Type with Alien Skin Software


Filters and Smart Objects


Lesson Info

Type with Alien Skin Software

Now, right now I want to talk about Alien Skin Eye-Candy for type, because that's probably, I'm going to say, the biggest use for it at all. These are some logos that were created years ago, actually, I think I can safely say. Mmhm. Using Eye-Candy. Now what we're going to talk about, some filter options. So what we're going to look at, is we're going to talk about just a standard faceplate, like on the top you can see we've got smooth chrome, and then we're going to look at lumpy chrome, because everyone needs some lumpy chrome in their life, and then what's really cool is Alien Skin's got this bevel, and you can use this bevel function to take the same type, only do an exterior bevel, so you end up making this 3D type out of a 2D file, because I suck at 3D. Let's just call a spade a spade; I just cannot do it. In addition to that, you can add your own reflection map, so you can pick your lovely view of Mount Lassen, if you need to, and put it inside your type, if you'd like. On t...

hat same note, when we get to the adding your own reflection map, one of the things I realized about this particular function is often times we get called to make something look like it's a window, and you put something in the window, and you put a piece of glass over it, and a reflection, and it's perfectly in focus, but it looks wrong because it's perfectly in focus, because with glass you get refraction, and it occurred to me with this filter, I'm like, "Well, why the heck am I not putting it in Alien Skin, "refracting it, and then putting it in the settings." That's something to keep in mind. A little strange, but-- You learn something. You do learn something. Yeah. When I talk about the 3D bevel, this is the idea. It's that you take the same typeface, but with the bevel function you can make it 3D. Let's go to Photoshop. All right. Here are my lovely little layers, and I'm just going to dissect this one by type. I think that might be impact; I'm not sure. I usually use impact for this demo. (laughs) Guess what? It's impact. I always use impact for the type demo. Do you remember earlier I said all those object that could be a smart object? Type happens to be one of them. What's really cool about this, is it makes it a smart ... You can make a smart object out of it. People can deal with it. They can deal with it and not worry about loading the font, because it actually translates it as pixel data. However, if they're going to edit it, they're going to need the font, but as long as it's a smart object, you don't have to worry about loading the font. As some of you may notice, I'm going to just say this right now, there may be a typo or two in that handout. I am famous for being lousy at type on every kind of level. I don't want to have to deal with changing type. I just like to leave it live, and those who can spell can spell, and they can do it. When I did the type layer, I did it black. Do you remember I said when I do chrome in this filter, I tend to like it to be 50% gray, or some kind of gray. I just did a levels move on it, and slid the blacks up, just to make it gray, okay? I'm going to close that and not save it. I did my Alien Skin bevel, and I'm going to take a look at it. It's no different than what we did for the filigree, only it's on type. I'm going to do command plus to get in close and personal. I just want to say I really love this filter. See, you, because you're a wiz at selections, he could use the chrome filter in Photoshop and eventually get there. It would take him a while, but he could do this. I cannot. I'm not that good at making selections and blurring. Also, why would I want to spend an hour using the chrome filter in Photoshop? I'm going to pay for the filter, the plugin, and just be able to do it this way. Once again, I just want to remind you, you can change you bevel width. You can make it tighter, you can change the height. Sorry; I'm leaning on that a little bit. Smaller height, taller height, smoothness, round the corners. I want to sing; I don't know why. It makes me want to sing when I say that. You should sing. I should sing. Anyway, so you've got plenty of adjustments. We're not going to go over here to the outside steel or silver, or textural later. We'll do that another time, if we have time. Anyway, so please play with the adjustments here. You can change your lighting. I'm going to zoom out for a minute. All right, I'm just going to move the lighting. You can change with the bevel profile. I don't ever do this, but you can. These are all custom. Now, I'm going to hope you are picking up a theme here. The theme is, with any kind of Alien Skin product, they have a ton of options. Once again, that's where it's like, "Ah!" Don't be afraid. Don't panic. What you can do is just on a Saturday, or on a easy day, take a minute and go, "Oh, okay, what's the flat? "All right, I see the flat, I see what the concave does, "I see what the rounded curve," and just get a feeling for it. Mmhm. Then it won't be quite ... That looks like chocolate, like a chocolate bar. Mmhm. Isn't that delicious? I'm hungry. Sorry. Peak, anyway, please play. There's so many options. This, it's awesome possum sauce. Anyway, I'm going to hit cancel on that. There it is, editable type. In addition to that, you have lumpy, and this is what I used ... I think they call it lump, but I call it lumpy or rough. This is what I used on that DIY project I had to do. I cut out the letters, and it was kind of a metallic bit, and it wanted to look a little rough, so I just use the pen tool and pathed it out. It took minutes, and then I changed the surface. I used rough, sorry, not lumps. You can have some lumps, if you like, sugar, one or two sugars. You can also have pits, lumps, and rough. It worked perfectly. Again, bumped up, lots of options. Foil, if you need something to be foil. This is something to consider if you're having a retouching job and you just have to clean up something. Why do all that cloning? Just remake it; it's so much easier. The bump spacing. I mean, look at that. You can make such great type with this. I'm going to hit okay on that. Let's leave it really bumpy. Ooh, look at that. All right, now we're going to talk about the fill in image. There's two items here, there's a bevel. (hums Jeopardy theme) Just give it a second; it's going to redraw here. There's a bevel and then there is a ... I think it's on the other one here; let me double check. Yeah, it might be on this one. The only trouble I have with the ... We talked about this earlier. Can't label? You can't label stuff. It drives me crazy. I'm sure someone's going to fix it at one point. All right, give me one second here. Ah, screw it. We're going to start over. Sometimes it's much easier to start over, right? Mmhm. I am for some reason ... Oh, I'm on the bevel. Okay, I actually had the bevel here. Let me really start over. I think I'm illustrating perfectly, why it is