<%@ Language=VBScript %> Dogwaffle FAQ


Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some questions and answers collected by Kelly Christiansen and others as seen on the official Dogwaffle forum at Yahoogroups. We recommend that you join this group to participate in its discussions and learn more about Dogwaffle.

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Question:  I have a Tablet PC and Dogwaffle runs well but it doesn't seem to recognize the pressure from the stylus. Is there a fix?

Answer:  Try the newest enhanced drivers from Wacom, it has worked for others to fix this issue:


I heard that as  programmer I can make additional filters, plugins, exports etc... where can I find the Software Developer's Kit (SDK) and documentation of source code examples?
The free SDK for VB programmers is here

How can I apply a series of images in a spray pattern?

There is an icon in the Tools palette for Custom Brush selection.
Right-click it and you'll have the tool for Chroma-keying, i.e.
turkey-basting on the desired background pixel of the image preview and
that will be flagged as transparent. Make adjustments with the sliders.

That's how the leaves in the free animated brush were make. Did you see
them in the freebies collection?

Once that's done and you have just the object you want opaque and the
rest around it is transparent, there are special FX features in the brush
Left-click the upper-left-most icon in the Tools palette, that's the
brush panel, showing the details of the brush. The third tab in that window
is for special FX. Check the enabled box and select the drop shadow mode. The
sliders there affect opacity and distance (offset) and more.

Once you have created an animated brush, then create any drop shadows as a post
effect. www.thebest3d.com/dogwaffle/freebies has some examples.
A tutorial for this can also be found at:

I purchased DogwaffleDE today and have had a number of problems trying to
install the software.

When trying to run the installer brought up another "extract" dialog
and when I tried to accept the default directory, it wouldn't allow it.
I then requested to extract to the Dogwaffle parent directory and this worked.

Working through the installer, I accepted the default location for installation but was
notified that I was overwriting shared files.

Attempting to authorize this caused the installer to fail. Trying a second
time, (after reboot), I denied the overwrite and the install completed
giving me a success dialog. Upon trying to launch the program from the
start menu, however, resulted in the demo version being run, instead,
(this is after I uninstalled it and rebooted). So, now I am hopelessly
lost, and gee, I was hoping to spend the whole weekend learning this
most excellent program. Can you make any suggestions?

It is recommended not to install over an older copy of the program. First try
uninstalling both, rebooting windows then installing only the version you wish
to use.

However this has also worked for some people:
Uninstall the older version of Dogwaffle, reboot Windows, run the "Setup"
program instead of the "install Dogwaffle" program.

Is there a shortcut for creating buildings with rectangular stones in
perspective with Dogwaffle?

The closest thing I can think of is the rubber sheet plugin that lets
you warp an image by four control points.

Is there a series of effects that can be applied to produce
photorealistic looking rock and stone, where shadow and highlight
are painted in real time? A kind of 3D painting effect?

You can experiment with loading different paper textures and using the
drybrush features.
You can try building textures by starting with fractal noise or the
cellular plugin, adding displacement, combining with other textures, applying
emboss, etc. There are several examples of stone texture on the gallery at
There's also the isometric 3d plugin that can be usefull for generating
fairly realistic stone imagery when starting with a noise image. The
wireframe designer also has a basic rendering capability in one of the
latter versions.

How can I run Brian Hinton's Tutorials? Every time I try, I get java script
errors and it stops

Don't run them from the webpage, instead, download them and run them from your

I've been having problems with Project Dogwaffle for a few days
now. I'd open the program and when it would come to the Buffer Size
window, I'd select the dimensions I wanted and would click Ok..but then
a window pops up saying:

"Run-time error '5':Invalid Procedure call or argument"

Can anyone tell me what I am doing wrong or what's happening?

This is possibly a result of the registry settings for window
positions becoming corrupted.

You can run RegEdit to remove the offending entry
the settings can be found at ...

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\VB and VBA Program Settings\dogwaffle\WindowData

in the registry.

Removing the entire WindowData entry is an option.

Hello all,
I'm rather new to graphics programs and I'm trying to do something
that hopefully isn't too hard. Basically I want to overlay a grid on
top of a map. I have the map and grid in two separate jpg files, so
is there a way to combine them together so the grid is on top? I
tried looking at the tutorial for the alpha channel, but it left me
confused. Perhaps I am out of my league.

Any help is appreciated.

Yes you can do that. Load one image into the Main buffer, then swap to
the other and load the other image, then merge them in multiply mode.
Assuming the grid is black lines on White background, the merge will keep the
colors as is except where the black lines are, which will turn the color

There's probably a way also with the "Rub-through" brush.


An easy way might be to load the map, then load the grid as a brush,
from the brush menu/load command.  Then you can key out part of the
grid with the brush keyer - (right click on the brush selector tool
on the tool panel to get the brush keyer)  then you can just place it
where you want and stamp it down.  If the grid is a different size
than the map, you can scale the brush from the brush menu.
Another option would be to swap screens "j" and stamp it down by
itself and use one of the many 'Combine with swap' options from the
filters menu.
-Dan Richie

fieldpackp question:
What is it and what does it do?

Field pack is an interlacer, de-interlacer and video retimer.

Each frame of a television signal is is composed two independent
images called fields.  While each frame is played at 30 frames per
second, what is really happening is two fields are playing for each
frame, at 60 fields per seconds.  These fields are interlaced, so
that 1 line is shown from the first field, then one from the second,
and so on.  If you pause a television image, you may see this in
areas of fast motion.  The image appears to flicker because the two
fields are being refreshed independently.

When working with video, such as painting on or applying filters to
a video sequence, it is often important to on each field
separately.  Thus, with field pack, you can split a video frame
sequence up into independent images.  This way, you can work on them
separately, then re-interlace them later.

Field pack goes a little farther than just splitting the images
though.  It uses several techniques to try to maintain as much of
the original detail as possible, instead of just interpolating extra

Also in field pack is the ability to retime a video sequence.  This
is more involved than just creating in between frames by blending
between neighboring frames.  A sort of morphing is applied to in-
betweens to create a more realistic looking motion.  Fieldpack first
de-interlaces the image, creating 2 separate images, then
extrapolates another 2, leaving you with video that runs 4 times
slower.  It's possible of coarse to re-interlace the images to make
them look like normal video again, still leaving you with a 2x slow
motion effect.

I've been playing with the fx brush, and I'm having trouble
getting the anim brushes it makes to actually paint with their animation.
I know the frames are being built properly, because when I open
the brush manager, the brush's thumbnail animates. But when I paint
with the brush, it uses only the first frame.

This is one of those annoying ones.  The problem is a limitation in
the plugin interface of 1.6.  When an animated brush is allocated for the
first time, a small structure is created with it containing, among
other things, the direction that the animated brush plays (a value that's
added to the frame count; 1, 2, -1, etc.)  When an animated brush is
initiated through the plugin interface, this structure is not filled
out, leaving it at 0.  The solution for now, is too be sure you've
had an animated brush initiated either by creating or loading one.  This
will be addressed in future versions.

In the optipustic's configuration menu, if I put the value of 1 into the drag
field, I can't get anything to show up on the screen no matter how I move the
mouse across it.  Any other value doesn't seem to cause problems. even 1.1
allows lines to show up but 1 gives me nothing.
any reason why?

Drag is a bit odd.  It's a value between -1 and 1  0 is no drag and
1 is 100% drag and -1 is 100% negative drag.  It's really just a
value that lets you control the global speed of particles, including
the ability to make them do the opposite of what they're physically
supposed to do.

I can't seem to get the optipustics settings right. I'm trying to get the
particles to follow my mouse in long flowing curves, so that i can use it to
paint hair on figures, but either I get tight curves, or the particles follow
the mouse but in straight lines.

Any suggestions for settings?

Turn the 'terminal velocity' way up.  It limits the speed of
particles, otherwise they'd just keep accelerating - just like in
real life.  Turn 'use mouse velocity' off.  Play with the 'particles
follow mouse'

In the optipustics configuration menu, I assumed that max particles meant that
was the maximum amount that could be created. but I was able to put 100 into
max particles then put 200 into particles per emission. Which kind of looks like
even though I said no more than 100, I can get it to generate 200 every time it
emits particles.

