Free OpenSource Wireframing & Mockup Tools
The wireframing process is the straight-to-the-point and completely non-tech stage of any web project. It only requires that you define a skeletal outline of essential page elements such as headers, footers, navigation and content area and should illustrate how to cater and respond to any possible interaction from a user. It is the most important, yet underused, stage of any web or apps development
The wireframing process is the straight-to-the-point and completely non-tech stage of any web project. It only requires that you define a skeletal outline of essential page elements such as headers, footers, navigation and content area and should illustrate how to cater and respond to any possible interaction from a user.
There are several avenues you could take for sketching a wireframe, most notably pen and paper (the easiest and most cost effective way), but for the sake of this article we have focused on apps that are not only highly effective and easy to use, they are also completely free.
We have covered free wireframe apps before (here), but a year is a long time in web development – some of the apps we had previously covered are either no longer completely free or are no longer available. And as such, we felt that we should compile a new list with more detail and covering all areas of design including web pages, mobile apps and application dev.
Lumzy Editor Screenshot
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/7e1f2591wireframe_a.jpg" alt="Mockup Builder">
Mockup Builder Editor Screenshot
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/35c3afb8ireframe_03.jpg" alt="Tiggr - Creating Prototypes Collaboratively">
Tiggr Editor Screenshot
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/d4967b6fireframe_05.jpg" alt="Frame Box - Lightweight Online Tool for Creating Mockups">
SimpleDiagrams Free Edition (Adobe Air App)
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/f58cec89ireframe_08.jpg" alt="SimpleDiagrams Adobe Air App">
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/9bed15a3ireframe_09.jpg" alt="iPhone Mockup">
iPhone Mockup Editor Screenshot
fluidIA Editor Screenshot
Pencil Project (Firefox Extension)
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/19334087ireframe_13.jpg" alt="Pencil Project">
Pencil Project Editor Screenshot
CogTool – General Purpose UI Prototyping Tool (Standalone Application for Win & Mac)
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/ace68572ireframe_17.jpg" alt="CogTool - General Purpose UI Prototyping Tool">
Prototype Composer (Community Edition)
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/d3f2f524ireframe_18.jpg" alt="Software Prototyping - Serena Software">
DUB – DENIM (Standalone Application for Win, Linux & Mac)
src="http://yoursourceisopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/67e18203ireframe_19.jpg" alt="DUB - DENIM">
Premium Wireframe/Prototype Apps with a Free Option Available
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How To Create A Realistic Blueprint Image From A 3D Object In Photoshop – Free Tutorial
In this tutorial, we’ll create a a quick mock-up of a 3D car blueprint. Then we’ll place it on an image of a drafting table. This time we’ll use a particular Photoshop 3D Render Mode to create this awesome effect. Let’s get it started!
Editor’s note: This tutorial was originally published on Psdtuts in July of 2008.
Weeks ago, when I published my tutorial about the 3D airplane, I was looking everywhere for a free 3D model with a Creative Commons license. In my quest to find it, I notice some cool websites with absolutely awesome 3D objects to available to play with. For this tutorial, we will use a nice 3D car downloaded from CGIndia.org. When I opened the car in Photoshop I saw the axis planes (X, Y, Z) were part of the model too. This inspired the idea of creating a blueprint of the different views of the car.
After downloading the car model, create a new blank document 1024 pixels by 768 pixels. Then select a white background. Then create a blue (#094464) square over the white layer. This creates a white margin.
Create a new 3D layer by going to Layers > 3D Layers > New layer from 3D file. Then find the “3D car” file and press OK.
Double-click the 3D layer to edit it. Change the size of the car by making it bigger. Then change the View to Left or Right (depends on you and the model you’re using). I don’t know why, but on my PC this is the Front view. The trick to creating the blueprint is to change the Render mode from Default to Wireframe.
Now Alt+Drag to duplicate the 3D layer. Then change the copy’s view to Top. Place the copy below the first view. Also, add some guides to ensure the car’s width is the same in both layers.
Rasterize both 3D layers by going to Layer > Rasterize > 3D. Then adjust each layer levels to increase the white of the lines using these values.
Delete all the extra lines using the Lasso Tool.
Now resize both layers, by the way I named them “Car Side” and “Car Top.” Also, add some space between them.
Next we’ll create some lines to get a more realistic blueprint result. First, show the Ruler CTRL+R. Then click the Ruler and drag the cursor to draw a guide. Make sure the guides touch the critical points of your views, like the wheel’s diameter, or the car’s width and height. Try to get something like the image below.
Using the guides, start drawing some lines. Grab the Line Tool and select a white foreground and 1px weight. Then Shift + click and drag to draw the lines (by using shift and drag you will draw perfect horizontal, vertical, or 45? lines).
Draw a line first, then Shift + click to start the second one. This will activate Add to Shape to add the second line into a unique Layer Mask. Using this step draw as many lines as you want, not too many, but not too few either. Change the layer Opacity to 50%.
Using the same steps, create a new layer and draw some white lines on it. These lines will show some of the car’s dimensions. Create some of this lines between two of the previously draw lines. Again, use the Add to Shape option to add all the lines into a single Vector Mask. Then change the Layer Opacity to 50%.
Now add some measurements. You can use some random numbers, but imagine that this is a mock-up of a real-life 3D model, like a house. So, you must transcribe the right dimensions to please the client. For this use the Ruler tool, and select pixels as the measure unit. Finally type the dimension; I used this font to create the text.
