For PSP V7Home   >   Tutorials   >   PSP 7 Effects   >
Pot of Gold Pt 1 - Creating the Rainbow
Download this tutorial Download (553kb)
E-mail this tutorial to a friend Email to Friend

Pot of Gold Pt 1 - Creating the Rainbow
Created by: the Prof


This tutorial works with Tubes & the Deformation Tool and is part of a series which creates the various images that will be used in the On-Line Tutorial for Creating a Pot Of Gold, a St. Patrick's Day Card.

The tutorials are:

  • The Rainbow -- this tutorial: (Describes Gradients, Creates a Rainbow Gradient and Tube File.)
  • The Shamrock: (Using Circles and Shading Effects)
  • The Pot: (Using the Weave & Sculpture Effects with shading.)
  • The Pot of Gold: (on-line class tutorial) - The St. Patrick's Card

In this tutorial, we will create a Shamrock primarily using circles and shading. The final image (a PSP file) will be used in the On-Line Tutorial and we will also make a Tube of this image.

(This tutorial is written for PSP v.7 although many features are available also in PSP v.6.)


In this tutorial, we will use the Gradient Editor to create the Rainbow used in the final image. Once we have created the Rainbow gradient and made the rainbow, we will also save it as a Tube File.

(This tutorial is written for PSP v.7 although many features are available also in PSP v.6.)

We will first explore the PSP feature of using Gradients using one of the Preset Gradient Patterns. Next, we will look at the Gradient Editor to understand how one creates a gradient pattern. Then, we will use the Editor and create the Gradient used to make a Rainbow for our image. And finally, we will create the Rainbow and make it a tube file to use in our St. Patrick's Card.


Exploring Gradients

Setting the Gradient Style

  • Set: Foreground = White and Background = Black
  • New Canvas: 300 x 300 pixels, Foreground, 16 M colors
Note:When you click on the Right Arrow in the Styles Foreground (or Background) box you will select the style:
  • Paint Brush = Solid Colors
  • Gradient = Gradient Patterns
  • Pattern = Patterns
  • Null = Turning off Style
  • Select: Gradient

Selecting the Gradient Pattern

When one clicks, now, in the Styles Box, the Gradient Window Appears. The following are the Options available:

  • The Gradient Selector Box: Clicking on the Gradient Selector Box or the down arrow brings up a window with the preset gradients provided by PSP. In my version I have 43 different patterns to select from.
  • The Edit Button: The Edit Button, which will be explored below, brings up the Gradient Editor where one edits and creates new Gradient Patterns.
  • The Invert Gradient: The Invert Gradient box, when Checked, inverts the pattern. You will want to explore the various patterns and determine when to invert it as experience is the best teacher here.
  • The OK Button: The OK Button is clicked when the Gradient Pattern Options you want are ready to be set. When Click the Gradient Pattern is then seen in the Styles Box.
  • The Cancel Button: The Cancel Button will just cancel and leave the Styles Box as originally set. At times one may wish to see the options used, particularly in the Gradient Editor screen, and then use Cancel to just return.
  • The Styles Area: The Style Area allows one to select one of four gradient patterns. (The Best teacher here is to just explore them to see how each produces the pattern.):
    • Linear Gradient: (Top Icon) The Linear Gradient produces an image in a linear fashion. Often this gradient pattern is used for landscape background images as it will produce a dark to light pattern dependent upon the pattern used.
    • Rectangular Gradient: (Second from Top) The Rectangular Gradient produces a box like pattern that has a rectangular 3-D effect.
    • Sunburst Gradient: (Third from Top) The Sunburst Gradient produces a pattern in which the pattern has a circular or sunburst effect often used to create a background with a sun/moon effect.
    • Radial Gradient: (Fourth from Top) The Radial Gradient creates a cylinder or radial pattern.
  • The Horizontal and Vertical Settings: Horizontal and Vertical Settings will move the center of focus. The Style Linear Gradient will not use these settings.
  • The Angle: The Angle setting will rotate the gradient pattern according to the angle used. (Only the Linear Gradient uses this option.)
  • Repeats: The Repeats setting will produce the original (0) or duplicate it by the number set to create variations of the original pattern. (All Styles use this option. Most often the setting of zero (0) is the best to use.)

Explore the Foreground-Background Linear Pattern

Use the Following Settings to explore the Linear Gradient:

  • Gradient Pattern = #1 (Foreground-Background)
  • Style = Linear
  • Invert Gradient = Checked
  • Horizontal and Vertical are grayed out
  • Angle = 0
  • Repeats = 0
  • Click on OK

Now, Use the Flood Fill Tool and Flood Fill your Canvas.