So I'm curious what the max particles actually refers to?

Max particles refers to the very maximum number of particles that
can exist.  Particles per emission referees to how many particles are
spurted out at any one time (that is, each time the program receives
a mouse move event).  There will be no more than max particles.
When a particle reaches the end of its lifespan, it becomes
available for recycling.  For example, if you set max particles and
particles per emission both to 100, 100 particles will be created on
the first mouse down, and no new particles will be created until
particles reach the end of their lifespan.  If you set max particles
to 100, then set particles per emission to 10 and lifespan to 10,
you will have a constant stream of particles with no breaks in
Of course, if you have splits set to a value above 0, then those are
taken from the available particles in circulation and the math gets

How can I erase while I'm drawing?

The method for erasing generally involves using the right mouse
button with the secondary paint color which is the color that a
buffer is cleared to when you hit clear.  It's a little trickier
with a pen.  If you need to toggle off the paper texture, you can
hit the middle icon on the upper part of the tool panel.  Saves the
step of opening the paper panel.  

How do I re-seize a custom brush?

The best way is with the brush manager plugin that's part of Doggybag 1.
Another option is the resample item on the brush menu.

How do I effectively use the colour mixer. What is really the use of it?

Some people like to mix their colors like they would with natural
media, and some are perfectly happy working with RGB values. The mixer
allows you this choice.

How do I paint on Alpha?

First, lets define the alpha channel.  In a typical computer graphics
system, an image is contained in 32 bits per pixel, where each
channel is 8 bits.  There are 3 channels for color (red, green, and
blue) and one for transparency.  This 4th channel is the alpha
channel.  It is typically represented as a grayscale image with black
being completely transparent and white being completely opaque (or
the other way around)
In the case of painting programs, the alpha channel is used as a
mask, to define where paint can be applied.
Since this is a grayscale image, we don't simple superimpose it over
our painting because then we wouldn't be able to see what we're
working on.  Therefore, what is usually referred to as a 'selection',
or 'Marching ants' is actually a very crude representation of the
alpha channel.  A routine that separates the mid-point of the alpha,
(value 128) is applied to give a basic outline of the rough shapes in
the alpha channel.  This can cause problems because the alpha may not
contain only completely opaque and completely transparent values.  In
fact, a function is supplied that will compensate for this case,
called 'Dynamic range' by expanding the values in the alpha channel
so the highest value is always 255 and the lowest is always 0

Lets go over a few alpha tools.
First, as a standard feature with all the alpha tools, there are the
following keyboard shortcuts that modify the behavior of the alpha
Holding the Control key is used to drag the alpha 'selection' around.
You can also use Shift and the Arrow keys to nudge the selection by
one pixel at a time.
Holding alt while using an alpha tool lets you add to or subtract
from the current selection depending on which mouse button you use.
Control + 'c' copies the current 'selection' as a custom brush.

The 'paint on Alpha' plugin lets you paint directly into the alpha
channel like a regular buffer.  Basically it copies the alpha
channel  to each channel of the main buffer, and when you're done
painting on it, you click the 'Paint normally' button and it gets
converted back to a single channel and copied back to your alpha
channel, and you get your original buffer back.

I might also mention at this point, we have two tutorials on working
with alpha tools.  http://www.thebest3d.com/dogwaffle/tuts/zipped/

When you use the paint on alpha plugin, your buffer is swapped out
with one that represents the alpha until you hit the 'paint normally'
button.  Then you get your old buffer back and the one you were
painting on gets converted to grayscale and copied to the alpha
channel.  For best results, you should paint with black or white.
Grey areas are may not show up correctly.

Can I save colour settings?

You can save a set of colors by right clicking on the mixer button at
the bottom of the tool panel.  This brings up a menu with options
like 'save wells'
There's also an option for building a new color well from colors in
your buffer, etc.

How do I change the color in the masked (Alpha) area?

You have to go back to using the paint normal mode and select a brush
that paints normally, in case you did select one of the predefined brushes
which paint on alpha.

