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Sharp metallic edges in outer space
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Path Styler Pro is great for creating sharp metallic edges. In this tutorial, I will show you how to use the Chrome style preset as a base to create a completely new style. Almost every aspect of Path Styler Pro is covered in this tutorial, including surfaces, maps, gradients, and more. If you want to experience for yourself how easy it is to work with Path Styler Pro, you can download the supporting ZIP file for this tutorial here. It contains files for both Photoshop and Illustrator.
Getting Started
To create the Outer Space image in Photoshop, I first created a background by merging several free space images from the Internet. I then added additional stars with the Brush Tool using a very small diameter. To create the "Outer Space" title, I used a type layer with a high-tech looking font. After converting the type layer to a work path, I selected the background layer and started Path Styler Pro.
Finding the right style
When I create a new style in Path Styler Pro, I usually start with a style from the preset library. There are about 140 different presets in the full version, so there almost always a style that I can use as a base. For this project. I'll start with the Chrome style preset.
In Path Styler Pro, click the Presets button (1), find the Chrome preset and double-click it (2).
Creating a separate interior surface
The chrome style is great for the sharp edges, but I want to give the interior a different style. In order to do this, I need to create a separate surface for the interior.
First, click the New Surface button (1) to create a new surface. Then, to make it the interior surface, drag the surface to the top (2) and set the size to 0 (3).
Adding a vertical gradient fill
I will now give the interior a vertical gradient fill by mapping the material's color channel.
Click the triangle next to the material title (1) and select Map Color from the menu. A noise map is added by default. To turn the map into a linear gradient map, click the map preview (2) and select Linear.
Selecting a gradient
Click the gradient bar (1) to bring up the Gradient Picker. Select the gradient presets to experiment with different color combinations. I am going for the violet to orange preset (2). Click the preset a second time to commit.
Changing color
To add a bit more red to the orange color of the gradient, double-click the orange color stop (1) to bring up the Color palette. You can then use the Slider switch (2) on the Color palette to switch between the RGB and the HSB color model. I prefer to use the HSB color model when adjusting colors. Drag the Hue slider to the right to add more red (3).
Adjusting the mapping
Because of the default mapping of the linear map, there is bit too much red in the top of the interior surface. To solve this, select the mapping tool (1) and simply move the top handle up (2).
Adding a tiny inner edge
I want to put the interior a bit deeper into the chrome outer edge. To get this effect, I am going to add a tiny chrome inner edge.
First, copy the chrome surface by dragging Main Surface onto the New Surface button. The original Main Surface will now become the tiny edge. Select Main Surface, flip the contour horizontally (1) and set the size to 1 pt (2). Finally, to make the edge an inner edge, position the Path Border Indicator between the original surface and the copy (3).
The finishing touch
I want to add a bit of variation to the shading on the bottom part of the chrome edge. Because the Reflection item has the biggest effect on the shading (You can see this when you set the Reflectivity of the chrome material to 0), I am going to add another layer to the color channel of this item.
Click the map preview of the second map layer (1), and choose New Layer. A Noise map layer is added by default, which is just the right map type for adding variations to your image. To make it blend with the other layers, set the layer's blending mode to Multiply (2) and lower the opacity to 40% (3). The noise pattern is too compact. To solve this, simply scale up the noise map using the map's scale control (4) until you get a nice distribution. Finally, to further minimize the effect of the noise, shift the white color stop to the left (5).
And below is the final image! As you can see, the sharp tiny inner edge really makes a difference. And, although the effect is very subtle, the noise map layer is just enough to make the shading on the bottom edge more varied.
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