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Super Cool Frilly Bits Typography

Last week we published our 10th Wallpaper of the Week. It was an awesome typography/design from Ginger Monkey Design called Compassion. What I really liked about that design was how they mixed some "frilly bits" with the typeface to create an outstanding piece of work. I decided to create a tutorial showing you how to do that as well. In this tutorial I will show you how to mix some vectors with letters to create a really nice design. Step 1 The first thing to do is to find the elements we will use. There are lots of websites where you can find nice vectors, and there's a post from Cameron Moll with a huge list of these sites. So that's a nice place to start. http://cameronmoll.com/archives/2008/05/25_resources_ornaments_fleurons/ After checking all the sites out, I bought the vectors from http://www.istockphoto.com/file_closeup/object/5836792_floral_design_elements.php?id=5836792 Step 2 Open Photoshop and create a new document. I used 1680x1050 pixels. After that, type abduzeedo and go to Layer>Layer Style>Gradient Overlay. Use Red, Yellow, Green, and Light Blue for the colors. I used Futura for the typeface Step 3 Let's start mixing the vectors with the type. First you will have to find the right "ornament" for the letter you want. Then you will have to place it in a way that it follows the shape of that letter. In the image below you can see that the "ornament" seems to be coming from the "a". Step 3 After you align the ornament with the letter, it's time to add some depth. To do that let's use the Layer Styles. Go to Layer>Layer Styles>Drop Shadow. Use Multiply for the Blend Mode, Black for the color, 100% Opacity, -60% Angle, Distance of 5 pixels and Size of 5 pixels as well. Step 4 Here let's create a layer from the shadow of the layer style. To do that click with the right button of the mouse on the layer with the drop shadow. Then select Create Layer from the menu. That's it, you'll now have a layer with the shadow. Step 5 Now that you have the shadow in a layer let's apply a mask. Go to Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal All. Then select the Brush Tool(B). The color will be black and the brush will be regular with a diameter of 45 pixels and 0% hardness. Then just paint the mask to hide some parts of the shadow. The idea is to create the impression that the ornament is coming from, and passing above the letter. Step 6 Repeat the same thing for the other letters. However it's not necessary to do that for all of them. I only did it on the A, B, D, Z, E, D, and O. After that select the ornament and word layers, group them together and rename the group to "logo". Tip: Always use the color of the exact part of the letter that the ornamet will come from. Step 7 Here let's add some texture to the image. You can hide the other layers. We'll use some textures from a blog called DesignReviver, they published an article called 300+ Vintage Style Textures and Photoshop Brushes. Download the Vintage II pack and place "Vintage10.jpg" image to the document. Because the image is 1500 pixels and the document is 1680 pixels, you'll have to duplicate the image and fill the remaining part of the document with it. After that go to Image>Adjustments>Hue/Saturation. Use Hue 49, Saturation 19, Lightness +35. Step 8 Download the "15_textures__art___vintage_by_jocosity" pack and place the "textur2.jpg" in the document. Then change the Blend Mode to Overlay and go to Image>Adjustments>Hue/Saturation. Use Hue +2, Saturation -41, Lightness -75. Step 9 Download the "Old_Paper_Textures_by_lailomeiel" pack and place the "DSC02679.JPG" in the document. It will go over the other textures, then just change the Blend Mode to Color burn. Now, select all texture layers and group them. Rename the group Textures. Step 10 Select the "logo" group and go to Layer>Merge Group. This will convert the layer and all groups inside it to a single layer. Then go to Layer>Layer Style>Drop Shadow. Use Color Burn for the Blend Mode, 100% Opacity, -60º for the Angle, Distance and Size of 5px. Step 11 Duplicate the "texture" group and change the blend mode of the "paper" layer to Overlay. Merge the group in order to create a unique layer from it. Change the order of the layers and put the new texture layer on top of the logo layer. Then go to Layer>Create Clipping Mask and change the Blend Mode to Multiply. Duplicate the texture layer again making sure that it is still with the clipping mask. Then just change the Blend Mode to Overlay. Step 12 Group the "Logo" layer with the two texture clipping mask layers. Duplicate the group and merge it to a single layer. Then go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur. Use 4.5 pixels for the Radius and change the Blend Mode to Screen and 80% Opacity. Conclusion In this tutorial we learnt how to mix some vector ornaments with a word to produce a nice typography. We also played around with vintage textures and cliping masks that gave our image a not so "clean" look. You can create many variations of this effect. Below I added a Radial Gradient so the textures only appear where the logo is. Again it's all about experimentation. Click here to see the full preview Download the Photoshop File Click here to download the Photoshop file for this tutorial

