Thursday, May 21, 2009



* Paint Shop Pro. I used PSPX but you should be able to make this tag in other versions.

* Animation Shop.

* Photograph of choice. I am using a photo by Elizabeth Halverson. You can purchase a license to use her work from Mistaken Art.

* Font of choice - I used A & S Snapper Script.

* Eyecandy Gradient Glow Filter. You can substitute a white drop shadow if you do not have this filter.

* Xenofex Constellation Filter. Any sparkle filter will do.

* Mask made by me - right click and save


1. Set up your supplies ready for use. Have your mask and photograph open in PSP. Open a new image 500 x 500 with a white background.

2. Resize the photograph so the height is 500 pixels. Copy to your canvas and position so that the focus of the photo is in the centre.

3. Apply the mask to the photograph ie Layers menu - New Mask Layer - From Image. Find your mask on the drop down menu and click OK. Merge group and duplicate the layer.

4. On the bottom mask layer, Adjust menu - Blur - Gaussian Blur at the settings given below. If your photograph has fairly light colours you may want to change the blend mode to darken on the layer palette.

5. Duplicate your blur layer twice (so that you have 3) and apply the Constellation filter at the following settings. Change the random seed for each layer. If you are using a different filter a smaller sized star looks better.

6. Duplicate the white background layer twice (so that you have 3) and merge a blur layer to each background.

7. Activate the top mask layer and resize to 90%. Sharpen if necessary. Duplicate twice (so that you have 3) and merge to each background layer.

8. Select your text tool and making sure the top layer is active, add a quote of your choice and position. Text settings are below. I used #676470 as the background colour with the foreground closed. Convert to raster.

9. Apply the Gradient Glow filter to your text using the settings below. If substituting a white drop shadow then have Vertical and Horizontal at 0, Opacity at 100% and Blur at 20. Apply the drop shadow twice if your text doesn't stand out enough. The first settings are EC4 and the second EC5.

10. Change your font size to 72 and type your name as a new layer. Convert to raster and apply glow to your name.

11. Add copyright information. Merge all your text layers together and duplicate twice (so that you have 3) and merge a text layer to each background layer. Save as a .psp Animation Shop file.

12. Open your file in Animation Shop. Select all frames and change the frame properties to 15. Save as a .gif file using the settings below and you are done. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. NOTE since changing to a widescreen digital monitor I have noticed that the Octree settings leave a noticeable background where the median cut doesn't. Experiment and choose what suits you best.

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