Let’s organize the layers a little bit. Create a Layers Group and name it “Blueprint.” Then put all the layers inside it, also create a folders for the numbers, lines and all the extra text. Then duplicate the “Blueprint” group. Then hit Ctrl+E to Merge it. Create a new group outside and name it “Mockup.” Then put the “Blueprint copy” inside of it, and hide the “Blueprint” group.
Paste this image into a new layer. It’s a picture of a nice drawing table. Resize the “Blueprint copy” to make it smaller. Then use the Warp tool to distort it a little bit, specially the bottom left corner. Finally, Select All (Command+A) and Cut (CTRL+X) the “Blueprint copy” layer.
Select the empty “Blueprint copy” layer. Then go to Filter > Vanishing Point, and draw a plane over the table. Then extend it a little bit, and paste the “Blueprint” as shown in the image below. Try to get the blueprint’s left side out of the drawing table bounds. Then click OK.
Duplicate the “Blueprint” layer and fill it with black. Then apply a Gaussian Blur with 2px radius. Then duplicate the “shadow” layer, and apply to the copy another Gaussian Blur with a 10px radius this time. Merge both “shadow” layers and adjust the Hue/Saturation using the values shown at the bottom of this image.
Select all the extra paper out of the left table bounds. Distort it using the Warp tool, just a little bit; ensure that the white border remains the same.
Using a the Burn tool, add some shadows to the folded blueprint. Also, add some random shadows over the entire blueprint surface.
With the Dodge tool add some highlights.
Duplicate the “Shadow” layer. Then press Ctrl+F to re-apply the last filter again (Gaussian blur 10 px radius). Then use the Eraser tool to delete some areas of the new shadow. Delete all the areas outside the table too.
Using the Blur tool, blur the image a little bit at the top and right side of the blueprint. Don’t overdo this, rather apply only the necessary blur amount.
Select the “Blueprint” layer of our mock-up. Then click on Filters > Liquify. In the Liquify Filter Window select the Turbulence tool. Then set the values as shown below; just do a few soft click and drags to create more wrinkles over the plane. Then click OK. You can use the Dodge and Burn tools again to get a better result.
This is it! a simple and fast technique to create blueprints of real objects using Photoshop Extended CS3′s 3D tools. Try it using some architectural models like a house or a building. If you work with this kind of design, you can blow your clients minds.
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Creating A Realistic Vintage Ticket Stub In Photoshop – Free Tutorial
In this Photoshop graphic design tutorial, I will show you how to create a ticket stub for the imaginary Design Instruct Graphic Design World’s Fair , which was held in New York City in 1949. We will use fundamental Photoshop tools and techniques in the process of creating the ticket — brushes, using textures, the Burn Tool and the nifty Gradient Map adjustment layer, just to name a few
In this Photoshop graphic design tutorial, I will show you how to create a ticket stub for the imaginary Design Instruct Graphic Design World’s Fair, which was held in New York City in 1949. We will use fundamental Photoshop tools and techniques in the process of creating the ticket — brushes, using textures, the Burn Tool and the nifty Gradient Map adjustment layer, just to name a few. Continue reading…
Continue Reading: Create a Realistic Vintage Ticket Stub in Photoshop
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Guide To Speeding Up WordPress
WordPress is one of the most popular and widely-used blogging platforms and CMSs (content management system). The reason is it’s easy to install and use, so you can focus on creating content rather than building and maintaining your website.
WordPress is one of the most popular and widely-used blogging platforms and CMSs (content management system). The reason is it’s easy to install and use, so you can focus on creating content rather than building and maintaining your website. Everything from small personal blogs to big digital magazines like Smashing use WordPress to run their sites. Chances are you’re using WordPress for your own site or are planning on using it. Well, although WordPress is fine out of the box, it’s not optimized – and worse, it can crash when you start getting more traffic. Lucky for you, this article brings you essential tips for maintaining and speeding up WordPress.
Using these simple and free tweaks and plugin installations, you can:
• Maintain your WordPress site to be in tip-top error-free shape using automated methods so you don’t need to waste your precious time
• Speed up your WordPress site so it not only loads faster but holds up to traffic spikes
• Monitor your WordPress site so you’re aware when a problem pops up and how to quickly fix it
All of which will ultimately free up your time to focus more on creating content and great work, not wasting time fixing your site when it goes down. So without further ado, here are the essential tips for maintaining and speeding up WordPress…
Maintaining Your WordPress Blog
1. Regularly backup your database
In case your WordPress-powered blog breaks or you need to reinstall WordPress. You’ll have all of your latest pages, posts and comments in a handy file. Automate this by using the WP-DBManager plugin. You can set it to regularly backup your database and save a file on your hosting or by emailing an attachment.
2. Optimize your database
Again, you can use the WP-DBManager plugin to automate this.
3. Regularly backup your WordPress files
This means your images and plugins. Automate this by using the WordPress Backup plugin. You can set it to regularly backup your WordPress files and email an attachment.
4. Reduce spam comments
Have Akismet plugin running and filtering out the spam comments. This will save you time by helping speed up comment moderation/reading/replying.
5. Make sure you don’t have unnecessary 404′s
This is when people try to access your pages and posts and get a 404 error message page instead. Use the 404 Notifier plugin to identify the 404 errors and fix them with redirection by using the Redirection plugin.
6. Switch to pretty permalinks
That is if you haven’t already. Go to Settings > Permalinks panel and choose a pretty permalink style (like “example.com/date/post-name/“). Like the URL style that Speckyboy here has, rather than the “/?p=X” permalink style that WordPress for some reason still insists on defaulting to. This not only helps with SEO (search engine optimization, since the keywords people would use to find your post will be right there in the URL) but with human readability. It becomes obvious what you’re going to read as well as making it easier to share.
