Archive for August, 2010

Marquee Based Selection design tutorial

The most basic way of making a selection in photoshop is to use one of the standard shaped marquees. The standard shapes are: elliptical and rectangular.

There are also two marquees that select either horizontal or vertical rows that are one pixel wide. These are useful for drawing one pixel wide lines and creating 'pixel stretch' effects
In this tutorial we will be selecting the wheel of a car using the marquee tool.

Note that to remove a selection after it is no longer required (or in order to make a new selection) use the 'deselect' option on the 'select' menu [ ctrl – D ] . Also on the 'select' menu you can use the 'inverse' option to select the inverse of the current selection.

Choose the elliptical marquee from the top left of the toolbar. You may have to click and hold the tool to bring up the menu of marquee tools.

Once the elliptical marquee tool is selected draw an oval selection over the wheel. The easiest way to do this is to hold down the [ Alt ] key after you have started drawing (this will enable you to begin drawing from the centre of the wheel rather than from the top left). Another good tip is to hold down the spacebar while you are holding down the left mouse button. This will enable you to draw and move the selection at the same time.

Having selected the wheel of the car you will want to do something with the selected area. To copy or move it to a new layer, simply select 'New' from the 'Layer' menu and choose either 'Layer via copy' [ ctrl – J ] or 'Layer via cut' [ shift – ctrl – J ]. Thus the selected area of the image will be copied/cut onto a new layer.

Once you have made a selection you can create another selection that subtracts from the original.

Once you have selected the wheel you can remove the centre of the wheel from the selection. Just hold down [ Alt ] while selecting the wheel's centre.

You can also add areas to the original selection. Hold down [ shift ] while selecting the top ring of the Audi logo.

When you have finished adding/removing areas from the original selection you can move the defined area to a new layer or simply shift the selection to a new area on the same layer. To move the selection to a location on the same layer just hold down [ ctrl ] while dragging the selected area. To copy the selection to somewhere on the same layer hold down [ alt ] while dragging the selected area. If you do not hold down [ ctrl ] or [ alt ] you will simply move the location of the selection.

Having made a selection it is possible to create another selection that intersects the original by holding down both the [ alt ] and [ shift ] keys at the same time while drawing the second selection.

Start by selecting the wheel with the elliptical marquee tool. Then hold down the [ alt ] and [ shift ] keys together while drawing a rectangular marquee ( you will need to switch to the rectangular marquee tool) that intersects the original selection. Note: intersection is the default behaviour after a selection has been made, thus holding down [ alt ] and [ shift ] together is optional.

Draw the rectangular selection so that it cuts off the top and bottom of the oval.

Final Tips: Selections can be nudged into position rather than dragged. Thus giving you more positioning control. Nudge selections one pixel at a time using the arrow keys. Hold down [ shift ] to move 10 pixels at a time.

If you have trouble remembering the keyboard shortcuts for adding, subtracting and intersecting selections you can use the buttons on the above toolbar.

If you hold down the [ shift ] key AFTER you click and drag using the marquee tools (rectangular or elliptical) then they will form perfect squares and perfect circles no matter how you drag the mouse.

The way to make the rectangular marquee most useful is to use a 'free transform'. Simply draw a rectangular marquee. Then select 'transform selection' from the 'select' menu. Then go to a corner of the selection, hold down the [ ctrl ] key and drag the corner into place.

Free transformation can also be used with elliptical marquee tool to make fine adjustments and thus find a perfect fit between the selection and the image.

Sunday, 19 November 2006

Marquee 1-Pixel Stretch

The single row Marquee tools (row and column) can be used to create pixel stretch effects.

If you find an image such as this one that contains a gradient that you wish to capture and use elsewhere (e.g. as the background to an element on a web page), use the single column marquee tool.

Here I have selected a gradient using the 'column' tool.

Once you have selected the column of pixels the selection can be copied to a new layer via [ ctrl – J ].

