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  #1    
Old July 23rd, 2010, 06:07 AM
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The Way of the Graphic Artist



Okay, well I've been getting a few requests as to where to begin with graphics and graphic design and how I got to the level I'm at, which incidentally isn't a very high one but nonetheless I'm here to share my story and how I got to being able to make half decent icons, tags and large pieces. This is going to be the new tutorials and resource thread also. The old one can be found here.

You may discuss what is in this thread, submit tutorials recommend things that could be added to the first post etc.


The Theory



Now I guess I best go through some terms for starters. I know some people looking here will probably be a little more advanced and won't need to read all this stuff, so you guys can skip on through!


Tags:
Tags are small works intended to fit into signatures. They're often rather small in height and somewhat wide in comparison. Tags were a big internet fad for a while, or at least they were on forums and boards alike, but had died down with the popularity of larger pieces. An example of a tag would be this. Tags are always a good place to start for aspiring graphic artists as they allow you to learn about the functions of photoshop, apply flow, work with renders and stocks and so much more. In reality, the thing that makes you money through graphic design is print work. Thins meaning that tags aren't exactly money makers when it comes down to it though they most certainly are good practice.

Icons:
Icons again, are a fad and quite a popular one too. Though web designers would see icons as something of small graphics to indicate certain options or links, such as favicons or I guess you could say dock icons. The icons I'm speaking of now were started by LiveJornal. An icon is a small 100x100 piece of graphics and is often a good representation of a graphic artist's style. They're primarily used as avatars on boards, forums and blogs. They've also been used to make themes on boards or forums. An example of an icon would be this.

Large Pieces:
Are exactly that, large graphic art. In the graphic design world, people primarily work with larger pieces for print work and such. Think about posters, billboards and advertisements; that's what large pieces would be when brought into the world of graphic design. Though most of the large pieces you seen on graphics communities and the likes. Large pieces vary a lot. This is an example of a large piece.

Some terms we here in GFX talk with:


Flow:
Flow is when the focal points natural "flow" or direction is also represented by the effects used in the artwork. It is often created by smudging, C4D's and pentooling.

Vector:
The art of pentooling the outline of an image to trace or color an image.

Composition:
This is what goes into a signature, this would include the render, the background, the stocks, C4D's used etc.

Depth:
Is just that, a signature with no depth is what we call "flat" which is something we'd like to avoid. Depth is often made by the background using blurring, smudging, stocks or C4D's.

Focal Point:
This is the part of the signature/piece in which you should be focusing on, the part that stands out and in which the entire signature/piece is created around.

Lighting:
Is the light in which is created by the focal. Often made my soft brushing or a lens flare (found in your filters).

Placement:
Where you put your stock/render, this is important in making a piece, you've got to know how to make your stock/render work with the size of the piece and where it fits best.

Monotone:
When a signature is the same hue, tint or colour the whole way through. This can be avoided by using many colours. Even B&W tags can avoid this.

Render:
A cut out of a stock used in tags quite a lot. Often feature a character or person.

Stock:
A full picture.

Smudge:
An effect made in Photoshop/Gimp using the smudge tool. It can make a signature, or it can break a signature.

C4D:
A cinema 4 d image. Used for effects primarily.

GMV
= Got my vote

LQ
= Low Quality



Next up we're gonna go through some of the things that go into making a great tag.


Depth


The way of the blur


Depth is a very important technique for all graphic artists and I've seen it missed by beginners more times than I can count. Depth is what makes a 2D banner turn into a seemingly 3D piece of art when done correctly. Depth is important in almost every sig.




This is an example or some smudging and blurring. Looking at where the render/stock is is an important element of adding depth. If the render is pushing forward and there's a clear indication that part of the render is more forward than the rest of it; you should try blending (blurring/smudging) the back of the render with the background so that it adds that much more realism. What I've done here was make the render look like it's been swallowed by the background, thi is why the arms are covered and that the head isn't so much. It's all used to create depth. Mainly what was done here was smudging. You can also add depth by blurring.




Notice how in this tag that the render's edges were blurred so that it felt as if it had been coming forward. Anything with action (meaning the render or stock looks as if it was moving and was freeze framed) always has the option to blur or smudge in the direction in which it's heading.

