Please do not use any of the licensed supplies without purchasing them first.
I know you all have seen them. Those fonts that use these gorgeous letterings, but you can’t seem to type it out. It’s frustrating to say the least!
For this tutorial, we are going to be learning more about “glyphs” and how to use them in your tags. If you do not use the font(s) I have posted, you will need to be sure the font you have uses alternate characters.
Always install the OTF version of the font. There are usually two different formats in your downloads.
The differences, you ask?
OTF means Open Type Font. TTF means True Type Font.
TTF formated fonts have exactly what you need for typing and printing right in the font. It is the older and more popular font format. However, it is limited to a “what you see is what you get” deal.
OTF formated fonts have exactly what you would expect. An open format. They are able to contain up to 65,000 characters. These are NOT limited to keystrokes. You will need the character viewer (or glyph viewer) in your graphics program. Luckily, Photoshop has just that!
There is also a third option, but we won’t be needing that for tagging. That is for mass printing and the best resolution possible for large formats and printing.
To open your glyph viewer, go to Window > Glyphs. At the moment, since you have nothing open, it won’t do you a whole lot of good.
So let’s get started, so we can understand how to use these amazing things called Glyphs.
First off, unzip all supplies.
Open the template I have provided in the tutorial supplies. Delete the watermark layer, since you won’t be needing it.
You can resize the template to whatever you prefer. I usually size to 800 px on the longest side.
Drag and drop items straight from your file browser into the canvas.
Highlight the “Mask” layer.
Choose the paper you would like to use on your mask.
Drag the paper onto the canvas above the mask.
In your layers pallet, right click on the paper layer and choose Create Clipping Mask.
Clip a paper to each of the template layers, as well.
Now, time for the elements!
Remember to highlight the layer on the layers panel that you want the element to appear ABOVE.
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.
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 a layer (topmost works fine) and choose “Blending Options.”
I add a drop shadow and an outer glow. It 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 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:
Now that we have all of that done, time to add the next details. Tube and text. Fun!
Highlight the paper that is clipped to the “Circles Inside” layer.
Now drag and drop your tube onto the canvas. Right click the tube and Create Clipping Mask to the circles layer. This will put the tube inside the circles.
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.
I have two tubes used. You can clip more than one layer at a time. Just drag your other tube onto the canvas and Create Clipping Mask again.
Add the same drop shadow you did before. Don’t forget your copyright text!
Highlight the top layer of the layers pallet.
Grab your text tool and add the name you would like.
Here is where the fun of fonts finally comes in! I bet you are ready for this, aren’t you?
Now that you have your name typed out, highlight the first letter of the font.
You should see under the highlighted letter if there is an alternate for that particular letter. Just click on the alternate you want to use.
However, sometimes the font doesn’t show all alternatives, so this is where the Glyph panel comes in.
With your letter highlighted, open up your Glyph panel. You can scroll through the previews to see all of the different alternates of the whole font.
Double click on the alternate you want to use.
You can also change the view to show only the alternates for the selected letter(s).
You can check all of the letters to see exactly the combination to make your name look the best it can!
Position it just where you want it and add a layer style.
Speaking of. Did you notice in your Blending Options dialog, some of the features have a plus mark beside it?
This actually allows you to have more than one “layer” of this option! I have decided to add two shadows to this 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.
Just to show the difference in the Glyphs. This is two versions of my tag using the exact same font.
Let’s give a slight animation to this tag.
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.
This is going to get a little complicated to explain, so bear with me.
On the layers panel, cmd+click on the “Circles Inside” layer thumbnail. This will make a selection of the circles.
Highlight the topmost tube layer that you have clipped to the “Circles Inside” layer.
Layer > New > Layer… (Name it “Lights” or something)
Edit > Fill… White
Duplicate this layer 2 more times. You will now have 3 circles layers.
Use your selection tool (or eraser) to delete the last 2 circles from the “Lights” Layer.
On the “Lights Copy” layer, remove the first and last circle.
Highlight the “Lights Copy 2” layer. Take out the first 2 circles.
Now you will have all 3 circles on different layers.
Turn the blend mode of each of these to Soft Light. There is a drop down box at the top of your layers panel with all of the different options.
Now hide all three of these layers.
Down into the animation panel.
Duplicate the frame by clicking the little “+” at the bottom of the panel.
Unhide the “Lights” Layer in the layers panel.
Duplicate the frame in the animation panel.
Hide the “Lights” layer and unhide the “Lights Copy” layer.
Dupicate the frame in the animation panel.
Hide the “Lights Copy” layer and unhide the “Lights Copy 2” layer.
Highlight the first frame.
You see the button at the bottom of the animation panel that looks like a fading circle? Click that.
There will be a dialog box pop up.
This will add 3 more frames after your first frame.
Highlight frame 5 in the animation panel. This is the next frame after the first frame and the 3 tweened frames.
Repeat the tweening.
Highlight frame 9.
Repeat the tween.
Highlight the last frame. This time, DO NOT repeat the tween. You must click on the drop down box and select “First Frame: from the options. This will make sure you are tweening with the beginning of the animation and not going backwards.
You should now have 16 frames to your animation. You can click play at the bottom to see what your animation looks like.
Oh, right! Don’t forget to set your frame delay.
Select all of the frames in your animation panel. (Highlight the first frame, then shift+click the last frame). Then click the little arrow beside the “time” of the last frame.
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!