so annoying that you cannot label your smart objects, your filters, smart filters; excuse me. That was like a live demo of why that is annoying. Now, that's not the plugin's problem. That is the problem with the smart filter itself. All right, and I'm having a total brain fade here. I'm having a brain fade. This ever happen to you guys, where you have a brain fade? Yeah. How about mine? Do you want me to show them all the bunch of different stuff that Alien Skin can do? Yeah, why don't you do that while I find where I'm looking for? There's a button I'm looking for. I apologize. Yeah, you want to show them that-- Yeah. Function here, while I look for my setting? You look for your button. I'll look for my button; give me one moment. I'll be over here building airplanes. I had a job that they ... It was a movie about an airplane, and they wanted to have, make a paper airplane, but one that they die cutted and fitted tab A into slot B, and made this huge airplane. They had a die cut of it, but then they wanted me to illustrate it. They didn't want to take photography of this airplane. They were just like, "Here, what can you make out of nothing?" As soon as I hear, "make something out of nothing," I start looking for filters. This whole thing is built with KPT, but using all those different settings, I went in and pathed out each little part and piece of it, and just did different settings until I found something that worked. All of this, the red steel in the back, that is all just done with gradients in Alien Skin. These little rivets in the background, these were all done with Alien Skin. The hubcap, and just each one is its own little art piece when it all fits together. I believe I told you about brushed steel with the rain this morning. That's all there. Different adjustment layers made it look more rubbery than shiny and metallic. Some steel braids in there. This was all done in that interface, that Alien Skin interface, and just using different settings, brought out different colors, different reflectiveness, and it's all there. Once you get this new Christmas toy, the Alien Skin toy, you'll spend all day Christmas just playing with it, and seeing what it can do. Then when you piece it together, you can turn up with something like this. Absolutely. Where's your button? My button is fixed. One of the things that I want to reiterate with what Simon just showed you is again, it's a way of looking at it differently. Alien Skin, the Eye-Candy portion, most of us think of it as type, but you were starting to think about a product. Mmhm. How you can start building items. It's whatever your imagination can take. On this one, I'm not sure why I didn't see it, but it was right there. One of the things you can do here, under lighting, is you can do a reflection map. You can add ... See factory? You can have whatever they've already given you, penny, rainbows, ooh, a little San Francisco thing going on. Hey, cue the lights. Once again, many options. I have to tell you, I think I have used these. I have actually used their canned refraction maps before, but as a general rule, I have a tendency to import my own. I want to do that. I'm going to go to import, and I'm going to hit plus. I'm going to navigate to where my files are, and what I have here, and I really want to reiterate this, is you need to have it be a flat jpeg, okay? I will guarantee you you'll forget. I forget; I always forget. As you can see, see how it says, "add reflection PSD?" No big deal. You don't panic. When you go to this setting, and it's all grayed out, you just go, "Oh right, she said I was going to forget this," and you make a jpeg. It's all good, and you can add it. Now, you can call it a category. You can call it whatever you want, like mountain, job, whatever it is. Add reflection, you can call Lasin. I don't care what you call it. Call it happy days are here again, whatever suits you, and you can load your map in there. I called it mountain for bride. It's going to come in here, in a minute. It's coming down the edge. Now, this is on my machine. This is why this didn't work now, I realize. This is on my machine. This is on my Alien Skin plugin. This is here. If I send this job to a file, as a smart object, and it goes to his machine and his alien skin, guess what ain't in there? That file. Once again, be careful with your assets and make sure you deliver them with it, or go ahead and apply this. How embarrassing would that be? That would be like right now, when you're doing a demo and you can't figure out why it's not loading. That would be a perfect example of why that is. (audience laughs) Please use this; it's such a great tool. All right, the other thing, the last thing I want to show you here, it's going to jump a little. Don't let it freak you out. I'm going to put a faceplate on it just so you can see it a little easier. I have a bevel, and watch what happens here. There's the bevel, the 3D, and then I have a top bevel on it. Don't freak out over the bumping; that's fine. This technology, at its best. I'm now going to open the exterior bevel. I love this, because as I said, I am not a 3D mama. I'm a 3D, sucky, can't do it, "Oh dear God, don't make me do it." I really wish I was good at it. You can change the extrude depth. Ooh! Right? It's so much fun; you can taper it. Ah! Ah! You can have some fun, you can change the color. There's presets. I'm going to admit to this, because I don't do a lot of type. He is the type guru. A get a little tiny bit uncomfortable here, but what I'd like to say, and I hope this makes you feel good, I only get a little uncomfortable doing this. I can actually do this. I have jobs I get paid for. I produce using this filter, and it's so easy. I know there are 3D options in Photoshop. Dear God, I cannot manage them to save my life. My brain just doesn't work that way, and I've just come to accept that. I have products like this that I can say, "Okay, I'm going to use their filter, "and it's going to make me happy." What I end up doing on this is, do you see how I have a drop shadow on this? Mmhm. Hopefully I'll turn off and on. I like to add a little drop shadow to give it a little zing zing, and do you see this levels move that's turned off? I'm going to turn it off and on. I like to darken the bevel underneath. That's the bevel, and then I leave what I call a faceplate, on top. It just gives it a little added dexterity. I do not have, for me, I don't have the bevel and the faceplate as one file only. I've got the bevel right here, and then I put what I call a faceplate on top, so I can change the tone. If you have one layer of type, and you have both the bevel and the faceplate in one, you can't adjust the faceplate separately. Cool? Your color too. Yeah, and color too, and all sorts of stuff. If you do your back is gold and the front's silver. That looks really good. Yeah, that looks cheery. That's nice. Anyway, have som fun. Seriously, it's awesome. This is probably, I would say the strongest thing about Eye-Candy is type.