7. Automate basic SEO (search engine optimization)
Install the All in One SEO Pack plugin. Add your title, keywords, and description in the plugin options screen. This will make it easier for people who are searching for what you have to find you.
Speeding Up Your WordPress Blog
1. Use caching
Install the WP Super Cache plugin and enable the Gzip option. This will load only the appropriate cached content to visitors rather than loading every single script and element of your WordPress site. Your bandwidth is greatly reduced and you avoid your site going down during traffic spikes (and if you’re making a kick-butt site with kick-butt content, you should expect them more often than not).
2. Reduce the CSS files to as few as possible
Combine multiple custom CSS files into one big one. The less individual CSS files the theme needs to read the faster it’ll load. Simply copy/paste the code from individual CSS files into the main style.css or a custom.css file in your theme.
4. Use as few plugins as possible
The less plugins need to load the more stable your WordPress site can be (and slightly faster in certain cases if a plugin isn’t properly coded). Do that by seeing if you can copy/paste code or hand-code the functionality into your theme, or using a theme that has the functionality built-in, or having it designed or customized for you. This doesn’t mean don’t use any plugins, especially since this article is suggesting plugins for WordPress optimization – just stick to only the essential ones rather than random sidebar widgets and whatnot.
5. Speed up image loading
Use the Amazon S3 storage service to upload and host your files. The images will load faster and your visitors won’t have to wait as long for them to load – especially important for web and visual designers with lots of images and portfolios to showcase. You can use the Amazon S3 for WordPress plugin to streamline image uploading and inserting into your pages and posts.
Monitoring Your WordPress Blog
1. See your basic hosting server info and WordPress PHP memory usage
Install the WP System Health plugin. This can let you see if there are memory issues so you can identify and fix the problem rather than blindly trying things when your WordPress site is slow.
2. See more detailed hosting server info
Install the Hosting Monitor plugin. This will let you know if slowness or any other performance issues are something to do with WordPress or your hosting, and you can fix it or contact your hosting accordingly.
3. Have any WordPress errors logged and notifications emailed
Install the Error Reporting plugin. Since you’ll be notified right when an error occurs, you can fix it right away.
Maintain and Speed Up WordPress
By using these tweaks and installing these plugins, you’ll not only take your WordPress site’s performance and stability from merely okay to great, but you’ll automate a lot of it so that you don’t have to spend time maintaining your site. Not to mention you won’t have to waste time fixing and trying to get your WordPress site back up when it crashes from a traffic spike or whatnot.
All of which boils down to why you should even care about any of this in the first place: you free up time to focus on creating content and great work.
Over to you: what are some other essential tips for maintaining and speeding up WordPress that weren’t featured here? Feel free to share your useful additions in the comments section below.
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Creating A Supernova Planet In Photoshop – Free Tutorial
When stars die, they explode in a brilliant burst of light that releases more energy than our sun releases in its lifetime. This brilliant burst of light is so bright that for a brief moment can outshine an entire galaxy. Supernovas occur in our galaxy about once every 50 years. Put another way, somewhere in the universe, a star explodes every second. This is important because the left over debris from these explosions eventually become planets, moons, air, water, and even life itself. Today’s tutorial will demonstrate how to create a supernova that is about to devastate an entire solar system. Our scene will depict a ringed planet and a fleet of ships struggling to get out of the way in time.
Today’s tutorial is part of a 4-part series depicting the journey of the inhabitance of a dying world that must travel into the unknown to find a new world to call home. In this series, we will explore the cosmos from the perspective of this fictional civilization making their way through the universe and will demonstrate the techniques that you can use in Photoshop to depict your own cosmic scenery. In addition to written content, this tutorial also includes over an hour of video instruction to help you along the way. So what are you waiting for? Will our fleet of ships survive this massive explosion? Let’s get started!
The following assets were used during the production of this tutorial.
Step 1 – Giant Planet
We will start up by creating the foreground main character the big ringed planet, and we will do this using this texture, so follow the link up there for the planet texture and download it.
Ok once you have it open it in Photoshop and duplicate the layer and rotate the copy 190 degrees counter clock wise.
Set this new layer to overlay so we get nice intense colors and then merge the layers.
Next up let’s apply a motion blur completely horizontal like shown below, and repeat the filter about 6 times.
Ok perfect now let’s get creative, grab the smudge tool with a big soft brush as shown below.
And let’s start smudging horizontally with a bit of wrist action so we create some forms in our stripped texture and eliminate all completely straight lines.
Now let’s reduce the size of our brush a bit as shown here so we can smudge some greater detail all over the texture, the screens here give you some insight on how to do this but you are better off watching the video for this part and then get creative yourself with the smudging.
Perfect, once we are happy with the texture and have smudged out all traces of the motion filter let’s create a new layer.
Once the layer it’s created, let’s sample a light blue from the canvas, and the custom brush indicated below.
Now let’s modify this brush a bit by adding some settings in the brush palette. First of enable transfer and shape dynamics as shown below and enable pen pressure for both opacity jitter and size jitter as shown below.
Now let’s set up these settings for the brush tip shape. And as you can see in the preview we are getting a nice cloudy looking brush.
Ok now let’s start brushing some tiny clouds as shown below, riding the streams of swift layers below and following these shapes.
Ok right here you can see what I came up with, so now let’s give this cloud a bit of a shadow so it looks a bit over the general surface of the planet streams with the settings shown below.
