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Thread: Anybody have a good skin idea

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    Maximum Bitrate sporty_drew's Avatar
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    Anybody have a good skin idea

    I'm wanting to make a skin, but i can't come up with a "theme". Does anyone have any designs that they wouldn't mind if i messed with? I need to find a nice layout but can't make a decision on anything i've put together in photoshop. Thanks, Drew
    1998 Camaro Worklog Starting over, New setup for 2010

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    I'm a total noob for the car PC, and I too have been building skins as I think that's the only way to "know" what's going on behind the scenes. However, I also am struggling with a theme.

    Some simple advice given to me (that you may not need) was to pick a consistent set of icons, use the same font throughout, etc. I certainly see many graphically beautiful skins here - almost all beyond my capability - but it is highly rewarding IMO to come up with your own stuff. Below is a pic of my main menu screen. I put the functions I call up most often there and built up other menu screens for less often used things (like DVD, image viewer, etc). I also went with space for big buttons as I found many to have buttons too small to for my use while driving. As a "theme" I made my buttons into stylized "keys" to fit with the car-puter theme. And finally, the central icon is the logo for my car (a Toyota MR2 Spyder), but I also use the space for other functions, i.e., the "M" at the top of the logo serves to minimize the screen, etc.

    I have PSDs etc for all my screens, but no place to host them. You are more than welcome to rip off any idea I may help you get.


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    Maximum Bitrate sporty_drew's Avatar
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    wow, it seems like you have a nice start on the main screen. I am thinking that the camaro logo is going to be the center of my main screen. I was building off the idea of how websites are do, like you said :same font, size ect,ect... But on my main screen i'm thinkng about staying away from text. I have pretty much got my main screen decided on but i would like to find a tutorial on making reflections because i really like how you did yours. Have you made it to any of your player screens (music, video)? I'm trying to decide if i want to play with the same background for them and just change the opacity for where my text will go or if i want to keep the colors and make it look like other players. One more thing, i've collected a few pictures for buttons, but i was wondering where you got yours?

    ~Drew
    1998 Camaro Worklog Starting over, New setup for 2010

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    I have a 2nd menu (that loads DVD, changes skin, switches between day & night skin, loads a web browser screen, and a launch apps button). There are individual screens for iGuidance (v3), music player and browser, DVD player (using Media Player Classic), skin browser and web browser. All use the same background and button theme. They are all working.

    I made the buttons myself in Photoshop. I should mention that the icons on the buttons I ripped from the KDE people - which makes them open source, but they still deserve the credit for the artwork.

    As mentioned above I also have a set of screens for night use that has the same basic character except the color switches from blue to dark gray and the text switches from white to dark red. Below is a screen capture of the night version of the music player screen. BTW, I kept the text on most buttons because the icons sometimes wash out in the day, but the white on black text still shows up well. But I guess that's pretty much implementation dependent.



    Oh, one other thing you asked. Reflection - I dropped the logo onto the Photoshop background I made (simple color, then two ellipses with varying opacity but in same color overlaid), then used the transform function under the edit menu item - flipped it, dragged it down, and changed opacity - that's all it took for the reflected image.

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    Maximum Bitrate sporty_drew's Avatar
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    Hmm i haven't seen any skins that have keep the ame layout for every screen, but i really like it. I figured you made the buttons, i was wondering about the pictures on the buttons (ie. the globe, cd, ff, rw, power) It looks good with how you kept the reflection on the second screen. I must really be a semetrical person because the first thing i noticed about that one is how you have both the ff and rw buttons on the same side, is it to make them both in reach?
    1998 Camaro Worklog Starting over, New setup for 2010

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    Quote Originally Posted by sporty_drew View Post
    Hmm i haven't seen any skins that have keep the ame layout for every screen, but i really like it. I figured you made the buttons, i was wondering about the pictures on the buttons (ie. the globe, cd, ff, rw, power) It looks good with how you kept the reflection on the second screen. I must really be a semetrical person because the first thing i noticed about that one is how you have both the ff and rw buttons on the same side, is it to make them both in reach?
    Yes, I originally had them in a row across the bottom - then I went side to side, but now I'm trying to keep most used buttons closest. Even though all the screens I mentioned are done, I still play with them and am still looking for some inspiration on a theme. I can manipulate photoshop reasonably well for a noob, but graphics design talent I sadly lack. So my basic routine is to throw something on the screen, think about what's stupid, then try to make it better - sometimes it works, sometimes not.

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    New skin concept and design.

    lbridges: That is just scary! I was working on a new look a month or so ago, and got side tracked on something else. I never saw your skin, and I know you never say the one I was tinkering with, as I have never posted it before.

    That aside, is spooky how similar the design and layout is! Here is a screen cap of about as far as I got with it:

    Front End of Choice: Ride Runner (Is there anything else??? ) & Powered by the DFX5.1 Skin Available in the Mobile App Mart

    My Fiero Build Thread

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    Maximum Bitrate sporty_drew's Avatar
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    Oh yea i completly consider myself a photoshop noob. i never used it before my collage web grophics class last semester because i considered all my highschool computer class a waste of time (all you do is type) and never took them, but now that i'm a senior i've decided that i want to go into computers lol, so i'm taking some collage computer class while i'm still in highschool.

    So do you have the whole skin "done" enough to use? And do you have your setup in yet or are you still building?

    JohnWPB- i like what you we're doing with the volume bar (or at least what i think you were doing) Why is it that everone puts the text toward the center with the icons on the outside?
    1998 Camaro Worklog Starting over, New setup for 2010

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    Quote Originally Posted by sporty_drew View Post
    Oh yea i completly consider myself a photoshop noob. i never used it before my collage web grophics class last semester because i considered all my highschool computer class a waste of time (all you do is type) and never took them, but now that i'm a senior i've decided that i want to go into computers lol, so i'm taking some collage computer class while i'm still in highschool.

    So do you have the whole skin "done" enough to use? And do you have your setup in yet or are you still building?

    JohnWPB- i like what you we're doing with the volume bar (or at least what i think you were doing) Why is it that everone puts the text toward the center with the icons on the outside?
    Hahahaah! I remember that! ASDF JKL; Over and over again! hahahah!

    As for the position of the icons and such, you can put the text and icons anywhere you want really. It is done this way to be more touchscreen friendly I would say. If you put the icons right next to each other, and the text off to the side for instance, it would be pretty difficult to hit the exact spot to press to change the volume. In the above example the entire button would be divided in half. Meaning anywhere on the right side of the button would increase the volume, left side to decrease.

    On another note, I feel so compelled to click your car avatar, to get the latest mortgage rates or a free iPod nano or something! lol!
    Front End of Choice: Ride Runner (Is there anything else??? ) & Powered by the DFX5.1 Skin Available in the Mobile App Mart

    My Fiero Build Thread

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    Quote Originally Posted by sporty_drew View Post
    ...So do you have the whole skin "done" enough to use? And do you have your setup in yet or are you still building?...Why is it that everone puts the text toward the center with the icons on the outside?
    1) yes, I use it every day.

    2) As John said, do it how you like it, I tried both ways and thought the icons "out" & text "in" looked better. Also, I use a Pioneer Premier head unit for radio/audio, so the computer puts it's audio to the head unit, then off to the amp - so no need for radio on the computer, and no need for volume buttons on any of my screens (which saves real estate).

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