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Photoshop mastery can be elusive, but in Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery, best-selling author and video trainer Deke McClelland teaches the most powerful, unconventional, and flexible features of the program. In this third and final installment of the popular and comprehensive series, Deke delves into the strongest features that Photoshop has to offer, including scalable vector graphics, Smart Objects, and Photomerge. Exercise files accompany the course.
Recommended prerequisites: Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals and Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced, both part of the lynda.com Online Training Library®.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts and color settings for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.
My newest version of this document is called Thank you Scrubbco.psd, because the walls of this subway have been scrubbed clean by our good friends at Scrubco and the trains will run on time and so on and so on. But you know what, I'm not sure that this looks terribly realistic. I'm going to go ahead and zoom in. I think the edges are way too sharp and I think they want to be blurred away just a little bit. With the Scrubbco elements layer active, I'm going to press Ctrl+Alt+F or Command+Option+F on the Mac, and this tiny Radius value of 0.3 pixels works out pretty nicely. Let's take it up to 0.4, just to nudge it up just a little bit there. And of course Ctrl+Alt+F brought up Gaussian Blur, Command+Option+F on the Mac, because it was the last real filter that we had applied. The last filter that Photoshop tracks anyway.
Click OK. And then you know what I'm going to take the Opacity down to 80% by pressing the 8 key when my Rectangular Marquee tool is active. And we get this effect here which I think looks pretty good actually; it looks like it could be a real part of that scene. All right, so now I want to add some text. I want to add a little bit of text right there on that plane. And I have gone ahead and created the text in advance. It's called Some type.psd. But you know here is the thing, now I'm going to switch back to the other image for just a minute, and let's go ahead and create a new layer. I'll press Ctrl+Shift+N or Command+Shift+N on the Mac and I'll just enter a URL, it's a good name for that layer I think. And then I'll click OK.
And if I go up the Filter menu and choose Vanishing Point with the expectation that I can then type in some text in perspective inside Vanishing Point, I'll be horribly disappointed, because there is no Type tool. And that's it. There is no Type tool. There is no nothing going on in here. So how in the world do we not get Type and I mean really Vanishing Point, this perspective tool doesn't allow you to do perspective type, one of the common things you would want inside of this filter, really? Anyway, cancel out, because yes, it really. Here is what you do instead. You go ahead and render the type in some other image like so and then make sure that the Type layer is active, as it is. This is live type inside of Photoshop. Now you might think what you do is copy it which is true, you do copy and paste it.
And you might figure while you will go ahead and get your Type tool right there. And then you will go ahead and select the type like so and then go up to the Edit menu and choose the Copy command, something along those lines. No, you don't do that. Because Vanishing Point not only does it not have a Type tool, it can't even see type. It doesn't know type from anything; it only knows pixels. So what you do, and this is a little known function inside of Photoshop, you press Ctrl+A or Command+A on the Mac. And then you press Ctrl+C or Command+C on the Mac and what you just did, because the Type layer was active, you just copied the pixel version of this type. So Photoshop is always tracking a pixel representation of live type and you can copy it just by doing a Ctrl+A, Ctrl+C, Command+A, Command+C on the Mac.
Now go back to the other composition here. You have got your URL layer all right, ready to go. So go up to the Filter, Vanishing Point, and now press Ctrl+V or Command+V on the Mac in order to paste in your text. Now get ready for the pain, my friends. Go ahead and drag this text around and see what happens to it. So it's up here on the ceiling. That's kind of cool. It will go down to the proper location on the back wall. It does something just bizarre on the sidewall and on the floor. It gets upside down and sideways and stuff.
And there is nothing you can really do about that, even if we had copied the text sideways, it comes in this way. I don't know why. And this though, once we match it to this little plane right there, it comes in very nicely. And now switch over to your Transform tool and we'll go ahead and scale the text into place like so. And we want it right about there; I think it's going to look nice, maybe not quite so tall, so it doesn't look like it's stretched. So something along these lines. And then I'll go ahead and click OK in order to put that text on a new layer.
Now at this point I want to make some Photoshop modifications to the text. I want it to the white. White is currently background color. So I'm going to press Ctrl+Shift+Backspace or Command+Shift+Delete on the Mac in order to fill the text with the background color because of Ctrl+Backspace or Command+Delete on the Mac. And because we have a Shift key down as well, we are just filling in the opaque portions of the layer. So we are respecting the transparency. And now I want to go ahead and add an outer glow effect to this layer so that it looks like its projecting light just like the lights next to it.
So I'll go to Outer Glow down here from the fx icon. I'll change the color of course to white like so, click OK. Let's take the Opacity down to like 55% and then tab down a size and take it up to 15 pixels like so. And actually maybe let's go back to Opacity; let's take it up to 65% that looks good. Click OK and then I'm thinking those letters are too sharp once again. So let's go up to the Filter menu and choose Gaussian Blur, Ctrl+F, Command+F on the Mac. And we don't have anything, but pixels to work with so I might as well just go ahead and filter them directly and we get this wonderful perspective text, accurately represented perspective text here inside of Photoshop.
And remember this URL, people. If you ever decide to leave the lynda.com Online Training Library and then later you decide to come back, won't you use this wonderful entrance right here? LYNDA.COM/DEKE is your portal of choice my friends. In the next exercise I'm going to show you how to map an image that's already in perspective into another perspective scene. Stay tuned.
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