Perfect, now sample some dark color from the image and let’s paint in some darker spots over the cloud so it has more depth as shown here with the same brush and settings.
Now repeat the process in a couple of more cloud groups, but don’t overdo it; it’s just detail.
Next grab the smudge tool back and smudge some wisps out of the cloud edges as shown below, just to make them integrate just a bit with the flows below.
Once we are satisfied let’s merge both layers back together.
Now its time to create our final piece document and start working on it so let’s do this size shown and fill the background with black.
Perfect, now just copy and paste our texture on to this new document in a new layer
And now just scale it down within the borders of our new canvas.
Next up let’s grab the elliptical marquee tool and drag a perfect round selection holding shift and if needed scale it right to the edge of the texture by right clicking on it and selecting “transform selection” as shown below.
Great, now invert the selection and delete whatever its outside so we have a perfect circle.
Now let’s invert the selection back and spherize it so that we have the planet look on our texture; now for gas giants like this I spherize much less than usual for other planets so just apply the settings below or experiment to your liking.
Now that we are done with that let’s just scale it a bit and rotate it if you want to give our composition something more dynamic.
And finally let’s apply a levels adjustment layer to our planet with the settings below so we can create a shadow for it.
Ok Now we have a dark planet all around so let’s grab a big soft brush as shown and mask off the darkening effect using black as shown below. And that gives us a nicely light exposed section of the planet.
Step 2 – Sun Flare and Perspective Grid
Next up we will be creating a flare so that we know where the light is coming from and also a perspective grid to keep our sights in the right place. So first we need our big soft brush and less intense orange such as this below and we will be continuously reducing the brush and increasing the brightness and color.
So next up we reduce our brush a bit and select a muted yellow to add to the first orange stroke.
And we keep adding the same process to the flare selecting a much brighter yellow and a much smaller brush
So we repeat the process as needed until we have what we want, but remember right now we only want a flare to remind us of the position, we will build on this much deeper later.
Ok let’s move on and create a perspective grid to help us keep our creations in place. We will need a new layer for this and then just select the vanishing point filter.
Now just click to create a 4 point grid and drag the corners until you get something like this below. And then select render grids to Photoshop so that the grid appears in our new layer.
And there it is exactly as we traced it; now let’s just reduce the opacity a bit so it helps us but doesn’t intrude.
Step 3 – Planet Rings
Now let’s create some rings for our planet; there are several ways to do this, this one has a great deal of control over the look of the rings and its pretty straight forward. So we will create a new document with the settings shown below so we get big defined rings.
Now select a medium gray and fill your canvas with it.
Ok now grab your circular shape tool and define a big circle that sits well within the edges of our document and center it.
Ok now double click on the shape color and change it to black as shown here.
Perfect now to create our rings we will be using the outer glow and inner glow in the layer style settings, so double click on the layer so you get this.
Ok do no for the outer glow select a white to transparent simple gradient, it is also included in the project files if you need it. And then set the opacity size and quality contour as shown below.
Now the custom contour its also included in the project files, but if you wish to edit one yourself, just select any contour and then click on the small thumbnail so you get this screen where you can drag and add points to the curves and immediately see the changes in the rings.
One you are finished with your experimenting with the curves then apply these settings to the inner glow so you get more rings defined inside the circle; load the custom contour or make another one you like.
Ok now it’s very important to set the range and jitter for our contours plus select the anti-aliasing option so we get smooth rings. The range and jitter control for the quality of the contour affects the appearance of the rings directly, you can test this and see the results so you can choose the look of your rings.
Ok then we need to duplicate the layer to keep it safe if we need to modify something on the rings. Then hide the original layer and rasterize the copy and create a new layer so we can merge both the copy and the empty layer. This flattens everything in the layer styles.
We now need to drag a circular selection over the center of the resulting layer and transform it to fit perfectly centered inside the rings; once this is set right click on the selection and choose feather to apply a 50 px fade to it. Then just delete the center.
Perfect now we can copy and paste the rings to our main document and set the layer mode to screen.
Ok as rings are made from small particles, we will create this effect by applying some grain to them, with the grain filter and the settings shown below.
The resulting grain has much coloring and we need to eliminate this so let’s desaturate our layer so we get only black and white information as the result shows below.
Perfect we are finished with the effects now let’s scale and rotate our rings into place as I show below.
Once you have the rings in place drag the layer on top of the planet and create a layer mask for it that we will use to mask off part of the ring so it looks like it surrounds the planet. We need to mask off only inside the circumference of the planet so make a selection of the planet sphere by hitting Command/Ctrl + click on the planet layer thumbnail.
And now with a big brush just mask off with black all the rings that would be behind the planet as shown below.
Next let’s create some shadow for the rings too the same as we did for the planet, so create a levels layer and select clipping mask so it only affects the rings; then adjust the levels as shown below.
Now we need a big soft brush to mask off the darkening effect from the lit areas, so grab this brush and set the opacity of it about half way down.
Now just mask of everything but leave a shadow as shown below that represents the planet shadow falling over the back section of the rings as shown below.
Ok now just to finish it up for now reduce the opacity of the rings a bit so the appearance its a bit more subtle. And that is it for this step.
Step 4 – Blast Effects Perspective
To begin building up the main action of our image we will start up by establishing a perspective and flow for this effect following the perspective offered by our grid created previously. Ok grab the circular selection tool and define a big selection inside the boundaries of our image and create a new layer to start painting.
Then select a bright yellow as shown here and grab a fairly small brush like the one below.
Now paint some strokes in a circular pattern close to the center of the selection and apply a radial blur with the settings shown below.