Hulk Eyes Effect - Photoshop Tutorial

Yesterday I watched the Incredible Hulk... and it was a real thrill ride. For those who are into the Marvel's Cross Universe, It was a great movie, probably not as great as Iron Man, but still a great movie. And now I'm gonna teach you how to do the Banner transforming to Hulk eyes. This is the result we must achieve. STEP 1 We start selecting that cool eye picture... if you want both eyes to become Hulk eyes, that's double work. For this tutorial, I'm gonna use only one eye. This is a personal picture. Using the pen tool, select the eye. For those who are not familiar with the pen tool, you can hold and drag the pen to get curves. After doing that, right click inside it and click in "make selection". Go to Select > Modify > Feather > 5. Ok. STEP 2 Don't loose that selection yet. Create a new layer and name it "GREEN", select it and paint inside the previous eyes selection, painting it all with just 1 click. Don't click several times, Just once. Now, invert the selection and delete... it will make our feather effect smoother. Se the GREEN Layer blending mode to Dodge Color. STEP 3 Invert the selection once more, and after doing that, click in the Original pic layer, and click CTRL + C and then CTRL + V. That will make an eye copy... name it "EYE". STEP 4 Now, hold CTRL and click the EYE layer we've made earlier. Go to Create new fill or adjustment layer > Hue/Saturation. For the Hue, use a value proper to your picture... make the eye gamma green. STEP 5 We're going to use the Dodge and Burn tools. Both of them will have the same values. Range: Midtones, Exposure: 30%. Size the brush as you wish. Use these tools to enhance the areas as shown. STEP 6 And the Hulk Eye effect is ready. Now we gotta do that greenish feel to the skin. Make a new layer right above the Original layer, fill it with black, set Blending Mode: Hue, Opacity: 40%. Name it "BLACK HUE". STEP 7 Repeat the same step, but this time, instead of filling this layer with black, use a really dark green. I'm using #030b00 here. Blending Mode: Hue, Opacity: 30%. Name it "GREEN HUE". STEP 8 Now we must sharp the picture a little bit. Select the ORIGINAL layer, and go to Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp Mask. Set the values as shown. Do the same for the EYE layer, but instead of using 5 for Radius, use 3. STEP 9 We also gotta set the mood. If your pictures lacks lighting, this is a important step. Click the ORIGINAL Layer, and select the eyes area. Go to Select > Modify > Feather > 40. Invert the selection and go to Image > Adjustments > Levels > 0,50 (for the middle value). STEP 10 Without losing this selection, create a new layer called "SHADOW" and fill it with black. Set the Blending mode to Overlay, Opacity: 50%. FINAL RESULT And we're done! Now we got the awesome Hulk Eyes effect. I hope I made myself clear, and that all of you got the same effect. Enjoy, and cheers! :) You may download the Sample PSD file HERE.

