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Christmas Ornament
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Christmas Ornament
Created by: Barbara Townsend

This tutorial is a basic lesson designed to help you use your own creativity to make as many ornaments as you want using stripes, tubes, and whatever comes to mind. By following these instructions you will be ready for a bright and happy holiday season.
Download File Download File
The download file on the left contains a bow and tie that you can use for your ornament.

New Image

Materials Palette - Materials Box Materials Solid Color Option Materials Gradient Option

Flood Fill Tool

Creating the Ornament

Open a new image, 300 x 300 pixels, transparent background.

Set your Foreground Color to a very light grey (Red = 230, Green = 228, Blue = 228; #E6E4E4) and your Background Color to white.

Now set your Background Material to Gradient:
– Gradient = Fading background
– Angle = 0
– Repeats = 0
– Invert = unchecked
– Style = Linear

Flood-fill your image with the Foreground Color, then flood-fill again with the Background Gradient, using 4 (right-)clicks.

This should be a lightly shaded white, looking some what like satin. It will be the base of the ornament.

New Raster Layer

Selection Tool     Flood Fill Tool

Create a new raster layer (Layers || New Raster Layer), naming it 'Stripes' if you wish.

Activate your Selection tool and choose the Rectangle for the Selection Type in the Tool Options palette.

Now draw a narrow rectangle across the image, about 30 pixels high (see the screenshot on the left). Flood-fill this selection with a red gradient of your choice (I had "Duotone red" with an Angle of 90).

Go to Selection || Modify || Contract by 1 Pixel. This will put the marching ants inside of the stripe.

Paint Brush Tool

Activate the Paint Brush tool and choose the "Colored noise" preset in the Tool Options palette. (If you are using PSP 9 you will either have to transfer this Preset from PSP 8 or go to JASC and download the Resource Packs.)

Hold down the left mouse button and drag across the stripe two or three times using whatever size for the brush you are comfortable with. With the selection contracted by 1 pixel you will be able to stay inside of the stripe easier.

Now go to Effects || 3D Effects || Drop Shadow:
– Vertical Offset = 5
– Horizontal Offset = 0
– Opacity = 50
– Blur = 5
– Color = black

Selection Tool     Flood Fill Tool     Paint Brush Tool

Repeat the whole process, this time bringing the selection stripe down a small space from the red one.

Using a green gradient (I had "Duotone bright green"), flood-fill the second stripe. Go to Selection || Modify || Contract by 1 Pixel. The settings should still be there.

Activate your Paint Brush and, using the same preset, fill this stripe with colored noise as well.

Finally, repeat the Drop Shadow effect (Effects || 3D Effects || Drop Shadow).

Afterwards, do all this again for another red stripe beneath the green one.

Selection Tool

Using the Selection tool again, select all three of the stripes including the drop shadows.

Go to Edit || Copy (Ctrl+C), then to Edit || Paste || Paste As New Selection (Ctrl+E). Paste it as a new selection once more and move these two selections evenly into place.

Since we want vertical stripes for our ornament, we have to rotate them. Go to Image || Rotate || Free Rotate:
– Direction = Left
– Degrees = 90
– All layers = unchecked
– Rotate single layer around canvas center = unchecked

Picture Tube Tool

Now merge your layers (Layers || Merge || Merge Visible), then go to Effects || Geometric Effects || Circle:
– Transparent = checked

Activate your Picture Tube tool, select something like the Holly that comes with PSP, and place several of them in the white areas.

If you wish you can use small amounts of colored noise here, too.

Deform Tool

We will need space for the bow, so we will decrease the size of the ornament, but not the size of the canvas:

Click on the Deform tool:
– Scale X = 50
– Scale Y = 50

Move the ornament to the center of the image. Deselect by clicking on the Pan tool.

Open Image     Deform Tool

Adding a Bow and a Tie

Open the bow and tie. Activate the bow image and go to Edit || Copy (Ctrl+C), then go back to your ornament image and go to Edit || Paste || Paste As New Layer (Ctrl+L). Activate your Deform tool and size the bow proportionately to the ornament. (The bow can be pasted more than once to make it fuller, then go to Layers || Merge || Merge Down for the bow layers before resizing.)

Now activate the tie image and copy the tie (Edit || Copy or Ctrl+C), then paste it as a new layer into your ornament image (Edit || Paste || Paste As New Layer or Ctrl+L). Place the tie at the bottom of the ornament and resize it if necessary. Finally go to Layers || Arrange || Send to Bottom to have the tie layer beneath the ornament layer in your Layer palette.

Last go to Layer || Merge || Merge visible.

Materials Palette - Materials Box  Materials Gradient Option Materials Transparent Option

Pen Tool  Freehand Segments     Paint Brush Tool

Creating the Hanger

Select a golden gradient for your Foreground Material (e.g. "Metal brass") and set the Background Material = Transparent (Null).

Select the Pen tool:
– Create as vector = unchecked
– Mode = Drawing Mode
– Segment type = Freehand
– Line style = Default line
– Width = 2
– Anti-alias = checked

Draw a loose loop at the top of the ornament.

Use the Paint Brush with the "Colored noise" preset again and touch up the ornament, bow, and tie.

There are many ways to vary this ornament. You can use beads, different stripes, and different tubes. Change the colors and do whatever you can imagine. Have fun and make many, many ornaments. Don't forget to save your work often.

Merry Christmas from Barbara T.