We get the results here, and we are going to increasingly build up on it by repeating the process; painting more strokes and applying the radial blur again, this time twice.
And again let’s repeat the same steps, but this time let’s paint a couple of concentric lines of strokes and then apply the radial blur again 3 times.
We will now modify the results of the last radial blur by accessing the fade option and eliminating a bit of percentage of the last filter
You can see that by reducing the effect of the last filter we can still see some of the circular brush strokes, which give a nice layered blast look.
Ok so now let’s use the distort tool to arrange the perspective and size of our blast into position as shown below.
Once in place set this layer mode to screen, then duplicate the layer and set the copy layer mode to overlay.
And this is what we have so far a nice blast base for us to build up around.
Step 5 – Blast Cloud Structure
Next up we will be building up on what we have for the blast cloud right now so for these we need a new layer and let’s pick up a nice bright yellow plus one of our big custom brushes shown below.
Now let’s stamp a few times to get something we like.
Then let’s pick up another brush and make a few additions like shown below.
Once we have something we are satisfied with for this stage, let’s use the distort Command/Ctrl and modify it following the perspective grid guide.
Perfect, now let’s select yet another brush, this time we will add the settings shown below in the brush palette.
Now just add some vertical cloudy strokes in the section shown here; you can undo and redo until you get something nice.
Then I selected a couple of more brushes shown here and added a bit more all over the image.
This is what I came up with so far we have a nice base structure to work with.
It is time to add some personality and unique qualities to this cloud structure, so grab the smudge tool with a brush and size as shown below.
And now start smudging flow and detail all over the image as shown in red.
Next we will need a new layer and yet another brush where we will stamp a new pattern to add to our work as shown below.
And select this other brush and add a bit more variation.
Ok once you are satisfied distort this layer into perspective the same way we did before.
And once again let’s pick up this other brush and add some structures to the top as shown below.
And then we simply grab the eraser with a big soft brush and erase some sections to give the sense of depth.
Now we need to merge down all the layers we have been working on.
Then its time to continue our smudging all over to increase what we did before adding flow and detail all over the cloud; this process benefits quite a bit from the video so you might want to take a good look at it. Also indicated in green below I masked off softly the bottom of the planet so it feel sitting inside the blast cloud.
Step 6 – Color for the cloud
Ok so far we have been working with a mono tone cloud since that way its easier to work with the smudge tool plus the flow and detail of the texture; but now its time to add some color to our work. So let’s make a gradient layer on top of the cloud layer and select the gradient I have prepared for you shown below.
Then set the layer mode to multiply and adjust the gradient as shown here, and drag the center of the gradient on top of the main light in the canvas.
Depending on what you see you might want to change color position a bit or maybe you want to change them into something you prefer.
Once the adjustments are ready, duplicate and rasterize the layer. Then hide the original.
Ok next up we will grab the smudge tool once again and select a brush such as this below.
Now as you can see in these before and after picks, we will distribute the color following the flow of our base cloud.
Now let’s add a couple of adjustment layers to control our gradient. First create a hue saturation layer and add a clipping mask to it.
Now adjust the settings for the layer as shown here.
Now let’s grab our paintbrush soft and big so we can mask off this layer effect from our image as shown below.
Now we also need a color balance layer and adjust as shown below.
And again we mask it off where we don’t want the effect to go through.
And then one more layer this time a levels layer and adjust as shown below.
We repeat the process masking of the effect where we don’t need it marked here in red.
Now to pair up the ringed planet with the new colors, we must go down to the planet adjustment layers and make some work there. Let’s first add a hue saturation for the planet sphere layer and adjust as shown here.
Now fill the layer mask completely with black so the effect disappears completely.
And now with the same big soft brush and white we mask IN the yellow effect only where we need it as shown here.
Now select the levels layer we already have for the planet, and readjust as shown here.
Now go back to our original gradient fill layer, duplicate and rasterize it.
Drag the layer all the way to the top and set its mode to screen.
Now just reduce its opacity to 18%
And again grab our big soft brush and mask off this layer influence where we don’t need it as shown below.
So let’s add first a hue saturation layer for the rings as shown here.
Then just adjust the settings as shown here which gives us the hue needed to pair it up with the image.
Step 7 – Small Planets
Ok for this next step we will be adding a couple of far away small planets to enhance our composition. So first off let’s grab the ellipse shape tool and define a big enough shape as shown here.
Then rasterize the layer and lock the pixels as shown below.
Now let’s use these two brushes below to stamp some texture in our circular shape using black.
Now by holding the Command/Ctrl key, click on the layer thumbnail to make a quick selection of the circular shape and let’s go to the spherize filter.
Apply the filter twice with the settings shown here.
Now scale the result quite a bit and move it into position as shown below.
Now we will need a couple of adjustment layers for the planet, let’s start with a levels layer, and clip it to the planet as shown below.
Then adjust the levels layer as seen here
Now using a small soft brush let’s mask off the darkening effect of this layer, to create the light side of this planet.
Next create a hue/saturation layer and adjust it as shown below.
And then follow the process once again to create another small planet we will place at the right side.
Here are both planets set and a cool addition to our image.
Now let’s go to our top gradient layer and grab our elliptical lasso tool.
Now define a shape behind the planet as shown here that points in the opposite direction of the light source. And then right click on the defined selection to apply feather to its border with a radius of 5 pixels.
Once we have the selection feathered, grab the paintbrush back and set its size as shown, plus select a soft brush.
Now just mask off with this brush on the gradient layer to get the effect shown here.
Repeat the same steps for the other planet as shown here.
