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The way I decensor hentai mangas

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I am regularly asked how I decensor hentai mangas. By email, at least once per week. In the comments, at least twice per week. So, well, I may as well write it once for all and avoid making a copy and paste very time :)

First of all, a very important notice : I am NOT talented with picture editing even if, as a hard worker, I’ve come across quite a few ways to achieve functional results, and it is obvious there are several better ways of uncensoring hentai mangas. Professionals make it better . I simply share the way I do it, knowing it is not of very good advice, and you definitely can do better with enough training or with better tutorials.

OK, now that it is settled, let’s explain my method. All advice and comments to help making it better will be welcome, and if YOU successfully decensor something, you’d better share it with everyone as fast as possible :)

Before we begin the most important remark : decensoring a picture is, fundamentally, a convincing lie, not the restoration of a lost picture state. Missing information (pixels color and position), once it is lost, cannot be recovered, decensoring is something different. Decensoring is different, it is the construction of an alternative solution that might be the right one, an alternative solution that will cheat the eye, that will look convincing, and that will be accepted as being true. Only the original drawer could accurately restore missing information, not us – us, we have to build a convincing lie.

No special software is needed, just a good picture editing program. I reckon photoshop is by far the best, however I never managed to get the hang of this program, I have no affinity with its menus or with the way it works. Personally, I’m a user of The Gimp, I had almost immediate affinity with the way that program works, and I’ve been now working with it (in real life) for almost five years. Alternatively, you could use Corel Paint Shop Pro, I guess.

There are two ways of decensoring :
– method 1, the best : you’re very good at drawing and you have good anatomic knoweledge, you have a graphical palette, you manually redraw the missing shapes and fill in the blanks
– method 2, my method unfortunately : I have no drawing notions, low anatomic knoweledge, and only a mouse.
In that second case, I guess what are the missing shapes and zones, and, with the neighbouring elements, using these elements, extending and copying-and-manipulating-and-pasting them, I do my best to reconstruct the censored zone.
Of course, if a censored zone is not entirely blackened but simply grayed, it’s much easier, it’s back to the roots, using the neighbouring elements, after you copied and manipulated them, to fill in the censored zone.

And that’s it : you guess the forms to first reconstruct the shapes before reconstructing the surfaces, and you copy, transform, paste and move a copy of the surrounding zones to reconstruct the missing parts.

The manipulations I use most of the time :

– select something with the free hand selection tool, copy and paste it. You may test what’s the best settings for the free hand selection, the Gimp allows you two settings for the free hand selection, to soften the borders or even smoothen them, you’d better do it indeed unless you want the copied and pasted zone to have ugly sharp borders (I don’t know the proper english words, but try for youself you’ll see the difference).
Something you have copied and pasted will be movable when you click it and drag and drop it.

– extending lines and shapes : I copy the end of a line, control c, control v, and I paste it in the continuation of a censored line. Gimp’s Deform tool can adjust a bit the thickness of a line, be wary of ugly results.

– rotating elements : the lines in curbs can’t be extended in a straight line, can they ? Watch out, with the Gimp, the more you rotate an element the more blurred it becomes (does Photoshop also have this problem, I wonder).

– paste in a new window, and copy-paste it back to the original picture. That allows to freely do everything you want on a selection without running the risk of affecting the whole picture by accident

– create layers and affect various elements to layers : I leave it to confirmed users, I won’t advice a beginner to use layers when there’s already a zillion other things to learn first.

– adjust levels in darkened zones : for zones where the pixels haven’t been suppressed, but only darkened. Warning : the operation “kills” some pixels, so don’t overdo it even if you need to manually make the finishing touch afterwards. You draw a selection with the Paths tool (its precise functioning may vary with the version of the program you use, so the general idea is : you draw a zone clicking a point after clicking another point, these points are linked with each other, and at the end you click the “create a selection from this path” button, or whatever this button is called). Then you adjust the levels in that zone, play with the settings, but better adjust a bit two settings rather than ajust a lot one single setting, this would cause more pixels loss). The borders of a zone where you adjusted levels are often uglily deformed, you’ll have to copy-paste parts from the non-adjusted neighbouring area to hide it. That’s something you must try for yourself to learn how to make it well.


And that’s it, the rest is a matter of training and seeing for yourself :o

My method, I’ll write it again, is barely functional, far from being good, and there are many better ways to decensor hentai mangas (even if I don’t know them).
An example to show my method sucks and you’d better find out yourself how to decensor better : I completely fail with color or grayscale shaded off zones, that makes my usual zone extension, rotation, levels correction, pixel push and copy and paste methods completely useless.

I’m done, two conclusions :
– please, if you know how to do better, I will accept advice and tutorials with gratitude
– if you were encouraged enough to start your own decensorings and you think you’ve done well, why not share it with everyone in the community, so that in the end there is more uncensored hentai for everyone ? :) Send me your decensorings if you like, or share them anywhere you want, but don’t keep your uncensored hentai for yourself, the more for everyone, the better in the end ;)


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7 Comments on "The way I decensor hentai mangas"

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LonerGoth
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^^ arigato.

this brings back memories… I once tried de-censoring, I got quite good at it, only my anatomical knowledge falls to be represented from other angles correctly, and being a perfectionist, I ended up not submitting my failures.

