• Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint
Share this Page URL

Chapter 4. Working With Menus > Working with Subpictures

Working with Subpictures

When you create a button in a menu, you will most likely want it to have the proper highlights to indicate when it is in its normal (unselected), selected, or activated states. These highlights are created by graphic overlays called subpictures. Each subpicture shape can have three colors assigned to it, with opacity controls for each color as well. Those color and opacity values are managed by the menu's color set (Figure 4.122).

Figure 4.122. A quick look at the color set for this project.

A little background on subpictures and color sets and how they work:

  • A subpicture is a 2-bit color overlay, which occupies a layer in a button layer set (Figure 4.123).

    Figure 4.123. The track with the =1 prefix is the subpicture for this layer set.

  • Subpictures are limited to solid colors and sharp edges—no color gradients and no feathering.

  • You can create a button without a subpicture, but it makes navigating a menu more difficult. Without highlighting to indicate a button's state, the viewer will be unsure which button, if any, is selected.

  • The button templates in Encore DVD have a subpicture included. If you create custom buttons out of text and other objects, you can create a subpicture to go along with them.

  • In Encore DVD, the subpicture shape is defined by the shape of the button image it is associated with (Figure 4.124). You can also assign a different shape to a subpicture.

    Figure 4.124. An example of a button and its subpicture. The Direct Select tool was used here to separate the two elements.

In order to understand how subpicture colors work in creating button highlights, you need to understand the relationship between color sets and layer sets.

For the basic button in Figure 4.124, there is one subpicture layer, denoted by the (=1) prefix (Figure 4.125). This means that its color values and opacity will be determined by the Color 1 settings in the Menu Color Set dialog. As you can't see color differences in this book, I'll point out the adjustments made to the opacity settings.

Figure 4.125. One subpicture layer. The (=1) indicates that the Color 1 controls in the Menu Color Set dialog will apply to this layer.

In the Menu Color Set dialog, note the Color 1 opacity setting for this button's subpicture. In its Normal (unselected) state, the opacity is 0%, so there will be no highlight color visible at all (Figure 4.126).

Figure 4.126. The Color 1 values for the subpicture layer's Normal and Highlight Group 1 states.

For the button's selected and activated states (Highlight Group 1), its subpicture, and therefore its highlight, have values set to 60% and 67% respectively. Figures 4.1274.129 show what it looks like in the Menu Editor.

Figure 4.127. The same button as before, reunited with its subpicture layer. This is the unselected state…

Figure 4.129. …and the activated state.

What we have here is one button, one subpicture shape, one color, mapped to one set of controls in the Color Set window, and those controls manage the color settings for the three button highlight states. Got all that?

You can add a little more complexity right in the Menu Color Set window, because you can assign two different groups of highlights to the selected and activated states of various buttons in a menu. This allows more visual variety in a menu. For instance, the main navigation buttons, such as Play Intro or Scene Select, can have a bolder highlight color scheme than a secondary navigation button, such as Next or Return.

Figure 4.128. …and the selected state…

You can also add more complexity when you design your menus in Photoshop, because you can create subpicture layers designated as (=2) and (=3), to route to the Color 2 and Color 3 controllers in the Menu Color Set dialog.

In addition, each of these layers can have their own shape or mask applied to control the color highlight. In Photoshop, you can also design subpicture layers with objects that “pop on” or “pop off” for the different highlight states when you adjust the opacity settings in the menu's color set. More about that in Chapter 7.

To create a subpicture:

  • Select an object in the Menu Editor and do one of the following:

    • If the selected object is a button, choose Object > Create Subpicture (Figure 4.130).

      Figure 4.130. You can create a subpicture for a button.

    • If the selected object is an image file, choose Object > Convert to Button (Figure 4.131). Then choose Object > Create Subpicture as above.

      Figure 4.131. If you are starting with an object, you can make it into a button first.

    • If the selected object is text, choose Object > Convert to Button. Then choose Object > Create Subpicture as above.

✓ Tips

  • To verify that a subpicture was in fact created, you can use the Show Subpicture Highlights button on the bottom of the Menu Editor window to view the different colors attached to each subpicture state, or you can check the Layers palette for the telltale (=1) prefix in a layer's name.

  • For button text, you can also use the Properties palette to create a subpicture (Figure 4.132).

    Figure 4.132. You can also apply a subpicture to button text with the Properties palette.

  • When you create a subpicture in Encore DVD, only the subpicture layer #1, with the (=1) prefix, is created. Some of the button templates in Encore DVD have more than one subpicture layer. If you need to add a subpicture layer or change the number of a layer, it must be done in Photoshop, using the Edit in Photoshop function. Once in Photoshop, the subpicture layer can be renamed or more layers added. See Chapter 7 for more information.

  • Creative Edge
  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint