Tips Tricks for Furniture and Room Deriving, Design Concepts


Design Concepts



Welcome to the first chapter of Keef’s Room and Furniture ‘Tips and Tricks’ guides. Unfortunately as many lab studies go, you have to sit trough the boring concept stuff before we get to blow things up. :P


The goal for these guides is to slowly take you through my personal methods of working. This is not intended to be all and end all way of doing things instead my hope is that you can borrow some of the ideas here and come up with your own method of working.


Vocabulary as used in this section


-Texturer: One who derives from an existing product and makes custom textures for it.
-Mesher: One who builds a product that has a new mesh shape. (one can be a mesher and a texturer, they are not exclusive)
-Id: A Freudian term for one’s intangible spirit.


Starting a Project


As a texturer there are basically two ways you can start a room/furniture project. Get an idea and then look for a mesh(s) that will work for that idea. Or you may have already come across a mesh(s) you really love and you need to come up with an idea of what to do with it. In either case before you jump in making your textures you should have it already set in mind how you want the product(s) to look and feel when you are done.


Additionally you will always want to think of a project in the terms of sets. That is, you will always want to make and market a room or furniture item have coordinating companion pieces so that if folks love one item they will want to buy more matching ones, if not the whole set! So when thinking of your idea try to think of all the facets that could be incorporated into that idea.


Personal Deving Note: I keep a notepad by my computer and doodle up crazy sketches and flowcharts as I conceive of projects. For me as primarily a room maker the room tends to be at the focus then around that in various categories I will list out or doodle all the things I think would go well in that room. Everything from the most obvious to the most obscure goes down on that pad. Then as I go about making the products I am constantly referencing and refining that list of ideas. Some ideas may turn out to be imposable to do, some ideas that may have seemed trivial at the time of brainstorming may end up being the focal product.


Also keep a notepad with you at arms reach at all times, you never know when an idea will strike, ALWAYS write it down so that you can remember it later. It may not be for the project you are working on now but it may be just the prefect thing for a project down the line. I have the main one on my desktop but I also have one by my bed, one in the car, one at work, one in my laptop case, and one in … errr…. the thinking room… *laughs*




Choosing your theme


You may already have a distinctive developing style so choosing your theme may come easily. A theme can be something as simple as ‘Modern Day Loft Apartment’, to something as complex as ‘Nuclear Powered Superhero Underground Base’ the main point is don’t just start making textures without some sort of goal in mind. Once you have your theme in mind it will help to guide you on your texture choices…


What time period? Current day? Victorian? Medieval? Post Apocalyptic? etc

What would the floors be made of? What would the walls me made of? etc.

How would it be finished? High end? Hand Made? Distressed?


Having the answers to these and similar thematic questions will speed up the texturing process by narrowing your scope down to just what you need vs being distracted by limitless options.


Choosing the Mood


How you want your product to make people feel is a very important question to ask yourself. What do you want the ‘Id’ of your room to be?


Do you want them to relax?
Do you want them to be excited?
Do you want them to be inspired?
Do you want them to be on edge?
Do you want them to be scared?


While it is not necessarily easy to put your finger on exactly why one product makes you ‘feel’ and another product makes you feel nothing at all, the mood you are wanting to covey is an important thing to be thinking about during the product making process. Texture choices, color choices, scale, and lighting choices will all dramatically influence a products mood.


You will rarely get the viewer to feel exactly what you are as how one reacts to a product is a very individual experience built up on their own life experiences. The important thing is to get them to feel something.


Personal Deving Note: I’m very big on intent. When I’m working on something whether for Real Life, IMVU or SL, the emotion behind the piece, whether it is an environment, a piece of furniture, or a tree is almost always a driving force. While this kind of emotion driven product making will not apply to everything you make, it will surprise you how much life you can add to an item with just your intent. /end Keef mumbmo jumbo, lol


Color Choices


It is very important to come up with a color theme and stick with it. Especially if you are making items that you expect users to be able to later mix and match.


Whether you are aiming for Naturals, Primaries, Vibrant, Pastels, Faded, Grey Tones, that choice needs to be represented in every texture you make for that line of products. Sticking to a color family, and even a limited pallet within that family will lead to a much more cohesive whole and more polished looking final product line than picking stuff from here and there just because you like it.


I hope that helped to get your mind thinking larger than the basic make a texture box as well set the groundwork of where we are going. Up Next, How to Choose Meshes to derive from!



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