BGs with people?

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OtomeWeekend
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BGs with people?

#1 Post by OtomeWeekend » Mon Mar 26, 2012 8:25 am

What do you think of BGs with um, people included on it?

I've been running out of sources especially of the temple views I needed so I was planning on going to Kurashiki Bikan Chiku(historical quarter?) which is like the old japan(and is a popular tourist spot). It's just near here and there was a big temple there too.

The problem is... bikan chiku has a lot of people EVERYDAY. Even the Achi Jinja is always filled with people even if I go on a normal day(it would be either filled with foreigners instead). And I'm setting my game in an ancient time so...

Do you think it's not a good idea to use photos with people on it? Or you don't really mind?

Thanks for the answers in advance :'D
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Re: BGs with people?

#2 Post by luminarious » Mon Mar 26, 2012 8:38 am

It takes a tiny bit of effort, but taking multiple shots of something like 5 minutes apart means you can photoshop the people out of the background. A few days apart and you can even remove parked cars and stuff.

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Re: BGs with people?

#3 Post by ThisIsNoName » Mon Mar 26, 2012 8:44 am

It depends if the photo is in the same time period as the story. For example, you wouldn't want cars and people with modern clothing in a period piece. If it does match, I would say go ahead. Honestly, I think it adds more life to the background (No pun intended).

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Re: BGs with people?

#4 Post by nyaatrap » Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:13 am

If you set your game in an ancient time, it could disturb players. The best option is trace the photos then make them into the drawings. The second is what luminarious said. and the third is using photoshop filters heavily. and the forth is... just the photo let it be...?
I suggest the 3rd option personally though.

[edit] BTW, you can try the new content-aware tool of CS6 for free now. http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/photoshopcs6/
Last edited by nyaatrap on Mon Mar 26, 2012 10:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: BGs with people?

#5 Post by Auro-Cyanide » Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:19 am

I paint people out. I don't like them there since they just don't belong with the style.

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Re: BGs with people?

#6 Post by sciencewarrior » Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:45 am

luminarious wrote:It takes a tiny bit of effort, but taking multiple shots of something like 5 minutes apart means you can photoshop the people out of the background. A few days apart and you can even remove parked cars and stuff.
I like this idea. If you use a tripod to take photos exactly from the same place and angle, you can theoretically just stack your images as different layers in Photoshop/GIMP and erase the areas with people on them
Keep your script in your Dropbox folder.
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Re: BGs with people?

#7 Post by wulfae » Mon Mar 26, 2012 10:07 am

I'd be a little creeped out to see myself in a game, when I hadn't signed any releases or anything. I'm not sure how those rules actually apply, I know that you don't need to get a release from every single person in a crowd at a concert, say, but if you could only see a few people in the image... It would just feel weird.

If you check out google maps in Canada, for instance, everyone's face is blurred out so you can't tell who they are.

I... can't really explain this any better, I just think that using some of the solutions that people gave you would be better than just using straight photos.

If you do decide to use a tripod over several days, maybe you could put tape on the ground to mark where the legs go, and make it easier to line up again?

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Re: BGs with people?

#8 Post by leon » Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:30 pm

wulfae wrote:I'd be a little creeped out to see myself in a game, when I hadn't signed any releases or anything. I'm not sure how those rules actually apply, I know that you don't need to get a release from every single person in a crowd at a concert, say, but if you could only see a few people in the image... It would just feel weird.

If you check out google maps in Canada, for instance, everyone's face is blurred out so you can't tell who they are.

I... can't really explain this any better, I just think that using some of the solutions that people gave you would be better than just using straight photos.

If you do decide to use a tripod over several days, maybe you could put tape on the ground to mark where the legs go, and make it easier to line up again?
Most VNs, that use photos, photoshop them heavily anyhow, so the faces might end up blurred enough to be unrecognizable already.

I don't think the laws about this are clear, especially on the internet... Google even got sued because someone's cat was not blurred out of street view (I think the cat owner lost this one) and I think New York (or it might have been some other city), sued a gaming company for using that city's actual buildings and plans in a game.

I think a high resolution photo of a concert crowd (where you could zoom in the details), is violating privacy of these people just as much, as a any photo of an individual.

However, if the license says it's OK to use some photo, I'd say it's safe to use it.

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Re: BGs with people?

#9 Post by LateWhiteRabbit » Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:41 pm

If you are taking the photos yourself and using them in a game or movie and there are people in them you need to get signed releases from everyone in the photo. Movie makers have to contend with this all the time, and it is why extras are hired or volunteers, instead of just randomly filming a crowd of people - not to mention you can then get the extras to actually act how you want.

And no, I don't think people work well in backgrounds. First off, it takes the player out of it to be in the middle of a long conversation or scene and people perpetually frozen in the background. Plus, in your case, a historical background simply won't work with giant crowds of people in modern clothing. T-shirts and jeans don't look anything like kimonos, blurred or not.

Do what others have suggested. Get a tri-pod, mount the camera, and then take multiple pictures without moving it as people move out of the way of certain parts of the shot. All the photos can then be composited into a single image without people very easily then. Make sure the light stays the same in all the photos and no shadows from people are being thrown. Noon would be the best time to do it, or an overcast day.

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Re: BGs with people?

#10 Post by OtomeWeekend » Mon Mar 26, 2012 7:59 pm

Thanks for the reply ^^;

And um, I'm not very familiar in photoshop so anyone know how to manipulate the multiple images? :'D I'm sorry if I ask a lot of question m(_ _)m
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Re: BGs with people?

#11 Post by leon » Wed Mar 28, 2012 11:18 am

Here is how I would do it:
First open all the images in Photoshop and put them in one .psd on several layers. Just drag the layer (from the layer toolbar) onto the image surface, you want to add it to. Make sure all the layers are aligned exactly on top of each other. If you change every layer into background (from Layers menu), they will snap into position automatically.
Select the topmost layer and use a feathered eraser to erase the people from it. This will reveal the parts of the layer below it. Then select the next layer and repeat erasing where need, while keeping the layer on top visible (you may apply transparency to the top layer, to better see what you are doing).

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Re: BGs with people?

#12 Post by OtomeWeekend » Thu Mar 29, 2012 12:23 am

ooh! Thank you! :) *googles what feather eraser is xD*

I'll try this! But first of all... I'm off to take photos. :'D

Really thank you very much :'D
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Re: BGs with people?

#13 Post by nyaatrap » Thu Mar 29, 2012 3:24 am

You can also use the healing brush tool with content-aware mode in CS5 or CS6, element 10. The clone brush tool is another way to erase unwanted objects manually.
http://ayaemo.skr.jp/photodramatica.html will also help to know how to manage photos (assuming you can read Japanese.. am I correct?).

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Re: BGs with people?

#14 Post by leon » Thu Mar 29, 2012 3:45 am

Feathered eraser... I meant the eraser tool in "brush" mode (soft edges). There are also other settings you may want to try out, like eraser transparency.
I think healing brush will be useful, for cleaning out spots, where there is a person on every picture you took (so simply erasing it, would reveal another person on the image below).

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Re: BGs with people?

#15 Post by luminarious » Thu Mar 29, 2012 4:58 am

For combining several photos you took at the same location, 'Photoshop > File > Automate > Photomerge' is a better choice. It tries to automatically align the photo layers and generates the masks as well. I always prefer using layer masks to erasing, because this way I can always undo it, even if I have saved and closed Photoshop.

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