This particular tutorial is a little more complex. You will need to have been working with photoshop a little while before attempting this tutorial.
Tube: I am using the Feb 2021 bonus tube from Andreea Cernestean
Scrap: This is the matching kit for the bonus tube: ib-cernestean-feb21
Mask: 663 and 657 from Package 14
Please do not use any of the licensed supplies without purchasing them first.
First off, unzip all supplies.
Open the mask(s) you would like to use. You don’t have to use the ones I have chosen.
Select > All
Edit > Copy
This will save a “selection” of the white areas in the mask.
You can now close that mask.
Open a new 800 x 800 pixel canvas. Be sure it is set to 72ppi resolution. You can always resize later.
I usually add a color fill layer to the tag so it is easily changed should I use it on a different color website. Layer > New Fill Layer > Solid Color…
White usually works with most websites.
Place the paper on the canvas that you would like to use. You can either drag and drop it onto the canvas from your file browser, or you can use the File > Place… method. Just browse to the folder with the kit when prompted.
With the paper layer highlighted in the layers panel…
Select > Edit in Quick Mask Mode.
Edit > Paste
This will leave parts of the paper in red. This is good! If it doesn’t, then you will need to open and copy the mask again.
It seems that our mask was too big for the tag. Let’s fix that.
With the red “quick mask” still in effect, go to Edit > Free Transform
Fit the red mask inside your tag.
Select > Uncheck the Edit in Quick Mask Mode.
Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal Selection
Magic, right?? now you don’t have to worry about having an extra clipped layer.
Instead, you have a mask thumbnail attached to your paper layer.
Place another paper on your canvas and repeat the process with any other masks you want to use.
That’s it! How easy is that?
Now, time for the elements! This is where the real magic begins.
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.
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.
Now, back to the frame element layer. You have a frame, right? If not, you can skip this part. We need to add a fill layer to the picture frame.
Highlight the layer UNDER the frame in your layers panel. Now drop the paper you would like to use onto the canvas.
Grab your selection wand from the tools panel. If you can’t find it, check out the basics page for a better understanding of the tools layout.
The Selection Wand options should look like this at the top of your window:
Click on the center portion of the frame.
In the upper menu of Photoshop, click on Selection > Modify > Expand…
Expand your selection by 2px.
Now highlight your paper layer.
Go to Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal Selection.
Now you have a fill to your frame. Easy Peasy!
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 (click the top one, then shift + click the bottom one) and right click again. This time, choose “Paste Layer Style.”
It makes a HUGE difference to add shadows:
Let’s get rid of those shadows around the elements.
Highlight the bottom-most element layer, above the masks.
Hold the shift key and highlight the top-most element.
All of your element layers should be highlighted now.
Layer > Group Layers
Right click the mask thumbnail of your masked layers at the very bottom. Choose “Add Mask to Selection.”
Repeat this with all other masked layers. (All layers that have the black/white thumbnail addition.)
Now… right click the bottom element layer’s thumbnail (in this case, the frame element) and choose “Add transparency Mask.”
Repeat this with all other element layers.
Highlight your group in the layers panel and then go to Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal Selection
You can take a big soft round eraser and remove any unwanted portions of the mask. I just wanted to get rid of the part of the wordart that hung down just a little too far.
Viola! Shadows have been trimmed. Perfect. Let’s go on!
Open a new image. File > New 300×300 pixels should be good enough.
Fill the layer with gray. Some version of a middle gray, or you can go to Edit > Fill… and choose 50% gray from the dropdown.
Filter > Nose > Add Noise
Image > Adjustments > Desaturate
Edit > Define Pattern…
Name it whatever you like.
You can now close the image without saving.
Back to the tag.
Now that we have all of that done, time to add the next details. Tube and text. Fun!
Choose where you want your main tube to be placed.
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.
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. Notice the pattern in the “Stroke.” This is mine:
Now is the time to resize your tag, if you want. I don’t, but you can!
Don’t forget your copyright text!
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 (570). I am going to show you how to use the 25 frame animations that I have at CDO. To conserve space, we will be cutting the animation time in half.
You will see that all 25 layers are open and unhidden in the layers panel.
Highlight all of the odd numbered layers. Hold the ctrl (or cmd) key and click each one.
In the menu choose Layer > Group Layers
If you would like to use the entire animation, just highlight all of the layers and group them.