Really cool Eclipse Effect in Photoshop

In this tutorial I will show you how I created the Abduzeedo's footer. Some of the techniques I used here I took from other tutorials and also from another tutorial I wrote some time ago for PSDtuts Mix Cool Retro Curves Into Your Photographs. Besides, the design is inspired by the amazing work of James White, so I highly recommend you to check his work out. As I said before I used some techniques we saw before, from other tutorials. But one of the ideas of this tutorial is learn how to apply what we have learned from this tutorials, and create different effect. Step 1 Open Photoshop and create a new document. I used for this tutorial the wallpaper size of 1900x1200 pixels. Right after that fill the background layer with black and with the Rectangular Marquee Tool(M) create a selection like the image below. Step 2 - Brush This is exactly what we saw on the other tutorial I wrote, there are just a few differences. But let's repeat the step here. 1 - Add a new layer and fill it with gray. 2 - Go to Edit>Define Brush Preset... 3 - Rename your brush to "Rec Brush". Step 3 Now let's edit our brush, to do that go to the Brush Engine, Window>Brushes (F5). Basically we will use the Shape Dynamics, Scattering, Color Dynamics and Other Dynamics to create the efect we want. Just follow the image below for reference. Step 4 With our custom brush let's create the effect, add a layer and paint some rectangles. After that let's add some Layer Style. Go to Layer>Layer Style>Drop Shadow. Use Color Burn for the Blend Mode, 80% Opacity, 120º Angle, 5px Distance, and 10px Size. The last thing here is to repeat this step 2 more times. Like create another layer, paint some brush and add the Layer Style. Step 5 Now let's resize the layer, just horizontally. You can go to Edit>Transform>Scale, or just press CMD+T(mac) or CRTL+T(pc). After that go to Filter>Blur>Motion Blur. Use 90º for the angle and 155 pixels for the distance. Step 6 Select the Ellipse Tool (U) and create a big ellipse, it will be the dark planet. Use the image below for reference. Step 7 Now let's make some adjustments. Let use Layer Masks to delete some parts of the image and to make others darker. So first select the ellipse layer and go to Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal All. Then select the Brush Tool(B) and big brush, the regular one rounded with 200 pixels, hardness 0%, and the color black. Now just delete some parts of the ellipse (1-4). After that select the rectangles and repeat add a layer mask exactly like we did before. Again select the brush tool, it will be the same preset as the last usage, this time however, change the opacity to 20% and paint some areas to maks some retangles. (5-11). Step 8 Here let's add some color, I will use Abduzeedo's color. So go to Layer>New Fill Layer>Gradient. Change the angle to 90%, and scale to 80%. After that just change the Blend Mode to Overlay. Step 9 Create a new layer and fill it with black, after that go to Filter>Render>Lens Flare, use 100% for the brightness and the 50-300mm zoom for the Lens Type. Change the blend mode to Screen. You will notice that the layer is too bright, there is too much gray. So go to Image>Adjustments>Levels. Then just change the Input Levels to 50, 1, 255. Step 10 Now let's add a photo from sxc.hu, you can download it here http://www.sxc.hu/photo/986801. Place it in the center of our image. You will have to rotate, and rescale it. Then just change the Blend Mode to Screen too. After that go to Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal all. Let's repeat the step 7 and delete some parts of the image, do that until you get the result like the image below. Step 11 Now select the ellipse layer and go to Layer>Layer Style>Outer Glow. Change the Blend Mode to Hard Light, the opacity to 90% and select the Gradient Color. Use the default yellow and change the size to 60px. Step 12 Create a new layer on top of the others, fill it with black and go to Filter>Texture>Grain. Change the Intensity to 66 and the Contrast to 60. After that change the layer's Blend Mode to Soft Light and 60%. You will notice that the image will get a bit darker. Step 13 This step is not really necessary but the whole idea is add a bit of texture to the rectangles. So download the texture image from sxc.hu (http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1021346) and place it in the document, right on top of the ellipse layer and beneath the lights. After that reduce its just to make it a bit smaller. Then go to Image>Adjustments>Invert, change the Blend Mode to Overlay and the Opacity to 10%. Conclusion There are lots of ways to create this effect, and lots of good tutorials showing how to create that type of eclipse effect, the lines, and the other light effects. But the idea of this tutorial was to mix everything to get a nice result. I hope you like it and now it's all about playing with the tool. ;) Click on the image for the full preview Download the PSD file Click here to download the PSD file.

