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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.
Now that I have shown you how to project type into 3D space using Repousse, which is part of Photoshop CS5 Extended, I'm going to show you how to take the same text, albeit subject to a different color scheme, and I'm going to use it to cast some shadows and reflections onto another 3D object. Now, you'll need the Extended version of Photoshop CS5 to take advantage of these features. I'll start work inside of this file, in which I've gone ahead and created a rectangle that's pretty much exactly centered around this text. I press Shift+Tab to bring up the right-side panels, and I'm going to turn off my Text layer, which is just an FPO object, just there for placement, and I'll turn on the Repousse version of that very same layer, so that text that we projected in the 3D space in the previous movie.
Now I'll go ahead and grab this rectangle and move it directly below the Repousse text. And with a rectangle layer selected--and notice that it's a vector-based path outline because this is a shape layer-- I'll go up to the 3D menu, choose Repousse, and choose Selected Path. Photoshop will tell me that it has to rasterize that layer. I don't have any choice there. It's got to be converted to pixels. So I'll click on the Yes button. And then just to save myself some time, I'll drop down to this View option here, click on it, and notice down here at the bottom of the list is the word dimension. That word dimension comes from the Layers panel, because this dimension type right there is called Dimension. It's the Dimension layer, it has some 3D rotation settings associated with it, and I can duplicate those settings just by choosing that layer name.
Now, I'll go ahead and dial in a few different numerical options, 0.2 for the Depth, 1 for the Height setting for the Bevel, and 0.5 for the Width setting for that Beveled edge, and I'll go ahead and click OK. And that's all the work that we have to do inside of that dialog box. Now, I'm going to zoom out a click, so that I can take in more of my image at a time, and I'm going to press the F key to switch to the full screen mode right there. Now, I'm not happy with the way that the rectangle is colored, so I'll go ahead and double-click on its thumbnail there inside the Layers panel to bring up the 3D panel, and I'll click on the very top material, which is the front edge of the rectangle, click this down-pointing arrowhead next of the black circle, and what you want to do, if you're following along with me, you want to click this right pointing arrow head and choose Default (for Ray Tracer) in order to load some additional materials.
Then you would click the Append button. I've already done that in advance, however, so I'll just go ahead and scroll down the list, to this guy right there, which is Metal Gold, and I'll click on it. It's a great texture. I don't like the color though, so I can switch out the color if I want to by clicking on that color swatch next to the word diffuse. Now, I'll change the Hue value 215, I'll change the Saturation to 65, and the Brightness to 50. Then I'll click OK in order to accept that shade of blue. Obviously, you can go your own way; you can select any color you like. Now, I'm going to change the color of the beveled edge right there.
I click the down-pointing arrowhead next to the black sphere, I'll scroll up the list, and I'll click on this item, No Texture. And then I'll click on its color swatch and I'll change it to a shade of pale yellow by dialing in a Hue value to 50 degrees, a Saturation value of 15%, and then finally a Brightness value of 100% like so, and I'll click OK. And finally, I'm going to click on this Extrusion Material, the third item in the list, which is the extruded edge, and I'm going to click the down-pointing arrowhead, and this time I will choose Satin Black, and that's it.
Now, this object is properly colored. I'm going to go ahead and hide the 3D panel, and let's move this object around in 3D space just a little bit by grabbing the 3D Object Pan tool. So go ahead and select the tool, and then I'll drag this rectangle down a little bit, and notice that I can't see the other 3D object--actually, I can't see any of the other layers as I'm working. And that, to my way of thinking, is a real problem. So in order to see everything at the same time, I'm going to go up to the Edit menu-- if you're working on a Mac, you'd go to the Photoshop menu--then you choose Preferences, and then you choose 3D, and that will bring up the 3D panel inside the Preferences dialog box.
Turn off the Auto Hide Layers check box. Why in the world that's on by default, I have no idea. Click OK, and now, if you drag the rectangle around, you'll be able to see the other layers at the same time, which is really the only way to work, I have to say. Now, notice when I'm using the Pan tool, I am moving the object side to side as well as up and down, and that of course, make perfect sense. But what if you want to move it in 3D? In another words, you want to move it back and forth. Why then, one way to work is to go ahead and switch to the next tool over, which is the Slide tool, and that allows you to move the object, once again, side to side if you want to. But if you drag up, you'll move the object away from you, and if you drag down, you'll move it towards you.