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.
Fit one of the flames to sit directly on top of one of the candle wicks.
Here is where things get just a little complicated. We are going to write a “temporary” action for this tag.
Make sure your Actions panel is visible. Window > Actions.
If you have never used actions before, you will notice the default set list is there. You can either leave them, or delete them from the list. If you choose to delete them, they will still be accessible later, should you need them.
That aside, let’s begin.
At the bottom of the panel, you will see several icons. Stop, Record, Play, New Set, New Action, and a Trashcan.
Click on the “New Set” icon (folder).
You can name this “Temporary Actions” or anything you think is appropriate.
Now, we want to begin a new action.
Click the “New Action” icon. I just named mine “Temp”
This will automatically begin the recording, so now pay VERY close attention to what you are doing.
Open up the group that has your animation in it, in the layers panel. Click on the little arrow icon beside the folder in the layers panel.
Highlight the “Frame 1” layer.
With your selection tool, select the other flames.
Grab your move tool from the tools panel and use the arrow keys on your keyboard to position the next flame on top of the other candle wick. Of course, this only moves one layer. But it is supposed to. Don’t worry.
In the top menu, choose Select > Deselect
Now at the bottom of your Actions panel, press the stop button. (square). The red Record button should now be gray again.
In the layers panel, highlight the “Frame 3” layer.
In the Actions panel, highlight your “Temp” action title.
Press play at the bottom of your Actions panel.
This will line the flame up with the other layer.
Repeat this for each of the “Frame x” layers in the layers panel.
Highlight, play, highlight, play, highlight, play, etc.
However, once the action was finished, I noticed that my flame isn’t actually lined up like I want… It’s still a little too low.
So, to fix that, I am going to re-record the action.
DO NOT CLICK UNDO! Leave the tag just like it is.
In the Actions panel, click on the first option under your “Temp” title. It should be “Set Selection.”
At the bottom, click the trashcan icon. This will delete the option in the action. Repeat this with the other steps. You should be left with just the folder and the action title.
Highlight the “Frame 1” layer again.
Press record at the bottom of the Actions panel. (circle)
Grab your selection tool and select the flames again.
Grab the move tool and use the arrow keys to move it. This time, hold the Shift key and press the Up button. (or however many times you need to do it, and in whatever direction.)
Select > Deselect
Press the stop button in the Actions panel.
Highlight the “Frame 3” layer in the Layers panel.
Press play at the bottom of the Actions panel.
Repeat this for all of the “Frame x” layers.
Highlight, play, highlight, play, highlight, play, etc.
Now the flame is lined up perfectly!
Highlight your group in the Layers panel that contains the flame animation.
Layer > Layer Mask > Reveal All
This adds a blank mask to the group.
Grab the eraser tool and remove the leftover flames.
Your animation alteration is complete! Let’s get this sucker moving, now.
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!
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 13 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!
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 background layer by clicking the little square box beside the layer thumbnail. An eye should appear…
Unfortunately, if you look in your animation panel, most of the time, that only unhides the background layer for the first animation frame. Just hide it again, and then unhide once more.
Photoshop has a strange sense of background layers. It doesn’t play nice. Thankfully, the bottom-most layer is the only one you have to click 3 times. (I sure hope you got all of that. It is hard to explain…)
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.
But wait… has there ever been a moment where your layers didn’t unhide like they were supposed to? Are you having to do this for each frame, no matter what? There may be a bit of a solution.
Look at the top of your Layers panel. You will see an option for “Propogate Frame 1” with a check box beside it. It MUST be checked for this to work. Otherwise, your first frame won’t act like the base. Dooooo eeeeet!
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!
Ooooo! You know what this animation needs? GLOW! Let’s make these flames glow.
Make sure you are on the FIRST frame of the animation.
Highlight the group in the layers panel that has your flames in it. You don’t have to expand it, just highlight it.
Right click and choose Blending Options.
It definitely makes a difference!
Your flames are complete!
You can highlight the “Temporary” Action set then hit the little trashcan icon at the bottom of the panel to delete it. You won’t need this one again, ever.
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:
I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial! If you would like to have another tutorial with something specific, them please let me know by using the contact form of this site. I am always open to “guest” CT work, as well.
My “Forever List” can find their tags in their Fotki folders