Cross-Processed Lomo Effect - Photoshop Tutorial

Cross-Processed Lomo Effect - Photoshop Tutorial

I've worked with photography manipulation for over one year, and during that time I've learned some cool techniques that I would like to share with you. Two of my favorite techniques are the Lomography effect and the Cross-Processing effect. Then, someday I thought: how about mixing those two? What I got was a major kickass technique that will make any of your pics pretty awesome. Step 1 For this tutorial, I'm gonna use a personal picture. So this is the original picture. Now create a new fill or adjustment layer > curves. Make a soft curve just like this one. That will work for the brightness and contrast. Step 2 Now create a new layer above all and fill it with black. Blend mode: Hue, Opacity: 40%. Step 3 Ok, now you must merge all layers into one. After that, go to Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp Mark. Set the values like mine. You may use your own Radius value... that's what will make any difference. Now you got a cool sharp looking pic. Step 4 With the Elliptical Marquee Tool make an oval selection on the picture... you may select the main subject of it for a better result. Now invert the selection going to Select > Inverse. Step 5 Go to Select > Modify > Feather. High Resolution pictures may use higher values. For this one, use 20. Step 6 Don't lose the selection. Got to Image > Adjustments > Levels. You may change just the middle value, making it 0,45. It will dark the edges a little bit. Step 7 Now go to Filter > Blur > Lens Blur. You may use these exact values to get the right effect. The only value you may change is the Radius, depending on the effect intensity you might want. And now you got finished the Lomo effect! really love this effect... I use it in most of my pictures. Step 8 Now we're going to add the Cross Processing effect, using nothing but curves. Got to create a new fill or adjustment layer > Curves. First, we're going to adjust the Reds. Make a curve just like mine. Now, the Greens. Make a soft curve just like this. And now, the Blues. This, people, is what will give your picture a vintage, yellowish look. You may adjust it to make a light cross process if you wish. Final Result Done! So here is our final result! And here are the original and final result, side by side. Hope you all enjoy this. Cheers!

Space Lighting Effects in 10 Steps - Photoshop Tutorial

Abduzeedo means abducted in portuguese, the spelling is not exactly that, it should be abduzido. But the whole idea for the Abduzeedo's design is the space. I'm really fan of playing with this subject because we are sort of free to create whatever we want, and using Photoshop that really means everything. So in this Photoshop tutorial I will show you how to create a space scene with some nice Lighting Effects in 10 Steps. Step 1 Create a new document, I'm using my computer screen's resolution (1440x900 pixels) so I can use it as a wallpaper later. Add a new Layer and fill it with any color then go to Layer>Layer Styles> Gradient Overlay. You can add a gradient layer as well, I simply prefer the Layer Styles. Step 2 - Retro Colors Create a new layer and fill it with white, then go to Filter>Render>Lighting Effects. Change the style to RGB lights. Use Negative 60 for the Intensity, Narrow 96 for the focus, and for the other options keep the same. Step 3 Lets add some blur, go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur. Use 80 pixels for the Radius. The last thing here will be change the Blend Mode to Overlay. Doing that the RGB color will be hardly visible but later on with the other layers it will work ;) Step 4 - Creating Stars Creating Stars in Photoshop is something really easy. Create a new layer, fill it with black, and change the Blend Mode to Screen. After that go to Filter>Noise>Add Noise. Use 10% for the Amount, Gaussian for the Distribution and select Monochromatic. You will have a layer full of noise, then to create the start just change the levels of the layer, go to Image>Adjustment>Levels. For the Input Levels use 65, 1.00, 99. Doing that you will increase the black so just the bigger dots will appear, also you will increase the white, making the dots that appear brighter. Step 5 - Nebula Now that we have the stars and the colors and some colors lets create the Nebula. To do that create a new layer and go to Filter>Render>Clouds. Make sure that your color were black and white for the background and foreground. Then just add some Layer Styles to do that go to Layer>Layer Style. First over the Blending Options, change the Blend Mode to Overlay. After that select Gradient Overlay. use Overlay for the Blend Mode and for the colors use a Cyan, Green, Yellow, and Red. Also change the Angle to 130º and the Scale to 49%. Step 6 - Lens flare First, lets create a new layer and fill it with black, however, this time, add this layer in front of the background and beneath the other layers: (Stars and Nebula). Now go to Filter>Render>Lens Flare. This effect might be the most overused ever, like some people even say that using it you wil turn your design in an amateur piece. For me it's a nice filter and, if you use it right, it will give a nice touch to your image. For the settings use 100% Brightness and use 105mm Prime for the Lens Type. Step 7 - Rays of Light Now lets create the "A" of ray of lights. So create a new layer in front of the Lens Flare. Then select the Rectangular Marquee Tool (M) and create a rectangular selection like half of the height of the document. Use the image below for reference. After that select the Brush Tool (B). We will use a very big brush, 800px diameter and hardness 0%. Select white for the color and with just like a a bit of the brush inside the marquee (red circle) give a few clicks on the mouse button. Step 8 Now it's just about duplicating, resizing and rotating. The tip here is convert the original ray of light layer to Smart Objects, so you will be able to resize and rotate in a non-destructive way. After you create the "A", change the blend mode of the elements to Screen and use 80% opacity. Step 9 - Adjustments Now lets just adjust some opacities, change the the RGB light opacity to 80% and you can move the gradient overlay to test different color combinations as well. Conclusion In this tutorial we've learned how to create a very cool light effect that we often see is some of the NoPattern designs. Of course this tutorial was just an example and now you can improve it and apply it to your needs. Click on the image to View full size Download the PSD File Click here to download the Photoshop file for this tutorial

