Text Effect Using a Mask

Create a selection from Vector text, then mask from selection,
so the underlying layer can be moved without moving the text mask.
Create a custom gradient fill and add text effects.

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Today, let's make a cool text effect by using a selection over a photograph, creating a mask from the selection and adding effects to the text on the background layer.

This scheme originally was for a Photoshop tutorial and we adapted it for Paint Shop Pro. The neat part is the layer under the text mask can be moved around to create different look, without affecting the shadow or other special effects.


For the background image, right click on the image on the left and save as SweetBroom.jpg.

Open it in Paint Shop Pro.



On the layer palette, accessed by pressing the
L key on the keyboard, right click the background layer and duplicate.

Right click on the Copy of Background Layer on the layer palette and rename the layer to Text.

Choose the Text tool on the Tool Palette then click in the middle of the image.

On the Text Entry dialog box that pops up, type in Sweet (Press Return) and Broom for the text. Set the Font to a big bold heavy one. I used Arial Black.

Set the Font Size to 72, and Check the Auto Kern box. Set the Leading to -35 or so and the words will set closer together vertically. Set the Justification to Center.

Set the Stroke to none, and any fill color for the text. Check Anti Alias box and Check Vector in the Create as...area.

When the text entry dialog box looks like mine, below, press OK.



Move the text to the lower third of the image using the 4 headed Mover tool.



On the Menu Bar, click Selections > From Vector Object.

(Note: we made a selection from the vector text object instead of using Selection style text because vector text can be easily moved around, even if you messed up setting it inside the window. This saves time)

On the layer palette, turn off the Layer2 layer with the vector text on it by clicking the eye glasses icon next to its name.

A red X means its visibility is turned off.

With the selection on the image, go to the Layer palette, and select the Text layer just above the background.


On the Menu bar go to Masks >
New > Show Selection.

Doesn't look like much has happened but wait...

Remove the selection by pressing CTRL+ D on the keyboard or Selections > None from the Menu Bar.

On the Layer palette, notice the sad mask icon next the Text layer name.

This indicates we have a mask on the image.

Turn off the Background layer to see the effects of the mask by pressing the eyeglasses icon next to Background on the layer palette.


Notice in the image that only the text is left against a checkerboard background.


With the Mover tool, click and drag the Text layer up and down to see how it acts.

Note that the Mask and the underlying layer move as one.

Replace the text back in the bottom third of the image.

Now, for a really neat trick.

Let's adjust the Layer independently of the Mask to let a different portion of the image show through the text mask.

On the layer palette, in the right hand panel, click the second tab, the Mask tab.

Click the Chain Link icon on the right to UNLink the layer and its mask.

In the Image, with the Mover tool, click and drag on the text.

Only the underlying Layer moves. Pretty neat huh? This way you can reposition the image to suit the text

Once the layer is positioned under the text mask to suit, click the Link icon again on the Layer palette.

The red X disappears and the layer and the mask move together again.




With the layer and the masked re linked, move the text down to near the bottom of the image.

Before we go on, Let's discuss other options with the layer and the mask.

To see the Layer by itself, without the mask, click the Mask icon on the Mask tab on the layer palette. The red x will indicate the Mask visibility is OFF and the whole layer is visible.

If the Mask is off, and the Link is on, as shown on the left, and you move the layer with the mover tool, the mask, although not showing, moves with the layer.

If you turn the Link icon off with the Mask off, then move the layer, only the layer moves. The OFF/ OFF way, shown above is handy for repositioning the layer to its default area.

It's easy to get confused with the mask showing!

If you turn the Link icon off with the Mask off, then move the layer, only the layer moves.
The OFF/ OFF way is handy for repositioning the layer to its default area.

It's easy to get confused as to where the layer is with the mask showing!

Be sure to re link the Layer and the Mask, and turn the mask back on when you are done! :)

At this point, do a Save As and save the working image in the PSP format.

