Join Julieanne Kost for an in-depth discussion in this video Puppet Warp, part of Photoshop CC 2018 Essential Training: Design.
- [Instructor] Puppet Warp is a great way to bend and distort objects in Photoshop. Before I apply it, I'll convert the layer into a smart object by right clicking and choosing Convert to Smart Object. Then I'll select Edit and Puppet Warp. Puppet Warp adds a mesh on top of the image, and let's go ahead and zoom in. I'll use command plus, once and then twice. I'll hold down the space bar and reposition this in my image area so that we can see it a little bit better. If I want to hide the mesh, I can uncheck the option in the options bar, but let's leave it on for now.
In order to start warping the image, we need to add some pins to the warp. Anywhere you click will add a pin. So I'll add one pin at the top, one in the center, and one near the bottom. Now when I click on any of these pins and drag them, you can see that we can bend and warp our object. There are three different modes that we can warp. By default, we're in the Normal mode, but if you switch to Rigid and you try bending it, you'll just notice that it's a little bit stiffer as it tries to bend and use the warp.
If we change this to Distort, then it really distorts freely and you can see different areas of the drill actually expand and contract. So that's a little bit more of a crazy distortion. I'm going to switch it back to Normal for now, and let's drag the shape on top of itself, so I'm going to bring this down and I might add one more pin, maybe right down here, and then drag the lower pin on top of the other one.
So let's turn off the mesh so we can see what we're doing, and in this case we can see that I'm overlapping the bottom of the tool over the top. But if I needed to change that, you can use these icons for the pin depth in order to bring them down, so I'm going to decrease the stacking order here, and you can see that the bottom of it goes below the pin. So this stacking order, or the pin depth here, can be very useful when you're trying to overlap objects or if you've got multiple objects on the same layer and you want to overlap one on top of another.
Okay, let's go ahead and click the reset button and then we'll show our mesh again. We'll click to add maybe four pins this time, one at the top, one about halfway down the drill area, one at the base here, and one at the very bottom. And I just want to add a little bit of an S curve here, so I'll click on the top pin and drag that over to the left. I'll drag the next pin up. I'll hold down the space bar in order to reposition the image, and then I'll click and drag on the lower pin.
Now if I wanted to change two pins at once, I could hold down the shift key to select both pins, and you can see that they both move. If I want to delete a pin at any time, I can hold down the option key and position my cursor on top of the pin. I get a pair of scissors. When you click, it will delete that pin. I'll go ahead and add the pin back and then click and drag it back over to the other side. If I want to rotate around a specific pin, I can hold down the option key when I'm close to a pin, and then click and drag in order to rotate that.
Alright, so let's say I like this effect. I'll go ahead and apply it by clicking on the check mark. Then let's zoom out. I'll use command zero to fit in window. At this point, if I wanted to make some duplicates of this, well let's see what happens. On the layers panel, I'll use command j in order to create a duplicate, but now I want to transform this duplicate. When I select command t to Transform, or choose Edit and then Free Transform, Photoshop is telling me that it's going to turn off the Puppet Warp while I'm transforming.
I'll click OK, and you can see that you can't really preview how I would want to transform this because it's turning off the Puppet Warp. So let's escape out of here and I'm going to delete this copy by tapping the delete key, and instead of copying this layer, I'm actually going to nest this smart object into another smart object. I'll do that by going to the Layer menu, choosing Smart Objects, and Convert to Smart Object.
So I've nested the Puppet Warp within this smart object, and what this allows me to do is make a duplicate of it using command j, and then when I use command t in order to free transform it, you'll notice that the bounding box is different this time. It's actually taking up the entire image, and if I right click and I choose Flip Horizontally, and then tap enter or return, we can see that I can actually transform this and maintain the preview because I've nested the smart object within another smart object.
There's another benefit of doing it this way. In fact, let's create two more copies. So I'll hold down the command key and select both of these layers in my layers panel. Then I'll use command j to make a duplicate. We'll choose command t in order to do a free transform. I can right click and then flip these vertically, and then reposition them in the image area and tap return or enter in order to apply that transformation. In fact we could do that again.
I could select all four of these layers in my layers panel, use command j in order to duplicate them, command t in order to transform them. This time I'll just rotate it, positioning my cursor outside of the transformation handle. Holding down the shift key will allow it to snap to 90 degrees, and then I can tap return or enter to apply that transformation. So I've got kind of this cool design going on, but what if I don't like the original Puppet Warp? Well because we used command j to create a duplicate of all of these layers on the layers panel, if I edit the contents of one of these, it will update in all of them.
So I can select any of the layers, double click on it in the layers panel. That brings up the tool that has the Puppet Warp smart filter applied. If I actually wanted to go in and retouch or do pixel editing on the tool, then I could double click on this smart object here. Now we can see I can actually access the tool, but I don't need that, so I'll choose File and then Close. I'll double click on Puppet Warp in order to access the warp again.
I'll go ahead and make some changes to this pin and then apply that puppet warp. Choose File and then Save and then File and Close, and we can see in the master document that all of the instances of that smart object have been updated. So you can see, especially when you use smart objects, Puppet Warp can be a great way to freely bend and warp objects in Photoshop.
Photoshop CC boasts tools and features for making tonal and color adjustments, applying effects and treatments to type and graphics, and distorting, filtering, and layering elements—all while maintaining the highest-quality output. In this course, Julieanne demonstrates how to efficiently perform common design tasks, including editing images, drawing shapes, and working with type and fonts. Along the way, she shares the secrets of nondestructive editing using Smart Objects, and helps you master features such as layers, filters, blending modes, typography, custom brushes, vector masks, and much more—increasing your productivity every step of the way.
- Working with Smart Objects
- Linked vs. embedded Smart Objects
- Creative transformations and warping
- Essential filters for designers
- Emulating traditional drawing techniques
- Working with shape and fill layers
- Pen tool basics
- Applying layer effects and styles
- Type essentials
- Creative brush techniques
- Working with libraries and artboards
- Exporting files and sharing images