Finally the new layer can be expanded to fill the desired area via a 'free transform'. Hit [ ctrl – T ] or go to the 'edit' menu and select 'Free Transform'. Control handles will appear on the layer and thus it can be stretched to the desired size.

More interesting effects can be created with images like this one.

It has a sharp colour transition that produces a very nice effect.


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3D Wooden Plinth design tutorial

In this tutorial a simple 3d modelling application (swift 3d) is used to create a basic rendering of a plinth shape. This shape is then edited in Photoshop to add a wooden texture and placed in a scene.

Often when creating a scene in Photoshop you will wish to add an object that you do not have a suitable image of. In this situation you could attempt to 'draw' the object using Photoshop and/or Illustrator tools, however there is a faster and simpler option. This is to use one of the new generation of 3D polygon modelling applications.

3D modelling is often seen as an activity that takes many hours to learn. This is true if you are using advanced applications like 3D Studio Max or Alias Maya to produce highly detailed models. However simple 3D models can be produced quickly and easily with the new generation of low cost 3D polygon modelling applications.

Two of the best low end 3D applications are Sketchup (sketchup.com) and Swift 3D (erain.com). At around £100 Swift 3d is the cheaper option and also includes advanced features like lighting, rendering and feature based modelling. Both applications enable the import of pre-built 3D models in the .3DS (3D Studio Max) format. Many websites (e.g. 3dcafe.com) have large libraries of 3D models that can be downloaded, sometimes for free. This tutorial uses Swift 3D version 4.0.

To produce a plinth shape in Swift 3D start by selecting the 'Lathe Editor' tab. This will display a set of 2D drawing tools and an area where a 2D 'sketch' of the plinth profile can be drawn. Only one half of the profile is required as this will be rotated 360 degrees to produce the 3D plinth model.

Once the 2D sketch is complete select the 'scene editor' tab to view the 3D model. Click on the plinth model to select it and make sure the 'sweep angle' is set to 360 degrees (this will produce a closed model). The 'radial segments' can be set to any number greater than 3. Set the number of segments to a high number to produce a 'circular' plinth. To edit the shape of the plinth simply select it in the scene editor and then click the 'lathe editor' tab.

Now add a 'material' to the plinth. Select the 'glossy' tab (the materials are seen in the bottom right of the scene editor) and drag and drop the gray gloss material onto the plinth.

The last step before rendering is to add lighting to the model. Click on the 'sun' (to add a point light source) or 'torch' (to add a spot light source) to add as many sources of light as you wish. Position these lights by clicking on them and dragging them around the 'circle'.

Finally the plinth model can be 'rendered'. Click on the 'preview and export editor' tab. In the 'output options' section select 'raster' and a file type (e.g. .tif). In the 'render preview' section click the 'generate selected frames' button. To change the orientation of the plinth rotate it using the rotation tools in the 'scene editor'. Finally click the 'export selected frame' button to output an image file.


Open the plinth image in Photoshop and place it on a new layer. Then find a wooden texture e.g. copy part of the image of a wooden object and place this texture on a new layer on top of the plinth layer. Make sure the texture covers the plinth and has an appropriate size and direction of grain. Change the wood texture layer to 'multiply' using the layers palette, this will enable the rendered lighting to be visible on the wood. Finally with the wood layer selected click 'group with previous' on the 'layers' menu [ ctrl – G ].

Various shapes of plinth can be modelled simply by changing the value of the 'radial segments' option in the 'scene editor'.

Once a wooden plinth has been created in Photoshop it can be added to a scene. Try to match the lighting of your plinth when it is rendered to that of the scene that it will be placed into.

This table model was downloaded for free from the 3dCafe.com website. It was imported into Swift 3D using the .3DS format then rendered and the wood texture added in Photoshop.

Final Tips:

Wooden objects are often made of different wooden parts, e.g. a table is made of a top and four legs. As each part is made from a different piece of wood the grain should be different. In Photoshop this can be achieved by cutting out the different wooden components and pasting them to separate layers. Thus different wooden textures can be applied to each part.