Amazing Graffiti HDR Tutorial

Recently I decided to force myself to make a personal blog and website to share with others my passion for graphic design. In no way am I amazing when it comes to photography but I have stumbled upon HDR, which has captivated me. Like Fabio, I too have somewhat of an obsession for HDR. The only significant difference you will find in this tutorial, among others, is the use of only having one image. The professional way of doing this would be to have a top of the line SLR with tripod and take continuous shots on different exposure levels. For those of you that do not have the equipment to produce something like that, there is still hope! Requirements for tutorial: Photoshop and Photomatix are the only two programs that you will need. To be more specific I am using Photoshop CS3 and Photomatix Pro v.2.5. Also one RAW image that you would like to see converted. (RAW format is not required but definitely recommended.) Step 1 Open the raw image up in Photoshop. Without making any changes save the file as a .jpg in a folder. Click File > Save As > "0.jpg" Make sure save the image name as"0.jpg". This will make the process easier, as we continue to save multiple images. Step 2 Go to Image > Adjustments > Exposure and bring the Exposure level up to "1". In this case the slider would be dragged to the right until the number "1" appears or manually type "1", in the box. Step 3 Click File > Save As > "1.jpg". Make sure to save the file name as "1.jpg" and place it in the same folder where you put the "0.jpg" file. Step 4 Follow the step above to continue saving the files in the appropriate format. Each time the image has been saved undo the changes made to the image and continue going back into Image > Adjustments > Exposure. In this case you want to have 5 files in total, all saved with different exposure levels. Exposure Levels: -2, -1, 0, 1, 2 Make sure to save all of these according to the level. ie. -2.jpg, -1.jpg, 0.jpg, 1.jpg, 2.jpg Step 5 Open up Photomatix and click HDR > Generate > Browse. Highlight and select all five of your images. Then click ok. Step 6 Sometimes Exposure Values will come come in differently then what was previously set through Photoshop. If that is the case match the number up with the name of the jpg. In this case I had an exposure value on the right hand side set to 3, which I changed back to 2. So as long as both the left and right side have the same numbers you should be good to go ahead and click "OK". Step 7 Usually the preassigned setting configure fine for the image we are working with. Keep the "align source images" checked along with the "take tone curve of color profile". Then click "OK". Step 8 Allow this to generate for a minute until your hdr image has been compiled together. Once it click HDR > Tone Mapping. Step 9 This will bring up the actual manual editing stage. First click the 1024 view at the bottom. Once the image is increased continue editing the settings on the left. Play with them until you get exactly what your looking for. Every image is different and will require unique settings. Once you are happy with the finished product click "Apply". Step 10 Click File > Save As. A few options are given for the file format but in this case just save as a .jpg. So hopefully this tutorial has been of help to you. As HDR is becoming more and more forward in the design world I encourage all of you to get involved in it. If you have any questions, comments or personal work, I would love to see and hear from you. Feel free to check out my blog and don't forget to feed me as I am trying to grow this thing. Also check out a few other recent works I have done. About the Author Hello my name is Jonathan Connolly. I am the Creative Director for Theory Communication and Design. We are a Marketing and PR company reaching the automotive, youth and lifestyle market. If I am not creating something for work, I am designing something for myself and others.

Photoshop Tennis

From the title, some may think Photoshop tennis involves tennis rackets and copies of Photoshop, but the rackets are not need in this game. Photoshop tennis is, as the Flickr group stipulates, a game whereby someone chooses a starting image, and then people edit the image following the guidelines that the person who posted the original image lays down. The game ends when people stop posting, or a deadline can be set. I’ve seen this in another form, called Photoshop Relay, in a Photoshop magazine and it produced some very good designs. The best thing about Photoshop Tennis is that it helps designers use what they are given and add to it and, in the long run, it also helps improve their skills. The ability to alter an existing design is challenging enough, but to continue the alterations continuously takes a certain amount of skill that can only be enhanced through playing. Due to many of the “games” involving multiple people, with varying levels of design expertise, the final images can seem quite amateurish, but there are a few that can look stunning. For those who are interested in joining with Photoshop Tennis, there are a few sites offering games. As mentioned above, there is the Photoshop Tennis Flickr Group, Urban Collective offer competitions and possibly the biggest site devoted to this e-sport, Layer Tennis, which also includes use of other programs, such as Flash. About the Author My name is Luke Davis aka Starchild, and I’m an 18 year old student from England. I’ve only just finished college, where I studied Further Mathematics, Mathematics and Graphic Design and will be going to Nottingham Trent University to study a degree in Computer Science. I’ve been using Photoshop since the summer of 2005, and relish the chance to use the program whenever I can. My sites http://munchester2cool.deviantart.com http://cmwiki.co.nr/starchild