And here we have it both planets with a nice shadow streak behind them.
Now increase the opacity of the layer just a bit and grab our soft brush once again.
With this brush just soften up the shadow as needed and eliminate the brighter effect masking it of, behind the planet and where darkness should remain as shown below.
Steps 8-12 Continued on Page 2
The rest of this tutorial can be found on page 2 below.
How To Draw An Angel In Photoshop – Free Tutorial
In today’s tutorial we will demonstrate how to create a lonely, fallen, rain-soaked, angel composition in Photoshop using photo manipulation techniques. Let’s get started!
The following assets were used during the production of this tutorial.
Start by creating a file in Photoshop at the size of an A4 (210mm x 297mm) at 300 dpi. Once created, fill the background with a dark gray (# 424242)
After creating the background, the first thing to do is extract the boy by using your favorite tool. I made a selection using the Polygonal Lasso Tool (L) and then applied a mask. No need to be very precise on this selection, because the boy will merge with the rest of the image. In the area of the feet you can leave some details such as the shadow between her legs, and remove the excess using a soft brush (B).
Now let’s create an aureole for the angel. Create a layer called aureole and with the Elliptical Marquee Tool (M) make an oval selection and fill with white.
Make another selection within the aureole and delete the selection. This way you will get something like that.
Now we need to create the inner of the aureole. Create a new layer, place it below the aureole layer and name it “aureole back. Make an oval selection and fill with a light gray (# b0b0b0).
Use the Burn Tool (O) in Highlights mode to create the lights and shadows of the halo. In the end you should have something like the image below. After that, group the two layers of the aureole to keep your file organized.
Position the halo over his head.
Now we need to make the shadow of the halo. Create a layer and position it above the layer “angel.” Right click on the layer and create a “Clipping Mask.” Set the blend mode “Multiply” and with a Soft Brush (B) paint the angel’s head trying to simulate a shadow.
Open the image of the wing, cut and place them behind the angel.
Create a New Layer, set it to “Multiply” and then create a “Clipping Mask”. Use a Soft Brush (B) with Black and paint over the wing to create the shadow of the boy. Don’t forget to group the “Wings” layer and the “Shadow” layer.
Open the city file, desaturate it using Command/Ctrl + Shift + U. Then go to Image > Adjustments > Levels to darken the image.
Now open the bridge file, then go to Image > Adjustments > Levels to brighten the image.
After that, position the bridge behind the angel and the city like the image below. Group the two layers and create a mask to hide in the image edges.
Now it’s time to set the ground. Take the image ground and desaturate it. Place the ground like the image below and use a layer mask to hide the edges.
Open the Spatter image and desaturate it using Command/Ctrl + Shift + U. Invert the image color with Command/Ctrl + I. Then go to Image > Adjustments > Levels. At the levels window click at the black eyedropper and click in the black area as shown in the image.
After that, copy and paste the spatter in your main file. Set the blend mode to “Screen” so the black will become invisible. Then hide the borders using a Mask or the Eraser Tool (E). Make other copies of the Spatter layer and position them to get the result below.
Now let’s put more details in the Background. Create a New Layer on the top of the Background and use a Soft Brush (B) to make a soft white glow.
Place the Clouds on top of the Background layer, then desaturate it using the Command/Ctrl + Shift + U. Go to Image > Adjustments > Levels and use the Black Eyedropper to set the black point in the image as shown below. After that set the Blend Mode to Screen.
Duplicate the Cloud Layer and Flip it Horizontally and then place it like in the next image. Group the Clouds Layers and set the Opacity to 50%.
Place the Birds image. Desaturate it using the same technique as shown previously in this tutorial. Then go to Image > Adjustments > Levels and use the White Eyedropper to set the White Point of the image.
Set the Blend Mode to Multiply and position the image like in the next image.
Open the Street Lamp image and extract it from the background. Place it into your main file on top of all layers. Now we are going to make the shadow. Duplicate the lamp, set your foreground color to black and fill the lamp copy locking transparent pixels.
Use the Free Transform – Command/Ctrl + T – to create the shadow of the lamp. Set the Blend Mode to Overlay, opacity of 50% and put it behind the lamp.
Uncheck the “Lock transparent pixels” of the shadow layer and use the “Blur Tool” at the end of the shadow.
Create a new layer and use a soft brush to make a small shadow underneath the lamp.
Now we have to add the “flying” leaves to the composition. Open the Leaf image, extract it from the white background (I used Color Range) and then go to Image > Adjustments > Hue/Saturation and use the configuration below.
Duplicate the layer 3 times and place the other leaves around the scene. Use the Dodge Tool (O) to make some areas of the leaves a little brighter. Don’t forget the shadow of the leaf on the foot. To do that, use the same process of the lamp shadow. After that, select the biggest leaf and go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and use something around 3.5 pixels. You’ll get the following result.
Take the same splashes we’ve used on the ground and place them on the top of the head and the lamp. In the future we will create a storm, so they should look like water splashing from the rain that is falling.
Now we are going to add the lens flare effect to the lamp. Create a new layer and fill it with black. Go to Filter > Render > Lens Flare and use the following configuration.
Desaturate it and set the blend mode to Screen and opacity to 70%. Then use the levels to darken it a little bit.
Open Illustrator and create the colored crystal. After you’ve created it, copy and paste into Photoshop. Create a new layer and set the blending mode to Soft Light and click with the right button to create a Clipping Mask. Use a Soft Brush (B) with Black (to darken) or White (to brighten) in some areas of the crystal. This technique is very useful if you do not like to use the Dodge and Burn, because this way you can correct mistakes whenever you want. It gives you much more flexibility.
