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Full Signature Tutorial (Hopefully beginners can follow)

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Full Signature Tutorial (Hopefully beginners can follow)

Postby chargersfan36 » Sun Jun 18, 2006 11:05 pm

I was bored and decided to make a tutorial on the style for my latest sigs:

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1. Create a new canvas (ctrl + new) and use 400x100 (you can use something else if you want)

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2. Reset your colors (D), then inverse them (X) and use the fill tool
(G) to fill it with white. Your canvas should be all white now.

3. Make a new layer, Image. With this layer, we will set up the basic lighting of the sig. Use your gradient tool (right click the fill tool) and make sure you have these settings:

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(to change the gradient, just click the bar). Now drag the gradient tool from the outside to the middle. You will want to make the remaining white part be your picture.

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4. Find your image, and drag it onto your canvas. Position it and resize it (ctrl + t) until it fits well. Make sure you don't make your picture too small. I'm going to use Johan Santana.

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5. (Optional) Make a new layer below your player and above the gradients. Set the blending mode on the layers pallette (where's blending mode?) to soft light or overlay (experiment). Do some soft brushing which doesn't really effect the final outcome, but sometimes it does. So take out your favorite brushes and start brushing with white. Then make a new layer (experiment with blending mode) and brush with black. Do this a few times, alternating black and white. But you don't need to do too much. Here's what I have:

Image

6. Now we're going to add a stock photo. These are professionally taken pictures that can do a ton for a sig. They've been most of my backgrounds for my past few sigs. You can find some good pictures at imageafter. Click on the drop-down menu in the upper left corner and choose a category. I'm gonna choose 'mechanics', but you can use whatever picture you want. I usually pick pictures that are longer horizontally because I can fit more of them into my signature. After you find an image, copy it and paste it below your player layer. Resize it and position it so some interesting detail is shown. Here's what I have:

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To blend it in, desaturate it (ctrl + shift + u) and try different blending modes. Overlay usually works for me, but in this case I'm going to use Vivid Light.

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6. Now we will add a player effect. I will show you what I normally use. First, duplicate the player layer and set the top layer's blending mode to soft light. After that, desaturate the bottom layer (ctrl + shift + u). This usually gives a good effect.

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If the image is too dark, as mine is, you can play with the levels (select the desaturate layer and use ctrl + l).

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Now you could blend him in here, or use a drop shadow which I tend to do. To do this, right click the desaturated layer, and choose 'Blending Options'. Click the tab for Drop Shadow and use these settings or ones similar:

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7. For color, I think I am going to use a brownish orange. Yours will depend on the color on the player, but brown/orange usually works with a lot of sigs IMO. First make a color balance layer by clicking the half black, half white circle on the layers pallette and choosing 'Color Balance'. Adjust the midtones and shadows as you feel and only the highlights a little. I will use these settings for midtones:

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and shadows:

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This is what I have:

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Don't worry if it looks too colored ;-D. To fix that, we'll change the blending mode to soft light and lower the opacity (on the layers pallette), I put my on 68%.

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8. Looking pretty good ;-D. To add some contrast, I'm going to add a Curves Layer (half black, half white circle>'Curves'). Drag the left side downward, and the right side upwards.

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9. (If your picture's lighting isn't too good) The picture I'm using has great lighting on his face so I don't really need to do this step, but usually their faces are dark. (Even if your player has good lighting, try this anyway) Select your desaturated player layer and choose, filter>render>lighting effects. Drag the points around until it shows white on his/her face and black lower down.

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Another lighting technique you could use is making a new layer at the top, putting it on overlay, and brushing with a default 65 px soft brush (soft brush means hardness is set to 0%) with white where you want it to be brighter and black for darker.

10. Shapes and patterns are optional. I'm still a little new to them but I will share what I know. There are tons of creative things you can do with shapes (unfortunately, my creativeness isn't too great), but something basic is rectangles in the background, which is what I will show you how to do. On a new layer below (or above if you want) the player layer, select the rectangular marquee tool (M) and make a rectangle and use the 'add to selection setting' to make more rectangles with different widths.

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Use the fill tool, set your foreground color to white, and click in one of the rectangles. Use ctrl + d to deselect. Change the blending mode to soft light (or you can try overlay), and adjust the opacity to what looks good. You can add a drop shadow blending option to the rectangles which is something I've seen and never tried.

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For patterns, you can try different things. I'm not going to explain patterns here, but I'm sure you can find an explanation of what they are and how they work.

11. Next is text. I'm not too good at text, but not many people have it mastered. I'm not sure what would look good on what you're making but I'm going to add some vertical text on my left side, because there is a blank black spot there.

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I used the font: StoneSerif SAIN Sm Bd v. 1 in white. I put the text layers below the color balance and added layer masks to them (Image). Then, I added a black to transparent gradient to both layer masks so the text would fade out. If you have any questions about this text section you can ask me, because I'm not going into too much detail.

12. Make a new layer on top of everything. Use ctrl + a to select all. Go to edit>stroke and use these settings:

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Don't deselect. Make a new layer and go edit>stroke and use these settings:

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Deselect and you're done!

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Hope you learned something new. Please post your results, and if you have any questions, feel free to ask ;-D.
Last edited by chargersfan36 on Sun Jun 18, 2006 11:27 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Postby MMoNeY24 » Sun Jun 18, 2006 11:08 pm

Nice tutorial and nice sig too. ;-D

I'll give it a shot. ;-D
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Postby go_jays_go » Sun Jun 18, 2006 11:10 pm

Great tutorial and pretty easy to follow. ;-D
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Postby laxguy8947 » Sun Jun 18, 2006 11:27 pm

Well I was gonna watch some 24...but this is too good to pass up. I'm gonna give it a try :-)
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Thanks to abrage22
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Postby laxguy8947 » Mon Jun 19, 2006 1:02 am

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This is a great starting point. Just in making this I think I found lots of other things I wanna try out or had been wondering how to do ;-D ;-D [/img]
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Thanks to abrage22
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Postby RedWoodTree824 » Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:31 am

nice
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Postby smoovethug » Mon Jun 19, 2006 3:55 am

Nice tut, learned a new tip with the stock photos. ;-)
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Hal·la·day, n. 1. every fifth day in Philadelphia. 2. a day of rest for the bullpen. 3. innings eater. 4. doc. 5. ace.
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Postby laxguy8947 » Mon Jun 19, 2006 8:20 am

Now that I look again, I think my picture is a little busy. I was going for the brass instrument look, something simpler woulda been better
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Thanks to abrage22
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Postby bojanglesmn » Mon Jun 19, 2006 11:52 am

lax, try desaturating your stock and setting it on soft light.
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Postby shappy » Mon Jun 19, 2006 1:06 pm

good stuff cf, i like a lot
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I have bad luck when it comes to signatures that the person either gets traded or hurt...in this case I hope he gets traded.
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