surround area, I take a screenshot of the default area and us that in the same paint area as my bmp.


This way I can grab the wanted color and put it in the bmp where I want.


Results: very difficult to tell where your photoreal ends and default begins!!! Bob

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The best way to do seasons is:


take a screen shot of spring, fall, winter, and / or hard winter. (I usually do fall and hard winter only unless there is a drastic difference in the others in the area in question).


I then bring my original bmp satellite into my paint program along with the seasonal screenshot I made as a reference. (ALWAYS start off with your original bmp!!! and when done tag it with the seasonal tag I sent)


I then have a reference as to what that season looks like in THAT area!! Then try to match colors as to what you see in the seasonal screenshot.


This is where Metrix again comes into play (yes you can perhaps do all this with the tools within GIMP or other paint programs, Metrix is so easy to use and does such a good job).


For hard winter I would suggest using a slightly off white color (so yo do not get red splotches) as to match your default snow, but adjust the opacity of your brush so your 'snow' does not blot out objects in your bmp. (have to play with this a bit).


Next - try drawing a select-line precisely around roads and then choose in your effects I think - or adjustment of colors- a sepia tone. This colors roads with a slight brown look as if the road were plowed and left a bit muddy.

That is tedious work but fun and rewarding.


SO- Each season is done by you manually.

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would like to see some pictures of results! Please consider or keep in mind about Skype. I've used it for years. As I mentioned, I've worked with fellows in many different time zones and at THEIR convenience. fun and easy way to exchange ideas, help each other out.

Oh well, keep it in mind if you wish to give it a try. Fast way to learn from each other!!! anyway- looking forward to pictures . Bob

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  • 7 months later...

Hi, sorry for the late reply. I have seen your messages only now, I haven't been on this site for some time.

Also thanks to your help I have been able to make nice textures to my photoscenery, now I'm still struggling to create custom objects and populate the area with some autogen biuldings. It's soon done :)

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Labrat- find me on Skype. Look for Robert Lacy or jyarddog. Probably Robert Lacy might work easier. If there are many, I am the one in Ione Washington. On Skype we have a tremendous advantage.


hope to see you on skype asap. Bob

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  • 1 year later...

Hi Tiberius,

Thank you for the tutorial it is very well done and has got me started on making scenery. I have made a few scenery for the area where I live. I'm on a canal system in Lighthouse Cove. I have been successful in adding my builds to the Chatham Kent scenery default in FSX. My problem is my house always comes out flat there is no 3d to any of the buildings. The trees are coming out just fine. I am using Sbuilderx and gimp and just recently tryed F-bmpl which I like very much, but still the same flat buildings. The capture from Google Sat. is really nice and my home looks good when I pan around. I've tried a few different angles with no luck. Do you have any suggestions on how to improve my textures and i think that is my problem. Any suggestions would be welcomed and as I progress I can help others like you are doing. I want to fly and land my Icon A5 at my dock.


Thanks in Advance

Wm. Clarkson

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  • 2 years later...

I know it's been since 2012, but I want to know why it is that there are NO images in this tutorial. I wish when something is posted, it includes EVERYTHING that needs to be included, and that includes images.  It should be in it's original entirity.



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