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Working with Vectors: A Valentine's Card (3)
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Working with Vectors: A Valentine's Card (3)
Created by: the Prof

In the first and second part of this tutorial we created a Valentine-Heart card using vectors and various PSP enhancements. In this third part, we will use a variety of techniques to create a very realistic card that one may use on their web page or in an e-mail for Valentine's Day.



Tool Palette - Selection toolTool Palette - Zoom toolTool Palette - Flood Fill tool


Giving the Card a border

Load the valentine-02.psp file you created with the second part of this tutorial into your PSP program.
  • Merge all layers: Layers || Merge || Merge All (Flatten), and label the merged layer: Card
  • Set palette colors
    • Foreground = Medium Purple (192, 0, 192)
    • Background = White
    • In Styles, set both foreground and background to Solid Color (paintbrush icon)
    • In Textures, set both foreground and background to null
    • Lock = checked
  • Create the border:
  • Double-click on the Selection tool
    • Left = 1, Right = 299
    • Top = 1, Bottom = 299
    • Click on OK
  • Use Selections || Invert
  • Use Flood-Fill tool and click inside selection to fill with the purple color (you might need to zoom your image to see the area to flood fill)
  • Deselect (Ctrl+D)
Tool Palette - Selection toolTool Palette - Flood Fill tool

Creating a Page Look

  • Create a new layer named 'Right Page'
  • Increase canvas size: Image || Canvas Size
    • New Width and Height = 400
    • Both Center Horizontally & Vertically = checked
  • Double-click on the Selection tool
    • Left = 350
    • Right = 354
    • Top = 50
    • Bottom = 350
  • Flood-fill the selection with White (right-click on mouse)
  • Use Effects || Texture Effects || Blinds
    • Width = 2
    • Opacity = 40
    • Color = Medium Purple (192, 0, 192)
    • Horizontal = unchecked
    • Light from left/top = checked
    • Click on OK
  • Deselect (Ctrl+D)
Tool Palette - Selection toolTool Palette - Flood Fill tool

  • Highlight the Right Page layer and create a new layer named 'Bottom Page'
  • Double-click on the Selection tool
    • Left = 50
    • Right = 350
    • Top = 350
    • Bottom = 354
  • Flood-fill the selection with White (right-click on mouse)
  • Use Effects || Texture Effects || Blinds
    • Width = 2
    • Opacity = 40
    • Color = Medium Purple (192, 0, 192)
    • Horizontal = checked
    • Light from left/top = checked
    • Click on OK
  • Deselect (Ctrl+D)
Tool Palette - Zoom toolTool Palette - Deformation tool

  • Highlight the Right Page layer
  • Use the Deformation tool
  • Press the Ctrl key
  • Place mouse cursor over outside middle handle and cursor changes to an up/down arrow
  • Hold mouse button down and drag downward about three pixels or until the three squares form a diagonal appearance
  • Release mouse button
  • In the Tool Options palette, click on the Apply button
  • Highlight the Bottom Page layer and repeat using the Deformation tool and drag the lower middle handle (using the Ctrl key) to the right about three pixels or until the three squares form a diagonal appearance
  • Release mouse button and click on the Apply button
You may need to use the Zoom tool to better see the selections. Also if the right edges don't match, use the Deformation tool on the Bottom Page layer and place mouse over the lower middle button (cursor is double crossed arrows) and just hold mouse button down and drag to the right.

