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OpenGL Need advice with how to draw graphics

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I'm trying to figure out the best way to draw the graphics of my game. It's 2d top down. A lot of things I would like to be procedurally generated in the game.

I have VERY little experience with OpenGL so bear with me.

The art style is that of glowing neon lights. You fly a 'ship' around and it basically looks like a neon sign in the shape of a ship.

Neon_ship.gif

(Minus flashing and also not being a pirate ship)
I would simply just use an image of this nature, but there will be the same shape of ship, but colored differently depending on it's attitude towards the player.

There will also be procedurally generated objects that will follow this same art style. There is also an object that will be prismatic and I would like to shimmer.

I also would like to do particle effects like electric bolts and just standard particle emitters. There is also glow effects and light being cast off of objects onto other objects. As well as fields that are basically Perlin noise.

I'm just wondering if anyone could offer any advice on how to achieve this in the best manner possible? I'm just trying to draw color on the screen according to a few simple parameters. I would also like to be able to have real curves rather than approximated ones made with straight lines. My experience is limited in this sort of thing so that is why I'm kind of clueless on the whole matter. Normally I'm dealing with just your regular 2D graphics from an image file but this seems to me like it should be handled differently than that.

I'm just looking for some advice or a pointer to something that would help. Thanks in advance. I post this hear because SFML uses OpenGL and you can use shaders with it.
 

Edited by Azaral

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