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Automating layer effects

From: Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery

Video: Automating layer effects

In this exercise I'm going to show you a few different ways to record the application of layer effects inside of Photoshop. This time around I've gone ahead and created some catch-up documents for you, if you like. So if you are recording, let's take a break for a moment. Go ahead and click on the Stop button, and what I have done is I've saved the file called Rounded anarchy.psd, so there is my progress file. I have also gone ahead and put my chrome maker, the one that I'm recording here, inside of a separate action set and I have called it Chrome in progress. So both Chrome in progress and Rounded anarchy are found inside the 30_actions folder, just so you know, if you want to catch on up. All right, so let's say that I want to record the application of a bunch of different layer effects and all together we are going to have inner shadow, and an inner glow, and a bevel and emboss, and a gradient overlay. All these things mixed together, and this will create some luminance contours upon which we can build our chrome effect.

Automating layer effects

In this exercise I'm going to show you a few different ways to record the application of layer effects inside of Photoshop. This time around I've gone ahead and created some catch-up documents for you, if you like. So if you are recording, let's take a break for a moment. Go ahead and click on the Stop button, and what I have done is I've saved the file called Rounded anarchy.psd, so there is my progress file. I have also gone ahead and put my chrome maker, the one that I'm recording here, inside of a separate action set and I have called it Chrome in progress. So both Chrome in progress and Rounded anarchy are found inside the 30_actions folder, just so you know, if you want to catch on up. All right, so let's say that I want to record the application of a bunch of different layer effects and all together we are going to have inner shadow, and an inner glow, and a bevel and emboss, and a gradient overlay. All these things mixed together, and this will create some luminance contours upon which we can build our chrome effect.

That's the idea. Well, I could tell you to start recording and then we would just sit here and build the effects manually together, which would be about as exciting as watching paint dry. There is no point in doing that because you can always investigate what's going on with the effects later if you want to. So rather I'm going to show you a few different ways to automate the process. All right, so if we want to continue recording our action, which we do, then you want to click on the step after which you want to begin recording. So for example, if I clicked on Levels, and then I clicked on Record button, I would insert my new operations right here between Levels and Set Selection.

Now that's not what I want to do. I want to record some operations at the end of the current action. So I would either click on Show background, the last step in the action, or I would just click on the action name. Either one is going to work for you. Then go up to your Styles palette. Make sure it's on screen. If not, you can go to the Window menu and choose Styles, and then go to the Styles palette fly-out menu, choose Load Styles, and I want you to load this group of styles right there, Chrome FX.asl, and it's really just one style. Then click on Load and by the way it's inside the 30_actions folder, but of course, click Load, and then I want you to go ahead and apply it, but not yet. We need to record the application of this style right here.

All right, so click on the record button once again and then I want you to click on Chrome FX to apply it and notice that it applies a bunch of stuff. We have got an inner shadow, we have got an inner glow, we have got bevel and emboss, and we've got gradient and overlay, just gobs and gobs of stuff going on. Instead, what Photoshop goes ahead and records is Apply style "Chrome FX," and we can see if we twirl it open to current layer, there is no information there. So in other words, if it doesn't find this Chrome FX style right there, we are in trouble. The action isn't going to work. It's going to fail.

And so that means we are going to have to tell the person to go ahead and load the style and even if we try to record the loading of the style, it would have to be in a very specific location, and that probably wouldn't work either. However, watch this. There is a little bit of work around. What you can do is you can double-click on the word Effects here, underneath Rounded, and then you can just look at it and if you want to, you can peer through the various effects that I have applied. There is the inner shadow settings right there, there are the inner glows settings, and I'll tell you what? I'll show you all of them, for those of you who don't have access to these files here. I'll go ahead and show you all the settings so that you can pause and write them down or enter them in or do whatever you want to. Here is Bevel and Emboss, these guys right there. Note by the way, back to Inner Glow. Sorry about this.

Inner Glow, I set the contour to ring and this sends up being pretty important actually. And then we have got Bevel and Emboss, so that's ring. Even though it show the bunch of other garbage there, it's just the ring contour. Then here are the settings for Bevel and Emboss. And throughout my angle value, thanks to global light, it's set to 54 degrees, and the altitude is 30 degrees, and then here is the Gradient Overlay. It's just a black to white overlay with an angle of negative 85 degrees and the scale value is 40%. So I didn't move it to any special location. It's just scaled to a smaller size.

All right, then you just click OK. You didn't have to click on each of these items if you didn't want to. You just have to click OK and then that for some reason wakes Photoshop up and makes it go, oh yeah, here is the styles I want to apply. Here's all the layer effects, and on and on and on and on and on. And it's just keeping track of those four layer effects. But ntice here is the items when it's telling you what effects you are applying, Gradient Overlay: gradient overlay, that kind of thing. So you will find four of those since there is bevel and emboss, and there is also the other ones though. What was it? Inner shadow and inner glow as well.

