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For the first installment of Photoshop for Designers, Nigel French shows how to create editable, non-destructive effects such as shadows, glows, and bevels with layer effects in Photoshop. The course covers the use of layer effects like Drop Shadow, Inner Shadow, Bevel and Emboss, and Gradient Overlay, as well as how to combine effects with blending modes, transparency, and textures. With these techniques, designers can finesse type and graphics, control light, warp text, and extrude shapes, creating drama and adding depth to their compositions.
So we've worked with the shadows. Now let's work with the glows, which we can think of as being the counterparts to the shadows, but they are adding light instead of shadow. And because they are adding light the default color is a light color and the default blending mode is light blending mode, a light yellow and Screen respectively. And we will leave them as they are for now. Now that the Noise option for Outer Glow is included here with Opacity and it does just that. It increases noise. If I first of all increase the Size, we can add Noise to our glow like that, should we want to.
I'm going to put that back down to 0. Let me just say that while these are the default colors in blending modes, maybe we want to have a dark glow in which case I could click on that, choose a dark color. It has no effect at the moment, because I'm using a lightening blending mode, but if I change this to Multiply then we have a darker glow. Let's put that back to how it was though. Let's go with something like that and back to Screen.
So we can apply our glow as a solid color or as a gradient and at the moment, because the gradient is a color to transparency gradient, it's not really going to look any different regardless of which one of these we choose. But I'm going to leave it on a solid color for now, but we will choose this one in just a moment. In the Elements area we can apply this as Softer or more Precise. So just try those and see which one you like. Precise does tend to result in these rather choppy breaks around the curves and more typically I use Softer.
We have a Spread slider here just as we had in Drop Shadow, which will control how much of the effect is opaque. As we move this up, we get more opaqueness and hardening of the edge of our glow. We also have our Contour option that we saw with Drop Shadow and Anti-alias and then we have two new options, Range and Jitter. Both of which are rather hard to understand, neither of which are terribly important, but Range controls what part of the effect the contour curve that you're working with is applied to.
Now at the moment, and this is the default amount, at 50% it is applying across the whole of the Range. It is affecting the transparent areas on the right-hand side of the slider and it is also affecting the opaque areas. If we move this to the right, it is only affecting the transparent areas and if we move it to the left it is only affecting the opaque areas. For the most part we leave it right where it is, in the middle. Jitter will introduce random noise into the glow, but it only works when combined with applying a gradient to the glow.
So if I choose the Jitter slider right now, it's having no effect whatsoever. If I then clicked on the gradient, it's still having no effect and that's because the gradient goes to transparency and we are not really seeing the noise that it's introducing. But if I change the gradient by clicking on the Gradient Editor and use one color to another, both solid colors, we can now see the effect of moving the Jitter slider to the right. We're introducing this noise into the glow.
And if I move that down we can see what the gradient glow would look like without that. So those are the options that relate to the Outer Glow.
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