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Step 1: Open A New Photoshop Document
Go up to the File menu at the top of the screen and choose New... to bring up Photoshop's New Document dialog box and enter a width and height for your document. I'm going to use a size of 900x700 pixels. Note my resolution is 240. Click OK to create your new document, just as in Figure 1 below.
Step 2: Choose a Color for Your Text
Select the Type tool from the Tools palette as in Figure 2 below:
You can also press T on your keyboard to quickly select it. Then, with the Type tool selected, go to the Options Bar at the top of your screen and click on the text color swatch in Figure 3:
With the Type tool selected, click on the text color swatch in the Options Bar.
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This will bring up Photoshop's Color Picker. Choose a color for the text. I'm going to choose a light blue for mine, just as in Figure 4 below.
Figure 4 – Choose a color for your text from the Color Picker
Click OK once you've chosen a color to exit out of the Color Picker.
Step 3: Enter Your Text
Choose a font from the Options Bar. The font used in this document is "Bauhaus 93". After selecting yor font, you can then click inside your Window and type your text. I'm going to type the word "photo" as you can see below in Figure 5.
Enter your text into the document.
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Step 4: Use "Free Transform" To Resize the Text if Needed
I'm going to enlarge my text a little using Photoshop's Free Transform command. With my text layer selected in the Layers palette, I'm going to use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+T (Win) / Command+T (Mac) to bring up the Free Transform box and handles around my text. Then I'm going to hold down Shift+Alt (Win) / Shift+Option (Mac) and drag out one of the corner handles to enlarge my text. Holding Shift constrains the text proportions, and holding Alt/Option forces the text to resize from the center – demonstration image is Figure 6 below:
Figure 6 – Enlarge the text using “Free Transform” if needed
Step 5: Select the "Drop Shadow" Layer Style
We're going to head into the wacky world of Layer Styles at this point, and the first Layer Style we're going to add to the text is a drop shadow. Before continuing;, just a reminder that you should feel free to experiment with the different settings in using this effect. It isn’t necessary to use the specific settings I have used in this demonstration. There is a lot of wiggle room to play around as you create this gel text effect. Now let's add our drop shadow. Click on the Layer Style icon at the bottom of the Layers palette as Figure 7 demonstrates below:
Figure 7 – Text selected; click on “Layer Styles” icon at the bottom of the Layers palette
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Select Drop Shadow (Figure 8) from the list:
Figure 8 – Select Drop Shadow
This brings up Photoshop's Layer Style dialog box already set to the Drop Shadow. The various options show in the middle column as in Figure 9:
Figure 9 – Apply the Drop Shadow settings from this window
Step 6: Choose a Color for the Drop Shadow and Apply It
Click on the Drop Shadow color swatch:
Figure 10 – Click the Drop Shadow’s color swatch to choose a color – it should be a shade darker than original
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This will bring up the Color Picker. Instead of choosing a color in the Color Picker just hover your mouse over the text, which will turn your mouse cursor into the Eyedropper, now click on the text to get a color sample as in Figure 11:
Then go to the Color Picker (Fig 12) and select a darker shade of that color to use for the drop shadow:
Select a different/darker shade of the sampled color in the Color Picker to use for the drop shadow. Click OK from the Color Picker, and your drop shadow will be the color you selected as in Fig. 13:
The drop shadow applied to the text using the color chosen in the Color Picker.
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Don't click OK in the Layer Style dialog box yet. We've only just begun.
Step 7: Apply an "Inner Shadow" Layer Style
Click directly on the words Inner Shadow in the Layer Style menu on the left of the Layer Style dialog box, directly below "Drop Shadow" – Fig 14 is an image of what you should see and do.
Figure 14 – Click directly on the words “Inner Shadow” in order to select that option.
The first thing we're going to do here, shown in Fig 15, is select a color to use for the Inner Shadow, just as we did for the Drop Shadow. Click on the Inner Shadow color swatch:
Click on the Inner Style color swatch to choose a color. This will bring up Photoshop's Color Picker. Just as we did with the Drop Shadow, rather than selecting a color directly in the Color Picker, move your mouse over the text and click on it to sample the text color:
Figure 16 – Click anywhere on the text to sample the color
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As in Fig 17, select a darker shade of the color in the Color Picker to use for the Inner Shadow:
Click OK once again. The inner shadow will appear in the color you selected. An example of what it should look like at this point is shown in Fig 18 below.
