First off, I want to thank you all for the patience with me the last couple of months. I have been on vacation in the states since December, and haven’t had much time for writing tutorials. I am still on vacation right now, but I thought I’d take a little time to give an update and a new tutorial! Even though, it took me a few days to write haha!
Vacation has been going great, but my mom certainly keeps me occupied!
But enough of that. On to the good stuff!
Template: The 4th from last template on the template downloads page. AoRK_Template-47
Mask: 484 from Package 10
Please do not use any of the licensed supplies without purchasing them first.
First off, unzip all supplies.
Open the mask you have chosen to place in your tag. You don’t have to use the one I am using.
Select > All
Edit > Copy
Select > Edit in Quick Mask Mode
Edit > Paste
Select > uncheck Edit in Quick Mask Mode
This will leave you with a selection around the white areas of the mask.
Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal Selection
This will remove the black areas of the mask. However, you will notice a faint dark outline around the white area. But don’t worry! We will reduce that.
Right click the mask in the layers panel. It will be the black and white “attachment” thumbnail to your layer. Choose “Select and Mask…” from the options.
In the right side panel, you will see some options. Set them similar to this:
You can adjust the numbers to make your mask look better.
Now hit the OK button. This will take you back to your mask canvas.
Right click the mask in the layers panel and choose “Apply Layer Mask”.
Save this as a PNG where ever you can find it easily.
You can close this image now.
Open the template you downloaded. I have resized it to 800px wide, but you can resize it to anything you like.
Delete the watermark layer from the template. Or you can just hide it with the eye icon in the layers panel, in case you want to remember where you got it later.
Since this template is not a perfect square, I would like to adjust it to be a square.
Image > Canvas Size…
Make both of the entries the same. Always use the bigger number, though. If you use the smaller number, you will end up chopping off part of your template.
Thanks to Gail Wilson for this little trick, we can eliminate a step later in the tut.
Layer > New… > Fill Layer…
You can choose any color to match the website you are using. I just use white, but my website is white, so it fits. You can name this layer Background by double clicking on the name in the layers panel. This is just to keep the tag nice and organized.
Add a new blank layer to your tag. (Layer > New… > Layer…)
Layer > Arrange > Send to Back. This will send the layer to the very bottom of your template.
I like to rename this layer “Blank” so I know what it is for. I will give more information on this when it comes time to (not) use it.
Highlight the Background layer in the layers panel.
Drag and drop the mask you edited onto your canvas. If your mask placed as a Smart Object, right click and choose “Rasterize Layer.”
Let’s add some papers to your template.
Highlight the layer you would like to use, then drag and drop the papers onto your tag.
Once you dragged the paper onto your canvas, right click it in the layers panel and choose “Create Clipping Mask” from the options.
Right click it again and “Merge Down” onto the template layer. This will reduce the amount of layers you have later.
This is what I have so far:
Now, time for the elements.
You can drag and drop items straight from your file browser into the canvas. This makes it faster to place items.
Instead of telling you exactly where to put what and what size to use, I am just going to show you a animated image of what I did. This way, you can create your own version of the tag without doing exactly what I have done.
I didn’t put a whole lot of elements, because I want the template to be the showcase of the tag.
When placing your elements, you can transform them again by going to Edit > Free Transform. Just be sure you hold the shift key to constrain the proportions.
As you can see, it is pretty random. I just place the items where I think they might work.
We definitely want to add some shadows to our elements. Without shadowing, the tag will just look flat. The secret to a good tag, is a good shadow effect.
Right click (or ctrl+click) a layer and choose “Blending Options.”
I add a drop shadow and an outer glow. The glow enhances the effect a bit.
Now after you have hit OK, right click the layer again and choose “Copy Layer Style.”
Highlight all of your element layers, (one at a time, if you need) and right click again. This time, choose “Paste Layer Style.”
It makes a HUGE difference to add shadows:
Now that we have all of that done, time to add the next details. Tube and text. Fun!
Highlight the top layer of your tag.
Now drag and drop your tube onto the canvas. Resize and adjust it to your liking. Always make sure you constrain your proportions while resizing. Hold the Shift key while you drag the corners.
Add the same drop shadow you did before.
We need to remove the part of the tube that hangs over the circle, so let’s get that done.
First, highlight the tube layer and then go to Layers > Layer Mask > Reveal All. This will add a white thumbnail to your tube layer in the layers panel.