Have some fun and explore other Styles and option settings to see the almost unlimited number of background images one may create.


Exploring the Gradient Editor

PSP provides the opportunity to create new gradient patterns. The following explores the Gradient Editor which one uses and will appear when the EDIT button is clicked in the Gradient Window. The following briefly describes the various areas of the Gradient Editor.

First, Select a Gradient Style and Pattern to explore, or just use the Foreground-Background Pattern from above.

  • Click in the Styles Box
  • Select the Gradient Style
  • Select the Pattern
  • and then click on the Edit Button.

Gradient Editor - Types Area

The Types Area will have the Gradient Chosen highlighted. In this example the Rainbow Gradient we will be creating is illustrated.

To Select any Gradient to Edit, just scroll in the box of listed types and highlight the Gradient wanted. It's settings will then be visible in the this window.

The Options available are:

  • New: To create a new Gradient Pattern click on NEW. Then give the New Gradient a NAME. A new Gradient Editor window will appear with all other options showing just a white gradient.
  • Copy: To use an existing Gradient you may want to edit, just click on COPY. Then give the gradient a New Name. A new Gradient Editor will appear with the same options as the one you copied from and you are now ready to edit it.
  • Rename: There may be times you want to rename a Gradient to another name to better describe it. Just click on RENAME and give it a new name.
  • The newly named gradient will now appear in the Types Box.
  • Delete: Sometimes when you are creating a New Gradient you might give variations different names. Then, when you find a gradient you don't want, just DELETE it.
  • Import and Export are advanced functions and not often used.

Gradient Editor - Gradient Area

The Gradient Area is where one edits and sets the gradient colors that will be used for this Gradient. Once one finishes setting these colors just Save It.

In this area you are able to set Colors (Use Foreground and/or Background Colors already selected or Use Custom Colors you select) and set the Markers or Pointers (where the color(s) you have selected for each marker will be displayed in the pattern). Learning to use the Markers is the key to developing new Gradient Patterns. Most often you will want to use the Custom Colors option so you control the colors of the gradient areas (markers).

In the example illustrated, the Custom Colors is selected and the Marker at the left (which is white) is selected.

Notice in the LOCATION % Box, zero (0) is shown. This setting indicates that the Marker is at the very left most position of the color bar. This setting varies from 0 to 100.

Notice in the Custom Box, white is showing which is the color selected. Also notice that the Marker has its top point BLACK which indicates it has been selected.


Gradient Editor - Transparency Area

The Transparency Area has a similar set up as in the Gradient Area except one does not change colors and the color bar is white with the two points at each end. This area allows one to change the transparency of the pattern from completely opaque (100% Opacity) to completely transparent (0% Opacity) which are changed in the Opacity Box. One can manipulate the pointer locations to alter which part of the color bar has more or less transparency.

Gradient Editor - Results Area

The Results Area displays in the color bar the results of the settings in both the Gradient Area and the Transparency Area.

Gradient Editor -- Creating Gradients

Step 1. Use the Gradient Area. Set the Markers (Pointers) which are below the Gradient Bar. Set the Colors. Set the and the colors for each pointer. Set the Mid Points (diamond) which are above the bar and by default set at 50% between two Markers.

Add New Markers by placing cursor just below the bar and click the mouse. Delete Markers by clicking on the Marker, hold down the mouse button and drag off to the bottom. Note that whenever you add a Marker a Mid Point is automatically added in the correct default spot.

Step 2. Use the Transparency Area. You can change the transparency using the Opacity switch, can add Markers and create interesting patterns

Our next task is to create a Rainbow pattern using all these features. Since the Rainbow has a circular shape, so to speak we will use the SunBurst Pattern when done to draw it.


Creating a Rainbow Gradient

Set the Gradient Colors

Before one is able to create a Gradient Pattern, one needs to first set any Gradient Pattern in the Styles Box. In our illustrations above, we set the Foreground-Background Pattern.

Then, one clicks on the EDIT Button for the Gradient Editor. The following instructions are for the Gradient Editor already visible.

