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How Do I Create Mottled Paper?

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Lenny
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How Do I Create Mottled Paper?

Post#1 by Lenny » 14 Apr 2020, 05:01


This beautiful mottled paper was the background for a border I extracted from it. It was only about 290px tall and maybe 1100px wide, so I didn't have much to work with. I have tried unsuccessfully in recreating this style using the various colors in the paper. This image was on a public domain website from the British Library. I think it might have been an end paper or paste down for a book from the mid 1800s.

I tried a filter/render/sinus with two of the colors, adjusting the sinus size, then another filter/render/sinus on new layer, set to overlay, with two other colors, with a different sinus pattern. Wasn't quite right, so I used a couple of other filters, shift, one in GMIC - I've forgotten which, maybe simple noise canvas. Did some blurring, some sharpening and on and on. None of this came close, although it was still pretty and the colors weren't bad.

Tiling it as is, to a much larger page size, gave that very obviously tiled look. Does anyone know how to create this look using filters? If so, please include the steps.
Screenshot (3859).png
Screenshot (3859).png (242.17 KiB) Viewed 5260 times
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Lenny
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Post#2 by Lenny » 14 Apr 2020, 06:36


I figured I should post my best attempt so far.

This is a sinus layer with two colors from the original
New layer set to overlay, sinus with two more colors from original
Then I hit every button on my keyboard and use every filter 10 times
Seriously, it went something like this:
Color adjustments, GMIC canvas noise, waves, exposure, median blur, layer opacity, exposure, shift, waves, several color adjustments, curves, selective Gaussian blur, linear motion blur, sharpen.... And it's still not what I wanted.

There is no way I could reproduce this for a larger page size, since I didn't write down every adjustment parameter.
MottledAttempt.png
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Tom
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Post#3 by Tom » 14 Apr 2020, 14:20


I gave it a try, I made a gradient of the darkest and lightest colors and then used a bump map with the original.
On the bumped mapped image I set the layer mode to screen.
Then Colors > Curves for the right color.
It's close but to make a bigger one, I'm not sure. Maybe it will give you an idea.
Screenshot_1.png
Screenshot_1.png (303.92 KiB) Viewed 5224 times

Tom
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Post#4 by Tom » 14 Apr 2020, 14:44


I don't know what size you need.
I made the canvas size the size of 4 of your pictures and then just flipped them horizontally and vertically.
You could make a canvas size of what you need and if a seam shows up try G"mic InPaint on the seam.
Screenshot_2.png
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Lenny
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Post#5 by Lenny » 15 Apr 2020, 04:50


Yours is perfect, but I can only guess that is due to the bump map. My knowledge of bump maps is limited to some vague idea that it is the textures existing on the original. Perhaps that is wrong. I just noticed your dark bits were identical to the dark bits on the original.

I probably wasn't clear, but I would like to know how to get closer to the texture/fiber patterns of the original like you did, but without having it available to me -- via bump map.

The original shows the actual detailed fibers in the paper. My attempt from scratch looks more like a Formica pattern (a brand name for inexpensive composite kitchen/bath countertops).

Your last attempt made a very subtle, yet beautiful pattern in the middle. I isolated it, boosted exposure and black level, then did a bit of selective dodge/burn to reveal the pattern.
IsolatedPattern.png
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Tom
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Post#6 by Tom » 15 Apr 2020, 13:48


I think I have it now.
Make the size image you want.
Open your image Screenshot(3859).png as a layer.
With Screenshot(3859).png active go to Filters > Enhance > Wavelet-decompose and use default.
Make Background, Screenshot(3859).png and Residual Invisible.
Then right click the Decomposition Layer and select mergevisible layers.
They would be Decomposition, Scale 1, Scale 2, Scale 3 Scale 4 and Scale 5.
With only Decomposition visible go to Edit > Copy.
Select Screenshot(3859).png and change your foreground and Backgroung colors, for Black I chose the darkest green and White the lightest green.
Now you can Delete the Decomposition Layer and Screenshot(3859).png
Make Background layer visible and active.
Go to Bucket Fill and Pattern Fill and choose Clipboard Image and fill.
Create new layer above.
Use the Gradient tool and FG to BG (RGB) with the greens from Screenshot(3859).png
Then set the Layer mode to Grain Merge.
Grain_Merge.png
Grain_Merge.png (835.51 KiB) Viewed 5176 times

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Lenny
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Post#7 by Lenny » 15 Apr 2020, 16:23


OK, wow, that is way above my pay grade. I'll have to work through those steps a few times in order to wrap my aging mind around it all. This will be an excellent learning opportunity for me, as you mentioned a couple things I've never used - wavelet decompose and grain merge.

You got a nice outcome. Good proof of concept on expanding design to a larger page size without noticeable tiling marks or many obvious repeats.

Although I was hoping for a better way to create the design to this level of detail completely from scratch, I will be most happy with this solution that apparently can be used with any color gradient for future projects.

Thanks, @Tom
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Tom
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Post#8 by Tom » 15 Apr 2020, 20:15


It's really not that difficult and good luck.
I learned about wavelet-decompose here https://patdavid.net/2011/12/getting-ar ... ching.html on Pat David Website.

Pat625
Tutorial Creator

Post#9 by Pat625 » 16 Apr 2020, 04:43


Tom, I have no idea how you arrived at your method but it really worked! I will have to try this a few times and see if I can get my head around it. Oh, well, nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Tom
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Post#10 by Tom » 16 Apr 2020, 13:34


Pat625 wrote:
16 Apr 2020, 04:43
Tom, I have no idea how you arrived at your method but it really worked! I will have to try this a few times and see if I can get my head around it. Oh, well, nothing ventured, nothing gained.
Hi Pat, I have no idea either, I guess I was just poking around and had tried wavelets on some photographs. This was just the opposite.
What surprised me was that I remembered what I had done, that usually doesn't happen.
Lenny, I tried some Cloud brushes this morning to make one from scratch but I didn't have good results.


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