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Author Topic: any photo editor that will both combine/tile, and keep transparency?  (Read 5274 times)
Curt
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« on: November 13, 2011, 12:45:00 PM »

This is looking okay, but the black areas really should be transparent:





Having edited the original nine normal JPGs into nine full-sized .PNG photos with transparent areas on each one, I decided to tile them (as seen on the above thumbnail), but realized that none of my many photo editors would deliver! Either they wouldn't offer to tile, or they would not maintain the transparency. It seems most can handle transparency if I edit the photos one by one, but not when I combine/group/tile the pictures.

So, do you know of a photo editor that will both combine/tile, and keep PNG transparency?
 tellme

Edited:
please do not tell about some expensive solution ;-)
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mouser
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« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2011, 12:53:50 PM »

I too am very interested in tools for combining images into grids of different dimensions and with different options.

It's something that I think would be useful to integrate into my Screenshot Captor tool, as I think people often have the need to combine multiple images into a grid.

I've considered writing a little tool for this but I keep thinking there must be good free/donationware/cheap tools for it already.
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rgdot
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« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2011, 01:37:25 PM »

Collage software may do that. Have a look to confirm that they do:

CollageIt http://www.collageitfree.com/
Picture Collage Maker http://www.picturecollagesoftware.com/

(not free)
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Curt
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« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2011, 01:46:20 PM »

@mouser; the above group was made in the free PhotoScape (which couldn't handle the transparency), but my setup is in Danish so you might want to download a copy yourself, if you want to know the options.

@rgdot; I already had checked some of them, and they replaced transparency with a colour. Besides, they don't handle full sized photos well.
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rgdot
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« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2011, 01:53:53 PM »

Both have background options (gradient, color, etc) but I don't recall if they have transparency (I have reviewed those two relatively recently)
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rjbull
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« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2011, 05:11:33 PM »

IrfanView Help:
Quote
If you want to create images with multiple rows/columns at same time, use the Contact Sheet feature from Thumbnails window.
But AFAICS it only gives you options for solid colours, not transparency  Sad
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Curt
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« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2011, 05:28:50 PM »

IrfanView > 'create contact sheet' can both display and create PNG transparency, but not transfer it from the original PNGs to the final contact sheet, when combining:




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Lutz_
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« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2011, 11:40:54 AM »

Hi Curt,

it seems your looking for a solution that creates your collages automatically?  If so, my suggestions likely won't help.

For laying out your pictures manually: Any image editor capable of using layers should do the trick. Photoline (my favorite) certainly does and the free Gimp, Paint.Net, and RealWorld Paint (introduced on DC) should do too.
Perhaps a bit easier to use are actually drawing applications for this purpose (no need to dig into layers); the free Inkscape and DrawPLus SE should do this very nicely.

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Curt
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« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2011, 02:30:21 PM »

-you're quite right, Lutz_. My first problem with this project was that none of the photos had equal dimensions, so an automatic solution was by far the easiest way to go. I should have told from the beginning.

Another problem is the size of the dimensions. They are between 3000-4000 x 2000-3000 pixels per photo. DrawPlus and many more of the kind doesn't handle such dimensions well, because such applications are targeted at paper sizes - but this combined picture is approx 10.000 x 7.000 pixels.

I have never tested PhotoLine (because of the price), but it was my impression that it is more like a desktop-publishing program that also can handle photos?
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Lutz_
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« Reply #9 on: November 15, 2011, 01:32:29 AM »

Hi Curt,

Photoline is more like photoshop (but can also do some drawing and some desktop publishing).  The 64bit version will certainly handle your filesizes (I have not used the 32 bit version for more than a year or two). I have read here on DC that Xara 5 is available for free at the moment - the Xara people often claim that their product is unbeaten in handling large bitmaps.
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Curt
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« Reply #10 on: November 15, 2011, 02:40:50 AM »

hmm... I did fear this problem would force me to re-install Corel, Magix, or Xara. They are quite capable in their areas, but I don't like them. They use procedures that confuses me, with terms that I don't understand. Support is expensive and/or weird, and they are always upgraded to even more expensive versions. ;-( 

My current financial situation prevents me from purchasing PhotoLine right now. But I sure will give it a thought the next time I have some money. Thanks for telling!
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joiwind
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« Reply #11 on: November 15, 2011, 10:32:46 AM »

Curt, have a look at Shape Collage - with a bit of fiddling about it could perhaps do what you want ?
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.: I use K-Meleon - the browser you can control - but I love Pale Moon too :.
Curt
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« Reply #12 on: November 15, 2011, 01:30:52 PM »

-thank you, joiwind  thumbs up

The $40 Shape Collage Pro does the trick!
Even the free version can do it, but with nag screens and watermarks:

PNG transparency:




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rgdot
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« Reply #13 on: November 15, 2011, 02:25:03 PM »

That's  thumbs up and pretty unique as far as I have seen.

(Shamelessx2 plug: Will be having another Picture Collage Maker giveaway this week if anyone is interested)
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joiwind
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« Reply #14 on: November 15, 2011, 03:58:49 PM »

Good - glad it works !  smiley
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.: I use K-Meleon - the browser you can control - but I love Pale Moon too :.
Curt
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« Reply #15 on: November 15, 2011, 05:02:34 PM »

Shamelessx2 plug: Will be having another Picture Collage Maker giveaway this week if anyone is interested

Thanks for making me go and study your profile, so I could find your site for the first time - forgive me for being so 'whatever' slow! But I must say that I don't understand why you don't have a link in your avatar...
Fine site, rgdot - and you even have giveaways!  thumbs up
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Curt
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« Reply #16 on: November 15, 2011, 05:10:03 PM »

The $40 Shape Collage Pro does the trick!

I first tried to ask Shape to create a full sized (10.000x8.200 pixels) collage. This was not all possible:





32-bits Vista, 4xQuad, 3.4 GB RAM > 1 GB available.
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rgdot
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« Reply #17 on: November 15, 2011, 06:47:53 PM »

Thanks Curt, I should promote it more smiley
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rgdot
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« Reply #18 on: November 16, 2011, 02:54:02 PM »

The above mentioned Picture Collage Maker Pro giveaway is now online
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