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Deke's Techniques is a collection of short Photoshop and Illustrator projects and creative effects that can be completed in ten minutes or less. The series is taught by computer graphics guru Deke McClelland, and presented in his signature step-by-step style. The intent is to reveal how various Photoshop and Illustrator features can be combined and leveraged in real-world examples so that they can be applied to creative projects right away.
Hey gang! This is Deke McClelland, here to welcome you to Deke's Techniques. Now, you may recall last week I showed you how to render type in gold. In the background, I featured a hammered metal surface texture. It's entirely synthetic. It's something you can create in Photoshop in about five minutes, frankly, and I am going to show you how to do it inside of this movie. Here it is. Now, the approach is this. You start off with a dummy Smart Object. It doesn't matter what's in it. Then you apply the Clouds filter and then Difference Clouds and then Glass, and then you top it off with a Rusted Metal pattern overlay effect.
Now the great thing about this approach, notice these highlights and shadows. Photoshop creates those automatically. If you want to update that effect and rearrange the highlights and shadows, then all you have to do is go to the Layers panel and double-click on Clouds or Difference Clouds. That's it! Here, let me show you exactly how it works. In this movie, I am going to show you how to create a hammered metal effect. It's a very easy effect to pull off, quite satisfying as well, and it's entirely synthetic, meaning that it doesn't rely on any form of base photographic image.
In fact, you create it out of thin air. All you need is a layer filled with some color, it doesn't really matter what. Now, I've used this technique to create the background behind these heavy metal letters, and I will show you how to create those letters in another movie, so get ready for that. I also used this technique to create the background behind my gold letters. So you can see just how versatile this technique is. Every time you apply it, you get different results: you get these wonderful lustrous highlights and shadows and shines and so forth. They're generated entirely automatically for you, after which point you can infuse the effect with any color you like.
So, I am going to start off inside of this composition. All we're seeing is some editable text against a transparent background. I am going to press Shift+Tab to bring up my right-side panel, so I can see the Layers panel, and the next thing I am going to do is create a new layer. So I will press Ctrl+Shift+N, Command+ Shift+N on the Mac in order to bring up the New Layer dialog box. And I'll call this layer "blackness," and click OK. Then I will drag the blackness layer below the editable text layer, like so. I'm going to turn off that text layer, because right now we don't need it. Then I am going to fill the layer with any old color, it really doesn't matter which.
Currently my foreground and background colors are set to black and white respectively. That's very important, by the way. So you might want to go ahead and press the D key to ensure that you have the default colors. Then I am going to press Alt+ Backspace or Option+Delete on the Mac to fill that layer with black. Now, this technique relies heavily on a trio of filters, and to keep everything as flexible as possible, we want to apply those filters as Smart Filters. So let's go ahead and convert this layer to a Smart Object by right-clicking on it and choosing Convert to Smart Object. Then go up to the Filter menu, choose Render, and choose Clouds.
Again, you need to make sure that your foreground color is set to black, your background color is set to white, so that you get this black-and-white clouds effect. This is actually random fractal noise. So every time you apply the Clouds Filter, you'll get a different result. Then go up to the Filter menu, choose Render, and choose Difference Clouds, which applies that same Clouds effect, of course randomly, set to the Difference blend mode, and you'll get an effect that looks something like this. Now, in order to convert what we're seeing here to hammered metal, you again go up to the Filter menu, choose Distort and then choose Glass.
Now, the default settings create a kind of frosted glass effect, as if you're looking through a shower door, or something along those lines. Make sure that Texture is set to Frosted. That's the default setting, but that's what we want. Scaling should be 100% as well. Then I want you to take the Distortion value up to something in a range of 18, like so, and that ends up creating a lot of contrast inside the effect. Then in order to transform this from looking like modeled glass to hammered metal, tab to the Smoothness value and take it down to 2, and you get this effect here.
Again, it might look a little different, because it's a random effect. Click OK in order to except that modification. Now, I don't need this filter mask, so I am going to right-click on it and choose Delete Filter mask. And then finally, what I want to do is I want to infuse this metal effect here with a little bit of rust, and I'm going to do that by adding a pattern overlay. So drop down to the FX icon, click on it, choose Pattern Overlay. Then inside the Pattern Overlay dialog box, go ahead and click this down-pointing arrowhead next to the word Pattern. The pattern we're looking for is the one called Rusted Metal.
If you don't see it, then click on the right-pointing arrowhead right there and choose Patterns in order to load the Patterns library. You'll get this dialog box. If you want to append these patterns to your existing ones, then click Append. If you just want to replace everything, click OK. Then select that Rusted Metal pattern. It doesn't really blends seamlessly, but that's not going to turn out to be a problem for us. Now, click off that pop-up panel to hide it. I want you to change the blend mode from Normal to Soft Light, and that'll give us this sort of soft infusion of that rust effect, which comes and goes.
So it's a variable effect, meaning that some areas are more rusty than others. Then I want you to reduce the Opacity value to 25% and click OK. So we have this just slight infusion of color. Now then, if you don't really like the effect, all you have to do is double-click on either Clouds or Difference Clouds, and that will regenerate the effect. So notice if I double-click on Clouds, I don't bring up a different dialog box; I just re-apply those clouds, and that varies the distribution of highlights and shadows in the image. You can get a different kind of distribution by double-clicking on Difference Clouds as well.
So double-click on either of those as many times as you want, until you come up with an effect that you like. I think something like this looks pretty darn good. Notice it looks as if we have multiple light sources that are being shined onto this background all at the same time. That, friends, that's all there is to it. That's how you create a hammered metal background inside Photoshop.
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