Right click the thumbnail of the circle (1) in the layers panel and choose Select Pixels. This will put a selection around the circle.
Select > Inverse.
Now highlight the mask thumbnail of your tube layer. Using your eraser tool, erase the part of the tube that hangs over the circle.
However, you will notice that the drop shadow now hangs over the circle… We need to get rid of that, too.
Open the blending options of your tube layer. On the Blending Options tab, check the box that says “Layer Mask Hides Effects.”
Now right click the circles framing layer thumbnail (2) and choose Select Pixels.
Highlight the tube mask thumbnail again and use your eraser to remove a portion of the tube that should lie behind it.
I just realized that the wordart would probably go pretty good behind the tube, so I added it. You can change up your tags as you go to match you visions!
If you would like to remove the excess shadows from around your tag, I have explained how to do that HERE.
Resize before adding copyrights!
Highlight the top layer of the layers panel.
Grab your text tool and add the name you would like. Position it just where you want it and add a layer style. This is mine:
That leave us with the non-animated version of the tag! If you wold like to keep the JPG version, you can save here. Simply File > Save As… and choose the jpg option from the drop down box at the bottom of the dialog.
Here’s where it starts getting complicated. We want to add animation!
Make sure your Animation Panel is open. Window > Timeline (or Animation, if you are on earlier versios)
You will need to click the “Create Frame Animation” button. If you do not see this button, please refer to THIS page for more information about the timeline.
You will see that your first frame is already there. But… ignore it! We don’t need it.
File > Open… choose an animation that you’d like to use. I am going to show you how to use the 25 frame animations that I have at CDO.
You will see that all 25 layers are open and unhidden in the layers panel.
In the menu, choose Select > All Layers.
Layer > Group Layers
Now right click on your group in the layers panel and duplicate. BUT DON’T HIT OK, YET!
In the duplicate dialog, choose your tag from the dropdown box. If you haven’t saved by this point, you should see an “Untitled-1” option. (but you definitely should have saved before now. Remember, always save often.)
After you have chosen your tag, hit ok. You can close the animation file without saving.
Back to your tag.
You can resize and rotate the group using the Edit > Free Transform option. Be sure you are resizing the whole group, not just one layer. Don’t forget to hit the check mark at the top of the window to apply the transformation.
On the right side of your animation panel, click the 4 horizontal lines. Choose the option that says “Make Frames from Layers.”
Now, this made a mess of things, didn’t it?? LOL! But no, not really. You will see that it created a frame for every layer in your tag. And that’s ok!
However, you will notice that some of the animation frames are blank. You will need to unhide all of the group folders in the layers panel. NOT the contents, just the folder.
Click on the first frame in the animation panel. At the bottom of the window, there is a trashcan icon. That deletes the frame. Delete all of the frames that aren’t part of the animation. You should be left with 25 frames that contain only the animation layers.
You will see that your tag only has one animation layer visible in each frame. You want this!
However, seeing this particular animation will be difficult, since it is so light… But don’t worry, we will be seeing it again very soon.
You can collapse the group again now, so you don’t mistakenly unhide layers in there. Click on the little arrow icon beside the group icon in the layers panel.
In the animations panel, click on the first frame. You MUST BE ON THE FIRST FRAME to do any kind of editing from here on out. ALWAYS make sure you are on the first frame. ALWAYS! I can’t stress that enough.
Are you on the first frame of the animation yet? Good. Now we can continue.
In the Layers panel, unhide the color fill layer from the beginning of the tut by clicking the little square box beside the layer thumbnail. An eye should appear…
But, for any of you who have followed other tutorials of mine, you notice that you don’t need to click 3 times anymore!! Thank you Gail!
Now, one by one, unhide all of the layers to your tag. DON’T touch the animation layers, though! Those are already spaced out the way they should be. Leave those alone.
After you have unhidden all of your tag layers, you can click play at the bottom of the animation panel to check out your creation!
If you would like to make your animation smaller, you can highlight all of the odd numbered frames and then click on the little trashcan icon at the bottom. I like to keep mine at full size. It’s just nicer for digital picture dispaly
Oh, right! Don’t forget to set your frame delay.
Highlight all of your frames in the animation panel. Highlight the first frame and then hold shift. Click on the last frame. Now all frames are highlighted.
Click on the little arrow beside the time of the last frame. This will bring up a popup for more “delay” options.
Now you will need to save your animation as a gif file.
In your animation dialog, use these settings:
My “Forever List” can find their tags in their Fotki Folders.