Creating the Card Front

We will create the front of the card by using the card image and deforming it so it looks like an open card. Since we need a larger image now, again we will resize the image.
Tool Palette - Magic Wand tool
  • Image || Canvas Size
    • Both New Width and Height = 600
    • Both Center Horizontal and Vertical = checked
    • Click on OK
  • Highlight the Card layer in the layer palette
  • Use Magic Wand tool and click outside of card
  • Use: Selections || Invert
  • Selections || Save to Alpha, labeling selection = 'Card Selection without pages' (Note: If there are other selections saved, delete them first as we are starting with new selections)
  • Deselect (Ctrl+D)
  • In Layer Palette right click on Card Layer and select Duplicate and label the duplicated layer = Front Card
Tool Palette - Deformation tool

  • Click on the Deformation tool
  • Place mouse cursor on the right middle handle
  • Hold down mouse button and drag to the left to about one half size (to the middle of the red heart)
  • Place mouse cursor over the top left handle
  • Press and hold down Ctrl key
  • Drag mouse up until left edges of front card are about 1 inch above/below the card top/bottom edges
  • Place mouse cursor over the center handle
  • Hold mouse button down and drag to the left until the front card right edge lines up with the card left edge. (You may need to click on the left middle handle, hold mouse button down and drag to the right to get image to fit properly in the canvas)
  • Click on the Apply button in the Tool Options palette
If you are not satisfied with the way it looks, before clicking on the Apply button, click on the Cancel button and start again. If you have clicked on the Apply button but want to make changes just click on the Deformation tool. If you want to start again, use Ctrl+Z to undo and start again.

Creating a Lacey Page

We are going to create a lacey embroidered page to overlay the card. We will first create the pattern needed for this page (layer). Then on a new layer we will create the Lacey Page.
Standard Toolbar - New (image) buttonTool Palette - Paint Brush tool



Standard Toolbar - Copy buttonStandard Toolbar - Paste button

  • Highlight the top layer and create a new layer labeled 'Lacey Page'
  • Create a new canvas, 100x100 pixels, transparent background, 16M colors
  • Click on the Paint-Brush tool
    • Click on the Brush Type Icon (at right of the Tool Options palette and looks like a brush with a right arrow)
    • Select Custom
    • In the Custom Brush dialog click in box with patterns for the menu selection
    • Select #5 or any other snow flake design
  • Set Size = 25, Opacity = 100. (Other values don't matter)
  • Right-click for a white snow flake in the canvas
  • Use Ctrl+C to copy the image
  • Use Ctrl+V to paste it into a new image
  • Close the 100x100 canvas without saving
  • Note: Illustration at bottom left uses a black background just to show the snowflake image
Tool Palette - Flood Fill tool

  • Switch back to the Valentine's Card image and highlight the Lacey Page layer in the Layer Palette
  • In Styles, Background click on the right arrow and select Pattern (the third icon from the left)
  • Click in the Styles, Background box for the Patterns dialog
  • Click in the image box and scroll to the top to find the snow flake image you just created and select it
  • Click on OK
  • Use: Selections || Load From Alpha and select 'Card without pages'
  • Use Flood-Fill tool and right-click inside the selection
You should now have snowflakes covering the card layer.
Tool Palette - Flood Fill tool

Enhancing the Lacey Page

  • Highlight the Lacey Page layer in the Layer Palette
  • If the square selection is not showing, use Selections || Load from Alpha and select 'Card without pages' selection again
  • Use: Selections || Invert
  • Use: Selections || Modify || Expand with a value of 5
  • In Styles, Background box return it to Solid Color (click on right arrow and select the paint brush icon on the left)
  • Flood-fill the selection with White (right-click for background color)
  • Deselect (Ctrl+D)
  • Use: Selections || Load From Alpha and again select the 'Card without pages' selection
  • Use: Selections || Invert
  • Press the Delete key
  • Deselect (Ctrl+D) for a white border around the snowflakes pattern
Tool Palette - Selection tool

  • Use the Selection tool
    • Selection Type = Ellipse
    • Feather = 0
    • Antialias = checked
  • You will have to use your eyes and may have to undo the selection a few times (Ctrl+D) to get it to center correctly.
    • Center the mouse cursor and hold down the button
    • Draw the ellipse to reach at top/bottom to the first/last snow layers and right/left to surround the text plus some.
  • When centered the way you like release mouse button and use the Delete key to remove that elliptical area of snow flakes
  • Do not deselect
Tool Palette - Flood Fill tool

