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  1. #11
    Abnormal Brain
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    Default Re: FrankenFan's Photoshop Fundamentals — Sig Tutorial

    Step 10

    With Data 2 the active layer, press Command J to create a new layer above it, add it to the Clipping Path, and change its Blending Mode to Hard Light. Name this layer Clouds.

    Next, click the Set Foreground Color Swatch on the Toolbar to open the Color Picker, and enter 128 for the RGB values. Press the Enter key to exit the Color Picker. Set your Background Color to White.

    With the Clouds layer active, select Filter>Render>Clouds from the main menu and apply the filter.

    Next, add a Layer Mask to the Clouds layer, then add a Linear Gradient from top to bottom.

    The Clouds layer adds some atmosphere to our image, but it also washes out our background a bit too much, so we're going to adjust the Levels of the Data layers.

    Make Data the active layer, then hold down the Option key and click the Create New Fill Or Adjustment Layer icon on the bottom of the Layers Palette (4th icon from the right), and select Levels from the pop-up menu to open the New Layer dialog. Check Use Previous Layer To Create Clipping Mask and click OK to open the Levels dialog box. Under Input Levels change the White Point from 255 to 228. Click OK.

    Repeat this proceedure with the Data 2 layer, but instead of changing the White Point, change the Black Point from zero to 19.

    Has your head exploded, yet?

    If it hasn't, your image and Layers Palette should now resemble this:



    Now we need to finesse the Iron Man figure a bit, and we're done!

    Well. Almost.
    Last edited by FrankenFan; 04-01-2008 at 09:13 AM. Reason: Added PC key command.

  2. #12
    Abnormal Brain
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    Step 11

    First, select the IM layer, then click the Add A Layer Style icon (the FX icon, second from the left on the bottom of the Layers Palette) and select Bevel and Emboss... from the Blending Options pop-up menu. Enter these values in the options fields:



    With the IM layer still active, hold down the Option key and click the Create New Fill Or Adjustment Layer icon on the bottom of the Layers Palette, and select Selective Color from the pop-up menu to open the New Layer dialog. Check Use Previous Layer To Create Clipping Mask and click OK to open the Selective Color Options dialog box.

    For Method, select Absolute, then select Reds from the Colors pop-up and change the Cyan percentage to -100 and the Magenta percentage to +100.

    Next, select Yellows from the Colors pop-up, and change the Cyan percentage to -100 and the Yellow percentage to +100. Click OK.

    Iron Man is starting to pop, but let's add a little more drama.

    Duplicate the IM layer, name it IM_Reflect and drag it under the IM layer. Click the Lock Transparent Pixels icon (first icon after the word Lock: at the top of the Layers Palette).

    Set your Foreground Color to the RGB values 0, 124, 239 and your Background Color to 255, 255, 255.

    Select Filter>Render>Clouds.

    Now select the IM layer and change its Blending Mode to Hard Light. Presto! Instant reflection! Pretty cool, huh?

    Your file and Layers Palette should now look something like this:

    Last edited by FrankenFan; 03-23-2008 at 02:02 PM.

  3. #13
    Abnormal Brain
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    Step 12

    Now we're going to add a glow behind Iron Man to give the image a bit of depth.

    Duplicate the IM_Reflect layer, name it IM_Glow, and drag it under the IM_Reflect layer.

    Click the Lock Transparent Pixels icon, set your Foreground Color to the RGB values 252, 248, 203, and press Option Delete to fill the layer with a pale, yellow color.

    Next, Deselect the Lock Transparent Pixels icon, select Filter>Other>Minimum, set the Radius to 5 pixels and click OK.

    Now select Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur, set the Radius to 6 pixels and click OK.

    Finally, change the Blending Mode of the layer to Overlay and add the layer to the Clipping Mask.

    Your file and Layers Palette should now look like this:

    Last edited by FrankenFan; 03-23-2008 at 02:04 PM.

