Become a true artist with The Joy of Painting mod for Morrowind

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A delightful new Morrowind mod adds a diegetic photo mode, of sorts, to the 20-year-old RPG. Up and coming mod The Joy of Painting from modder Merlord lets you carry around a field easel on your back, plop it down, and use it as a portable art station to become the Van Gogh of Vvardenfell.

Joy of Painting adds a quite feature-rich painting mechanic to Morrowind, letting you create sketches, oil and watercolor paintings, and charcoal drawings that exist not just in the game as objects but are also saved as high-res images on your PC so you can use them outside the game.

It's a delightfully simple-yet-detailed thing, I must say, as you can see on YouTube (opens in new tab) above. Placing your work surface lets you choose your materials, place them from your inventory, and decide what orientation you'd like your canvas to be. You then use a photo-mode-like reticle to frame your subject, deciding thickness of lines, saturation of color, and more.

In true and time-honored Morrowind fashion, of course, JOP adds a painting skill to the game. The painting skill determines the value of your work and its visual quality: "As your skill increases, your paintings become visibly more detailed," says Merlord.

Joy of Painting also makes use of the popular and superlative Ashfall (opens in new tab) mod, with its extensive survival and crafting mechanics. Recipes added in JOP include making your own paper, cavases, parchment, brushes, easels, and more. You can even craft a sketchbook to bind up all your paper and parchment sketches in.

In the future, developer Merlord hopes to add a system of vendors that sell art supplies you don't have to make yourself. The biggest yet-to-come feature, however, is a system of dynamic quests that will have NPCs asking you to bring them a painting or sketch of a specific person, place, or thing.

You can find a prerelease, alpha download of The Joy of Painting mod for Morrowind via Reddit (opens in new tab) or Github. (opens in new tab)

Jon Bolding is a games writer and critic with an extensive background in strategy games. When he's not on his PC, he can be found playing every tabletop game under the sun.