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Tips for Theme Creators
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smeger
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Sep 13, 2004, 08:50 PM
 
Seems like this is as good a place as any for a thread of miscellaneous tips for theme creators. Please add yours to the list!

Tip: To put a hyperlink into your theme's description, use iChat to create one and then copy/paste it into ThemePark's Description text field.

Open a chat with someone in iChat, then choose Add Hyperlink from the Edit menu. Type the address for the hyperlink and hit Okay. You can change the text from 'here' to whatever you'd like.

Select All, Copy and Paste into ThemePark's description area. The result is a clickable hyperlink.

Here's an example:



Thanks to whoever told me about this originally - I didn't know it was possible.

Oh, and in case people aren't aware, you can use images and styled text in your descriptions, too.
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mac15
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Sep 13, 2004, 09:21 PM
 
it was me champ
     
MacMan4000
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Sep 13, 2004, 09:25 PM
 
my tip:

Use Max's Theme templates (Download)

Would have made Avenger go a lot faster if they had existed when I started.

And almost always use the same size image as the aqua one. even if there is a 2 pixel border of transparent area around the image... it is there for a reason! If you fill up that 2 pixel area you will most likely end up with overlap problems later on. Learned that the hard way
     
Komisar
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Sep 13, 2004, 10:33 PM
 
hey instead of it here if you don't care i could compile a bunch of tips for our photoshop tutorial and themeing website.... i mean only if you guys would like something like that and if smeger would be up to it?
     
crooner
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Sep 14, 2004, 01:47 AM
 
Originally posted by Komisar:
hey instead of it here if you don't care i could compile a bunch of tips for our photoshop tutorial and themeing website.... i mean only if you guys would like something like that and if smeger would be up to it?
I vote for keeping this thread alive but having The Switchboard archive and maintain a searchable database of all hints offered. Best of both worlds.
Opinions?

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smeger  (op)
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Sep 14, 2004, 04:01 AM
 
Originally posted by Komisar:
hey instead of it here if you don't care i could compile a bunch of tips for our photoshop tutorial and themeing website.... i mean only if you guys would like something like that and if smeger would be up to it?
Definitely! Let's keep this thread alive, and if you're down, why don't you amalgamate the tips and put 'em on the SB.

P.S. Thanks Chris, it was you. Couldn't remember...

More tips?
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esXXI
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Sep 14, 2004, 07:21 AM
 
Thanks for the hyperlink tip! It'd be great if someone spent the time to go over each element themed, with tips. Since I guess it's on topic, I'm having a few problems with my WIP theme;

1) I can't seem to be able to theme the corners of menus (I'd like to have both sides' edges with shading). I noticed BBX Mercury themes the top-left and bottom-left corners, but not the other sides.. Is it not possible?
     
fireside
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Sep 14, 2004, 07:34 AM
 
Biggest tip for new theme creators: get used to themepark. besides having a horrible interface, its not a too confusing app. experiment, and apply a theme and go from there. don't always use base aqua for things, and experiment, experiment. screw around, and if something looks whack in themepark preview, apply the theme with shapeshifter, themepark's preview is dumb.
     
fireside
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Sep 14, 2004, 07:36 AM
 
Originally posted by esXXI:
Thanks for the hyperlink tip! It'd be great if someone spent the time to go over each element themed, with tips. Since I guess it's on topic, I'm having a few problems with my WIP theme;

1) I can't seem to be able to theme the corners of menus (I'd like to have both sides' edges with shading). I noticed BBX Mercury themes the top-left and bottom-left corners, but not the other sides.. Is it not possible?
select your theme name then go to "options>enable menu extras" then you to menubar and menues or whatever its called you have a plethora of crap to change.
     
esXXI
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Sep 14, 2004, 07:57 AM
 
Originally posted by fireside:
select your theme name then go to "options>enable menu extras" then you to menubar and menues or whatever its called you have a plethora of crap to change.
Did that, but there still doesn't seem to be a way to alter the corners.
     
fireside
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Sep 14, 2004, 08:04 AM
 
Originally posted by esXXI:
Did that, but there still doesn't seem to be a way to alter the corners.
maybe you could draw a diagram or something or post a mockup cause i don't quite understand what you're trying to do.
     
Komisar
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Sep 14, 2004, 10:18 PM
 
Originally posted by smeger:
Definitely! Let's keep this thread alive, and if you're down, why don't you amalgamate the tips and put 'em on the SB.

P.S. Thanks Chris, it was you. Couldn't remember...

