I like the way my PlayStation 4 adds a soft round cutout mask to the PlayStation Camera Feed when streaming gameplay. I wondered how I could best recreate this effect in OBS Studio for a consistent experience, no matter which device I decide to stream from.
Here’s how I did it, with a little help from Photoshop – feel free to use the resulting asset without any need for further fiddling.
In this episode I’ll show you how to create a moving Zoom Effect in Photoshop, using the Radial Blur Filter. I’ll also explain the use of Smart Objects and how to blend the original image with the blurred version using a Layer Mask.
I’ve used this effect to create the thumbnail for my Vertigo Shot animation here: https://youtu.be/M-UevHx5CsQ
The other day I wanted to convert a logo into a path, so that I could use it as a shape in Blender. It was in fact the WordPress logo that was provided as a PNG or PDF from the WordPress Branding section.
The trouble was, both the PNG and the PDF are rasterised, and as such cannot easily be used for an extrusion in 3D as an SVG file would. The question then was, how do I convert an image into an SVG in Photoshop, so that I could import it into Blender?
It took a bit of fiddling, but here’s how I did it.
Quick introduction to SVG Files
SVG files can actually contain three types of data:
Vector Graphics, such as paths (which is what we want)
Raster Graphics, such as bitmap images (which we have, but don’t want)
What I needed in Blender was indeed a Vector Path. Although the other two data types can be contained in an SVG file, Blender can only read path information at the time of writing. It makes sense too, because really I’d like to the path information available as a curve in Blender, not the potential raster or font information.
I’m mentioning this here because
a.) I didn’t know this, and
b.) importing an SVG containing either fonts or raster graphics will import nothing into Blender – which had me stumped.
In this screencast I’ll demonstrate how to pixelate or obfuscate text in Photoshop.
I usually use Skitch for such things, but one day it wasn’t working, and all I had to hand was Photoshop – so I hunted around and found that it works just as well. It’s just knowing what to click. Once I figured that out, I thought why not share it with the world.
Here are some written instructions, just in case you’re not a video person.
Using the rectangular marquee tool (M), draw a selection around the area you’d like to pixelate.
Now head over to Filter – Pixelate – Mosaic to bring up a little dialogue box.
Here you can select the Cell Size, meaning how pixelated you’d like the selection to appear. Photoshop even gives you a preview option – how nice is that?
When you’re happy, click OK and Photoshop will burn your pixelation into the selected layer. Press CMD+D to deselect the marquee, or head over to Select – De-select. Next, share your anonymous masterpiece with the world.
Photoshop has an interesting set of filters that let us turn ordinary images into fascinating Bokeh Effects. Those can be useful as a nice alternative for gradient backgrounds due to the elements of randomness they can bring, or for foreground effects akin to those created with plastic cameras.
Opening several JPG or PNG images in Photoshop is the easiest thing in the world: just select several in the Windows Explorer or in the Mac Finder, right-click to choose Open, and Photoshop brings in each image as a new document.
But when we try the same with raw images, it won’t work: although Photoshop shows us the raw processing dialogue for all our chosen images, and lets us make individual changes, as soon as we hit Open at the bottom, only the current image is opened as a new document.
Sometimes we want to reproduce an image using a brush stroke. It’s a handy way to replicate a 2D object along a path for example. Using the standard brush for this though, we’ll find that we can only reproduce a single colour image. But what if we want to reproduce all colours in our image?
It’s easy to create an effect of draped cloth in Photoshop, like in the image above. We can do this with the Gradient Tool. It’s the icon with an actual gradient on it, sometimes hiding behind the Paint Bucket or 3D Material Drop tool (if you don’t see it, left-click and hold for about one second for the multiple icons to appear, or press the keyboard shortcut G repeatedly).
Once selected, choose Difference as the mixing mode at the top left of the screen, and make sure that the colours are set to back and white (other colours can give “very creative” effects shall we say).
Now start moving your cursor in short strokes from left to right, then right to left. Every time you change direction, the image is inverted. Add a diagonal stroke in every so often. You’ll create magnificent drape effects in no time!
In this video I’ll show you how to render an image in DAZ Studio and compose it onto a background image in Photoshop.
We’ll use the Shader Mixer and a Shadow Catcher in DAZ Studio to make the figure cast a shadow but be otherwise transparent. In Photoshop we’ll add artificial depth of field to an arbitrary background picture using Smart Objects, and I’ll introduce some techniques to blend both images together for extra realism (all non-destructively).
The final picture is going to look like this (featuring the 3D Universe Toon Crab and a new lifeguard tower in my neighbourhood).
The whole video is nearly 40mins long, so grab a cup of tea and enjoy.