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liamwhite1's avatar

Inkscape: Mutual Clipping and Extrapolated Miters

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Stroke width bases: fav.me/d6y6w3r
Yet Another of Spike's Jokes: fav.me/d6w9fip
ParclyTaxel's guide to Mutual Clipping: fav.me/d69usi5
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Plentyrees's avatar
How do you convert the strokes to outlines? I'm new to Inkscape.
liamwhite1's avatar
Path —> Stroke to Path
Also Ctrl+Alt+C as a shortcut

Make sure to NOT have open the "Object Properties" dialog when you convert stroke to path. It tends to crash.
Plentyrees's avatar
snowfeather1's avatar
hi.how do you use this on alicorns heads?
liamwhite1's avatar
snowfeather1's avatar
no the curves of the head
liamwhite1's avatar
How are the alicorn's head strokes any different than the regular horses'?
snowfeather1's avatar
couse celestia head have the nodes are like corners
liamwhite1's avatar
I like to promote learning from the source. If you download my Celestia vector, you'll see that what I have done at the corner is close to what I demonstrate here. Release the clipping paths on the two objects, and see if you can figure out what I did. Or download the image demonstrated here (it's at the back of my gallery) and release the clipping paths.
snowfeather1's avatar
just I try to use masking but wen I do the object disapeer
liamwhite1's avatar
If you want to use masking instead of clipping, set the clipping path to a white fill and no stroke.
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ChainChomp2's avatar
I was actually going to look up tutorials in the club to see what they looked like before I tried my own to show :iconvectorizedunicorn:~VectorizedUnicorn (who, thanks to mentions appearing in dA inboxes, should get this), who asked about the clipping technique to use on a Soarin vector, but then I saw that what I was going to cover already covered in this tutorial. =p

Looking at my library, my first known use of "lines clipping each other's ends off" (or otherwise mutual clipping) as a technique that I can recall was in April or so (the gray strokes of different widths intersecting in the hat), but I didn't know of the name for it until I stumbled the Mutual Clipping tutorial in September. :P  Back then, I just came across the hat and thought, "I think the only way I can get this line to look like it gets thinner as it intersects here is to clip it with the other line".  Maybe Parcly used it far earlier; I don't know for certain except that it's a great technique. :)  So far I've found it useful for Wonderbolt suits (cadet suits and the muzzles on the full-body ones), tight-fit clothes or clothes in general, stallion muzzles, fetlocks, hoofshoes, hats, sharp points on manes/tails, the hairline and manes of Doc/Meadow/Lucky, etc. ...basically whenever you'll want two lines to clip each other particularly if they are of different color or stroke width, or when points look ugly.


Okay, I might be boasting, but I'm just saying that it's a great technique to know and tutorial after tutorial on the subject only helps more vector artists understand and learn it because it has many uses as I listed (and probably more), so useful it was worth going through the older vectors in my gallery and retrofitting those things I listed with it. ;)


The only drawbacks are that it doesn't look like there's a quick-and-easy fix to edit them later if you want to thicken or thin the stroke width, because you have to clip everything all over again =p, and that if the colors of the strokes are different you can especially notice a little pixelation (I can see a little bit on that last example with the orange and yellow strokes, typically it's less noticeable if the strokes are the same color).  More easily noticeable still the more lines or objects are duplicated or clipped over each other (eyes especially, though this isn't relevant to mutual clipping). So, from there I might turn the stroke under into a path and then delete some nodes or move anchors, as the stroke layered on top of it retains its shape from the clip mask.


Whether or not this is completely relevant I'm not 100% certain, but it's in the name of sharing advice and knowledge, so I hope it's okay. ^^;
liamwhite1's avatar
I generally try to avoid using Stroke to Path on visible lines, to ensure that there are no stroke width errors and to allow myself to change the shape and width of a line if I have to. This helps to ensure the best quality on my vectors. Granted, the errors will be small but they will definitely be there. It's kind of a trade off I guess. And Ponyscape is not working terribly well for me; I think there's a memory leak somewhere but I can't be sure.

If you tried something similar to this technique in April, then as far as I know you came up with a portion of this concept before ~Parclytaxel, who published his first work with Mutual Clipping in May: fav.me/d65whoc - "Fifty-Seven Eight Eighty-Five One Sixty-Luna" which seems to be named for the largest known prime 257885161 - 1.

okaminekowiesel's avatar
Ok, I really wanted to try this technique, yet I fail at the understanding of the simplest things. Maybe I know the things mentioned, but there is no name to the things I do and therefore no connection between them. I feel like living under a stone.
Well, maybe I get some knowledge of definitions and wordings first and retry another time.

Thanks for sharing.
pixiepea's avatar
Interesting. I'll totally try this out next time I'm vectoring ^-^
Thanks a lot for sharing!
Parclytaxel's avatar
You do realise that I was the progenitor of this trick, don't you?
liamwhite1's avatar
You said nothing that is in the Extrapolated Arc Miters section, although it logically follows. Full credit to you for figuring out the trick though :)
pixiepea's avatar
Well yeah, now I do :L
MrBarthalamul's avatar
Hmmm, interesting. I had to re-read it a couple of times but I think I understand all clipping business. As for the very first part, I suppose I'll just have to play around with it until it makes sense lol =p
liamwhite1's avatar
Here's how you use the "ready-made" tapers:

Download the SVG and put it in a place you'll remember
Open Inkscape and open the Path Effect Editor
Start drawing

When you need to taper a stroke:
Open up the "tapers" SVG in a new window of Inkscape
Ungroup everything
Select the taper you need and copy it
Go to the Path Effect Editor in the other, drawing window
If there isn't already Pattern Along Path on the current stroke add one
Click the Paste button

Play around until you get the desired width and fill

There you go, MUCH faster than tapering by hand.
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