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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. Welcome to Deke's Techniques, I tell ya! This week we're going to take that incredibly cool, entirely untrademarked superhero shield that we created in Illustrator last week and we're going to bring it over into Photoshop and make it photorealistic. Now, this is a two-parter. So we're going to start things off by grabbing all these shapes, the star and the four circles, which are easier to create in Illustrator than they are in Photoshop, and then we're going to copy and paste them into Photoshop and turn them into independent shape layers, which is quite the trick I tell you.
And then we're going to add some layer effects in order to give the shield depth. Here, let me show you exactly how it works. In this movie, we're going to take that superhero shield that we created inside Illustrator and we're going to bring it into Photoshop, and the result is going to be, instead of having this wildly graphical effect that we were able to create in the previous movie, we're going to end up with this more photographic effect. Basically, the idea is that both programs lend you a certain look and feel to your images, and you just have to decide which way you're going to go.
However, I will say this. It's so much easier to create these base shapes in Illustrator and then bring them over into Photoshop, which is why I'm having you work through this particular large-scale technique inside both programs. So let's start things off inside of Illustrator. And this is the file, as I say, that we created in the previous movie. I'm going to twirl open that new drawing layer, and there is a couple of objects on top that we want to turn off. They're all called Path and Clipping Mask and stuff like that, but this first item at the top is a gradient that's covering up the star and the blue circle, so I'll go ahead and turn it off.
And then the next item down called Clip Mask, it's the one that contains the Lens Flare, so let's go ahead and turn that off as well. That way we end up with the base shapes, which is to say the star, the blue circle, the red circle, the white circle, and the final red circle. I'm going to go ahead and press Ctrl+A or Command+A on the Mac to select those remaining shapes. Now, we want to copy these and bring them into Photoshop. As I say, it's easiest to create these base vector shapes in Illustrator and bring them over. However, what we don't want is the various effects that are assigned to these objects, because it will cause us problems in Photoshop.
So go up to the Window menu and choose Appearance to switch over to the Appearance panel. And then go to that flyout menu icon, click on it, and choose not Clear Appearance, because that will get rid of the fills; you want Reduce to Basic Appearance, so go ahead and choose that command. That will get rid of everything but the fills, and, if we had any, strokes. Now, you want to go up to the Edit menu and choose the Copy command or press Ctrl+C or Command+C on the Mac. Now let's switch over to Photoshop, where I have this base image called Grunge background.psd.
I'm going to go up to the Edit menu now and choose the Paste command or press Ctrl+V or Command+V on the Mac. And Photoshop will ask me which of the many ways I want to paste these objects. Usually you would go with Smart Object, but this time around we want the shape layers, so go ahead and click on Shape Layer and click OK. And now I'm going to go ahead and call this new layer "red 2" of all things, because this will eventually be our outer red stripe. Now, I'll switch over to the Black Arrow tool, which Photoshop calls the Path Selection tool.
I can also get to it by pressing the A key. And I'll go ahead and marquee these five shapes that are on this layer. And I'll go up to the Edit menu and I'll choose Free Transform Path, or I could press Ctrl+T or Command+T on the Mac. And then I'll press both the Shift and the Alt keys--this would be Shift+Option on the Mac--and I'll drag out to make these objects quite a bit bigger, as you see here. And then I'll press the Enter key or the Return key on the Mac in order to make my change. Now I'm going to Shift+Click on this background circle right there in order to deselect it.
I want to move everything that's not selected up onto another layer, so I'm going to press Ctrl+Shift+J or Command+Shift+J on the Mac, and that will actually lift those paths onto a new layer. Let's go ahead and call this one white, because this will represent the white stripe once we're done. Then I'll Shift+Click on this outermost circle in order to deselect it. That will be our white stripe. And I'll press Ctrl+Shift+J or Command+Shift+J on the Mac to move the selected shapes onto a new layer, and I'll call this one red 1, because it's the first red stripe.
Then I'll Shift+Click on that circle in order to deselect it. I'll press Ctrl+Shift+J or Command+ Shift+J on the Mac in order to move those guys to a new layer. I'll call this one blue, because this will be our blue circle. Then I'll Shift+Click on that circle in order to deselect it and I'll press Ctrl+Shift+J to move the star onto a new layer and I'll call this one star. So what I've managed to do is isolate each one of my vectors onto an independent shape layer. Now I want to fill this star with a darker shade of white, essentially.
So I've got my Color panel open. Notice that I'm working with the HSB values. If you can't see those, then go to the flyout menu and choose HSB Sliders. I'm going to reduce my Brightness value to 80, and then I'll press Alt+Backspace or Option+Delete to fill that star with a fairly bright shade of gray. Then I'll move down to the white layer, which is the white stripe, and I'll press Alt+Backspace or Option+Delete to fill that layer with that same white shade of gray as well. Now I'll switch to the blue layer to make it active, and let's dial in some new values.
I want a Hue value of 210, Saturation value of 100, and a Brightness value of 50, and I'll press Alt+Backspace or Option+Delete to fill that layer with dark blue. Now let's move to red 1, choose a different color. It's not that different, actually. I'm just going to change the Hue value to 0 degrees. That's it. Press Alt+Backspace or Option+Delete to fill that stripe with red and then move down to red 2 and fill it with red by pressing Alt+Backspace or Option+Delete as well. The next step is to apply a few layer effects.