Try this:

- right-click on the built-in (predefined) brushes icon (second row
from top in Tools panel). There's a submenu for painting on alpha, try the
soft or blobby.

Now paint of the 'desired' area, i.e. the pixels which you'll want in
your selection. If you already had some selection in place, e.g. from the
lasso or magic wand selection/alpha tools, this manual painting will 'add'
to the selection or 'subtract' from the selection depending on whether you use
the left or right button to paint.

Once your selection is ready, select a normal brush again, and paint
over the selection. The mask will prevent undesired changes. You can
right-click on the Alpha (selection) tools (3rd row in tools panel) to see all
alpha tools such as grow or shrink or invert alpha or smooth etc.

How do I get something to merge the two buffers?

To merge the two buffers, do this:
Right click on the upper-right-most icon in control panel.

If one image is in the main buffer and the other is in the swap buffer.

You can have additional images in stored buffers and make them current
(main) later to mix that in as well.

Also try the flood fill tool (right-most paint can fill on 2nd row of
tools panel). If you start from a blank white it will fill at current color.

Right-click on the same flood fill icon to see the flood tolerance and
the fill gradient. In the gradient panel you have a row at top with several
modes. The will let you fill the gradient left to right, inverse,
top-down etc... and even fill an image which is in the brush into the window
(stretched) or even warp it to match the current selection. So there's
another way to blend or mix an image with another. If one is in the
Main buffer you can load the other into the brush, (e.g. through Brush>Load
or Brush Clipboard options) and then use the opacity slider to set the
level for the brush and fill or click to stomp it over the main buffer etc.

How can I put a flare over part of my image?

But to put a flare over your image, I'd recommend instead to apply the flare
which is in the brush, directly to the image. Use additive mode or multiply
depending on effect (instead of Default mode, which replaces). Use opacity
slider to
affect the level of the stamp effect. Use 'a' (again) for repeating again and
until the desired level is there.

There's a shortcut for erasing to a color, but if the gradient/fill
mode is to erase to the brush's image it uses that, use 'q' as shortcut.

So with all in place after you rendered the flare you can simply select
the mode in the gradient panel which warps the brush image into the
selection (or the whole window by default) or just simply applies it without
warping, then use the slider for opacity, then 'q' to flood fill, then 'a'  to
do it again and again as needed.

Is it possible to use the animbrush to create an animated arrow icon?

Yes but typically, you would create a traditional animation in dogwaffle,
perhaps 5 - 10 frames, and wiggle or move or turn that arrow which you have in
the custom brush,  using the brush manager too, and advance from one frame to the
next until  each frame is done. Then you could collect them all into an animated
brush, so you could use that again in various settings and conditions.

Can you do Flash in Dogwaffle? Or at least something approaching it?


No, but you can pack AVI files into Flash MX and there are some really
cheap tools like www.gif2swf.com which converts AVI and packs (embeds) it
into .swf files. There are other tools out there doing this. Check
www.tucows.com and look for Flash tools in Multimedia, I guess.
Or do a Google search for Avi to Flash conversion or similar

Dogwaffle only allows me to save it as a .dwa, and I can't view it unless it's
in Dogwaffle. What can I do to save it in a format my friend can see?


Save it out as image sequence or if you add the doggybag #2 (free
download from www.thebest3d.com/dogwaffle/whatsnew)  you can save to AVI also.

If you save as Targa image sequence you will find that many animation
programs can load that in and pack it into your target format like Avi
or Quicktime. For example Quicktime pro can do that.

How do I change the printing height of a dogwaffle sketch/painting?

Personally I like to use Irfanview for image viewing and
printing. www.irfanview.com -  It's awesome also to set dpi info and
resample with Lanzcos and other  great filters for avoiding pixelation.
You don't even have to save to file, you can Control-C from the main
buffer to the brush, then menu: Brush>Clipboard and copy to the clipboard,
then Alt-Tab to a running session of Irfanview, Shift-P to print (after
perhaps 'L' or 'R' to rotate left or right ) and then you can find great ways
to print according to internal file info dpi or new size settings on the