Join Deke McClelland for an in-depth discussion in this video Making a 3D pillow inflation, part of Photoshop CS5 Extended One-on-One: 3D Type Effects.
In this chapter, I am going to show you how to create pillow inflations, which are great for creating soft, fluffy, rounded 3D type effects. We'll ultimately end up with this effect here, but we are going to start off inside a file called Squishy.psd, which is found inside the 05_pillow folder. Now, it features that same font, Poplar, that we used in the previous chapter. So one minute you can use a typeface for a grunge effect, then you can turn around and use that exact same typeface for a pillow inflation. So if you don't have Poplar loaded on your system, you may end up getting a font warning. Don't worry about it; I've also got a shape layer ready and waiting for you.
Let's go ahead and work from that shape layer. It's called s&s, here at the top of the stack inside the Layers panel. To keep it safe, I'll go ahead and press Control+J, or Command+J on the Mac, to create a copy of that layer, then I'll turn off the original. Then go up to the 3D menu, choose Repousse, and choose Layer Mask. If you get the alert message, just click the Yes button. A moment or two later, Photoshop will bring up the Repousse dialog box. All right, let's go ahead and make a few initial adjustments. I am going to move the dialog box over, so we can better see what we are doing. I'll go up here to the Materials options, click on All, and then choose No Texture.
We also need to make sure that we're seeing holes in the right locations. So go ahead and change the Type option down here toward the bottom of the dialog box to Hole. That's not going to take care of all of them. In fact, I am not even sure which one it did take care of. It looks like the hole inside the Q is now a Hole, but we've got three others that we need to address. So go ahead and select the Rotate tool there under the word Internal, and click on the hole inside of the O. Change Type from Inactive, to Hole. Go ahead and click on the top hole inside the ampersand, change its Type to Hole, and then finally, click on the bottom hole inside the ampersand and then go ahead and change its type to hole as well, and that should take care of everybody.
Now, we don't want any Depth setting whatsoever, so go ahead and set the Depth to zero, and now we've got just plain old flat type. We also have this Inflate option. Go ahead and change the Sides to Front and Back, so that we are fluffing both sides of the type, and go ahead and take the Angle value up to 75. Now, note that the Strength value remains dimmed; it should activate, but that's because Photoshop requires us to sort of drag the slider around before Strength becomes active. Anyway, let's stick with that angle of 75 there.
And notice, you can go ahead and take that Strength value up as high as 1, and that's going to give you a lot of fluff associated with your type, as you can see right there. However, if I go ahead and drag the type around, and in my case, I am actually dragging the Internal Constraints, because I have this tool selected here. That's not what I want, so I'll go ahead and click on that little home button there in order to restore those Constraints. And let's switch to the Rotate the Mesh tool, which is located up here in the upper left corner of the dialog box. And now, drag the type around, like so, and you can see that we've got some pretty radical problems.
We've got this big lump in the middle of the H, for example. We've got some lumps at the bottom of the U, at the bottom of the Q, over here at the top of the O; all kinds of weirdness is going on. Now, you are going to get better results if you set that Mesh Quality from Draft, to Best. Now, it might take a few moments for Photoshop to update the screen display, so you will have to wait for it. It may take several seconds in fact, but you can see that things just got smoother; just slightly smoother onscreen. So we do want a Mesh Quality of Best, but we don't want this Strength value; there's a better way to work.
So I am just going to go ahead and reduce that Strength value to 0, once again, and press the Tab key. Then you are going to have to wait for Repousse to update the screen display again. Now, you may look at that and say, well those are some awfully flat letters Deke. Again, as I say, we'll take care of that in a moment. For now, go ahead and click on that little home button below the various mesh tools, and that will restore the angle of the mesh to straight on. And then go ahead and click the OK button in order to create that 3D object. All right; so that's step one. We now have a classic pillow inflation inside of Photoshop.
We've got to fluff it up, however, and I'll show you how that works in the next exercise.
- Smearing colors across letters
- Creating drop-and-splatter effects
- Tracing character outlines with smart filters
- Rotating, positioning, and scaling words
- Quickly (and accurately) masking 3D letters
- Assigning complex, high-quality bevels
- Matching 3D type to a photographic scene
- Adding a crack to a grunge letter
- Making a 3D pillow inflation
- Simulating worn fabric with soft noise
- Making blocky type using depth maps
- Carving recessed type in a tree
- Creating a sunken extrusion
- Bending 3D text as a Smart Object