Monday, July 25, 2011

deviantArt Update: Tiled Wallpaper Collection

For a while I've been thinking of putting my old bits of tiled desktop wallpaper up on my deviantArt gallery, but the thought of more than a dozen tiny images burying everything else brought me to the conclusion that bundling them up as a collection would be the best way to go. If you still remember what tiled wallpaper was or indeed, if you're still rocking Windows 3.1, the whole glorious collection is now available. Well, apart from a few duds I decided to leave out and a few I already discarded years ago. Even thought I never stopped to ask "do people even use tiled wallpaper any more?", whipping up abstract little wallpapers was one of the quickest and easiest ways to get new content to put on my old GeoCities site in the early aughts. Not that anyone visited that site, but that's never stopped me before (or since :D ). By the time I nuked the site in 2003, the wallpaper page had produced some pretty interesting-looking stuff - a minor miracle given the main tools I was working with: a 486 running Windows 95 and a copy of Ulead Photo Express LE that came with our scanner. To mark this shameless repackaging of the past, I thought I'd take the time to look back on the wallpapers within the collection and the only three I know to still exist that I've left out. Let's start off with a little blue-on-blue action:
Blue Paint
I'm not sure what this started as, but the swirl effect was done with a special version of MS Paint that came with Creative Writer 2, a kid's word processing package that came with our first PC. I'm pretty sure this is one of the oldest wallpapers here, probably dating back to 1999, before we even had the internet.
Baby Blue
Yeah, blue is going to be kind of a recurring theme here as it was kind of my favourite colour at the time. Maybe it still is, though I'm quite partial to lime green too now. :D Getting back to the topic at hand, this is actually just a modified version of Sky Tiles. I'm not quite sure what I did to turn it into this, but I still really like the look of this one.
Colourburst, Frosty, Stained Glass 
There isn't much to say about any of these, I'm afraid. They're all latter period wallpapers I made from scratch in Ulead Photo Express. Colourburst is kind of a dumb name though. I'd expect something called that to be much brighter and more colourful. This looks much more like blurry stained glass to me now.
Perhaps a sign that I needed to give up the tiled wallpaper gig, this originated as a screen cap of the Ulead Photo Express colour chooser thing.
Denim Boxes
A remake of a wallpaper I first attempted in 1999 (the one on the right, though I added the frame around it in 2000). The idea was to use the spray can tool in MS Paint to draw a square that looked like denim. Why? Well, it sounded like it'd be easy to do. Both attempts turned out pretty awful I think. I should have probably excised this from the collection, but I'd already made that totally sweet preview image before I thought of doing it. :D
Digital, Dreams
I don't know much about the creation of these either, I'm afraid, but they both have pretty weird names that begin with "d". I think I went for Digital because the colours evoked a kind of cyber world, while I thought Dreams had kind of a nightmarish quality to it.
Flower Blossoms
I have a feeling that this may be derived from Colourburst (or maybe it was the other way around). This is one of my favourites. It really reminded of the Flower Fields area of the first Paper Mario at the time, hence the name.
This is a textless, cropped version of a banner ad I made for my Orange Theme in 2000. I think this actually turned out much better than the background of the real theme. More to come, including some deleted scenes after the jump.
I think this started out life as a picture of a leaf from Encarta 97. As usual, I fiddled around with it to within an inch of its life in Ulead Photo Express to get this.
Tiled Grafitti
Doesn't look much like graffiti, but naming things has never been my strong point. This is one of the first of these I made, dating back to August 1999, though I gave it a significant polish up when I put it up on my current web site in 2007.
Disco Squares
This started out as a wallpaper of a football surrounded by a sort of rainbow aura. Zooming into the rainbow bit, I thought it looked much cooler than the overall image, so I made a wallpaper from bits of that instead. Not sure how these are in any way disco-related, but it seemed to make sense at the time. :D
Sky Tiles
I'm pretty sure this is a cropped version of the background from my first website. If you thought black text on a cloudy blue background would be pretty much unreadable, you'd be right. That wasn't the only thing I used that background for either. Shortly afterwards I made up a web site for another religion project from the same teacher that demanded that terrible poem to be composed.
This started as a corrupted screen that I think I captured from Dungeon Keeper. It was a solid screen of coloured static that I stretched out until it turned into a series of coloured stripes.
This started out as a sheet of paper I was testing out felt tip markers on. I scanned it in and messed around with it until I got to this. And that's it for the collection, but if those are the wallpapers that found their way in, what on Earth got turned down? Well, these:
A scan of a few Celebrations wrappers I made on Easter Sunday 2000. I know this because I spent pretty much of the entirety of that day scanning in N64 and SNES boxes and writing mini reviews to put onto my web site. *sigh* What a colossal waste of time. :D
A scanned-in page from a Man Utd. magazine surrounded by some text doesn't really make for a very worthwhile wallpaper. I was very excited by their treble win at the time though. Ugh, I've just noticed that I spelled ""treble" wrong. Awesome.
Rainbow Streak
A bit of rainbow-coloured airbrush work on a black background isn't much of a wallpaper either. So this one found it's way into the dustbin too.

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