Try using the 'dodge' and 'burn' tools to add to the highlights and lowlights from the 3D rendering. Also use 'Image > Adjustments' to modify the final image or any of the intermediate stages.


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Web 2.0 style button design photoshop tutorial

So you like your buttons web2.0 style? Well in this tutorial I show you how to create this button:

Start my creating a new 72dpi document. Then Use the 'rounded rectangle' shape tool to draw the body of the button.

Now open the layer effects dialogue by selecting the layer and clicking the 'F' button at the bottom of the 'layers' palette.
Click on 'gradient overlay' then click on the gradient dropdown. Set the start and end gradient colour stops to #434343 and #000000.

Then click on 'stroke' and add a 3px black outer stroke. Also add an 'inner glow'.
This will give you the following basic button:

Now create a new layer on top of the first and draw another rounded rectangle (white this time).
This rectangle will be the gloss on the button. It needs no layer effects.
Position it as shown, then right click on this layer in the 'layers' palette and select 'rasterise'.

With the new (top) layer selected, switch to 'quickmask mode' and use the gradient tool to draw a gradient similar to this one:

Now switch out of 'quick mask' to get the selection and hit the delete key.
Hit [ctrl – D] To remove the selection.
You should now have a button that looks like this:


If the button doesn't look glossy enough try adding a 'satin' effect to the original (large) shape layer:

Add some text in a web2.0 font (e.g. arial rounded). Here I have also added a feed icon.

Finally link all the button layers together (click the link slot next to each layer in the 'layers' palette) and merge them (Menu: Layer > Merge linked).
Now duplicate the single button layer onto a new layer (Menu: Layer > Duplicate Layer) and position the copy below the original.

Select the lower button layer and use Menu: Edit > Transform > flip horizontal/vertical Until you have a mirror image:

Finally select the lower button layer and use Menu: Layer > Add Layer Mask > Reveal All to create a mask.
Then use the gradient tool to draw a white gradient across the layer to produce the fading reflection:


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Lafangey Parindey – Skates with Identifiable emotions & lifting perfor

What is it all about?
After not a quite memorable experience with ‘Badmaash Company’, Bollywood premiere production company YRF comes down on the streets of ‘Amchi Mumabi’  to find the ‘pyaar’ of the audience and succeeds to a considerable extant.
The Story…Of course
‘Lafangey Parindey’ is about a group of youngsters living in the backstreets of Mumbai. It is an unusual love story of Nandu (Neil Nitin Mukesh) and Pinky (Deepika Padukone) whose path to love is paved by friendship, grit and hope.
For Nandu the raw, champion street fighter, one-shot is literally what it takes. Absolutely wild, fierce, and hungry to win, this fighter takes boxing to a new level by knocking down his opponents – “Blindfolded”. He meets Pinky Palkar and his world changes.
Pinky who losses her eyesight in an accident is a fabulous dancer, she is born to fly. On one hand she works at a regular, boring 9-to-5 job at a mall but on the other hand, she is a kickass dancer on skates! Her life’s ambition is only one – to rise above all the ‘losers’ living in her locality and carve a niche for herself.
‘Lafangey Parindey’ is the love story of this two different people.
What to look out for?
Pradeep Sarkar after the miscalculations of ‘Laga Chunri mein Daag’ makes sure that this time he doesn’t slips and skates with identifiable emotions, positive energy and a delightful Deepika and the growing up actor Neil to come with a love story not set in Manhattan or New York and minus the candy gloss feel that was once synonymous with this production house.
Set in Amchi Mumbai, the production designed by Madhu Sarkar Kuriakose is done with perfection and gives the required feel that comes with detailing like the tulsi planted in a  Dalda ghee dabba, the bindiees on mirror at homes etc etc.
Dialouges by Gopi Puthran are punchy and well written with typical Mumbaiya lingo.
Fine background score by Bishwadeep Chatterjee and Nihar Ranjan Samel.
Eye pleasing cinematography by N Natarajan Subramaniam. Sharp scissor work by Sanjib Datta. Music by R. Anandh sounds better while one is watching the film.
Production values are first rate.
Pradeep Sarkar narrates Gopi Puthran’s screenplay with smartness and keeps the pigeon’s away from its crows by concentrating on the lead characters of Nandu – well played by Neil Nitin Mukesh who grows as an actor and shows significant improvement. He shows his versatility in fight and emotional scenes and is a good dancer.
 Deepika – Well the movie belongs to her as she is the backbone of this flick, portraying the role of a dancer who dreams big of being the no.1 at the top reality talent hunt show does her act with varied shades as matters proceed.
It’s delightful to see her dance with skates on and the dances are well performed by Neil and Deepika thanks to the choreography by Bosco Martis and Caesar Gonsalves, the lifts are finely done.
The side actors also impress and once again Piyush Mishra as Osman makes his mark. K.K. Menon in a cameo impresses.
‘Lafangey Parindey’ skates with identifiable emotions, positive energy and delightfully lifting performance.
What not?
On the flip side, the story is predictable and the pace in the second half is lazy.
The length and slowing of place during the end makes the movie miss the knock out punch.
The movie losses point on telling us a predictable story, getting lazy in the end and not having much time for laughs.
Conclusion: ‘Lafangey Parindey’ comes with the desi punch and the vada pav munch that gives the flick its ‘lifting’ moments; go if u don’t have anything more important this weekend.