Class Description

Learn how filters and smart objects can enhance your images when you incorporate them into your retouching workflow. Make adjustments to your file without overwriting your original image. Professional high-end retoucher Lisa Carney will show you the many tools within filters and how to use them to improve and speed up your post-processing workflow. You’ll learn about:

  • Transforming edit functions
  • Camera Raw Techniques
  • Understanding Liquify
  • Blur and distort techniques
  • Adding textures and stylized looks
  • Incorporating third party plugins into Photoshop® like Alien Skin Software and Nik

Gain more control over your portraits or product retouching by understanding and incorporating filters and smart objects.


Pat Saizan

This is one of the best courses I have taken on Creative Live. Just amazing. This is geared towards intermediate to advanced Photoshop users. So happy to see an advanced class!! Very happy to see Alien Skin being used as a part of this course. Highly recommend this course.

a Creativelive Student

I can't say enough about this class. I am looking forward to watching this again and applying all I have learned at my leisure. Lisa Carney is am amazing instructor and I loved Simon as well, they did an awesome job! Just the handouts alone are well worth the price of the class. Thanks for another class filled with excellent content and lots of laughter. I own all of her classes and will certainly purchase any other's she instructs. Way to go Lisa! Well done and Exceptional!

Jeph DeLorme

Great class presented in a way that keeps your attention. This class is packed full of fun ideas with a ton of great take-aways for your 'bag of tricks! I would recommend this class 100%!