Photoshop Help Resources Tutorials

 

"Cutting type into wood"


 

Carved into a tree...

the reader asked:
      > I have a cilent that wants his menu
      > buttons to be on a tree.
      > And then the text on the buttons he wants
      > to look handwritten or carved. (?)

The first thing we think about in such a scenario is the old-fashioned tradition of carving your girlfriend's name, or your initials into a tree. This technique is fine for the effect, however for buttons at a web site, they would be much more legible if you simply nail sign boards to the tree. Tilt and cock them to look home made, and even have a bent nail here and there to drive home the concept.

[*]FIRST: For this effect you need a chunky, poorly designed font because most of these kinds of signs are routed into wood either by hand, or using lettering patterns made for router use. I'll approve the use of the world's most stupid font -- just this once -- "Comic Sans" because it's a uniform thickness font, and it does look like an amateur wrote the letters with a router.

If you have a lot of signs to do, I recommend stepping the wood background enough times, in a file large enough to accommodate all the buttons you'll be needing. This way you only have to do the processes once.

The wood we selected has a nice dark, aged look to it, much like one might find in the Ozarks lodges.

Once we have our lettering, we'll keep that layer for safety -- but we won't actually be using that layer. Now we'll make a selection of the type, move to the wood grain layer and then pick up a copy of the wood grain into the selection and move or "float" it to its own layer. Then we'll adjust the color so it's lighter -- like freshly cut wood.

Float a copy to work on

[*] 1) Select the Type: Command (Ctrl) Click the type layer
Then turn it off by clicking its "Eye" icon
[*] 2) Select the Wood Layer by clicking it in the Layer Palette
[*] 3) "Float" a copy: Command (Ctrl) J copies to a new layer
[*] 4) Image > Adjustments > Levels (Command or Ctrl L)
now pull the right-hand slider toward the center and watch carefully as the type lightens.

Bevel

[*] Making the Cut

Now we make the cut by using the Bevel & Emboss layer style.

[*] At the bottom of the layers palette, with the floated layer selected, choose the "f" button, pull-out menu and select Bevel & Emboss
[*] Style: Inner Bevel
[*] Technique: Chisel Hard
[*] Direction: Down
Here's the way my Bevel & Emboss Settings turned out

All the other settings, depend on the size of the type and the finished art desired. For Depth, you want the edges of the cut to almost meet in the center of the letter. You'll also want to back off a bit on the opacity of the shadow areas do they're not so black, and a bit of the wood shows through.

finished

To complete the effect, make sure the sign board has some dimensionality as well. These nailed to a tree could be quite nice.

If you want to see the lettering cut into the side of a tree, let us know, or send the tree we're to use. But for the sake of web site buttons -- the roughness of the bark will cause the lettering to be difficult to read.

There are lots of other ways to do this technique. In Photoshop CS, CS2 and CS3, using the Type Mask tool directly on the wood plank would do the same in a single step.

However, this method allows us to keep editable type, and to adjust the "floated" layer color-wise until we had the effect perfect. This method works in virtually ALL image editing programs on ALL platforms which support layered art.

Return to the Photoshop 911 DISCUSSION FORUMS you were reading

 

Who invented "Photoshop Tips & Tricks"

from the Editor:
      I was delighted that day back in 1989 when Peggy Killburn called to ask if I could handle one more speaker in my "Great Graphics Tips & Tricks" session scheduled for the 1990 Macworld Expo. "Yes" was my response to her request to add Russell Brown to my panel. After all, we loved Adobe's young "Illustrator" program, and were quite anxious to try out their upcoming new product called "Photoshop." After seeing his demo, I was convinced Photoshop would be big. So the next month we added "Photoshop Tips & Tricks" to our regular DTG Magazine uploads to Compuserve, GEnie and AOL. The rest is history.
      I only regret that I didn't trademark the name.

Fred Showker editor publisher

Editor / Publisher: Photoshop Tips & Tricks, DTG Magazine.

What do you want to do next?
Notes, Policy & Disclaimers:
Information in this web site are the exclusive property of Photoshop 911 dot com or respective authors and is copyright as a 'collection' - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Content herein may not be published in any form without the express permission of Photoshop911.com. * All solutions or suggestions found in this web site are intended as guides only, with no written or implied guarantees of remedies. * Photoshop 911 dot com has no direct association with Adobe Systems, Inc. other than to support and evangelize Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Photoshop Elements. Trademarks of various products mentioned in these pages is the express property of the respective owners. Photoshop 911 is an analogy of the national "911" emergency system, and is in no way related to nor in reference to the events of September 11, 2001.
      Security and Terms of Usage This web site as do all Graphic Design Network sites adheres to the highest ideals of TRUSTe. No information gathered herein will be shared with any third party beyond publishable questions from readers. Email addresses will not be stored on the internet in any fashion, and will not be shared with anyone outside Photoshop 911 dot com. Photoshop 911 is a member of: User Group Network, and is sponsored in part by: The , The News Serve Network, and the Designers' Bookshelf. Hosting services are provided by The Graphic Design Network to serve the computing community. * Photoshop911.com is a wholly owned subsidiary of Showker Inc., T/A The Graphic Design Network, and is copyright 1998 through present, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Photoshop911 and Photoshop911.com as well as DTG, DT&G Magazine are trademarks owned by Showker, Inc., a Virginia State Corporation established in 1972.

Valid HTML 4.01!