So I'm going to scroll up my list, click on star to make it active, drop down to the fx icon, and click on it, and then choose Bevel & Emboss. And the style I'm looking for is Pillow Emboss, as you can see here. A Depth value of 100% is fine; Direction Up is great; Technique should be Smooth. Size and Soften values of 5 and 0 are great. We've got an Angle value of 35 degrees, an Altitude of 30 degrees. I've got the Highlight mode set to Screen. It's White. 50% Opacity. Shadow mode Multiply.
The Opacity is 100%. The Color is black. So we've got everything where we need it to be. I'll go ahead and click OK in order to apply that modification. The next thing we want to do is copy this Bevel & Emboss effect onto the other shape layers. So I'll right-click on Bevel & Emboss here inside the Layer panel, and I'll choose Copy Layer Style. Then I'll go ahead and click on the blue layer, scroll down the list and Shift+Click on red 2 so that I've selected this entire range, and I'm going to right-click on the layer--and I apologize for this. We're going to get this whacky menu.
Your menu will not be this disorganized. I'm just working on the short screen. And I'll choose this command here, Paste Layer Style, which will go ahead and paste that same effect onto all of the shape layers. All right, that lends our shield a certain sense of stacking orders, if we have plates kind of right on top of each other. Now we need to integrate things just a little bit better. Notice here in the background the shield appears to be kind of carved out of that backdrop. That's not right. So I'm going to scroll down to this red 2 layer and click on it, and we need to modify this Bevel & Emboss by double-clicking on it.
And we're going to change the style from Pillow Emboss, which gives a sort of a denting effect right there. We have a shadow, immediately followed by a highlight on the other side. We're going to change that Style from Pillow Emboss to Inner Bevel, and that will drop out that highlight in the background. Then I'll click OK to accept that change. Now let's make some additional modifications to some of the other layers here. I'm going to click on the star layer to make it active, and by the way, notice, every time you click on one of these shape layers, you end up seeing the outline, and here in your Photoshop CS6, you see the anchor points as well.
If you want to hide them, just press Ctrl+H or Command+H on the Mac. Now I want to fortify this dark edge, which will come in handy later, the dark edge on the lower-left side. And I'm going to do that using an inner shadow. So I'll click on the fx icon and choose Inner Shadow. And then, inside this dialog box, I want the angle to go exactly the opposite direction. Notice we have the Inner Shadow appearing on the top-right side. We want it on the bottom-left side instead. So I'm going to turn off Use Global Light, but notice that our Angle is set to 35 degrees.
We want the opposite of that. So I'm going to turn off Use Global Light; otherwise, I'll mess up everything. And I want to change that value to -145 degrees. In case you're wondering what the logic there is, it's -180 degrees plus 35 degrees, so that's exactly the opposite direction. Now I'm going to reduce the Opacity value to 50%, and otherwise things are fine. A Distance value of 5 is great, Choke wants to be 0, and the Size value wants to be 5 pixels. Now I'll click OK in order to accept that change.
And you can see that just slightly fortifies that lower-left side, but it's going to make a difference when we go to add some of the other effects. All right! Now I'll go ahead and scroll down to this layer of white right there, and you know, what I want to do, I wish I had a little more room, so I'll double-click on the Color tab here on the Color panel at the top of the screen, and then I'll scroll up my list here inside the Layers panel. And what I want to do is take that Inner Shadow I just created for the star layer and duplicate it onto the white layer. And I can do that by pressing the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac, and dragging Inner Shadow down onto white and dropping it, like so.
Now I want to make a slight modification by double-clicking on Inner Shadow, and I'm going to reduce that Opacity value to 25%. And I realize these are some nuance changes, but they are going to make a big difference in the future. All right! Now click OK in order to accept that change. And finally, I want to fortify this lower-left edge on the white stripe, and I'm going to do that by adding an effect to the red 1 layer--that is, we're going to create a drop shadow from this red stripe onto the white stripe. So click on red 1 if you're working with me, then click on fx and choose Drop Shadow from the bottom of the list here in Photoshop CS6.
This would be the top of the list in CS5 and earlier. And then I'm going to reduce the Opacity value to 50%. Everything else is fine: 5, 0, 5 for Distance, Spread, and Size. The one change I'm going to make is to turn off Use Global Light and change that Angle value to -145 degrees, and then click OK in order to make that change. Then I'll know to what degree this is showing up onscreen, but if I zoom in here--and I want you to keep an eye on the lower left edge of this white stripe-- here's what it looks like without that drop shadow that's being projected by the red stripe, the inner red stripe, and here's what things look like with that drop shadow.
So as I say, we have a kind of strengthened edge going on there. All right! I'll go ahead and zoom out by pressing Ctrl+0 or Command+0 on the Mac. All right! So that's all there is to bringing the Illustrator paths into Photoshop as shape layers and adding a series of layer effects in order to create these beveled edges. In the next movie, I'll show you how to create a more photorealistic effect using a combination of Smart Filters, adjustment layers, and more.
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