Xami
Guest

Well Oliver.
If you would like I could make a video tutorial explaining a couple of methods in photoshop :]
Decensoring is in the base very easy to do if you know what you are doing, its only very time consuming.
Ofc there are some kinds of censoring that is hard to remove and requires a proper redrawing, but most of the time a few key tools can help you ^^

Soge
Guest

Thanks for the post Oliver! I’m a scanlator, so I’ve occasionally considered helping scanlate (mostly just edit) or decensor doujins before.

I haven’t done anything with doujins yet because I don’t know whats in demand for editing, so if you could post up your decensor queue/list, I might choose one of the doujins at the end of the list to work on.

marurd
Guest

“method 2, my method unfortunately : I have no drawing notions, low anatomy knoweledge, and only a mouse.”

HAHAHA!, same here.

Ero-Otoko
Guest

I dunno Ollie, have you method 1? ‘Cause method 2 seems harder to me.

Anyhow, I dunno if I’m any good or not at decensoring, but here’s what I typically do (I use photoshop):

1) First I copy and paste the censored part. I use this as a reference for what the area originally looked like while I’m editing.

2) Next I erase the inside of the censoring box, since the boxes are usually black and it’s easier to me to work with a white area. I leave a thin edge of the censor box alone so that I know what area I’m working within.

3) After that I start to sketch in the box with a small brush (usually 1 pixel). Some advice:

-If you look at the blank area and you have some instinct about what it should look like, run with that.

-If in the process of sketching you loose track of that instinct, just move the box you cut and paste back to it’s original place. Then undo/redo the move to compare the original idea in your head with what you drew. Sometimes I do this frequently.

-There’s no need to be too precise when making lines. It’s easier to make a rough sketch and then refine it.

-Try to avoid pulling focus to the area you’re editing. Make sure your lines aren’t thicker, darker or sharper than the lines nearby. Also, be minimalistic; don’t draw lines and features that don’t obviously need to be there.

-(Contradicting myself) Adding a detail or two can go a long ways. For example, a liquid drop when everything is wet and sloppy nearby. Don’t go nuts with it though.

-There’s nothing wrong with searching “vagina” on Google images to remind yourself of what goes where. Still, keep in mind that the artist’s depiction is less detailed than a picture and perhaps not 100% accurate.

4) Once the lines seem to be in the right places I use clone stamp to fill in the white with nearby tones. Steps 3 and 4 don’t necessarily have to be completed in that order. You’ll probably have to switch back in forth between them. Advice:

-Manga tones often have a distinct, dotty news-print pattern when you zoom in real close (I guess in most scans it’s more blocky then dotty). Often you’ll want to keep that pattern precisely, as best as you can.

-Sometimes this can be hard if the area you’re copying with clone stamp is really small. In this case, I select the smallest repeating unit of the tone and use it to define a pattern. Then I copy and paste some random area, fill it in with the pattern, and use that box with clone stamp.

-If you can avoid it, don’t fill in everything with the same tone. Try to use different tones as appropriate.

5) Things are probably coming together at this point, so I start to polish things up.

-Usually I touch up my lines as I’m doing step 4, but I also usually have to touch them up a little more before I finish.

-If the tone of the area you filled in looks too bland and uniform, the burn and dodge tools work well to lighten or darken where it’s needed.

-Using the eraser on low hardness works pretty well for making highlights.

-Sometimes the blur tool is useful to blur subtle features that stand out to you (i.e. lines that at too sharp, boundaries between two different tones).

-Once again, move the box you cut and paste in the beginning back to it’s original place. Then undo/redo the move to compare it with what you drew with what you imagine is inside the censor box.

6) Stop editing. Sometimes the edit looks perfect and this step is easy. Sometimes this is hard, because no matter what you do it doesn’t look right. Advice:

-You already know that you’re not as talented as the original artist. You don’t have to be. All you have to do is fake it.

-In other words, your drawing doesn’t need to be perfect. You’ve been staring at this little box looking for flaws, so of course you see them. But, the reader is only going to give the area a glance. He’s not particularly looking for flaws. Also, he’s looking at the whole penis/vagina and not just focusing that tiny part of it that formerly was a black box. In that big picture, any little flaw wouldn’t likely stand out.

-If you’re not sure, just move on and come back to it later. When you do, if it looks okay at at first glance then it’s probably fine.

Hebdomas
Guest

– Open a few different pages from the work you’re trying to decensor so that you have several pictures to use as reference.

– Select the clone brush. Use an uncensored area for the sample, this is where having different pages can be helpful as it is unlikely that the censoring is covering the exact same spot.

I don’t know if this is the most efficient method or not.

I find the brush gives more control than the stamp, but the brush is probably slower.