As shown in Fig 19, increase the size of the Inner Shadow effect by clicking on the Size slider and dragging it to the right. Mine was increased mine to about 16 pixels:
Figure 19 – Increase size of Inner Shadow
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Fig. 20 shows the result after increasing the Inner Shadow size:
Step 8: Apply An "Outer Glow" Layer Style
Click directly on the words Outer Glow in the Layer Style menu on the left of the Layer Style dialog box, directly below "Inner Shadow":
Figure 21 – Click directly on the words, “Outer Glow” in order to select this option
Once again, the first thing we're going to do is select a color for our Outer Glow, the same way we've done it for the Drop Shadow and Inner Glow. First, click on the Outer Glow color swatch – Fig 22:
Figure 22 – Click on the Outer Glow color swatch to choose a color
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This brings up the Color Picker. Click directly on the text once again to sample the color. Then go back to the Color Picker, but this time, rather than choosing a darker shade of the color, choose a lighter shade as in Fig 23 – then click OK to continue.
Figure 23 – Choose a lighter shade of the text color for the Outer Glow effect
Change a few of the other Outer Glow options. Feel free to experiment here on your own, but if you want to follow along, my settings are; first, lower the Opacity value at the top to around 60%; second, in the "Elements" section in the middle, increase the Spread to around 15% and lastly, change the Size to about 10 pixels. In Fig. 24, these values are shown, circled in red.
Figure 24 – Make the adjustments according to the circled values
Fig 25 shows about what it should look like after making the changes:
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Step 9: Apply An "Inner Glow" Layer Style
Click directly on the words Inner Glow in the Layer Style menu on the left of the Layer Style dialog box, directly below "Outer Glow" – shown in Fig 26:
Figure 26 – Click directly on the words, “Inner Glow” in order to select this option
What are we going to do first? Yep, we're going to pick a color to use for the Inner Glow. Go ahead and click on the Inner Glow color swatch:
Figure 27 – Click the Inner Glow color swatch to choose a color
This brings up the Color Picker. Rather than clicking on the text color itself and then selecting a darker shade in the Color Picker, click on one of the darker areas in the text (Fig 28) for the Inner Glow then click OK once you have sample your color.
Figure 28 – Click on a darker portion of the text to sample for your Inner Glow effect
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The darker color is selected but the blend mode for the Inner Shadow is set to "Screen." So we won’t see our darker color. Therefore, we need to change the effect from an inner "glow" to an inner "shadow", and for that, all we need to do is change the blend mode from "Screen" to Multiply as shown in Fig. 29:
Figure 29 – Click on the down-pointing arrow (drop down) and change from “Screen” to “Multiply.”
A few other options need to be changed for the Inner Glow. First, lower the Opacity value to around 50%. Second, in the "Elements" section in the middle, raise the Choke value to about 10% and lastly, change the Size value to 13 pixels – the aforementioned changes are shown in Fig 30
Figure 30 – Make the option changed as circled in red for the Inner Glow effect
Fig 31, shows the applied effect so far.
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Step 10: Apply the "Bevel and Emboss" Layer Style
Next, you will add the Bevel and Emboss style, so click on the words Inner Glow, as in Fig 32, in the Layer Style menu on the left of the Layer Style dialog box, directly below "Inner Glow":
Figure 32 – Click directly on the words, “Bevel and Emboss”
This time there are no colors to choose. Instead, there are a few options that need to be changed. You don’t need to use these specific settings for your effect. In fact, you probably need to play around with them a little if you're using a different font type or size. However, here in Fig 33, are the settings I have used in the Bevel and Emboss options:
Figure 33 – Changed the options as circled in red
First, increase the Size to about 16 pixels. Then, in the "Shading" section, uncheck Use Global Light. For the Angle, set it to 90° and the Altitude to 75°. Then, at the very bottom, drag the slider bar for the Shadow Mode option all the way to 0% as we already have more than enough shadows in the effect.
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Now you will be adding the "Contour" effect, as in Fig 34. Click directly on the word Contour in the menu on the left. It is directly below "Bevel and Emboss":
Figure 34 – Click directly on the word “Contour” to select this option
In the Contour options, shown in Fig 35, click on the down-pointing arrow to the right of the Contour preview thumbnail, then click on the Half Round option (it's the first one on the left, bottom row):
Figure 35 – Click the down-pointing arrow (drop down) to select the “Half Round” contour
After applying the Bevel and Emboss filter, your image should look similar to that in Fig 36.