Depth can also be made using lighting. The lighting can either go behind, or in front of the render. In this sig, the lighting behind the render creates a feeling that something is back there, behind him, which created depth in the sig. That, and the effects around him that lower in opacity as the get farther away from him.

Depth is something you should always ensure you have in abundance, in can never hurt to have a nice quantity of it.


Flow


Let's get smooth


Flow is the technique used to make the signature feel as if it's moving in the same direction throughout, or when everything works together (more so in composition). Flow is another important aspect of tag making.




Here the flow of the tag is represented by the arrows. It's always good to get the effects moving in the same direction as the render itself. As I've mentioned, it's best to keep the effects going in the same direction as the render itself. I used this tag as it's got the clear indication of flow without using anything over complicated.


Lighting


Let there be light


Lighting is another important aspect of a tag. However you must be careful with where you place it. You must place it in a place where the lighting is foremost created. It is often created by the stock or render. Have a look at where it most bright and imagine the light is coming from that area or from above it/behind it etc. depending on the angle. You can also create your own lighting using methods such as a soft brush and a lens flare. Let's take a look at this tag again:



See how the lighting is strong here? The render had a nice bright position on the arm so the lighting was intensified.

I'll add more to this if people would like it, but for now, those are the basics in a nutshell.

PC Member Tutorial List



If you'd like your tutorial added to this list, feel free to post it in this thread or PM it to me.

Resource Section


Here you will find a bunch of resources varying from brushes to C4D's.

Tutorial & Resource Thread #1 Resources

Spoiler:


Please report any dead links, thanks.

Free Brushes
Free Brushes -a ton of them
BioRust Brushes (need to register for free)
DeviantArt Brushes
Brush Listings
Another Brush Listings
VBrush
Finfond Brushes
Rebel Heart Brushes
Brushes by Sage
*How to create your own brushes
*Another how to create your own brushes


Free Shapes, Patterns & Borders
DeviantArt Patterns
Free Patterns
BioRust Patterns (need to register for free)
Shapes & Patterns Listings
Free Shapes -a ton of them
BioRust Shapes (need to register for free)
Borders & Frames by Sage



Free Textures & Gradients
Free Textures
Free Gradients
BioRust Gradients (need to register for free)


Free Layer Styles
Layer Style Listings
Free Styles
Photoshop Styles
BioRust Layer Styles (need to register for free)


Corel Paint Shop Pro (previously known as Jasc) - Below are only related to this program

Corel Paint Shop Pro X 30-day Trial
Paint Shop Pro 9.0 Trial

Tutorials
PSP 7 & 8 Tutorials
Installing custom brushes


Free Brushes
DeviantArt Brushes
Brush Listings
Finfond Brushes
Omnix Brushes
Ely & Kelley's Brushes
*Create custom brushes
*Another create custom brushes

Free Shapes
Preset Shapes
Sissywood Vector Shapes
Teph's Vector Shapes

Free Patterns & Tiles
Ely & Kelley's Patterns
Nanson's Tiles
Estazia Tubes & Patterns
Nanson's Presets

Free Tubes
Tubes
PSP Tubes
Estazia Tubes & Patterns
Jumpin Jack's Tubes & Frames
Ely & Kelley's Tubes

Free Gradients
Ely & Kelley's Gradients
Nanson's Gradients


General -most can be used on any graphics programs
Graphics Resources
Textures
Great tutorial listing
Pixel2Life
Grey Cobra
Game Renders



Fonts
DeviantArt Fonts -original member-created fonts
1001 Free Fonts
Font Freak
Free-Fonts
Acid Fonts
BioRust Fonts
DaFont
Abstract Fonts
What's that font


