Let me tell y’all something, dear reader, Skyrim is a beautiful game. Beautiful. It’s one of the main reasons why I play it. And when one adds modifications to it, it’s even more more stunning. But sometimes, the screenshots aren’t as awesome as they appear in the game. They just don’t make the transition from 3D to flat very well. So when I take a screenshot of a beautiful landscape, it sometimes comes out looking… whaaaa? Especially the sky. So this was the screenshot I took last night of an incoming (outgoing? I don’t remember) storm on one of the coastlines. It’s pretty rare (in my experience) to see actual clouds like this in game, so I thought it was pretty awesome. And so I took a screenshot thinking, “This is gonna be great! I can put it in my background slideshow!” and this is what I got…
Yeah it came out pretty dark… You can’t see anything. Not the sundog, not the roiling clouds, not even the glowing blue snow. Yep, dear reader, some reason, the snow in this particular playthrough is blue. I think it has to do with one of the snow textures I put in. Any bit of snow in the shadows (or under cloud cover) is blue. It looks kind of cool, but it’s also distracting because as you can kind of see in the above picture, it glows blue. I’m gonna be trying to fix that later.
Here’s what it looks like if I just use the auto filters (tone, contrast, and color) in Photoshop. It strips away the “darkness” and gives it a kind of watercolor wash…
That’s some bright blue snow! ahahahaha It doesn’t look that bright in game, but it is blue. Like I said, I’m gonna fix that. You can see that the snow on the rocks, distant hills, trees, and grass, isn’t nearly as blue. It’s just the snow on the closer ground that’s blindingly blue. Still not what I want as wallpaper for my computer. I mean, it does have an interesting watercolor feel to it… it’s blue. Like… blue. I suppose if I were an artist I could call it artistic license and leave it at that. But I like my snow whitish in nature, so I continued on.
I fiddled around with the screenshot for a few hours and this is what I came up with
I still have blue snow, but it’s not quite as blue, and it’s white in the brighter places. It’s more of a shaded effect I think. But, as I said before, I’m not an artist, I know nothing of shadows. I guess I should learn though if I’m gonna try to make shadows on pictures. ^_^ Anyway, I added a bit more snow in the air to give it the feeling of “storm”. There isn’t much I can do with the clouds in the background unless I want to actually redraw them from scratch, and as I’ve mentioned many times before, I’m not an artist. I just play one on TV. ^_^ Or to update that saying to contemporary times, I play one on the internet.
Hope y’all don’t mind me sharing my Photoshop stuff. It’s fun to do and I don’t really have a place to brag about them other than here. Feel free to let me know what you think (constructively). I think Skyrim is an awesome game and I love messing with the screenshots. Maybe someday I’ll learn to actually do artistic things like redraw the clouds, but until then it’s a learning experience. And fun.