  • Click on the New Button and Label the Pattern 'Rainbow'. The default pattern will have just two Markers at each end of the Color Bar. The default color maybe white or maybe another color.
  • Use the Custom Colors
  • If color is other than white, click on each End Marker and set it to White.
  • Add a New Marker by clicking near the center of the color bar and below it. Set the Location = 50%. Click in the Custom Color color wheel box and set the Color = Yellow (255,255,0).
  • Add a New Marker, clicking to the Left of the Yellow Marker just below the Color Bar. Set its Location = 40%. In the Custom Color color wheel box, set the Color = Purple (255,0,255). (Notice now, the colors are blending on the Results Bar from yellow, orange, red to Purple.)
  • Add a New Marker, clicking to the Right of the Yellow Marker. Set its Location = 60%. Set the Color = Cyan (0,255,255). (Notice now, that in the Results Color Bar we have a blend of colors from left to right of a rainbow spectrum. There is much more cyan and purple than the other blends.)

Set the Gradient Transparency

First, set this Gradient by clicking on OK. Then click Ok in the Gradient Window. Finally, use the Flood Fill Tool you will get an image with much Purple and Cyan and little Rainbow Effect. (Remember to use the SunBurst Gradient Type and Check Invert Gradient to try out this pattern.)

Notice we have a large purple area surrounding a smaller rainbow set of circles with a larger cyan center. We want to eliminate all colors but the Rainbow colors. We will accomplish this by using the Transparency Settings.

  • First, Click in the Styles Color Box for the Gradient Window and then Click on EDIT.
  • Your Rainbow Gradient will again be displayed in the Gradient Editor.
  • In the Transparency Area, We need to now change the settings from the current default of just two markers at the ends of the bar.:
    • First, click on each Marker and set the Opacity = 0 for both Markers. The Bar is now Black.
    • Add a New Marker (click below the bar) and set its Location = 50%. The Bar has a white area in Center.
    • Click on the Left Marker to highlight it and set its Location = 43%. (Either drag the marker to its location or change location value in the location box.)
    • Click on the Right Marker to highlight it and set its Location = 60%
    • Click on the Left Mid Point (above the Color Bar) and set its Location = 10.
    • Click on the Right Mid Point (above the Color Bar) and set its Location = 60.
  • Notice now in the Results Color Bar, there is transparency to the left and right of the center rainbow colors. So, just click on OK to set these values.
  • Then in the Gradient Window, click on OK to set it for use.
  • Then Use the Flood Fill Tool and you will now have just a Rainbow circle. (You will need to clear your canvas using Edit || Clear.)

Note that the shading of the Rainbow is somewhat light. If you continue to use the Flood Fill Tool you will get a darker set of Colors. For now Flood Fill a few times to get rich rainbow colors.


Create a Rainbow Tube

Any time you want to use this Rainbow Pattern, just set your Styles Box to Gradient, Set the Style to Sunburst, and select the Rainbow Pattern. One technique to use to save you this step is to create a Tube from the Pattern. Then you can use just the Tube.

The following Steps are used to create a Rainbow to use in the Pot of Gold On-Line Class Tutorial. We will save it as a PSP file and create a Rainbow Tube as well.

Create a Rainbow on a Transparent Background

  • Make sure the Rainbow is on a Transparent layer. If you have a Layer Palette set with two layers, a BG Layer which is white, and a Top Layer which is the Rainbow, just Delete the BG Layer. Otherwise, start a new Canvas, 300 x 300, Transparent, 16 Million Colors and use your Rainbow Gradient to Flood Fill that layer.
  • Then, in Styles Foreground, select the Gradient Pattern, click on the box and in the Gradient Window, select Sunburst. Make sure the Invert Gradient is checked and click on OK. Then Flood Fill the Layer a few times to make the Rainbow Brilliant.

Delete the Bottom half of the Rainbow Image

  • Use the Selection Tool
  • Set Selection Type = Rectangle
  • Double Click on the Selection Tool and use these settings:
    • Left = 0
    • Right = 300
    • Top = 150
    • Bottom = 300
    • Click on OK
  • Use the DELETE Key to remove the bottom half of the Rainbow
  • Deselect [Control]+[D]
  • Use Edit || Copy [Control]+[C]
  • Use Edit || Paste as New Image [Control]+[V]
  • Save the New Image as a PSP file (File || Save As) with filename of rainbow.psp
  • Note. This is the image used in the Pot of Gold On-Line Tutorial.

To create a tube file

  • Use File || Export || Picture Tube
  • All needed Variables will be set except:
    Tube Name = Rainbow
  • en, Click on OK.
  • e the Tubes Tool and Select this tube.

-- Enjoy -- :o)

The tutorials:

  • The Rainbow -- this tutorial: (Describes Gradients, Creates a Rainbow Gradient and Tube File.)
  • The Shamrock: (Using Circles and Shading Effects)
  • The Pot: (Using the Weave & Sculpture Effects with shading.)
  • The Pot of Gold: (on-line class tutorial) - The St. Patrick's Card