Darkjames Self Skin

You’ve seen fan skins of games, fan skins of comics or movies, and even fan skins of other players – but what about a fan skin of…  The skinner himself?  Self portraits have long been a highly appreciated subject in the history of art, so why not in Minecraft as well?  Let us meet the established and incredible skinner, darkjames, in Minecraft form.




You may remember darkjames from two previous skins of his which I reviewed, the Pale Man skin and the Monk 2.0 skin (which, if I may say so myself, houses a fantastic pun – see if you can find it).  James is known in general for creating video game and fantasy fan skins, with a decent collection of League of Legends skins.


James has yet to post a photo of himself, so let us instead focus on the technical execution of this skin.


As usual for James, the shading and detail is exceptional.  The slight asymmetry to his hair and shirt are true to the daily chaos of life, which makes this skin more believable.  I appreciate the deviation from the norm in how he made his eyes, as well.  The shirt has a sufficient amount of wrinkles to give it some character.


The only facet of this skin that I dislike is the shading on the pants.  For the most part, it is great – except for the inside edge of both legs.  I am not sure if it is meant to be a seam, but if it is not, then there is some misunderstanding of light direction here – the light source would have to be on both sides of the skin for this shading to make sense.


Otherwise, the skin is fantastic – it is a small detail (literally a single line of pixels) and doesn’t really make me love it any less.  Hats off to you, Sir James – and nine out of ten academically justifiable selfies as an award.


Installing the Skin


For online play, skins can be installed by simply uploading the file to your profile on Minecraft.net.  Skins posted on certain websites can be uploaded directly from their page, including this one; click on the button on the right-hand side labeled “change my skin” to be taken directly to the appropriate page.


For offline play only, the process is similar to installing mods:


  1. Download the skin’s .png file;

  2. Hold Windows key and press R to bring up the Run… dialog, or go to Start > Run.

  3. Type %appdata% and press enter, then navigate to roaming/.minecraft/versions.

  4. Open the folder containing the version you use for offline play and view the .jar file using WinRAR.

  5. Create a backup of the meta.inf file contained inside the .jar and store it in a separate folder.

  6. Navigate within the .jar file to assets/minecraft/textures/entity.

  7. Rename the image file titled “steve” to anything else (such as steve_backup).

  8. Change the name of your skin’s .png file to steve.png and insert it here.


Remember to keep your meta.inf and original steve texture backed up somewhere just in case.


What do you think of skin “self portraits”?  I have always loved the artistic self portrait and think it is one of humankind’s greatest methods of self expression.  I have a BFA degree in fine art and art history, so I won’t get too into it unless someone is genuinely interested (else we’d be here all week).  Post your thoughts on the matter in the comments below!

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