More tips?
Great if anyone has any tips they want to send over here my mail is jrk3001 at aol.com ... thanks for letting me do this Jason!
     
demograph68
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Sep 14, 2004, 11:26 PM
 
Originally posted by MacMan4000:
And almost always use the same size image as the aqua one. even if there is a 2 pixel border of transparent area around the image... it is there for a reason! If you fill up that 2 pixel area you will most likely end up with overlap problems later on.
SON OF A BITCH!!!!! *Rips computer in half* .....sigh..... Back to that mockup of mine....
     
smeger  (op)
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Sep 14, 2004, 11:59 PM
 
Originally posted by esXXI:
Thanks for the hyperlink tip! It'd be great if someone spent the time to go over each element themed, with tips. Since I guess it's on topic, I'm having a few problems with my WIP theme;
I'm always open to submissions on these.
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smeger  (op)
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Sep 15, 2004, 12:01 AM
 
Here's a biggie that a lot of new themers miss: Select your theme variant name and hit the Options button. Turn on additional menu customization. This gives you more options on what you can theme on the menubar.
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smeger  (op)
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Sep 15, 2004, 12:02 AM
 
You can open ThemePark editors in their own window. Double-click the background of the editor or control-click and choose Open in New Window.

One use for this is to drag elements in order to put the same element into a bunch of different places.
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fireside
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Sep 15, 2004, 12:07 AM
 
Originally posted by smeger:
You can open ThemePark editors in their own window. Double-click the background of the editor or control-click and choose Open in New Window.

One use for this is to drag elements in order to put the same element into a bunch of different places.
Holy shit. i never knew that.
     
Patcarla
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Sep 15, 2004, 02:10 AM
 
Originally posted by fireside:
Holy shit. i never knew that.
Yeah, that's pretty handy.
It would be perfect if we could send to/retrieve from PS from these widows
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esXXI
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Sep 15, 2004, 06:28 AM
 
Originally posted by fireside:
maybe you could draw a diagram or something or post a mockup cause i don't quite understand what you're trying to do.


Those corners that the arrows point to, I can't seem to find any element that themes them. I could be blind, if anyone could name them, please?
     
smeger  (op)
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Sep 15, 2004, 06:58 AM
 
Originally posted by Patcarla:
Yeah, that's pretty handy.
It would be perfect if we could send to/retrieve from PS from these widows
Whoops! Added to my bug list.
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fireside
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Sep 15, 2004, 07:10 AM
 
Originally posted by esXXI:


Those corners that the arrows point to, I can't seem to find any element that themes them. I could be blind, if anyone could name them, please?
oh those biatches. you can only change the ones on the left side using "Menu Background" or something similiar. its a huge image, so the only side that always shows up is the left.

extending on that idea of opening things in a new window you should make it smeger so you can open a whole group of things (IE Windowbar Titlebar Buttons) in a new window so you've got everything for a particular element.

edit: esXXI: you could make the "Menu Background" element 100% transparent and as long as you theme ALL the extra things from menu enhancer its gone but it might look kinda weird.
( Last edited by fireside; Sep 15, 2004 at 07:17 AM. )
     
Patcarla
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Sep 15, 2004, 07:25 AM
 
Originally posted by smeger:
Whoops! Added to my bug list.
cool, thanks Jason
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esXXI
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Sep 15, 2004, 01:24 PM
 
Originally posted by fireside:
oh those biatches. you can only change the ones on the left side using "Menu Background" or something similiar. its a huge image, so the only side that always shows up is the left.

[Snip]

edit: esXXI: you could make the "Menu Background" element 100% transparent and as long as you theme ALL the extra things from menu enhancer its gone but it might look kinda weird.
Thank you! Making the Menu Background transparent seems to be the next best thing to what I wanted (I'm a little dubious of the shorter border above the top and below the bottom menu-items, but it still looks fine).

Thanks again!
     
crooner
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Sep 15, 2004, 06:32 PM
 
Originally posted by esXXI:
Thank you! Making the Menu Background transparent seems to be the next best thing to what I wanted (I'm a little dubious of the shorter border above the top and below the bottom menu-items, but it still looks fine).

Thanks again!
esXXI, please post your theme when it's done. I'd love to se it in action!