New Resources



Deviant Art Related Links

Brushes
C4D Tutorials

3D Studio Max Tutorials

Photoshop Tutorials
Paintshop Pro Tutorials

The Gimp Tutorials

Illustrator Tutorials

Stock Images
Tetxures

Vector resources

Tag Tutorials


Text Tutorials

Text 101
The Way of the Text

Photoshop Text Effect Tutorials


Stocks

We Heart it
tumblr

Photobucket

Stock exchange



Stock Packs


Fashion Stock Pack

MGFX Ultimate Stock Pack

Graffiti Stock Pack

Megan Fox Stock Pack

Drake Stock Pack

The Ultimate Female Stock Pack


Stock Buckets

Texture's and Effects
Landscape

People Stocks

Anime Stocks


Websites / Communities


Fringe FX
- redirects to a forum now. But a great graphics spot. Great resources.
Planet Renders - Renders, good forum. Great resources.
Signature Stop - Great signature tutorials
Abduzeedo - For advanced users, has some great professional work and tutorials.
PSDTuts+
- Great site to start learning professional graphic design.

Final Note



There is no trick to graphic design, there's so much diversity in this world that everyone is entitled to create their own style. Don't be stuck trying to be the graphic artist you see ahead of you because they get recognition or their work looks good. You can be at any level and create something astounding. Remember that beauty is in the eye of the beholder and that your style; is the only one that should matter to you. If you want to be a great graphic artist, just practice, put your emotions into the things you do, plan before you start, have an idea of where you want to, but also don't be afraid of experimenting sometimes. If you make something you think is bad, don't give in and feel as if you'll never be good. Nothing great comes without perseverance. If you need help, just ask someone, don't be afraid to seek advice, criticism or any form of input. Cherish feedback, be it good or bad, make it your goal to impress people and most importantly, yourself. Lose your right hand brain in your graphic program and enjoy what you do.

If you have anything to add to this thread or if you'd like to comment on anything, please post, I do not mind general discussion, this is not a strict thread. I will say though, any grammar, coding, spelling mistakes can be PM'd to me or add them as a side note to a bigger post. We all make mistakes but be sure you don't look like you're spamming.

As always, I'm here to help if you need to seek advice on your work. I will soon be implementing a little prize for anyone who significantly adds to this thread.

Thread shall be updated regularly.
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Last edited by abnegation; August 19th, 2010 at 07:50 AM.
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  #2    
Old July 23rd, 2010, 06:17 AM
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Reserving this post for possible character limit reach or will be used for better organization.
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  #3    
Old July 23rd, 2010, 01:11 PM
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Great work mista gavin ;D
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  #4    
Old July 23rd, 2010, 01:24 PM
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Oh my god my cutting tutorial. OTL Dude I made that like three years ago. OTL
[/I feel like such a n00b]

A few nitpicky things:
The link to my Badou Tag Tutorial is broken, so you can just remove that OTL
And the D.Gray-Man tag is linked twice for some reason. =u=b


For some reason, I recall that it's inaccurate to refer to transparencies as renders.
A render is supposed to be the image you make in the program C4D, and C4D simply stands for the program itself- not the images that come out of it.
I forget who told me that though, and it's been awhile so I could be wrong.

Also Composition can include the overall organization of the elements inside of the canvas. =u=b


But dang you're on top this Abs. xD Glad you're here to fix this place up. |D
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Old July 23rd, 2010, 02:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loki View Post
Oh my god my cutting tutorial. OTL Dude I made that like three years ago. OTL
[/I feel like such a n00b]

A few nitpicky things:
The link to my Badou Tag Tutorial is broken, so you can just remove that OTL
And the D.Gray-Man tag is linked twice for some reason. =u=b


For some reason, I recall that it's inaccurate to refer to transparencies as renders.
A render is supposed to be the image you make in the program C4D, and C4D simply stands for the program itself- not the images that come out of it.
I forget who told me that though, and it's been awhile so I could be wrong.

Also Composition can include the overall organization of the elements inside of the canvas. =u=b


But dang you're on top this Abs. xD Glad you're here to fix this place up. |D
An example of a useful post ^
Haha but seriously, thanks for that Loki, I'll be fixing those things up soon, I appreciate the report. I actually have C4D so I should really know this huh? XD

Thanks Panda <3
I'll be adding your LRO's too this from the previous thread too, if you still want them up.
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  #6    
Old July 24th, 2010, 08:36 AM
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I think I actually deleted that link tbh :x I'm getting a psd pack of my latest lps up soon though : D
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Old August 4th, 2010, 02:45 PM
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I made a tutorial for beginners. Its part one of a series I will (or intend to) finish.