Anyway, I'm going to go ahead and twirl this guy closed and then I'm going to click on the Stop button right there, in order to stop recording the action, and I'm going to grab Apply Style "Chrome FX" and I'm going to Alt-click on the Trashcan or Option-click on the Trashcan there in the Actions palette to get rid of it. Now let's go ahead and get rid of this Chrome FX style here so that we can text things out and I'm going to do that by Alt-clicking, because you get the little scissors icon, Alt-clicking on that style or Option-clicking on it on the Mac, and then let's go ahead and throw all the effects away. So I'm going to grab the effects and throw them in the Trash and now let's just try applying that one step there by Ctrl+double-clicking on it.

Command+double-clicking on the Mac, just to make sure it works and sure enough it did. It didn't complain about the missing style or anything. So that's totally wonderful. Now there is one other thing you could do if you want to and that is you can perform a drag and drop. And that works like so. Let's say I'll go ahead and take this Set Layer Styles of current layer, I'll leave it there actually, but let's turn it off for a moment, just so that we can distinguish one item from the other. Then I'm going to pop-open Chrome Maker 2.0 and I could scroll down to right there, Set Layer Styles of current layer. That's our guy. And what you can do is you can go ahead and drag that step from one action to a different action.

And you have to drag it into the action. You have to drag it to exactly the location where you want to be, but you can scroll down, you can auto scroll down the list and I'll put it right there, right before the one I just recorded a moment ago, and then press and hold the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac and release and that goes ahead and creates a duplicate. So Set Layer Styles of current layer to this big laundry list right there is still a step inside of Chrome Maker 2.0, it's still there, because we pressed Alt or Option, we duplicated that step and put it into My chrome maker as well.

So that's another thing you can do. Now I'm not going to do that. I'm just going to go ahead and Alt-click or Option-click on the Trashcan to get rid of that duplicate step there, but I just want you to see there are different ways to work. All right, wow, weezers! In the next exercise, we are actually going to turn this effect into Chrome using a Chrome gradient map layer. Stick with me.

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This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery
Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery

147 video lessons · 27748 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 21m 17s
    1. Welcome
      1m 21s
    2. Installing the DekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      5m 38s
    3. Resetting the Function keys on a Mac
      3m 51s
    4. Installing the CS4 color settings
      4m 34s
    5. Setting up the CS4 color settings
      5m 53s
  2. 2h 31m
    1. Introduction to masking
      51s
    2. Introducing color range
      4m 22s
    3. Adding base colors and adjusting fuzziness
      4m 46s
    4. Localized color clusters
      6m 12s
    5. The Quick Mask mode
      7m 33s
    6. Viewing a quick mask by itself
      6m 40s
    7. Testing the quality of edges
      3m 55s
    8. Introducing the Masks palette
      7m 45s
    9. Editing a layer mask
      6m 18s
    10. Choking a mask with Gaussian Blur and Levels
      6m 44s
    11. Choking a mask with Mask Edge
      7m 43s
    12. Adding a Gradient Overlay shadow
      4m 23s
    13. Using live Density and Feather
      6m 12s
    14. Journeyman masking
      5m 44s
    15. Creating an alpha channel
      7m 6s
    16. Increasing contrast
      7m 15s
    17. Overlay painting
      8m 28s
    18. Cleaning up whites and blacks
      5m 48s
    19. Soft light painting
      5m 47s
    20. Selecting in style
      6m 55s
    21. Employing masks as selections
      5m 2s
    22. Scaling and compositing layers
      6m 30s
    23. Compositing glass
      5m 10s
    24. Selecting glass highlights
      8m 41s
    25. Working with found masks
      5m 46s
  3. 1h 34m
    1. Introduction to vector-based shapes
      1m 10s
    2. Vector-based type outlines
      7m 23s
    3. The benefits of vectors
      6m 27s
    4. Upsampling vs. nondestructive scaling
      7m 35s
    5. Vectors and effects
      8m 7s
    6. Fill Opacity and clipped layers
      4m 24s
    7. Basic shape creation
      3m 15s
    8. Drawing interacting shapes
      6m 21s
    9. Power-duplicating paths
      3m 12s
    10. Combining pixels and vector masks
      5m 19s
    11. Line tool and layer attributes
      7m 5s
    12. Copying and pasting path outlines
      3m 28s
    13. Drawing custom shapes
      3m 59s
    14. Drawing with the Pen tool
      7m 48s
    15. Creating cusp points
      7m 28s
    16. Defining a custom shape
      3m 34s
    17. Assigning a vector mask to an image
      2m 38s
    18. Adding a vector object to a composition
      5m 40s
  4. 1h 23m
    1. Introduction to Vanishing Point
      1m 11s
    2. Creating and saving the first plane
      8m 9s
    3. Creating perpendicular planes
      5m 16s
    4. Healing in perspective
      8m 47s
    5. Cloning and scaling in perspective
      8m 33s
    6. Patching an irregularly shaped area
      6m 59s
    7. Healing between planes
      3m 34s
    8. Importing an image into a 3D scene
      5m 45s
    9. Adding perspective type
      5m 37s
    10. Removing and matching perspective
      5m 36s
    11. Applying a reflection in perspective
      5m 1s
    12. Creating a perspective gradient
      6m 11s
    13. Converting a gradient to a mask
      2m 58s
    14. Swinging planes to custom angles
      4m 32s
    15. Wrapping art around multiple surfaces
      5m 49s
  5. 1h 15m
    1. Introduction to Smart Objects
      58s
    2. Placing a Smart Object
      5m 7s
    3. Saving a PDF-compatible AI file
      4m 27s
    4. Performing nondestructive transformations
      6m 7s
    5. Editing a Smart Object in Illustrator
      6m 50s
    6. Converting an image to a Smart Object
      6m 50s
    7. Cloning Smart Objects
      5m 24s
    8. Creating a multilayer Smart Object
      5m 51s
    9. Updating multiple instances at once
      2m 54s
    10. Creating a Camera Raw Smart Object
      4m 17s
    11. Editing a Camera Raw Smart Object
      3m 25s
    12. Assembling a layered ACR composition
      5m 54s
    13. Using an ACR Smart Object to effect
      3m 41s
    14. Blending multiple ACR portraits
      6m 56s
    15. Live type that inverts everything behind it
      6m 32s
  6. 1h 48m
    1. Introducing nondestructive Smart Filters
      46s
    2. Applying a Smart Filter
      4m 22s
    3. Adjusting filter and blend settings
      4m 25s
    4. Heaping on the Smart Filters
      5m 19s
    5. Smart Filter stacking order
      7m 23s
    6. Resolution and Smart Filter radius
      6m 12s
    7. Masking Smart Filters
      4m 41s
    8. Employing nested Smart Objects
      5m 5s
    9. Dragging and dropping Smart Filters
      6m 31s
    10. Using the Shadows/Highlights filter
      5m 53s
    11. Regaining access to the pixels
      7m 8s
    12. Parametric wonderland
      5m 52s
    13. Working with the Filter Gallery
      6m 28s
    14. Freeform filter jam
      5m 51s
    15. Swapping filters from the Filter Gallery
      3m 45s
    16. Mixing all varieties of parametric effects
      7m 30s
    17. Addressing a few Smart Filter bugs
      3m 11s
    18. Applying a Smart Filter to live type
      5m 30s
    19. Choking letters with Maximum
      3m 7s
    20. Duplicating a Smart Filter
      2m 38s
    21. Enhancing a filter with a layer effect
      6m 30s
  7. 1h 6m
    1. Introduction to Auto-Align, Auto-Blend, and Photomerge
      1m 2s
    2. Merging two shots into one
      3m 49s
    3. Applying Auto-Align layers
      3m 44s
    4. Masking images into a common scene
      1m 38s
    5. Auto-Align plus Auto-Blend
      8m 11s
    6. Assigning weighted Opacity values
      4m 7s
    7. Employing a Difference mask
      7m 17s
    8. Masking smarter, not harder
      3m 53s
    9. Capturing multiple depths of field
      3m 37s
    10. Auto-blending real focus
      8m 31s
    11. Creating a panorama with Photomerge
      7m 27s
    12. Correcting a seamless panorama
      4m 52s
    13. An altogether nondestructive Lab correction
      7m 59s
  8. 1h 44m
    1. Introduction to new CS4 technologies
      1m 1s
    2. Applying Content-Aware Scale
      7m 18s
    3. What works and what doesn't with Content-Aware Scale
      4m 19s
    4. Protecting areas with masks
      7m 31s
    5. Applying incremental edits
      7m 6s
    6. Protecting skin tones
      7m 12s
    7. Scaling around a model with TLC
      9m 0s
    8. Adjusting the scale threshold
      5m 22s
    9. When Content-Aware Scale fails
      4m 2s
    10. Creating a lens distortion effect
      8m 39s
    11. Layer masking the family
      11m 44s
    12. Installing the Pixel Bender
      3m 42s
    13. Introducing Pixel Bender kernels
      6m 50s
    14. Pixel Bender kernel roundup
      7m 24s
    15. Tube View and Ripple Blocks
      3m 58s
    16. Making a seamless pattern with Kaleidoscope
      6m 13s
    17. Introducing the Pixel Bender Toolkit
      3m 24s
  9. 1h 20m
    1. Introduction to actions
      42s
    2. Creating an action
      5m 45s
    3. Recording operations
      5m 12s
    4. Reviewing and editing an action
      4m 45s
    5. Playing an action (the Button Mode)
      4m 50s
    6. Saving and loading actions
      5m 0s
    7. Copying and modifying an action
      4m 8s
    8. Permitting the user to change settings
      5m 50s
    9. The Best Chrome Effect Ever II
      3m 41s
    10. Recording a fail-safe action
      7m 33s
    11. Rounding corners with a mask
      4m 33s
    12. Cleaning up layers
      3m 51s
    13. Automating layer effects
      7m 1s
    14. Applying chrome with Gradient Map
      6m 24s
    15. Action anomalies
      4m 11s
    16. Rendering effects to layers
      5m 1s
    17. Testing that it works
      2m 0s
  10. 1m 14s
    1. See ya
      1m 14s

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