Help:Demonstration Thumbnail

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  • To make item demonstration thumbnails, you will need:
    • The ability to use a monitor resolution of at least 2560x1440.
    • Image editing software (Adobe Photoshop, GIMP, Paint.NET, etc., this tutorial assumes Adobe Photoshop).
    • Grab the thumbnails from here.
    • OPTIONAL: Fraps (will save you a bit of time when capturing images of the HLMV viewport).


  • Make sure your monitor resolution is set to at least 2560x1440.
  • Download, install, and configure HLMV as according to HLMV help page. After all of that is done, run HLMV.
  • Load the model that you need from File -> Load Model. (Ex. c_energy_drink for Bonk! Atomic Punch or Crit-a-Cola). If you need help in finding the model, find the items_game.txt in steamapps\common\Team Fortress 2\tf\scripts\items, open it in your preferred text editor (Notepad++ is recommended) and search for the name.
  • Positioning:
    • For non-melee weapons and cosmetic items, position the model so that the front of it is facing to the right.
    • For melee weapons, position it so that it's standing up and is tilted to the right slightly.
    • For all models, rotate the light source so that the model is slightly shaded near the lower left; the light source should be towards the upper-right.
    • For item set thumbnails, try to make the full-body shot of the model resemble the header image on the actual set's page. Make sure it's facing to the right, of course.
  • After you have positioned the model, go to Options -> Background Color. Set the background to pure white. Take a picture of HLMV; how you do this doesn't matter, as long as you can get it losslessly (PrtScrn, Fraps set to output images to PNG, etc.)
  • Open the image editor of your choice; load the image with the white viewport background.
  • Go back to HLMV, and set the Background color to black. Do the same procedure for getting the image, and then load the resulting image in your image editor.
  • Re-open HLMV, set the background color through RGB values:
    • 52 for Red
    • 47 for Green
    • 51 for Blue
    • Capture an image of this.
  • Paste the white background image over the black background, and place the TF2 brown image over the white image.
  • If neccessary, crop all of the images so that only the HLMV viewport is visible.
  • The following advice is for Adobe Photoshop, adjust the instructions as neccessary for whatever image editing software you are using: hide the TF2 brown background layer, and set the layer mode for the white background image to "Difference". Select the white area of the result (preferably through selecting the Color Range), and then un-hide the TF2 brown layer. Invert the selection, and copy the area. Paste into the thumbnail.
  • Ideally, when pasted into the thumbnail, the weapon image should only be a little larger than the TF2 logo in the background, unless the weapon is very wide (Scattergun, Force-a-Nature); if necessary, resize the weapon image.
  • After you have positioned the weapon image on the template to your liking (probably a good idea to center it by selecting the gray with TF2 logo area in the lower right area of the template), save the image as a PNG, and upload it to the Weapon Demonstration page. If you need to, ask Ashe to put the thumbnail on the Wiki YouTube channel.