Let's give the elliptical area a solid white frame:
  • Flood-fill the selection with White (right-click for background color)
  • Use: Selections || Modify || Contract with value of 3
  • Then press the Delete key
  • Deselect (Ctrl+D)

Making the Lace Dimensioned

  • Use: Effects || Texture Effects || Sculpture
  • Select the 3D Preset with these values:
    • Smoothness = 10
    • Depth = 2
    • Ambience = 0
    • Shininess = 50
    • Intensity = 50
    • Elevation = 30
    • Click on Ok
Tool Palette - Deformation tool

Giving the Lace Perspective

  • Use the Deformation tool
  • Place cursor over the right middle handle, hold mouse button down and drag to the left about 1 inch or to the edge of the red heart
  • Place cursor over the right top handle, press the Ctrl key and hold mouse button down and drag up about one-half inch
  • Click on the Apply button in the Tool Options palette
Standard Toolbar - Save (image) button

Save Your Work

At this point, the card image has been completed. Save your work as valentine-03.psp to preserve this image so that you can work on it again if you want at a later time. In the next steps we will give the card a perspective shadow and then create the background.
Tool Palette - Deformation tool

Creating a Perspective Shadow

  • First, use Layers || Merge || Merge Visible and relabel layer 'Card'
  • Next, in the Layer Palette, right-click for the context menu and select 'Duplicate' and relabel it 'Card Shadow'
  • Then use: Colors || Adjust || Brightness/Contrast and set the Brightness Value = -255
  • Use the Deformation tool
    • Place mouse on the top middle handle and hold down the button
    • Drag down until about three-quarters size
    • Keep mouse button on top middle handle and press the Shift key
    • Drag to the right until the top right handle is at right edge of image
    • Click on Apply in the Tool Options palette
    • Drag the Shadow layer below the Card layer in the Layer Palette
    • Use Effects || Blur || Gaussian Blur with value of 5
Tool Palette - Flood Fill tool



Tool Palette - Mover tool



Creating the Background

  • Create a new layer labeled 'BG' and drag it to the bottom in the Layer Palette
  • Flood-fill with a pastel purple foreground color (255, 192, 255)
  • Use: Effects || Texture Effects || Fine Leather and select the 'Small Cracks' preset
  • Use: Effects || 3D Effects || Inner Bevel
    • Bevel = last row, right bevel (looks a bit like a flat head screw)
    • Width = 20
    • Smoothness = 0
    • Depth = 4
    • Ambience & Shininess = 0
    • Color = White
    • Angle = 315
    • Intensity = 50
    • Elevation = 30
    • Click on OK
  • Use: Effects || Illumination Effects || Lights
    • Select the Soft Light (Lower Left) preset and then use these values:
    • Darkness = 80
    • Color = (192,192,255)
    • Intensity = 50
    • Smoothness = 100
    • Scale = 100
    • Cone Size = 12
    • Asymmetry = 1000
    • Click on OK
  • Use: Effects || Illumination Effects || Sunburst
    • Color = White
    • Rays Density = 40
    • Rays Brightness = 40
    • Light Spot Brightness = 1
    • Light Spot Horizontal and Vertical = 0
    • Circle Brightness = 80
    • Click on OK
  • Highlight the Card Shadow layer in the layer palette and set Blend Mode = Luminance
  • Set Opacity = 50
  • Turn off the BG layer
  • Highlight either visible layer and use Layers || Merge || Merge Visible and rename to Card
  • Turn on the BG layer
  • Use the Mover Tool and move the card a tad to the right
  • Use: Effects || Illumination Effects || Sunburst with same settings
  • Save your work as valentine-04.psp to preserve

The Valentine's card is now completed. You might want to add some text and a signature. Then you need to reduce the file size by saving the final image you use as a JPG file.

Here you can have a look at my Web Page Valentine's Card.

Enjoy :o)