Duplicate the crystal layer to make the reflection and put it under the original crystal. Set the blending mode to Linear Dodge, change the opacity to 50%, apply Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and use a radius of 35 pixels. After that create a Hard Shadow (Multiply and opacity of 30%) and a Soft Shadow (Multiply and opacity of 80%) under the crystal.
To create the rain, take a look at Step 13 of this tutorial. You should get a result similar to below.
Create a new layer and fill it with black. Go to Filter > Render > Difference Clouds. Set the blend mode to screen and use a mask to hide some areas of the fog we’ve just created. You can add more fog if you want, this is up to you.
Here we’ll add the final details. First create an Adjustment Layer (Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Gradient Map.). Use the following configurations and set its blending mode to Soft Light.
Now create a new layer, set the blending mode to Soft Light, the opacity to 50% and paint with a large Soft Brush around the edges.
Add a new Black & White Adjustment Layer (Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Black & White) and set its blending mode to Hard Light and the opacity to 50%.
Create a new merged copy of your image using Command/Ctrl + Shift + A, Command/Ctrl + C and Command/Ctrl +V. Go to Filter > Others > High Pass and use the configuration below. After that set the blending mode to Hard Light. This effect will sharpen the image. Now you’re done!
Here is the final result. Hope you have enjoyed the tutorial and learned something new.
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How To Create A Caricature Portrait In Photoshop – Free Tutorial
Having a caricature painted of yourself can be a fun and exciting experience. That’s because just about everyone has wondered, at some point, what they would look like as a cartoon or as an illustration on the cover of a magazine. In this Psd Premium tutorial, veteran illustrator, Jason Seiler will demonstrate how to create a professional caricature portrait using Psdtuts Editor, Grant Friedman as an example. Jason Seiler’s illustrations have been featured as covers and interior pieces for TIME, Business Week, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Weekly Standard, MAD magazine, and many others. Jason has also worked as a character designer on Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland, helping to create such characters as the Red Queen, the Tweedles, the Bandersnatch and more. So what are you waiting for? If you are looking to take your character illustration skills to the next level then Log in or Join Now to get started!
Professional and Detailed Instructions Inside
Psd Premium Membership
As you know, we run a premium membership system here that costs $9 a month (or $22 for 3 months!) which gives members access to the Source files for tutorials as well as periodic extra tutorials, like this one! You’ll also get access to Net Premium and Vector Premium, too. If you’re a Premium member, you can Log in and Download the Tutorial. If you’re not a member, you can of course Join Today!
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How To Draw Vector Traffic Cone In Adobe Illustrator
In this Illustrator tutorial, we will be creating a traffic cone. The creation process is quite simple: We just need to combine a few shapes, use the Pathfinder Panel and Illustrator’s shape tools smartly, and then apply nice gradients.
In this Illustrator tutorial, we will be creating a traffic cone. The creation process is quite simple: We just need to combine a few shapes, use the Pathfinder Panel and Illustrator’s shape tools smartly, and then apply nice gradients. What we will end up with is flexible and changeable artwork that can be used in a variety of ways, such as in web icons, business cards, or even big billboards and service signage. Continue reading…
Continue Reading: Draw a Vector Traffic Cone with Adobe Illustrator
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Free iPhone & iPad Apps For Designers & Developers
Big shocking news of the day: iPhones and iPads are increasingly popular and widespread and are being used by more and more people. But what’s interesting is this also includes web developers ie. you
Big shocking news of the day: iPhones and iPads are increasingly popular and widespread and are being used by more and more people. But what’s interesting is this also includes web developers ie. you. And the following list will feature 20 free iPhone and iPad apps for web developers.
While iPhones and iPads appear to be more consumer-driven devices, there are apps on there that can assist in your web development and make your development and design life much easier. Think of it as having sketchbooks, notepads, calculators, communications devices, and more – all in one device. Of course, there are paid apps that provide much more robust development tools, but these free apps will be more than enough to get you started using your iPhone and/or iPad as a web development aid.
Without further ado, here are 20 free iPhone and iPad apps for web developers:
File Accessing, Managing, and Syncing
Note-taking and Task Lists
Communicating With Clients and Collaborators
Creating and Managing Web Content
Adobe Photoshop Express
Working on and Testing Projects
PCalc Lite Calculator
Finding Work and Useful People
Design Inspiration and Ideas
What Are Your Most Useful Free iPhone and iPad Apps?
Over to you: what are your favorite free iPhone and iPad apps for web developers? What other apps should be on this list? Feel free to share your useful additions in the comments section below.
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30 Brilliant iOS Applications for Freelance Designers and Developers →
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30 iOS Apps for Freelance Designers & Developers
Mobile applications have become a staple in the bedrock of our futuristic society. There are many catalogs full of both useful and goofy apps for the world to share
Mobile applications have become a staple in the bedrock of our futuristic society. There are many catalogs full of both useful and goofy apps for the world to share. These have connected us in ways never before seen and allowed software developers to really push the limits on programming techniques.
Here I’ve collected 30 amazing iOS apps for freelancers. These are useful applications for those working on their own in any field. Tasks can help with time management, processing workload, tasks lists, and so much more!
/> With Shoeboxed Business Card Reader you can digitize business cards and auto-share your contact information with your new contacts. Simply snap pictures of business cards with your iPhone and Shoeboxed does the rest.
/> Price: Free.
/> With iFreelancer you can search and filter for jobs directly on your iOS device. It checks for projects from Elance.com, Freelancer.com, Odesk.com, Vworker.com, Scriptlance.com and many more coming soon.