3D Layer in Photoshop

One of the coolest features in the CS3 Extended version of Photoshop is the 3D Layer tools. These tools allow us to import a 3D file and transform it like if we were using a 3D software, we can rotate, move, and scale the layer in a 3D dimensional environment. Last weekend I decided to try this feature, but first I needed a nice 3D model, and a good site to get free 3D file is http://artist-3d.com/. They have lots of very cool .3ds files for free. I found a very nice Robocop robot over there and used in my image. Despite the fact that my computer suffered to complete simple tasks like rotate, I liked the 3D functionality. I was able to position the robot the way I wanted, and you can even edit the textures as well. Here’s my image:For more information I recommend you take a look at this video workshop from the adobe site and the Use a 3D Model to Create a Dramatic Scene in Photoshop tutorial on PSDtus.

A Perfect Lie in Photoshop

Hi my name is Cameron Rad. I am 17 years old and am an aspiring graphic designer from Los Angeles, California. I have been using photoshop for almost 2 years now and thought i should take it upon myself to try something new. I have always been fascinated by how models and actresses appear to have that glowing, flawless look. So over a period of 3 months I worked night and day to take this photo: And turn it into something amazing. I went through about 40 different makeover techniques, until i found what i thought was the best balance for this photo. By combining 2 very common techniques, i think i have found a good "flawless" skin method. So without further adieu: Video:

Creepy Photoshop Tutorials

If you are a fan of gore and horror flicks, then you'll love these tutorials. The Photoshop Roadmap linked some great tutorials that will chill your spine. Muahahaha. I usually don't try much of these tutorials myself, but I will definitely try this one out. Too real to be fake! ;p

Inspiration: depthCORE

Deviantart, Flickr, various portfolios... these are just some examples of places where you might find some superb art work. DepthCORE is one of these places. depthCORE is an international art collective focused on modern and abstract art, incorporating design, photography, animation and audio. Established by Justin Maller and Kevin Stacey in 2002, our membership is comprised of artists of all ages from all locations around the world and all walks of life, united by their love for art, and their passion for innovation. So go on and visit this awesome website, fulfilled with unique pieces of art. Here are some examples of what you will find over there. ;) Alejandro Javier Soto Martinessi Alejandro Javier Soto Martinessi Allan Tangedal Anneli Olander Chris Haines Craig Shields Pete Harrison Pete Harrison and Sheena Aw Erik Schumacher

Photoshop Experiment Blocky Brushes

Yesterday was holiday and I took the day to do some Photoshop experiments. One of these experiments was inspired by the work of James White. I’m a huge fan of the James White’s work, I love the way he plays with geometric elements and colors, it gives a retro feeling to the design but at the same time very modern. In an interview he told that he uses a Flash script to generate the vectors, then he does the rest of the job in Illustrator and Photoshop. My workflow is rather simple. I wrote a very simple program in Flash that allowed me to create random assortments of shapes that I export to a postscript file so I can edit them in Illustrator. From there I will clean up the exports, add gradients, and use brushes to bend my shapes into unconventional combinations. Then I port them into Photoshop one by one where I can overlap them, lay down colors, lighting effects, textures, etc. James White. After some time thinking, I sort of figure out a way to do that only in Photoshop. I’ve tried to simplified the process, the effect uses basically the Brush Engine and Layer Styles. Below you can see the final result. I’ve written a tutorial showing the whole process. It will be published on PSDTUTS, probably next week.UPDATE: Check the tutorial at http://psdtuts.com/tutorials-effects/mix-cool-retro-curves-into-your-ph…