  4. #14
    Abnormal Brain
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    Step 13

    Now, let's add a Stroke around the background art to frame it and add a Drop Shadow to give our sig a faux 3-D look.

    First, click the Clipping Mask layer to make it active, then click on the FX icon and select Stroke from the Blending Options pop-up. Change the Size to 1, the Position to Inside, and the Color to the RGB values 0, 0, 0.

    Next, click on the words Drop Shadow in the Styles column and set the Opacity to 50, the Angle to 120, Distance to 5, Spread to 0, and Size to 5. Press the Enter key to exit the Layers Style dialog.

    Now press Command Option C to open the Canvas Size box, and change the Width to 399. For Anchor, click the Upper Left square to add 7 pixels to the right side of our canvas to reveal the rest of the Drop Shadow. Click OK.

    Your file and Layers Palette should now look like this:

    Last edited by FrankenFan; 03-23-2008 at 11:04 AM.

  5. #15
    Abnormal Brain
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    Step 14

    Next, let's Crop our file to remove the unused portion of the canvas and reduce the overall file size of our sig.

    Select the Crop tool and drag a selection marquee that extends to the left and right edges of the canvas, and from the top of Iron Man's right hand to the bottom of the drop shadow. Zoom-in (Space Option Click) to make your selection as precise as possible



    Your file and Layers Palette should now look like this:

    Last edited by FrankenFan; 03-23-2008 at 11:04 AM.

  6. #16
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    Step 15

    Okay. Time to save our file as a Transparent GIF and wrap this session up!

    But! Not before we add one more very important final touch to out sig: Our name!

    Press the letter T on your keyboard to select the Type tool, then click on the Selective Color 1 layer to make it active, and and type your name.

    With the type selected, choose a font, size, and color from the Options bar, and drag it into place on the canvas. Press Enter to confirm the type to the new layer. I also added an Outer Glow in black set to Multiply to offset my name from the background.

    Now we're ready to save our file for the web. Click on the Eye icon next to the Background layer to toggle the background off.

    Your file and Layers Palette should now look like this:



    Press Command Option Shift S to open the Save For Web dialog and enter the settings, below. For Matte select Other from the pop-up menu to open the Color Picker and enter the RGB values 241, 242, 228. This matte color will fill or blend any transparent pixels in our drop shadow with the color of the Freaks board background against which sigs are typically displayed. If you're saving a transparent GIF for display against a different color background, choose that color for your matte.



    Click Save, to name and save the file, and we're done! Here's another look at the final image:



    For those of you who had the patience and endurance to read this far, thank you for your interest and attention. I hope you picked up a trip or trick or three along the way!

    Happy Photoshopping!
    Last edited by FrankenFan; 03-23-2008 at 11:05 AM.

  7. #17
    Wow, great tutorial! Thanks for writing it up

  8. #18
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    Thank you so much Kurt! Those are some of the tools and commands I've wanted to learn how to use. I only have Photoshop available at work, but I plan on going through the tutorial and learning how to use these tools!

    Thanks again!

  9. #19
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    Visit Batty's Instagram Channel
    Thank you, Kurt!

    I'm such a beginner when it comes to Photoshop. This will be very helpful.


  10. #20
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    Thanks for the replies, guys! I hope you are finding some useful info and techniques that you can apply to your own work. Please feel free to post any suggestions you may have as to how to make future tutorials better — assuming there is enough interest from you guys for me to continue them.

    Was this first lesson too long? Were my instruction easy to understand? Were the screen caps helpful? Was the content too basic? What other topics would interest you? Would a PDF download be preferable? Your comments, critiques, and constructive criticism are always encouraged!

    Reading through the tutorial again, I did find a few typos that I have since corrected, so if you come across a specific step that doesn't seem to be working, check the edit date and time on the bottom of the post to be sure you are working from the most up-to-date and accurate content. If you find any additional typos or other inaccuracies, please let me know and I will revise a.s.a.p.

    Thanks, again!

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