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Photoshop has become an indispensible tool for photographers, designers, and all other creative professionals, as well as students. Photoshop CS4 Essential Training teaches a broad spectrum of core skills that are common to many creative fields: working with layers and selections; adjusting, manipulating, and retouching photos; painting; adding text; automating; preparing files for output; and more. Instructor Jan Kabili demonstrates established techniques as well as those made possible by some of the new features unique to Photoshop CS4. This course is indispensable to those who are new to the application, just learning this version, or expanding their skills. Example files accompany the course.
One of the more fun text features in Photoshop is the Warp Text. Warping text is useful when you want to make some crazy special effects on text, or when you want to try to bend text around an object, like the can that you see right here. To start I have a regular type layer, which you see here in the Layers panel. This is point type and after I've created the text I just came in and selected this top line and changed its font size. So the first thing I have to do to bend this text around the can is to make it smaller.
Because this is vector text, I can change the size as much as I want. I can scale it up, or scale it down without risking degrading its appearance. To scale this down I am going to use the Free Transform command. To invoke that command, I'll press Command+T on a Mac or Ctrl+T on a PC. Then I get this bounding box. What I'd like to do is to resize from the center. So I am going to hold down the Option key on a Mac, or the Alt key on a PC plus the Shift key. The Shift key is to constrain proportions.
Then I'm going to move my mouse over any one of the corner points and drag and you see that it's dragging in from the center. That will make it easier for me to see when I have adjusted the right size to fit on this can. That looks about right. Then I'll click inside the bounding box and I will just move it up on top of the can. Then I will go up to the Options bar at the top of the screen where I have to click that checkmark to accept the transform. So now I want to bend this text, so it follows the line of the can. That's where Warp Text comes in. With my Type tool still selected and this type layer still selected in the Layers panel, I'll go up to the Options bar and I will click this icon right here, which is the Warp Text icon.
That opens the Warp Text dialog box, where I can choose from a number of preset styles. I'll click on that menu, where there is a list of the various preset warp styles that are available. There are some really crazy ones like the Fisheye down here. Here is one in the shape of a fish. But for the most part I start with those at the top, like the Arc, or the Lower Arc, or the Upper Arc. I think in this case the Arch is going to be the best. It doesn't look correct right now, but I can use these sliders to customize any of the presets.
What I want to do to here is to bend that arc in the other direction. So I am going to grab the Bend slider and move to the left. As I do you can see the type is coming down into the direction that I want, and I'll just do it until I get to a point where it looks good to me. Then I will click OK. I'll get my Move tool and I'll just move that into place. That's it. If you look in the Layers panel, you'll see that there is a new icon on this layer. It's the Warp Text icon and what it means is that this is still an editable type layer.
So I could change the color, or the content, or anything about this if I wanted. If I wanted to change the way that the type is warping, I could go back and select my Type tool again, and then go up and click on the Warp icon and I could change it again and click OK. You may remember that there is another warp feature in Photoshop and that's the Warp feature under and Edit > Transform. So don't mix these two up. You can use this Warp on type as well, but the Text Warp feature is specifically for type. If I want to try this one, I can do that and then I will have a little anchor point and I can get some more precise control using the Transform Warp and then click the checkmark.
So Warp Text is a fun special effect for making crazy shaped headlines, or it can be quite useful when you need bend some text around an object as I showed you how to do here.
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