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Antardwand – A real art house item

What is it all about?
Bollywood gets real, reel after reel, week after week. After Peepli (Live), it’s time to get more serious amidst Commonwealth scam and our neta’s pay hike.
‘Antardwand’ Sushil Rajpal’s ‘Antardwand’ re introduction to our ‘Incredible India’ where grooms are kidnapped and marriages take place by creating a hell – a phenomenon rampant during the eighties and still is active. Its told there where around 1000 odd cases last year, is a slow-burning slice of magical realism whose power lies in its subtlety rather than heavy-handed sensationalism.
The Story……of course
Groom Abduction or “Pakrauah Shaddi” once rampant in Bihar and Eastern UP during the 80’s is touched upon in Antardwand.
It’s a story of boy- Raghuveer who has just appeared for his Civil Services exams is admonished by his father against marrying his pregnant girlfriend in Delhi. Distraught and defenseless Raghu terminates his visit home in the interiors of Bihar and leaves for Delhi. But before he could get out of the village he gets ABDUCTED by another headstrong and ambitious father of a girl wanting to have a potential IAS officer as his son-in-law.
The boy is forcibly married off at a gun point much against his and the girl’s own wishes. Once married, they are locked up in a room for days end till they consummate their marriage and accept each other completely….but do they accept each other in the face of inevitability?
What to look out for?
Finding resonance in its light handling of a practice popular in Bihar amongst a section of upper caste, its tells a disturbing yet engrossing, frustrating yet sympathetic (towards the couple especially the bride in the end) without overstating its themes or sentimentalizing the drama.
Filmmaker Sushil Rajpal tells a story where you are’ forced’ to react.
At first, the movie seems a slow-moving, it only gradually becomes clear that Sushil doesn’t wanna play and keeps the setting s as it should be.
The film which could have been easily fallen prey to sensationalisms and bowed to the commercial push and pull of bollywood as the screenplay writer after the show told us about the atrocities done on the married couple in real but they omitted it and avoided the flick to become heavy handed.
And successfully create a vivid picture of our society where we live in and its problems.
Yeah there is a serial on Colours ‘Bhagyavidhata’ on the same issue but ‘Antardwand’ deals it more realistically and doesn’t go overboard as TV serials do.
Set in the 80’s, the movie is blessed with natural performance giving the movie more strength. Raj Singh Chaudhary as the abducted groom is simple and lives the role. Vinay Pathak is delightful in his Bihari accent. Swati Sen as the helpless bride is spontaneous and leaves her mark. Akhilendra Mishra as the egoistic father of the bride is perfect. Himanshi as Raj love interest is fine. Jaya Bhattacharya as Swatis bhabhi is wonderful.
Technically fine with good production values, Cinematography by Malay Ray is absorbing. Special mention for the art work by D.K Singh and Rajeev Dwivedi has to be made. Editing by Aseem Sinha is crisp. Amitabh Varma takes care of the bihari lingo in the dialogues.
The movie has scenes which get register like how the groom is forcibly told to consummate the marriage by making him drunk and hurting his male ego by calling him impotent.
The groom is made to take the saath pheras at a state when he is dead drunk with goons holding gun and giving him support.
What not?
So is there any problem.. yes.. For the ‘filmy’ junta it’s not happening.
The era of the film is 80’s but the wardrobe especially of Raj and Himanshi in Delhi isn’t. The helmer doesn’t bother to say whether Raj comes to know that he has a child from his forced marriage.
Raj’s father is worried about his son but the maker doesn’t make it feel for us on screen. Raj’s mother is mysteriously absent.
Conclusion: ‘Antardwand’ has bowed in 55th National Film Awards as the best in social issues, it’s provocatively infused with local colours, the film is a real art house item that should find champions as well as a few naysayers and need passionate support wherever it goes.