Part 2: Changing the background.



Delete the Vector layer, layer 2, by right clicking it and picking delete from the fly out box. We don't need it anymore.

On the layer palette, Turn OFF the Text Layer by clicking the eyeglasses icon next to the Text layer name and Turn ON the background layer in the same fashion.

Select the background layer.

Let's create a fairly complicated gradient Fill to apply to the background.

Select the Flood fill tool on the Tool Palette

On the color palette, click the right facing arrow next to the Background color swatch under Style on the Color Palette, and pick Gradient from the small fly out box.


Click directly on the background gradient swatch to open the Gradient palette.

Whatever gradient is showing doesn't matter as we are going to make our own.

Click the Edit button under the gradient preview box.


Click New near the top.



Name the new gradient Sweet Broom.

In the upper slider area under Gradient, click on the left hand slider arrow under the color bar. It's tip will show black indicating it is selected.

Click on the big color swatch next to Custom to open the Color Palette.

Run the mouse over the image and the cursor changes to an eye dropper.

Click on a pretty light yellow in the sweet broom itself.

I picked Red=254, G= 255, B= 23.

Press OK. The color for the left hand location is now set.

Click the right hand slider under the color bar.

Then click on the big color swatch next to custom.

When the color palette opens, run the mouse over the image and select a dark dark green.

I used R 66, G 106 and B 4.

Click OK to set the color.

What about some transparency?

On the bottom area on the Gradient Editor, in the Transparency area, let's set a portion of the gradient to be transparent so the flower shows through.

Click on the left slider. Move the opacity to 0 percent in the left hand box.

The area in the top gradient bar will turn black and a checkerboard will show in the bottom.

Pick the right hand slider and drag to the left until the Location percent reads 50 percent.

Grab the small diamond, above and in between the two bottom sliders and move to the right until the location reads 67 percent or so

Note in the bottom box, that the green is completely opaque, fully visible up to the middle and then fades through yellow to totally clear.

Press OK to make the gradient.

Back on the previous small gradient box, pick the Circular style icon on the right, the third one down.

Set the Locations; typing in 30 for Horizontal and 21 for vertical, or approximate by dragging the small cross hair in the preview box to the upper left location as shown.

Set repeats to 0.

Press OK to set the gradient as the background fill.



In the image, with the background layer selected, RIGHT click to apply the gradient Fill.




On the Layer Palette, turn the Text layer back on for a look see.

It's cute but doesn't show up that well.

With the text layer selected do a Selections > From Mask.


Note how a perfect text selection hops on.

I think this is pretty slick!


Turn OFF the visibility on the Text layer, leaving only the background and the selection visible.



Select the Background layer on the layer palette.

Go to Effects on the Menu Bar and 3D Effect > Cutout.



Set up the Cutout as follows:

Set both Vertical offset to -4, Horizontal offset to -1 Opacity to 90, Blur to 5.

Pick black as the shadow color and UNCHECK fill with interior color.



Press OK.

A pretty cutout.



Then do Effects > 3D Effect>
Drop Shadow...




Set to the following:

Offsets both to 0, Opacity 90, Blur 35 with black as the shadow color.


Press OK.

A soft shadow.


For stronger definition, do another Drop Show only changing the blur setting to 8.6.

Note the stronger 3D effect.

Remove the selection,

Turn on the Text and note how the Text cutout effect disappears.

Never fear....



On the layer palette, text layer, pick the general tab on the right hand panel.

Use the Overlay merge mode set to about 100 percent.



Save the image now as a PSP file, perhaps with a different name to keep the layers intact.

Export to JPEG. That's it!

Remember, as long as the file is saved in the PSP format with the layers intact and as long as the text layer is masked, you can UnLINK the mask and move the underlying layer creating variations.

Since the actual text effects are on the background layer, they remain the same no matter where you move the text's underlying layer.

Try changing the Merge Mode and the text layer position for other effects. See examples below.

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