Swirl Mania in Illustrator & Photoshop

There are lots of ways to create swirls in Illustrator, you can even download vectors from sites such as bittbox and dezignus, and if you are using Photoshop you can download brushes with those sorts of symbols. However in this tutorial I will show 4 ways to create swirls, and by mixing them you will learn some very powerful techniques that will allow you to easily make tons of different styles of swirls and crazy sperm vectors. 1st Way - Arc, Circle, and Path tool Select the Arc Tool and create an arc. You can change the arc's properties by holding the mouse button and pressing the UP and DOWN keys for the angle of the arc, SPACE to move it, and ALT to change the center point. Now create an ellipse using the Ellipse Tool (L). After you create the arc go to Object>Path>Outline Stroke. The stroke will be converted to a shape, the select the Direct Selection Tool(A). 2nd Way - Blend Tool(W) Create 2 circles, one will be the start and the other the end points of our swirl. Then select the Blend Tool (W) and click on the small circle and after that on the big circle. Double-click the Blend Tool icon to open the Blend Options, there you will be able to change the spacing of the elements and the orientation. Select Specified Distance and use 1pt, for the Orientation use Align to Path. The spine is the path along which the steps in a blended object are aligned. By default, the spine forms a straight line. To adjust the shape of the spine, drag the anchor points and path segments on the spine with the Direct Selection tool. To replace the spine with a different path, draw an object to use as the new spine. Select the spine object and the blended object, and choose Object > Blend > Replace Spine. To reverse the order of a blend on its spine, select the blended object and choose Object > Blend > Reverse Spine. You can test different styles for the blend, like adding a dark stroke with some light color. 3rd Way - Spiral Tool Select the Spiral Tool and create a spiral, you can change the style of the spiral by holding the mouse button and some keys like CMD/CTRL, ALT, SPACE, UP, and Down. You can go to Object>Path>Offset Path and specify the offset to 3pt, you will create a uniform spiral. But if you want to make the start point smaller than the end or vice-versa, you can use the spiral as spine for a Blend. 4th Way - Twirl Tool Create an ellipse with the Ellipse Tool, after that select the Twirl Tool and double click on the icon to open the Twirl Tool Options. Deselect the Simplify option and use 10 for detail. Then go with the center of the twirl tool over the edge of the circle and press and hold the mouse button to create a spiral. Mixing Techniques Step 1 Create the first swirl using the first technique. Use a very long line with a circle at the end. Step 2 Duplicate the swirls and resize it, repeat that to create another one, so you will have 3 swirls. Step 3 Create a spiral applying the 3rd or 4th technique, actually you can do that with blends too. Step 4 Create another swirl this time make the circle or much bigger. Step 5 Duplicate the new swirl, resize and make it a bit smaller than the other like the image below.   Step 6 Duplicate again the swirl, now go to Object>Transform>Reflect. Change the color to yellow. Step 7 Create a new spiral like the image below, then duplicate it again resize it like and place it above the other spiral. Step 8 Keep adding swirls. Step 9 Now we will add some 3D effects using the Mesh Tool (U). This tool allows us to apply multiple gradients to one object. Just select the object then with the Mesh Tool click where you want to add a new color. Here in our swirl we will create a highlight area and a dark area. Repeat the process to the other swirls. Step 10 With the Pen Tool create two lines following the shape of the tail of our "sperm" shape, then apply the Blend Tool with 5 Specified Steps. After that duplicate and resize the blend and use it on the other swirl Step 11 Add more shapes and apply the Mesh Tool. Duplicate the yellow swirl and make it really bigger like the image below. Step 12 For the spiral add a gradient from pink to cyan, then go to Effect>Stylize>Inner Glow... Use Screen for the Mode, 75% Opacity, 5pt Blur and Center.   Step 13 For those stripes following the spiral we will create a brush. To do that is really simple in Illustrator. Just create a rectangle and drag and drop it in the Brushes Palette, then in this case select New Pattern Brush. Use the image below for reference. After that create a spiral exactly like the one you want to add the stripes, and apply the brush. Step 14 Select the spiral without the Brush Stroke and copy it. Then select the spiral with the stroke and go to the Transparency Palette (Window>Transparency). Double click the area next to the thumbnail, it will create a new thumb all black, select this thumb and paste the spiral. It will create a mask, just move the mast to align it with the original spiral. It looks complicated but it's easier than the explanation ;) Step 15 Use the blend tool to add more elements and details to some shapes. Step 16 Create more swirls using the techniques we've seen before and just change the sizes and colors. After that group all swirls. End result in Illustrator. Step 17 (Photoshop) Create a new document and place your image, I used a photo from http://sxc.hu and 1440x900px for the document size. Step 18 Copy the swirls in illustrator, the group with all swirls we have created, and paste it in Photoshop. Select Paste As Smart Objects. After that go to Layer>Layer Style>Bevel and Emboss, use the image below for reference. Step 19 Duplicate the layer and go to Edit>Transform>Flip Vertical, and reduce the size of the layer and move it like the image below. After that select the 2 layers and convert them to Smart Objects and rename it to "Swirls" Step 20 Duplicate the new "Swirls" and rename it to "Swirls Glow", then go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur, use 3px for the Amount, place it behind the "Swirls" and change the Blend Mode to Hard Light Step 21 Duplicate the "Swirls" layer again and go to Edit>Transform>Flip Horizontal, again reduce its size and move it like the image below. Then go to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur, use 3px for the amount again, but don't change the blend mode. Step 22 Duplicate the "Swirls" layer one more time and this time just rotate it like the image below. Then go again to Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur, however this time use 5.5px for the Amount and reduce the opacity to 70% Conclusion Just place your logo and that's it. You can add more elements, you can even copy and paste each element separately and apply different layer styles to each swirl. There are many options and tons of different results from these methods, now it's all about trying different combinations. Download the Files Click here to download the files used in this tutorials