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Hello Darling – A tasteless chewing gum

What is it all about?
Honestly, this comedy on male chauvinism had enough potential to ensure a decent run but the 2010 inspiration of the 1994 Kamal Hassan starrer ‘Magalir Mattum’ which in fact was inspired by Jane Fondas’ 1980 laughter ‘9 to 5’ is a tasteless chewing gum which lacks originality, humor, and any semblance of charm.
The story……of course
The writers Pankaj Trivedi and Sachin Shah are clueless on laughter and rely on double meaning ness to evoke laughter and fail even there. They tell us a story of three working girls – Candy (Celina Jaitly), Mansi (Gul Panag) and Satvati (Eesha Koppikhar) who bond together in a posh office of Mumbai, though each of them belongs to a different stratum of society. The biggest issue they face is in their work place. It is headed by their smart boss Hardik (Jaaved Jaffrey) a chronic playboy. He is smart. They have to be smarter. Who wins this battle of the sexes?
What to look out for?
The only funny moment is the pati sudhar Kendra where Seema Biswas brings errant and wayward husbands back on track is amusing. Javed does a fair job. Celina Jaitely is strictly okay and Gul tries hard but in vain. Seema Biswas is competent. Sunny Deol does as expected. Technical values are okay. Production values are rich.
What Not?
Neither naughty nor hottie in its premise, ‘Hello Darling’ becomes object of scorn that tries every thing possible but ends up as second-rate sex farce that again cements the thought that comedy is a serious business.
Mostly clunky and vaguely unsavory ‘Hello Darling’ won’t provide any comfort for Mukta Arts in this week’s release onslaught. Amusement level slides rapidly as the story of the male chauvinist progresses. What a waste of opportunity.. even worse, the girls don’t delight much.
Eesha looks pretty but is miscast as a Haryanvi. Divya Dutta overdoes. Mukesh Tiwari, Vrajesh Hirjee & Chunkey Pandey are wasted.
Conclusion: ‘Hello Darling’, it’s a tasteless chewing gum that goes on and on as the writing is feeble and it worsens scene by scene.

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Portable SwishMax2 2008.1.31.0 | 25 MB

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Portable SwishMax2 2008.1.31.0 | 25 MB

SWiSH Max2 is packed with features that make producing stunning interactive Flash animations a simple and painless experience.

Creates Stunning Flash Animations and Websites with Ease Includes 250 Preset Effects and Many Ready-to-use Components Import Images, Graphics, Sound and Video from all popular formats Export Presentations to Flash, Video, GIF Animation or Image Sequence No Coding Required for Beginners, Powerful Scripting Language for Advanced Users Tools to Control Motion, Draw Shapes, Edit Text, and more.
Use Over 100 Designer Templates to create Professional Websites Instantly.

Download – RapidShare


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