Now, at this point, I want these two objects to interact with each other. Currently, they're completely independent 3D layers, and that means that we are seeing the dimension layer on top of the rectangle layer, regardless of their positioning in 3D space. If we want to integrate the two objects into the same scene so that we can cast shadows and create reflections and so forth, then you need to go and select both of the layers. So I'll Shift+Click on dimension, and you know what, I'm going to take a moment to get rid of this gradient overlay. I'm just going drag that layer effect down to the Clouds layer, just for safekeeping, just so that I'm moving it out of the stack for the moment. And now with these two layers selected, I'll go up to the 3D menu and I'll choose merge 3D layers, and that actually puts the two layers in the same scene.
But now, we'll see how these two objects are positioned with respect to each other in 3D space, which may surprise you. So I'll go ahead and choose that command, and we may find that the rectangle cuts through the text, or in this case, it's all the way in front of the text, which is a little bit of a surprise. So what I need to do is now move these two meshes--the text and the rectangle are independent meshes--independently of each other, by double-clicking on that thumbnail right there in order to bring up the 3D panel.
And then I'm going to switch over to the next group of options by clicking on this icon here, Filter By Meshes, and that will show me my two independent meshes: rectangle and dimension. And now I'll drop down here to these tools along the left side of the panel, go ahead and click and hold on the third tool down, and then select 3D Mesh Slide Tool. It's very important that you're working with one of the mesh tools, because otherwise you edit the entire scene. The Mesh tools allow you to edit the independent meshes independently of each other. All right. I'll go ahead and hide that 3D panel for a moment, so I can better see what I'm doing.
Notice when I hover over the rectangle, it's active, and when I hover over the text, it's active. So you need to pay attention to that cyan highlight there. I'm going to go ahead and hover over the rectangle and drag it up in order to move it backward like so, and you can see that is going behind the text. And once the text stops getting cut, then you know the two objects are touching each other, and that's exactly what I want. All right. Now, notice this little widget up here. It can be very useful for fine-tune changes. You've got this little block here which allows you to scale the object, along a specific axis, so this red axis right there, that's the x axis for what it's worth.
Then next door we have this rotation icon right there, and at the far end of the widget, that cone let's says move the object along the axis once again. So I'm going to start by dragging along this block here in order to scale the object widthwise, to make it wider, and then I'm going to go ahead and drag along the cone in order to move the object to the right. You can see how this is a very specific modification. I'm modifying the X placement of this object and preserving the Y and Z placement. Next, I'm going to go ahead and drag down on the blue cone to move the object down as well, like so.
Photoshop calls this the Z axis, by the way. So red is X, green is Y and then blue is Z, and that's because we're working with Cartesian coordinates, for what that's worth. All right. Now, you may look at this and say, "I don't care for working with Cartesian coordinates. Why don't we have any shadows or reflections going on inside of our illustration?" And the reason is, of course, because I need to ray trace. So I'm a switch to the Marquee tool by pressing the M key, and then I'm going to go ahead and collapse my right-side panels. I'm going to bring up my 3D panel once again, and I'm going to switch over to the Scene settings by clicking this first icon, make sure Scene is selected, and then I'm going to change the Quality from Interactive (Painting) to Ray Traced Draft.
And as soon as I do, I'll see that grid pass over my image as Photoshop is ray tracing the scene. Now I can already see that I have a little bit of a problem. Notice those little black edges at the bottom of the letters. I don't want those, so I'm going to click inside the scene to interrupt the ray tracing. And I just happen to know from trial and error, the problem is Infinite Light 2. What's happening is the light is actually in back of the rectangle, and the rectangle is casting a shadow on to the text. So if I just go ahead and turn that guy off there, then I'll reinitiate the ray tracing, and I'll also get rid of that under lighting, which is creating that dark edge.
Now, you'll have to wait a few minutes for the ray tracing to occur, because it is computationally intensive. What we're going do inside this video is go ahead and fast-forward the process. Now, the ray tracing is done, so I'll go ahead and hide my 3D panel once again, expand my right-side panels, and grab that gradient overlay and throw it back there from the clouds layer back on top of the rectangle layer, the layer that's now called rectangle, so we have this nice colorful artificial lighting. Because Gradient Overlay is a 2D layer effect, it doesn't require new ray tracing.
So all I have to do is press the F key to switch to the full screen mode and go ahead and zoom in on my final illustration. And that's how you merge 3D objects, so you can use one to cast shadows and reflections onto another, here inside Photoshop CS5 Extended.
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