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Fancy Frames Using Dingbat Fonts
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Fancy Frames Using Dingbat Fonts
Created by: SharC

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This tutorial will show you how to make a fancy frame using a dingbat font. You can download the font used in this tutorial here or use a font of your choice. (You needn't install the font if you don't want to, but it should be opened in your Windows Explorer when you want to work with it in PSP.)
Open a new image 200 x 200, white background, 16 M colors.
Click on the Selection tool and set as follows:
Selection type = Ellipse
Feather = 0
Antialias = checked
Position the selection tool at the center of your image (coordinates 100/100) and holding down the left mouse button, draw an oval to about 1/2" from the top edge of the image. Do not deselect the oval. Be sure to make it wide enough so that an image can be inserted at a later point.
Hint: Throughout this execise, do not deselect any image until stated to do so.
Now, click on the the Flood Fill and set as follows:
Blend mode = Normal
Match mode = None
Tolerance = n/a
Opacity = 100
Set both your foreground and background styles to Solid Color (click on the little arrows in the style boxes and choose the little brush icon on the left), then click into the foreground style box and choose R=255, G=245, B=208 for your foreground color, click into the background style box and set your background color to white. Your textures should both be set to None.
Left-click inside the selection to fill it with your foreground color.
With your selection still active, go to Selections || Modify || Contract and put 14 as the Number of Pixels; then click on OK.

Next, place your mouse inside your new selection and right-click to fill it with white.

Click on the Magic Wand and while holding down the Shift key, click on the white area outside of the oval. You should now have the white area within the oval and outside of the oval selected.
Go to Selections || Invert and the yellow oval should now be your active selection.

From the menu bar go to Selections || Modify || Feather and enter 2 for the Number of Pixels, click OK. We will now add two coatings of hot wax so the following steps should be done twice:

Go to Effects || Artistic Effects || Hot Wax Coating.

Go to Color || Colorize and set the Hue to 38 and Saturation to 165, click OK. Go to Effects || Sharpen || Sharpen.

We now want to define the frame just a little by adding a drop shadow as the final step. So go to Effects || 3D Effects || Drop Shadow and set as follows:
Vertical = 1
Horiztontal = 1
Opacity = 70
Blur = 5

Now repeat the drop shadow using -1 for the vertical and horizontal settings.

  We can now finally deselect our image ... yeahhh!! Go to Selections || Select None or just right-click anywhere outside of the selected area.
You now have a basic frame to use, but let's spruce it up a little bit.

The first thing we want to do is promote this background to a layer so that if you wanted to insert a picture behind it, you could. So, on the layer palette place your mouse on the background layer and right-click, choosing Promote to Layer.

You should now have Layer1 on the layer palette.

Let's prepare the frame so that you can add an image in the future if you like. Using the Magic Wand, click into the white area inside the frame and then holding down the Shift key, click into the white area outside the frame to add to the selected area.
Go to Selections || Modify || Expand and enter 2 for the Number of Pixels. (Expanding the selection will help get rid of the little "white jaggies" that might appear otherwise.) Now hit the Delete key on your keyboard and the white areas will be gone! If any "white jaggy" areas still remain, repeat this step expanding the selected areas by one pixel and delete again to clean up the white. Be careful not to expand too much so that you don't delete the drop shadow on the frame. When you are finished deleting, deselect your image.

You would now be able to add a picture behind the frame by adding a new layer and placing the new layer beneath Layer1.

OK ... Now, we want to add a new layer to work with the font to spruce up the frame. So, left-click on the New Layer button in your layer palette – name the layer whatever you like, leave all other settings as are and click OK.
  This is where the fun starts. There are so many free and shareware dingbat fonts available, you can be very creative here. We will use a fairly simple design for this exercise. So ...
With Layer2 (or whatever you named your new layer) active, choose the Text tool and click near the center of the white oval inside the frame. Set the Text tool as follows:
Name = Printers Ornaments One
Size = 14 (this can be adjusted as necessary)
Styles: Stroke = None, Fill = Solid Color (R=235 G=227 B=159)
Textures: Stroke and Fill = None
Text = centered
Create as: Floating = selected
Antialias = checked
In the text box area type a small letter "t" and click OK. Leave the selection floating, go to Effects || 3D Effects || Drop Shadow and set as follows:
Vertical and Horizontal = 1
Opacity = 100
Blur = 2.5

Click OK, but do not deselect the text. Now, place the mouse cursor over the floating selection and move it to place it on your frame near the top right curved edge; do not deselect yet.

Go to Edit || Copy and then Edit || Paste || As New Selection and place your new selection near the first one on the frame. You can repeat Edit || Paste || As New Selection as many times as you like to achieve the effect you want. (I used three images.)

Once you have completed placing the images on the top right edge of the frame, right click outside of the selected area to deselect any selections.

Using the Selection tool set to Rectangle, draw a rectangular selection around the total area of the images you have placed on the frame.
Now, click on Edit || Copy and then Edit || Paste || As New Selection and place this new selection on the bottom left edge of your frame. (I like symmetry ... :-)). Right-click outside of the frame area to deselect your selection.

Voila!! You have made a fancy frame to use as you see fit. You can save your image as a .psp file to preserve the layers for future use (adding images, etc.).

Adding an Image

To add an image to your frame, activate Layer1 on the layer palette. Using the Magic Wand, click inside the oval frame. Go to Selections || Modify || Expand and select 2 as the Number of Pixels to help eliminate any white jaggy areas. (You may have to modify the number of pixels to fit your frame.) Do not deselect.
Activate the picture you want to put in the frame and go to Edit || Copy. Now activate your frame image, click on the New Layer icon in your layer palette to create a new layer and drag this new layer beneath Layer1. Go to Edit || Paste || Into Selection. You should now have a frame with your image! Using this method will paste the whole image into the frame, however depending on the size of your image in relation to the size of your frame, there may be some distortion. It is best to try to use an image that is approximately the same size as your frame.

Happy creating!!

A big thanks to my friend Vianne (aka Kawliga) for sharing the picture of the girl with the dog (one of my favorites!) for use in this tutorial.