Comic Tragedy Presents - A Beginner's Guide to Gradients
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Old August 13th, 2010, 11:17 AM
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this could come in handy.
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Old August 18th, 2010, 11:44 PM
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Wow, Just lurking on the forums for the first time in who knows when, and saw my Smudge Tutorial :D (I forgot I even made that).

Good Job! Reason I was on here was to look for some tutorials and resources :)
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Old August 24th, 2010, 02:09 PM
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I need to ask this. The Program i use for graphics is PhotoImpression 4. Are tere any tutorials for that program? I'm notaloud to downloadPhotoshop or Gimp. Even though gimp is free D:
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Old August 24th, 2010, 03:47 PM
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I've got a pretty cool link to 650+ free C4D's.

Created by Stinky666. C4D's
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Old August 27th, 2010, 06:58 AM
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Nice thread. It was a good idea to put 'The Theory' there since people usually ask about those things. Well anyway, here's my list, I took out everything that's already there, or at least I think I did. All of the links should be working fine.

Spoiler:

Tutorials

DesignShard
Good-Tutorials
THE PHOTOSHOP BIBLE
PhotoshopJunkie
Laurie McCanna's complete list of Photoshop tutorials
Tutorial Warehouse
VERSYDEN's Web Design
Splicing and Dicing Images with Tables
Photoshop Selections: Production Graphics with Wendy Peck at webreference.com
AbsoluteCross.com : A one-stop resource for webmasters, programmers, and graphic designers
Adobe Photoshop Tutorials
CBT Cafe :: Photoshop Tutorials
distortion : freebies : photoshop tutorials
Articles : Photoshop
Introduction to Web Design with Adobe Photoshop | Table of Contents
Eyes on Design - Download free graphics and learn how to create stunning Adobe Photoshop effects
Firelily Designs - Tutorials
Adobe Photoshop - Photo-Editing and Web Graphics Tutorials
Main page: Tutorials: The Gurus Network
Photoshop Tutorials, Free Photoshop Tutorials, Adobe Photoshop Tutorials
Wacom - Photoshop Tips and Tricks

Gimp Tutorials and Resources

Gimp-tutorials
GIMP.org Tutorials
http://gug.sunsite.dk
GIMPtalk
GIMPguru
Gimpology
Pixel2Life
GIMP Tutorials
Tutorialized
GIMP Links
GHUJ
GIMPusers

Fonts

Fontasy
Fonts 4 You
Sketchpad
ActionFonts.com
Better Fonts
Broble
Creamundo
EKNP
Fawnt
FontFinder
Font Squirrel
FontStock
Fontco
Neatfonts
Urbanfonts

C4Ds

iphotoshop
Deviantart

Brushes

Brushportfolio

Stocks

Insect Images
Fourbees
Freemediagoo
Photorack
Freeimagefiles
Nelspin
Openphoto
Amygdela
Geekphilosopher
Imagebase
Cepolina
Burningwell
Stockvault
Freephotos
Freepixels
Pixel Perfect Digital
Woophy
Animestocks

Textures

CGTextures
Oera
BenCloward

Communities

AnimeRender
GameRenders
Delta-Visions
EffectSpot
GFXResource
SigResource
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GFX





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Old September 13th, 2010, 12:50 PM
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Haha, awesome thread. I'm definitely getting back into graphics and this thread shall certainly come in useful. Good work cleaning up this place, Gavy-boy~
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Old November 14th, 2010, 10:03 AM
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I made a tutorial last night on one of my favourite signatures.
Ascending into Naught tutorial
Requires decent knowledge on the liquify and dodge and burn tools. Enjoy.
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Old January 6th, 2011, 03:48 PM
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This thread will now also be for general G&P chat. Like a DCC, as well as being home to an index of resources & tutorials in the main post.