Light Graffiti in Photoshop

A few weeks ago, Paulo published a really cool post about what he called “Awesome Light Graffiti Pictures”. I was completely blown away by the images and the crazy things they’re capable of doing just by taking pictures with a long exposure. I received some emails asking me how to create that effect in Photoshop, and there are already some good tutorials on it, but I decided to write one myself. I’ll write 4 tutorials explaining how to do that in: Photoshop, GIMP, Pixelmator, and Fireworks. I’ll start with the Photoshop one, and the final result you can see below. The tutorial will be published this week I think.Update: You can read the tutorial at PSDTUTS.COM or clicking  here

Wave explosion Photoshop Tutorial Soon

Today I took 2 hours to do another reader’s request. I have to say, this image was really cool to make because I didn’t know how to even create that effect in the first place. But it turned out to be easier than I thought. Now I just need to write the Photoshop tutorial. Well I don’t even know how to describe the effect, it’s such a Heroes Peter Petrelli power of mind wave explosion, . Seriously, it’s a sort of explosion that this guy saw on a video and wanted to know how to do it. Below you can see the end result. Besides that, I’d like to share some information about the site. It had a huge traffic last month of over 930k visitors and more than 1.6 million page-views; it was a record. We’re all really happy with that and we want to thank all of you for visiting the site. We are also going to give away 2 favicon slots. These 2 slots will be to promote our visitor's sites. Each one will be there for a full month and by the end of that month, we'll change the favicons. So remember, every month we will give these 2 slots away. Wanna be the first one to get your site favicon here? Drop us a comment!You can check the tutorial at http://psdtuts.com/tutorials-effects/create-a-powerful-mental-wave-explosion-effect/ Winners of the Favicon slotsRajJonathan Solichin 

Funny Celebrity Digital Manipulations

Most of us, during our photoshop sessions, have made some bizarre experiments using pictures of family, ourselves, strangers or even celebrities. Bobby, a 37 years-old from New York took those experiments to a whole new level. These pictures are really funny, some are a little bizarre, but all of them are the product of an insane, open mind. Making Adam Sandler look like a Soprano got this guy lots of extra points. Awesome! You can check out more of his very creative work at http://www.flickr.com/people/digital_graffiti/

Retro Effect in Photoshop

Last weekend I worked on the new design for this blog. I already done 3 designs and the process is always the same. First I love it, then after a couple of hours I like it and by the next day I am already working on a new design.Anyway, after the Pixelmator tutorial, the Retro Light Effects, I thought  it would be nice to write a Photoshop tutorial showing how to create something with a retro style as well.  Besides that I was trying to create something inspired by some of the James White designs, with those geometric lines. Below you can see the result. I’m finishing the tutorial and I think it will be published this week.