Hey everyone, I’ve been busy busy busy studying Photoshop design effects. My last few lessons required tons of steps, which at times got frustrating. I guess my brain has been elsewhere this week. All in all, I still love what I am learning. With roughly four thousand pictures in my photo folder, it’s always hard for me to choose which ones to edit. Here are a few of my favorite edits from the past couple days.
My first tutorial showed me how to create illustrated effects using Photoshop. Illustrated effects give images that drawn or sketched look. I started my design with a blank layer (I am so glad I watched my layers DVD before moving on to design effects!) and copied the image of myself onto a new layer. I selected my foreground color, then added another layer with a gray fill. I created a top layer and applied the texture with an overlay blending mode. To give myself a sketched effect, I desaturated my image and copied it to another layer. On one copy I multiplied my edges. On the original image I applied a poster edge filer and applied a linear burn. I masked both images and used the smudge tool to make my picture look drawn in places. To finish up my design I applied the text. I rasterized my text before rendering and blurring it. I added a few lines with a one pixel brush for an architectural look. To finish off my design, I stylized my edges with a color burn and modified using the levels adjustment. Voila!
My next set of videos involved lighting effects. These also required a lot of steps, but the effects are awesome. The tutorial videos used studio head shots, so my images don’t have as intense effects, however I think they still work well. I should probably take more stock photos. Before you even work on your base image (my head shot) you need to establish what shapes you want to use. In a separate image I chose my shapes, inversed the color and dragged them to the base image. I copied my shape layer and arranged the shapes to my liking, then merged the layer to save myself some work. I added a new layer and applied a radial gradient to give an effect of light coming behind from the shapes. When in doubt, apply a new layer instead of working on the same shapes, images, etc. It is easier to delete a layer than make an error and have to apply the effects all over again. For the sparkle effect on my shapes, I used a square brush. I adjusted the space, scatter, roundness and angle of my brush, then brushed on the shapes as desired. I moved the sparkle layer behind my shapes as a personal preference. To add additional lighting effects I created a new layer directly above my base layer. I applied a lighting effect and adjusted the positioning of my light source. I played around with blend modes to get the best effect. On projects like this, with so many steps, it usually just comes down to a personal preference. I added a few minor touchups to my photograph as finishing touches.
My final design is just a fun little brush effect. The video instructor calls this “creating a light trail.” It reminds me of a Disney or fairy type effect. To create this light effect you need to create a brush. I chose the “fuzzy cluster loose” brush and applied some effects. I started by applying an outer glow with 100 percent opacity. I applied a hard light blend mode and chose a color to match my design. To that same effect I also applied a drop shadow and changed the blend mode to dissolve. Instead of a black drop shadow I selected a color slightly lighter than the one used for my outer glow. When working with brushes that are personally modified, it is best to save your brush preset. This way you don’t have to apply the same changes each time you create a new stroke. The instructor used a tablet to create extra smooth light trails. I never thought tablets made a difference in design, but after creating light trails with a tracking ball, the effect is not quite the same. I added some text for fun, as it perfectly describes my picture.
I’ve done so many designs in the past few days, I could upload ten more pictures and write another thousand words. However, I don’t think anyone would want to read that. Ok, maybe my neighbor Kelly as he is a designer also! I’m out. There is a lot of authentic Chinese food at home and it has my name all over it. Keep checking back for updates, thanks again for all your feedback! :]
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