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Creating a metal panel / crate / door thing from (semi) scratch

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Hey I made a texture and decided to create a step by step process/tutorial to Spill All My Secrets. Here's the final money shot:
(the thing in the bottom center)

*spoilers* i'm the laziest piece of shit when it comes to making textures (and i just emboldened random parts of each step)


So first things first I made the most basic sketch of the shape of the texture I want. I want a kind of metal panel with a cross bar in it so i draw a cross:

Then I start with the shapes of the parts that will make up the texture. My texture is only gonna be 64 pixels tall, but I always try to work on a 128 high canvas for Whatever Reason, so i'm duplicating it on both halves.
I noticed the diagonal lines weren't gonna be pretty when thickening them up so I decided to stick to 45 degree lines.

The background of the texture is gonna be corrugated and since I'm a lousy cheater, I took one I made earlier. This is called being efficient.
Then just filled all the sections of background with it. (I personally use a layer mask. If you know what that is then cool but if you dont, look it up i guess???)

I want some color variation on this thing, so I've decided at this point to have green background, grey bars and brown trim on the outside. So let's go stick some grey bars in!
Again, I stole some bar off another texture I made and trimmed it down to 4px high to fit the guide lines. I rotated it 45 degrees (with cubic interpolation) for the diagonal bars.

Now lets do the brown trim on the outside! This time I can't be super lazy and cheat the detail in, but we sure as hell can make it easy as possible.
I grabbed a really plain brown flat I use for a lot of materials and pasted it over the top half.

Then I trimmed out everything but the edges

Now, I use 2 seperate layers to draw in some light and shadow, to Make This Look Like A Thing.
I always go by the rule that light is travelling (roughly) from the TOP LEFT hand corner.
So on one layer I draw PURE WHITE lines over the top and left sides of the shape, and on another layer I draw PURE BLACK lines over the bottom and right sides.

Next, I set the layers to be SOFT LIGHT BLEND MODE. (Again, google up how to do this if you don't know how)
Then adjust the alpha of each layer til It Looks Ok. I find I have to have the dark layer at a lower alpha than the Light layer. In this case the dark layer was at around 60%, and the light layer was at 70%.

Now we're gonna make that middle detail. This is gonna be the most involved part imo?

So first I grabbed another section of that brown flat and trimmed it to the shape of the detail.

Then I created (on a new layer), a radial gradient around the center point, then stretched it to the shape of the detail (since it was kinda an ellipse)

Then I used colour to alpha to make it a gradient from white to transparent, and intentionally roughly cut out the bottom left and top right corners of the gradient.

(I forgot to take a screenshot of this, i'm the worst

Then I inverted the bottom right corner so it was black, moved it to it's own layer and used the same method with the soft light blend modes to Make It Look Good. The cutoff was a little sharp on the black part so I used a little bit of blur to smooth it out.

We're not done yet! Now I want to seperate out the layers a bit to give it more of a 3d look and stuff.
So I took the trim layer, duplicated it and make it pure black.

I then used a 5px blur, duplicated it a bit to darken it, then moved the layer behind the trim. voila! I've now got a Cool Shadow Thing!
[i](A step or two later I moved the shadow down by 1px, too, to give it more of a downward lighting)[/b]

Then I did the same with the grey bars and the middle detail.
But wait! Now we can see an issue! The middle detail thing looks shitty at the edges. Jaggy edges against the black shadow!

Well I can fix that! I took an eraser with a soft brush and carefully traced around the edges of the shape to blend into the shadow more. Cool.

Next up: Stick it in slade and convert it to doom palette! Turns out the green texture I used (which hadn't been palettized) wasn't actually the right shade of green for doom. WHOPS. Luckily, it converted to a cool green shade anyway so All Is Well.

Final and most important step: use the heck out of it in a level (to see if its actually cool or what)

Enjoy! lmk if this helps! I might make more if so, hopefully with Less Cheating in, haha.

edit: bonus variations!

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This is really great, thanks for going to the trouble of documenting how you do this kind of stuff.

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