For use with:

The Gimp, for texture editing (I'm using version 2.6)
BSA Opt, for BSA work
Optimizer Textures, for compressing texture sizes
Irfanviewfor viewing dds files
Nifskope for editing meshes.
Gimp Plugin to load and save .dds files

This tutorial assumes basic knowledge of each of the above programs. I apologize if I am too detailed or not detailed enough. If you have questions, please ask. :)

1) Make sure you've downloaded the main file of Buyable Paintings.

2) We need to esmify the main esp so that your esp can rely on it. Either follow this tutorial to do it yourself, or download the optional file "Buyable Paintings –Master File for Modders". Back up the original esp and copy the 'master file for modders' esp over it in your data folder.

3) Unpack the bsa that came with Buyable Paintings and Pictures (I use BSA Opt).

1) Find the pictures you want to use. If your using screenshots, they're usually found in you Skyrim folder, right next to SkyrimLauncher.exe. File Path: "C:Program Files (x86)Steamsteamappscommonskyrim"
I'd recommend that you make a folder somewhere for your WIP pictures and progress files.
Open the screenshot in Gimp.

2) Resize the canvas
The end .dds file is going to be 512x256, so we need to get that canvas size correct. The easiest way to figure out what ratio we need is to make a new image at 512x256, and then scale that image so that it's biggest dimension is the same as your screenshot's biggest dimension. My Screenshots are 1280x720. When I scale my 512x256 image to 1280 pixels, the height comes out to be 640.
Go to Image>Canvas Size, and edit the canvas size to the proper ratio. (Unclick the little chain so it doesn't uniformly scale down).
My 1280x720 becomes 1280x640.

3) Add effects
I use Filters>Artistic>Oilify or Filters>Artistic>Cartoon and then use Filters>Artistic>Apply Canvas. Make your picture look like a painting!

4) Scale down.
When the picture looks good, scale it down to 512x256. Flatten the image and save as .dds.

5) Name and place the file.
The dds file now needs to go in DataexturesclutterPaintings. Prefix the name with a unique identifier, like your initials, followed by "canvas" and "LC","MC", or "UC" depending on what class you want, followed by the type "01" for Landscape, "02" for Square, and "03" for portrait, followed by the number of the painting. (Start at 1 and increment up).

6) Repeat for as many pictures as you want.

1) Open a file to start with. Go to DatameshesclutterPaintings and pick a painting from the same class and shape of the painting you want to create.
-Paintings follow the same naming conventions as their textures. "Initials"+"painting"+"Class"+"Shape"+"Number".
EX: AKpaintingMC0102

2) Navigate to the textures section
Click the canvas/painting inside the frame. In the blocklist, a NiTriShape should become highlighted. Click it's arrow to the left to expand it. Then click the arrow next to the BSLightingShaderProperty to expand that as well. You should see a BSShaderTextureSet line. Click that to reveal a list of textures in the Block Details below.

3) See that list of purple flowers? The second flower is responsible for the meshes' texture, while the third flower is responsible for the bump map (the _n). Click the second flower and select your painting's dds file. You should be able to leave the file alone.

4) Change the frame
Click the frame and repeat steps 2 and 3 to pick out a different frame if you like. I like to use Irfanview to preview all of the frames to see which fits best.

5) Save your painting as a new file. Don't forget to keep things clean by using the proper naming conventions!

6) Remember to thank Artisanix for his amazing work with the painting meshes and their textures!

1) Load Skyrim.esm and Buyable Paintings and Pictures.esm. Once they're loaded, save the esp as whatever name you want. When you're done, the data menu should look like this:

In the object window go to World Object>Activator and click one of the paintings that are already made (Click one that's the same class and shape as the new one you're going to create).

2) Change the ID to the name of your mesh.

3) Change the name of the picture. First, have the class and shape of the painting in parenthesis, then give a one or two word description of the painting.
EX: (Middle Landscape) Waterfall

3) Change the model. Click the "Edit" Button and browse for the new painting.

4) Don't touch the keywords or the script. :)

5) When you click ok it will ask if it should create a new form. Say yes unless you want to replace a painting.

6) Go to Items>Weapons and find the weapon version of the painting activator you chose in step 1. These IDs are the same as the activators except they have 'scroll' in the name. Open one that is your class and shape.

7) Rename your weapon ID to the same name as the new painting, but put a "scroll" in between your initials and the word "painting".
EX: AKEScrollpaintingMc0101

8) Make the name exactly the same as the activator version of the painting.

9) Don't change anything else! If you picked the right object to modify, then it should already have the right keywords, 3d models, and value. IF you picked a painting that wasn't the right shape or class, your mod may not work. So be careful!

10) When you click ok it will ask if it should create a new form. Say yes unless you want to replace a painting.

11) Almost there! Now you need to pull up two formlists: AKPaintingHeldList and AKPaintingHungList. (Miscellaneous>Formlist).
Drag your weapon painting into the held list, and the activator into the Hung list.
(These lists need to have the objects in the same order so that the index is the same for each painting's weapon and activator versions, or the mod won't function properly). Make sure the index is the same for the weapon and activator! Close the formlists by clicking ok.

12) You're painting is now fully functional, but Da Gee doesn't sell it yet! To make her sell it, open WorldObjects>Container>AKPaintingScrollTest and drag your weapon into the item list. Click ok to close the container.

13) Congrats! You have a buyable, hangable painting that you can place anywhere! Repeat the process to make as many custom pics as you like!

1) One thing you should make sure to do is compress your textures. I use Optimizer Textures.

2) Pack up your new meshes and textures in a bsa and upload the file!

3) Send me a comment and link to your mod and I'll feature it in my mod description so others can download your custom pics!
NOTE: I won't link to mods that feature skimpy outfits.

4) Don't forget to un-esmify the Buyable Paintings and Pictures.esp. (Either follow the guide, or copy the original esp over the modified one.)

That wasn't so hard, was it? Sure was a lot of work though! Now you see why I want you to expand the paintings instead of doing it all myself. :D

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  1. iceburg
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    To just replace textures of the original paintings, just look at the Programs I Used, Setup, and Texture work steps.
    Then in Nifskope Work section, instead of creating a new nifskope, just redirect the texture path of one of the Nifs to your new dds file. Or you could even just replace an old .dds with your new one (name it the same and copy and replace).