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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.
In this movie I'm going to show you how to create a frame around a photograph here inside Photoshop. Now this is a very similar technique to what we saw in the previous movie. The big differences are that were expressing the selection outline as a layer mask time around, and we're going to engage in a little bit of troubleshooting. The Contract command, which is so very important to creating the frame effect in the first place, doesn't always work. It may end up being dimmed and I'll show you what to do in such a case. So let's start things off inside of this composition here. I've got the photograph on one layer and then behind it I have the texture represented as a background layer that will serve as our frame.
All right, so I'm going to go ahead and turn the photograph layer back on. Now what we should be able to do is just select the entire image by pressing Ctrl+A or Command+A on the Mac. That draws a selection outline around the entire canvas, as you can see there. Then we would go up to the Select menu, choose Modify, and choose Contract. The problem is that all these commands, from Smooth down to Feather, end up appearing dimmed when the entire image is selected. So we have to increase the size of this image before we can choose Contract. So I'll go ahead and Escape out of there.
So for starters, what we need to do is convert this background image to an independent layer by double-clicking on it. That'll bring up the New Layer dialog box. And I'll just go ahead and call this new layer frame. Now you would figure that you could go ahead and Ctrl+Click or Command+Click on that layer's thumbnail in order to load up the selection outline and then go up to the Select menu, choose Modify, and choose Contract, but again it's dimmed, because the selection encompasses the entire image. So, I've got to do another step here. Go up to the Image menu and choose the Canvas Size command, which will allow us to increase the size of the canvas independently of the layers themselves. And I'm going to turn on the Relative check box so that I can add pixels to the existing canvas size, and I'm going to change the Width value to 300 pixels and then change the Height value to 200 pixels and click OK.
It doesn't really matter how much larger you make the canvas; it just has to be bigger than this frame layer. Now having done that, we need to go ahead and restore the background, and the easiest way to pull that off is to click on this little page icon at the bottom of the Layers panel to create a new layer. It doesn't matter what its name is. Then go up to the Layer menu, choose the New command, and choose Background From Layer, and that will go ahead and generate, presumably, the white background. All right now I'm going to click on the frame layer and drag it above the photograph layer, since we need to frame to be in front of the photo. Let's go ahead and now load it up as a selection outline by pressing the Ctrl key or the Command key on the Mac and clicking on that layer's thumbnail. Then go up to the Select menu and choose Modify.
Now the Contract command is available, because the selection outline is smaller than the canvas, so I'll go ahead and choose Contract. You want to go ahead and enter the size of your frame, In my case I want it to be 100 pixels thick, so I'll go ahead and click OK, and that reduces the size of the selection by 100 pixels in all four directions. Now let's go ahead and express the selection as a layer mask by dropping down to the Add Layer Mask icon at the bottom of the Layers panel and Alt+Clicking on it or Option+Clicking on that icon on the Mac. That way we will subtract the selection from the layer in the form, of course, of layer mask.
So we haven't actually harmed the layer itself. All right, now let's go ahead and add the layer effects. I will I click on the fx icon. We don't need colorize the layer this time around, so we can skip the color overlay step. I'll go ahead and choose Drop Shadow to start things off. And I'm going to dial in those exact same values I did in the previous video, that is, for the color were doing a Hue value of 210, a Saturation value of 50, and a Brightness of 20%. Go ahead and click OK. I'll take the Opacity value down to 50%. An Angle value of 135 degrees works fine, although you can modify these values in any way you like.
I'll go ahead and take the Distance value up to 10 pixels. I'm going to dial in a Size value of 50 pixels. Then I'll click on Bevel and Emboss and change the Style from Inner Bevel to Emboss, so that were creating highlights and shadows both inside the layer and outside. And then I'll change the Technique from Smooth to Chisel Soft. I'm going to take that Size value down to 3 pixels once again. You can see that my Angle and Altitude values are 135 and 20 degrees respectively. Now I'll change the Gloss Contours to Gaussian. And the Highlight and Shadow modes are fine set to their defaults, that is, Screen white 75%, Multiply black, 75% as well.
And then finally, I'm going to add that outer shadow by clicking on Outer Glow, clicking on that little yellow color swatch. I'll dial in a Hue value once again of 210 degrees, and I'm going to change the Saturation value to 50% and take the Brightness value down to 20%, click OK, change the Blend mode from Screen to Multiply so that we're creating a shadow instead of a glow, and I'll take the Size value up to 20 pixels and then click OK. And now we have the final picture- frame effect, created using the Contract command, with a caveat that the selection has to be smaller than the canvas size, here inside Photoshop.
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