Is there a simple way to create a white or black recolor (using GIMP)?
I've learned how to use the 'hue' feature of GIMP to make recolors of clothes. I can also create an transparent black layer to darken clothes. But this doesn't seem to work so well for lightening clothes. Luckily, lowering the brightness seems to achieve this effect.
But I can't figure for the life of me how to turn a colored texture completely white or black (well, not completely, but you know). Well, not completely, but you know. I've found that I can create a black texture by inverting a white one, though I haven't actually tried to use this on an outfit yet. Come to think of it though, this would probably also invert the shadows and highlights, oh well.
Sometimes I can make a texture white by turning the saturation all the way down, but that only seems to work with textures that are already pretty pale. Darker textures just result in grey. And for the record, I don't like the 'yellowish' white you see often in the game. It just looks like a pastel yellow to me. To me, white garments should have a slight grey tinge. Also, I find the hue effect doesn't give you every possible color. The colors available to use seem to be determined by what color the texture started with. If I can a garment white, then I could easily recolor that into whatever color I want using transparent layers.
Just so we know, I don't like highly detailed textures in my game. It just looks weird to me seeing realistic textures in a game with such a low polygon count. I think the game looks better with its original cartoony textures. An issue with this though is I can't just use scans or images I find online. I either have to recolor a maxis texture or somehow craft my own. And I just don't know how to do that. What kind of patterns do I need to put on textures to get the desired effect? Could I just fill the texture with a single solid color and then add shadows and highlights? I haven't attempted that yet myself, but looking at the 'black and white' tutorial, and looking closely at other textures people have made, I suspect that doing so may not be too hard. I mean, all you do is draw thick lines, and then blur them. And looking at some of the maxis textures, some of them do appear to be just a flat texture with highlights and shadows. Not all though.
I've always been intimidated with textures because I just couldn't see myself actually drawing anything like the maxis textures. They don't look as impressive now, of course, but I still don't see what I need to actually do to get the desired effect.
A quick way is to:
Open the texture in GIMP
Go to Colors > Colorify. (you can also remove the 'yellowish' white the same way)
Then adjust the lightness or darkness by going to Colors > Curves.
You can also adjust the lightness or darkness by going to Colors > Brightness-Contrast.
BTW you are right inverting a white texture does invert the shadows and highlights and usually looks weird.
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Something I do with GIMP is first choose Colors>Hue-Saturation and lower the saturation (for blacks and whites I lower this as much as possible without causing any distortion - usually all the way down). Then I export the file with a new name to avoid accidentally overwriting the original.
With the newly saved file you can use Color Balance, Colorize, Hue-Saturation, Curves or whatever works to get the desired colors, and fine-tune it with Brightness-Contrast.