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Photoshop is one of the world’s most powerful image editors, and it can be daunting to try to use skillfully. Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced, the second part of the popular and comprehensive series, follows internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland as he dives into the workings of Photoshop. He explores such digital-age wonders as the Levels and Curves commands, edge-detection filters, advanced compositing techniques, vector-based text, the Liquify filter, and Camera Raw. Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, and enhancing colors without harming the original image. Exercise files accompany the course.
Recommended prerequisite: Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts and color settings for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.
All right. We're still working on this book cover title right here and we really need to make it more legible than it is and we're going to do that using a combination of layer effects and the original editable text layer here at the top of the Layers palette. I've gone ahead and saved my progress so far as Invert & threshold.psd. First step in this exercise is to make sure the BorW Threshold layer is active and we're going to apply a layer effect to it. So go down to the Effects icon at the bottom of the Layers palette and I want you to choose this guy right here, it's Color Overlay. That's going to go ahead and fill in the entire text layer with red. The only reason we're seeing gravel is because the Shadow layer is being multiplied in to the text, recall that.
So it goes ahead fills in all of the letters, all the way. We don't really want that and we want a different color. So I'm going to change this color swatch by clicking on it. I'm going to change the color from H, S, B, 0, 100, 100 as we're seeing right now to 0, 30, 100. So I'm just changing the Saturation value to 30% and I'll click OK and that turns the letters a grody Pepto-Bismol pink, but that's going to work out to our advantage later on. Not quite yet, but by the end of the exercise, these letters are going to look sweet.
Next, I only want to cover up the darkest colors, here the blacks, actually inside of the letters and I want to leave the whites alone. So I'm going to change the blend mode from Normal to Light and so we're only going to see the pink where it lightens the details on the background, which were the blacks. We're not going to see the pinks where it didn't lighten, which is white, because white is lighter than pink, whereas pink is lighter than black. All right, so click OK and this is the difference, this is -- I'll turn off Shadow for a moment here, so that we can focus just on the letters. This is what the effect looks like before applying the Color Overlay and this is what it looks like after Color Overlay. So we're just colorizing the black areas of the letters and nothing more.
All right, turn the Shadow layer back on there, so we get full interaction. Then I'm going to click on the Title invert layer, I want to add a Drop Shadow. So we need to have the Title invert layer active for this one so that we can trace the real letterforms. This layer is basically unaware of the real letterforms. All right, so select Title invert, click FX, choose Drop Shadow, like so, and the values I want you to enter are these. Go ahead and raise the Opacity up to 100%, the Angle value is -90, that's fine, that's what it ought to be. Then we're going to raise the Distance value to 10 pixels and the Size value to 10 pixels as well. And that's all there is to the Drop Shadow, nicely done, click OK.
Now the letters are starting to pop off the page, that's great, but it's still not enough. There is no way I could make out this title unless I have the book in my hands. If I'm across the room from it, it's not going to work. That's no good for a point of purchase or sales, you want to make sure to be attracting attention from a great distance as well as up close and personal. So, go to the end of road layer right at the top there, the editable text layer. Turn it on, make sure it's active and on. Then we're going to change the blend mode so we get an interactivity between the orange text and the text below. Set the blend mode to Screen, like so, and we get that nice effect there. Is that not awesome? All right. So we have a book cover. We've got an author. We've got an interaction of various layers. We have tons of adjustment layers working with each other here inside the Layers palette. We want to create one more thing. We need to create the big ghost. Remember that Blue man layer? We need to create it. We're going to create that layer as an adjustment layer.
Get that, there is something to freak you out and we're going to do it in the next exercise.
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