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how to include Alpha channels in images?

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how do i implement the alpha channel in my textures rather than just using a one colour total transparency colourkey. and how do i put these alpha values into my image? what programs allow me to do this? i am currently using Corel PhotoPaint 9, is that crap?

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tga files are a firm favourite for adding in alpha channels I think. The docs with your application should tell you how to do it.

Should that fail download a 3o day trial of Paint Shop Pro (www.jasc.com) I know its fairly easy to add alpha in that program and the documentation is great.

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Yep, TGA files are probably the preferred image format of choice - that or PNG if you want good compression. You can use Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro or my preference, the GIMP, to manipulate TGAs with alpha channels.

-Mezz

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Guest Anonymous Poster
I use .pngs because of the compression. If you are using OpenGL and need a texture loading library, DevIL (check sourceforge) works nicely at you giving it a file name ( "image.png" ) and it returning a GLuint refrenceing the texture.

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I'd say .png is the nicest choice. I'm using it in my OpenGL app and it works great. The compression makes it a hands-down sure-fire choice over TGA - think of the savings!

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