To dislike Sinatra is a sign of highly questionable taste. To dislike the Beatles is a serious character flaw.
     
mugget
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Sep 16, 2004, 01:29 AM
 
some good tips here i haven't seen before.

well here's mine. not so much a 'tip' but, kind of.

in PhotoShop, if you've got multiple windows open, the one that you currently have selected and frontmost is the one that the 'receive from PhotoShop' will import. very useful for some things. say if you have an Aqua element, and have just imported that into ThemePark, and want to make a 'clear' state of the same element, you can just desaturate the Aqua resource in PS, keep it selected, then select the clear state in TP, and import.

probably something that you just learn from using ThemePark, but thought i'd mention it.

i'd also love to see a description of how the elements come together. there's that diagram for the Butted Bevel Button, that shows how the fill, top, sides etc fits together, a diagram like that for other elements would be really helpful.

edit>> i was just thinking... if anyone wants to write a tutorial or explain something for me... i've been wondering how to get the end caps on the menubar, like in the 'Tiger' themes? and also, how to make a titlebar of a window like that in Avenger? i don't know how to do those couple of things, if someone could write a quick guide to which resources control that, that would be great.
( Last edited by mugget; Sep 16, 2004 at 05:57 AM. )
     
Patcarla
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Sep 16, 2004, 01:59 AM
 
A small tip to quickly make the disabled states:
export your normal state element to PS, set up the opacity to 50%,import back to
themepark and you're all set
Another advise to save some time, use the "action" function in PS as much as you can.
Spend some time creating them (like for example setting up the transparency to 50% )
them you can export many elements to PS, use the automate / batch to all opened
documents and put them back to TP.
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smeger  (op)
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Sep 19, 2004, 06:47 AM
 
Damn it, I wrote up a long tip that describes everything I know about creating windows and using transparency in them, but MacNN won't let me post it because it's got too many images. I've emailed it to the peeps at The Switchboard, so hopefully, they'll post it instead.

Edit: My email to them bounced. Contact me please, Komisar.
( Last edited by smeger; Sep 19, 2004 at 07:30 AM. )
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digitaljames
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Sep 19, 2004, 07:06 AM
 
Originally posted by smeger:
Damn it, I wrote up a long tip that describes everything I know about creating windows and using transparency in them, but MacNN won't let me post it because it's got too many images. I've emailed it to the peeps at The Switchboard, so hopefully, they'll post it instead.
I will if they won't.
     
esXXI
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Sep 19, 2004, 08:25 AM
 
Originally posted by smeger:
Damn it, I wrote up a long tip that describes everything I know about creating windows and using transparency in them, but MacNN won't let me post it because it's got too many images. I've emailed it to the peeps at The Switchboard, so hopefully, they'll post it instead.

Edit: My email to them bounced. Contact me please, Komisar.
Wow, be looking forward to that I shall!
     
MacMan4000
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Sep 19, 2004, 11:26 AM
 
Originally posted by smeger:
Damn it, I wrote up a long tip that describes everything I know about creating windows and using transparency in them, but MacNN won't let me post it because it's got too many images. I've emailed it to the peeps at The Switchboard, so hopefully, they'll post it instead.

Edit: My email to them bounced. Contact me please, Komisar.
Transparency? like AERO transparency? That would be AWESOME!!!
     
Komisar
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Sep 19, 2004, 02:29 PM
 
I just talked to smeger and we will have it up soon
     
smeger  (op)
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Sep 20, 2004, 05:10 AM
 
Okay, the tip I mentioned a few posts ago has now been posted at The Switchboard. Check it out.
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MacMan4000
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Sep 20, 2004, 04:22 PM
 
Originally posted by smeger:
Okay, the tip I mentioned a few posts ago has now been posted at The Switchboard. Check it out.
So... no AERO themeing? how about shapeshifter 2.3? maybe? (j/k)
     
llee
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Sep 22, 2004, 12:18 PM
 
Include a custom installer and an Aqua restore installer for your Panther theme for those who don't have ShapeShifter.

Build a standalone theme installer for Panther
     
siMac
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Sep 22, 2004, 04:04 PM
 
And risk catching it in the neck from people who have 'hosed' their systems?

No thanks.
|\|0\/\/ 15 7|-|3 71|\/|3
     
fireside
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Sep 22, 2004, 04:31 PM
 
Originally posted by siMac:
And risk catching it in the neck from people who have 'hosed' their systems?

No thanks.
no one is forcing you to use an installer..
     
idle
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Sep 26, 2004, 09:27 AM
 
how about iTunes skinning tips? Especially since masks and graphics are two different things in this particular appskin. How would (or do) you go about those?
     
esXXI
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Sep 26, 2004, 03:06 PM
 
Originally posted by idle:
how about iTunes skinning tips? Especially since masks and graphics are two different things in this particular appskin. How would (or do) you go about those?
I thought about the same thing, but I decided I can just make all the UI-graphics and then colour-fill them black on to a white background for the masks. I haven't tested it but I presume that'd be the easier (and speediest) way.
     
smeger  (op)
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Sep 26, 2004, 03:23 PM
 
Originally posted by idle:
how about iTunes skinning tips? Especially since masks and graphics are two different things in this particular appskin. How would (or do) you go about those?
You can use the techniques described here to deal with images and masks.
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idle
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Sep 26, 2004, 05:04 PM
 
ah, thankx a lot.
     
   
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