Figure 36 – Results after applying the “Bevel and Emboss” style
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Step 11: Apply The "Satin" Layer Style
We are coming to the end with just one more layer style to apply. This time we will apply the "Satin" style. Click directly on the word Satin in the Layer Style menu on the left of the Layer Style dialog box, directly below "Texture":
Figure 37 – Click directly on the word “Satin” to select this option
Back to choosing a color once again, this time for the Satin effect, so click on the Satin color swatch:
Figure 38 – Click on the color swatch to choose a color for the Satin layer
As you did before, click in the text to sample a darker shade of the text color. If the colors in your text turned strange when you clicked on the word "Satin," don't worry, just click once anywhere on the text and the colors will revert back to the way they should be. Then click on any darker area (Fig 39):
Figure 39 – Click in a darker area of the text to sample for the Satin layer style
As soon as you click your mouse to sample a color, you'll see the Satin effect apply itself using that color. If you want, you can keep clicking around inside the text to choose a different color, and the Satin effect will be updated each time you click, so you can keep clicking until you find a dark shade you're happy with. It's basically a live preview of the effect.
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Once you have your color selected, click OK in the Color Picker to exit out of it. Afterwards, make the changes shown in Fig 40. I have circled the specific changes in the image below:
Figure 40 – Change the Satin options as circled in red
In the case of the Satin effect, again, you may want to experiment with the settings yourself. However, if you are following this tutorial; first change the Angle to 75°. Second increase the Distance to 43 pixels and the Size to 54 pixels. Lastly, click on the down-pointing arrow to the right of the Contour preview thumbnail and choose the Ring contour, which is the second one from the left, bottom row. If following along, the text, after applying the Satin filter, should look similar to Fig 41:
Figure 41 – The effect after applying the “Satin” style
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Step 12: Save the Layer Style
Finally we are done adding layer styles, at least for now. However, as shown in Fig 42, before you close out of the Layer Style dialog box, click the New Style button on the right:
Figure 42 – Click the “New Style” button on the right
We're going to save this gel effect style so that we can re-use it whenever we want. When you click the button, Photoshop pops up the New Style dialog box shown in Fig 43. Name the new style "Gel effect":
Figure 43 – Photoshop’s “New Style” dialog box – name the style “Gel effect”
Click OK and this new style is saved in Photoshop. Next we will see how it can be used. Since you already have the word "photo" entered into your document, click the “T” for your Type tool once again from the Tools palette. This time enter the word "shop" below it. Then use the Free Transform command to resize it so it's the same size as the word "photo", and rotate it as in Fig 44. Fig 44 shows what it looks like at the moment:
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Right now, the word "shop" is using nothing more than the original text color, but we want it to have the same "gel effect" that was created with the word "photo". Of course, you could go through all the steps again and re-create the layer style, but thankfully, we don't have to because we were smart enough to save the effect as a new style. So, where can you find the style? In Fig 45, you can see that it is in Photoshop's Styles palette, located at the very bottom:
Figure 45 – Photoshop’s “Styles” palette with saved “Gel effect” – located at bottom of list in preset styles
To apply it to my text, make sure "shop" text layer is selected in the Layers palette, and then click on the "Gel effect" style in the Styles palette. As you can see in Fig 46, the effect is instantly added to the text:
Figure 46 – The “Gel effect” is instantly applied to the new text
Step 13: Changing the Color Of The Gel Text Effect
If you want the word "shop" to be a different color though it's quite easy to change the color, but there is a bit of a trick to it. You're probably thinking "Easy, just use a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer". So let's try that and see if it works. Here in Fig 47 I used Hue/Saturation to change the color of the word "shop" from blue to pink. Here's the result:
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The word has turned pink, but the layer styles are still blue. The Hue/Saturation adjustment had no effect on them. If we want to change both the text color and the layer styles color, we need to use a bit of a trick. With the "shop" layer selected in the Layers palette, use Ctrl+G (Win) / Command+G (Mac) to place the "shop" layer into a Layer Group, which Photoshop names "Group 1":
Figure 48 – Ctrl+G (windows) / Cmd+G (mac) to place the “shop” layer into a Layer Group
We can see in the Layers palette above that the "shop" layer is now inside the Layer Group. Next, we need to change the blend mode for the Layer Group from its default of "Pass Through" to Normal:
Figure 49 – With Layer Group select, change blend mode from “Pass Through” to “Normal.”
Now click on the "shop" layer to select it and then click on the New Adjustment Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers palette:
Figure 50 - With the “shop” layer selected, click “New Adjustment Layer” at bottom of Layers
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Select Hue/Saturation from the list:
Figure 51 – Select “Hue/Saturation” from the Adjustments Layers
When the Hue/Saturation dialog box appears, drag the Hue slider to change the color of the text:
Figure 52 – Change the color of the text by dragging the “Hue” slider
Keep an eye on your text in the Document Window as you're dragging the slider. When you're happy with the new color, click OK to exit out of the Hue/Saturation dialog box, and this time, because the "shop" layer was placed inside a Layer Group, the layer styles are now colored along with the text itself:
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This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?