Think Fast Racing Paint Help version 1.0

By: David Reid

     I wrote this page to help you better understand the process used to paint cars with Paint Shop Pro by JASC.  I am not a great painter but I have managed to stumble on to what I consider to be a few decent looking cars.  When I first started to try and paint a car I really had a hard time figuring out what steps were involved and could not find any good info on it.  But by asking some questions, and trial and error this is the method I came up with.  It may not be the best way but it works for me.  If you have any Questions that are not covered in this tutorial or just need a little help please contact me at

The car painted in this tutorial is not my best work it was done for reference only.  To check out some cars that I have painted using this process check out my nascar3 cars page.  Thanks, David Reid, Think Fast Racing.

Section 1.


First you need the template.pcx from your Nascar3 folder or CD.  There are also some good places on the internet that have well done car templates in all colors.

1.) Open the template file you want to paint in PSP. (See figure 1.1)

figure1.1.jpg (45484 bytes)
This is a template I found on the internet.
Figure 1.1

2.) Next choose the zoom button on the toolbar to the left (magnifying glass) magnifing glass.jpg (547 bytes) .  To zoom in palce the magnifying glass on the car and give it one left click of the mouse.  (See figure1.2)

Your Car should now look like this
figure1.2.jpg (70782 bytes)
Figure 1.2


3.) Next we want to increase the color depth.  To do this you need to go to the menu across the top and find the one that says (Colors).  Then go down to (increase color depth) and choose 16 million (24 bit).  (See figure 1.3)

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Figure 1.3

4.) Now it's time to prepare the image for our logo.  I start with the hood and the best way to do this is to rotate the care so you can get a better look at the hood.  Go to the menu across the top again and find the one that says  image go down to rotate.  A box will popup under rotation check the box beside left and under degrees choose 90.  Then click ok. (See figure 1.4)

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Figure 1.4

5.) Now you need a logo or a graphic of some kind.  You can get one from the internet or scan one whatever means you have to get the image on your computer.  Here we copied one from  After you save the image to your hard drive it's now time to get it on the hood of your car.  The first step is to open the new image or logo in PSP. Then using the selection tool  selection tool.jpg (581 bytes) on the left toolbar you want to drag it across your image from top left to bottom right .  This should make a box of dotted lines around your image. (See figure 1.5)

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Figure 1.5

6.) Now you need to do kind of the same thing on the hood to designate a place for the logo to be pasted.  Using the selection tool selection tool.jpg (581 bytes) .  Drag it across the hood in the same fashion we did on the logo (from top left to bottom right) making a square that has the dots running around it.  (see figure 1.6)

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Figure 1.6

7.) Now you need to click on the logo once more to bring it back to the foreground . (you should still have the little dots running around it). Then go to the menu across the top again and choose edit , then copy. (See figure 1.7)

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Figure 1.7

8.) Now we are ready to paste the image on the hood. To do this first click on the image of the car to bring it to the foreground go to the menu across the top again and choose edit, then paste, and paste into selection. (See figure 1.8).

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Figure 1.8

9.) The car should now look like (figure 1.9)

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Don't worry if it looks a little blurry remember we have the car magnified.
Figure 1.9

10.) Now we need to rotate the car back to the right so we can do some work on the side. Repeat step 4 except this time when the box comes up set the direction to right and keep the degrees on 90. (if the whole picture does not rotate go to the menu across the top and choose layers, then merge , then flatten all.) Your car should now look like figure 1.10.

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Figure 1.10

Repeat this process for every logo or graphic you decide to put on the car.


Section 2


1.) Here is how I get the numbers I want on the car.  Choose the text tool texttool.jpg (593 bytes)   from the toolbar on the left.  Click on the door of the car and a text menu will popup (See figure 2.1)

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Figure 2.1

2.) Choose your font, style, and size.  Here we are using BinnerD for our font Bold Italic for the style and a size of 36.  Type in the number you want to use under Enter text here.  (I used 32).  Once everything is how you want it click ok to see how it looks.  The best part of PSP is when you are trying to get your numbers right you can always click undo if something is not satisfactory once you place it on the car.  Your number should now appear on the door.  (See figure 2.2)

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Figure 2.2

3.) While the number is still selected  (has the marching dots around it.)  You can add some effects to it.  You will have to play around with it a little to get the desired effect.  I chose Drop Shadow for this car.  (See figure 2.3)

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Figure 2.3

Repeat this process for the roof and right side door.


Section 3

Getting the car ready to import into the Nascar3 game

1.) This process is a little tricky especially if you are not familiar with it.  First we need to load the car colors palette so we don't get the corrupted palette error when we import it into the game.  To do this go to the menu across the top and choose colors, load palette.  (See figure 3.1)

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Figure 3.1

2.) Once you have clicked on load palette a window will popup.  Now you need to tell it where the palette file is located.  This file comes with every copy of the nascar3 game and is located in the nascr3 folder.  The name of the file is car colors.pal.  Click on that file so that it appears in the box that says filename (See figure 3.2)

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Figure 3.2

3.) Now notice that when we loaded the palette the olive green background, it has turned to a dark gray.  The file is not yet a valid pcx file for the game. If we tried to import it now we would get the corrupted palette error message.  So here is what we need to do to fix it.  Open the file called import.pcx from your Nascar3 folder.  Go to the menu at the top and choose file, open, look in  C:/papyrus/nascar3/import.pcx. then click ok.  (See figure 3.3)

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Figure 3.3

5.) The next step is to copy the paintable area of the car and paste it onto the import.pcx.  To do this go to the menu at the top and choose selection then load from disk (See figure 3.4)

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Figure 3.4

6.) Now choose car mask.sel from your nascar3 folder and click ok.  Now you should see the (marching dots ) around the paintable area of the car.  (See figure 3.5)

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Figure 3.5

7.) Now we need to copy and paste this onto our import.pcx file.  Go to the menu at the top choose edit then copy.  Click back on the import.pcx file to bring it to the foreground once again.  (See figure 3.6)

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Figure 3.6

8.) Now we need to use the zoom tool magnifing glass.jpg (547 bytes) from the menu on the left.  Click on the import.pcx file with the zoom tool one time to enlarge it .  Go back to the menu across the top and choose edit , paste, then paste as new selection.  (See figure 3.7)

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Figure 3.7

When you paste the car on the import.pcx take your time to make sure everything lines up correctly.

9.) The last thing we need to do is rename and save the import.pcx file.  I named this one Xtough.pcx.  You must place the X in front of whatever you decide to name your car, for instance tough.pcx must be Xtough.pcx this is for importing purposes.  Save the Xtough.pcx to your nascar3 folder.  At this point we are done with PSP.


Section 4

Import Baby!

1.) Start your Nascar3 game.  Go to driver info, click on new driver in the lower left hand corner.  A box will come up, type in the name of the file we saved in section 3, .. Tough except this time we need to leave off the X.  Specify whether you chassis 1, 2, or 3.  Then click ok  (See figure 4.1)

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Figure 4.1

2.) Now you will see the driver info screen with the number 83 car from Papyrus.  Click on Paint Shop at the bottom of the screen, when it comes up you should see a screen with the car ready to paint.  Click on import at the bottom, A box will popup asking if you want to import car and pit colors too?  Click yes.  (See figure 4.2)

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Figure 4.2

You Should now have your car imported so you can add the finishing touches.  (See figure 4.3)

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Figure 4.3

I hope this has helped If you have any questions or comments please feel free to mail me or post a question on our message board.  Please do not repost any or all of this tutorial  without permission from David Reid.

Check out our Cars Pages.

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