Creating Gold Text in Photoshop 5.0

By Mark Crenshaw

 

 

 

 

Step 1: Start a new file in Photoshop (something like 300 pixels width by 100 pixels height).

Step 2: Set your Foreground color to a dark brown.

Step 3: Highlight the text key and create some text. For this example we will use the word "GOLD" in all capital letters (100 point font size used for example). Large, wide fonts work best, as you will see in the next step. Render the Layer.

Step 4: With your text completed, CTRL/CMD+click the layer to select it. Enter the Channels palette and load the selection as a channel. Click on the channel to display it. While still in the channel palette, CTRL/CMD+D will deselect your channel (matte). Go to the filters menu and the to Blur>Guassian Blur and blur your matte about 2-4 pixels (Figure 1). Click on the RGB channel and return to the Layer palette.

Figure 1
Figure 1

Step 5: With your text layer selected, go Filter>Render>Lighting Effect. Under Texture channel select Alpha 1 or whatever you named your matte. Set up the light as a spot and adjust the intensity to give a good variation in gold values. This may take a few test renders to find the result we are looking for. The lighting effect uses the grayscale data in your matte to form the appearance of a beveled edge and the light itself gives you the gradation in color on your surface (Figure 2).

Figure 2
Figure 2

Now this is a pretty good gold effect in itself but we can take it a bit closer to reality by adding a reflection.

Step 6: Make a duplicate of your text layer. With the copy selected go Filters>Sketch>Chrome. You can use you judgement here. Remember that this layer will be your reflections of the "world" your text exists in. Figure 3 shows my results. There is no right or wrong here. You can even add additional filters to soften or alter the results.

Figure 3
Figure 3

Step 7: Make sure your reflection layer is above your text layer and choose "soft light " as your transfer mode. You may want to adjust the reflection's transparency to taste (Figure 4).

Figure 4
Figure 4

Step 8: A cool effect at this stage is to use the smudge tool and follow the contours of the text on the reflection layer to soften the reflections a bit. Be sure to turn on "preserve transparency" before smudging. This makes them more "form-fitting". Using Hard Light transfer mode enhances the "roundness" of the text. Compare Figure 5 with Figure 2 and you will see the vast difference in dimension.

Figure 5
Figure 5

Step 9: Finally, add a background to place the text in an environment. A drop shadow will give it a little depth (Figure 6).

Figure 6
Figure 6

I hope this is of use to you and I hope you have learned something. I always try to arrive at my results without resorting to plug-ins (sometimes they are necessary). This helps me to better understand Photoshop.


Mark Crenshaw runs 212 Productions. This tutorial is ęcopyright 1999 and may not be republished elsewhere without the expressed written consent of the author.



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