Also-Rans, Part II

Recently, I shared some of the illustrations I’d prepared for the story “Childhoods,” but wound up not using. This time, I thought I’d show you a few “outtakes” from the story “Reverberations.”

As before, I based the illustrations on Skyrim screenshots, which I edited using various different applications, such as Picasa, Gnu Image Manipulation Program (GIMP), or However, since much of “Reverberations” takes place in a setting roughly contemporary to our own, I had to look to other sources for some of the imagery, and some new manipulation techniques, which I’ll talk about shortly.

An early attempt at Marisi

The first thing I had to do was imagine what the Dunmer maiden in the main character’s dreams looked like. I tried creating Marisi using the Dunmer template in RaceMenu. I wasn’t entirely satisfied; I never really liked the Elven brow ridge in Skyrim; it reminded me of Klingons. As a result, I wound up using another template for Marisi and her contemporary counterpart, Teri. Really experienced RaceMenu users might have been able to create something really spectacular using the sculpting and other tools available in the mod, but sadly, those skills are beyond me, at least right now.

It’s a Disco Duck!

People who’ve read “Reverberations” will remember a wedding scene right at the end of the story. That required finding a wedding venue and some fancy clothes for Adrian and Teri to wear to the ceremony. For the venue, I considered going with Eldergleam Sanctuary, and wound up taking quite a few screenshots in that sylvan setting. Regarding the clothing, wedding dress mods are surprisingly common but contemporary fancy clothes for men were harder to find. The following shot of Adrian never made it into the story, since I wasn’t really looking for a 1970s vibe (And that’s a good thing. Trust me, I lived through that era!).

“No, this isn’t the look I want,” said Teri.

As I said, I didn’t have much trouble finding a wedding dress for Teri, but it took a little while to get the rest of her to look right. Here she is with long hair and a flowery crown. I eventually decided to put her hair up and give her a jeweled tiara.

Getting rid of the green leaves you with a transparent background, if you save in .PNG format.

Since much of “Reverberations” takes place in an era like our own, I needed to come up with some modern imagery. Some of that I took care of using photos from my personal collection, while other shots came from a great stock photo site called Pexels. But I realized I’d also have to show Adrian and Teri in a modern setting. To do that, I used a mod called Green Screen Chroma Key Room. I took shots of Adrian and Teri, and using GIMP, cleared away the green backgrounds, leaving me with pictures I could easily paste into a nice picture of a carousel taken by dr jelibon at Pexels. An example of a green screen shot is at left:

And here’s the finished product, with Adrian and Teri pasted in:

Ain’t it sweet?

Writing this blog has been great fun, and so has been producing the illustrations. Hopefully, I’ve gotten better at both as I’ve gone along. Maybe a little later on, we’ll look at shots from some other stories. And hey, if you’ve got any screen shots to share, I’d be happy to see them!

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