So what do you guys think of the new G&P prefix; [Resource] where you can add your own resources?
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Old January 6th, 2011, 03:52 PM
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Resource prefix is gooooood. Go steal my resources peoples and leave a comment! :D

So just from curiousity, who here would be interested in an art worm? Basically one person makes a piece, then sends their piece to the next person who adds on a bit more. This process continues until we have a long piece which represents the graphic artists here at PC.
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Old January 7th, 2011, 11:05 PM
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The worm, to me sounds like an awesome idea to be honest. Though I'll definitely ask for a forum-wide announcement if we end up doing it, that way it can be a community project held in G&P rather than a tiny inactive one help in our humble little section haha.
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Old January 16th, 2011, 06:34 AM
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Alright, so here's the deal.
I am going to make a tutorial, not because I suddenly have the urge to make tutorials, but because I want to boost some activity in this forum, and I thought this might be a good way to spark activity and to get all you guys involved.

So here's how this will work. Whoever is interested, go in to my gallery, or even go dig up some of my older ones if you really want, and pick the tag you like best / would like to learn how to do the most and report back here leaving a comment showing which tag you have chosen and why. After a while, I will choose whichever got the most 'votes' and I will make a tutorial for it and post it in the resource thread I started up.

Here is the link to my current gallery.
Also, there will be a special surprise that comes with the tutorial which I'm sure all you graphic artists out there will certainly appreciate. I know I would.

So yeah, pick a tag, post here which one and why you want that one, and give me some time to whip up a tutorial.
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Old January 17th, 2011, 09:27 PM
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The Bob tag would be my choice, because of the smudging, blending, and such. :> In my opinion, it's one of the best tags in your gallery.
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Old January 18th, 2011, 09:53 AM
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Hey i'm new to the forums, and new to photoshop (Only Used Gimp Before In My Life) So I got brought CS4. When I download the brushes what folder would i need to save them into before i extract them? Or do they automatically go into photoshop themselves?

Ashberto~
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Old January 18th, 2011, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ashberto~ View Post
Hey i'm new to the forums, and new to photoshop (Only Used Gimp Before In My Life) So I got brought CS4. When I download the brushes what folder would i need to save them into before i extract them? Or do they automatically go into photoshop themselves?

Ashberto~
This should help you. Same applies to any Photoshop version, but that will help for CS4.

Also awesome idea Moom, I might do the same soon. But I look forward to seeing the way you make your stuff.
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Old January 24th, 2011, 12:27 PM
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I did graphics for quite a while last year, however personal circumstances led me to stop. However, now I wish to re-start making graphics but I don't know where to begin. So I was wondering: does any graphic artist know if they could point me in a good direction so I can regain my old skills at graphics?
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Old January 24th, 2011, 01:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Serene Grace View Post
I did graphics for quite a while last year, however personal circumstances led me to stop. However, now I wish to re-start making graphics but I don't know where to begin. So I was wondering: does any graphic artist know if they could point me in a good direction so I can regain my old skills at graphics?
Okay, well there's a lot of options, especially if you already have the basics down. My first recommendation would be to start looking at graphics before you start again, and look for your influence and what type of graphics inspire you. The next protocol would be to start downloading stock & render packs so you can start making tags. I would recommend downloading Moments' stock packs, which can be found in the thread he made for resources. I will be opening a thread in a few minutes to host my resources also, starting with C4D's. At any rate, before you start a tag, think about what you want it to look like after you choose your stock or render, that way you'll have better direction. Then take into account what makes a good tag, you could look through some tutorials and such, but basically, bottom line is that you should just start making tags again. You can always hit me up on MSN or something if you need help.
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Old February 3rd, 2011, 05:31 AM
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Alright guys, because this place is dead, I just went with Wolflare's suggestion and did the tutorial on the B.O.B tag.
Here is the link to my resource thread where you can download the folder. I told you I'd have a special surprise for this tutorial. Basically, included with the tutorial are all the resources I've used including the smudge effects, the dust textures and even the font used.

Enjoy, and show us an example if you end up using the tutorial, or even just the resources I coupled with it.
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Old February 14th, 2011, 11:07 AM
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Gazza
Heaven-Piercer
 
Join Date: May 2008
Age: 23
Gender: Male
Nature: Naughty
Graphics and Photography needs some love.

So I made it some. :D

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