/> Price: Basic Package $1.99 and the Pro Package $4.99.
/> Price: $0.99.
/> GetPaid! tracks your time and can generate instant PDF invoices and time sheets. This is a must have tool for freelancers.
/> Price: $4.99
/> Invoice2go is an invoice app that allows you to easily design, manage and send estimates and invoices on the go.
/> Price: $12.99
/> Invoice2go ?
/> MiniBooks has been developed to work in-conjunction with FreshBooks. The app allows you to manage clients, send invoices, enter payments, check on rates from past jobs, run timers, and much more.
/> Price: $14.99
/> Track time and log expenses on-the-go with Harvest, whether you’re online or offline. A beautiful flip-clock counts the number of billable hours and minutes you’ve been working. The expense tracker allows you to upload photos of your receipts as you enter expenses so you keep all your records organized.
/> Price: Free
/> With HoursTracker you can track your working hours and your earnings. You can set up as many jobs as you need, then clock in and out of them and let HoursTracker take care of the rest.
/> Price: Lite Version is free and the Full Version is $2.99
/> View, edit and search your FileMaker Pro 7 (or later) records with FileMaker Go. Whether you’re checking inventory in the warehouse, managing event registration on-site, or updating project status while traveling, you can do it all while you’re on the go with this app.
/> Price: $19.99
/> WorkTRAKR is a revolutionary product that allows professionals to create billable time entries, make low cost international calls, manage GPS location, calendar, contacts, and much more.
/> Price: Free
/> WorkTRAKR ?
/> Awesome Note is an innovative note taking application and to-do manager that allow you to combine notes with to-do flexibility. It allows you to customize its look with themes the way you want it to be displayed with different folder icons, colors, fonts and paper backgrounds.
/> Price: $3.99
/> 2Do surrounds you with your projects and actions, grouped the way you like them, sorted the way you need them and reminding you at the time you want them done.
/> Price: $6.99
/> Things is a beautifully focused and amazingly intuitive task manager. Effortlessly manage to-dos, notes, due dates, and projects. A smart today list and the scheduling feature allow you to work as effectively as possible.
/> Price: $9.99
/> ReaddleDocs is all-in-one document viewer and file manager for the iPad. It catches documents from any source you can imagine: PC or Mac computers, web sites, email attachments, iDisk, Dropbox and other online file storages and even iPhones. All files are saved to your iPad locally so you can enjoy reading them anywhere
/> Price: $4.99
/> iFiles is a file manager, viewer, editor, and more. You can transfer files from your computer, carry them around with you, and share them with your friends.
/> Price: $2.99
/> iFiles ?
/> Documents2 has eight apps all rolled into one high quality package. Transfer documents to/from your iPhone via WiFi, Google, or Email. Edit & View many types of documents on the fly. A powerful, top value, must have app for any iPhone.
/> Price: $1.99
/> Documents2 ?
/> SketchBook Mobile offers a full set of sketching tools and delivers them through a streamlined and intuitive user interface. Use it to digitally capture your ideas as napkin sketches or produce artwork on-the-go.
/> Price: $2.99
/> Color Oven lets you calculate, manage, and save color schemes for use in any design project. It helps you build color schemes with preset scheme types, and it lets you build your own scheme types.
/> Color Oven ?
/> With the PayPal Official App you can send money to your friends, manage your account, and more, with the PayPal app.
/> Price: Free
/> Square is a useful service that allows anyone to accept credit cards anywhere by offering an easy to use, free credit card reader that plugs into an iPhone or iPad. Download the app, recieve the free reader in the post and you are good to go!
/> Price: Free
/> Square ?
/> HippoRemote Pro turns your iPhone or iPod touch into a Wi-Fi keyboard, trackpad, and remote control, making it the perfect pocket-sized controller for your computer. You can do everything a physical keyboard and mouse can do. In addition, like a high-end universal remote, you can customize the buttons and tailor them to specific apps.
/> Price: $4.99
/> The Timelogger App allows you to track your work times. You can create custom rates for projects, clients and tasks.
/> Price: $3.99
/> TimeLogger ?
/> OmniFocus combines the in-depth task management functionality of a desktop app with the advanced mobile experience of the iPad. With flexible viewing options, location-aware task lists, and on-the-fly task entry with voice notes and image attachments, OmniFocus for iPad is a marvellous system for managing everything in your busy life.
/> Price: $39.99
/> DoveTail for iPad saves you time and hassle by allowing you to seamlessly create estimates, invoices and tasks directly from notes you’ve taken.
/> Price: $10.99
/> FolioBook is an iPad portfolio app that is essential for all freelancers and designers who are looking for an easy method to present portfolios. It features a customisable homepage (portrait & landscape) with an abundance of customisation options.
/> Price: $14.99
/> FolioBook ?
/> Portfolio for the iPad is a blank slate waiting for your personalization. You can customize its appearance to completely fit your business, giving the appearance of a custom app developed exclusively for you.
/> Freeform is a vector drawing tool for your iPad allowing you to create quick sketches, mockups, or diagrams, and you export your drawings via email in JPG, PNG, or PDF formats, or save to your photo library.
/> Price: $9.99
/> TouchDraw gives you everything you need to create structured 2D vector graphics on the go with your iPad. You can create charts, graphs, floor plans, architecture drawings, illustrations or almost anything else.
/> Price: $4.99
/> TouchDraw ?
/> Noteshelf has a rich set of features that enable you to completely move away from paper based notebooks.
… and finally … CSS3 Machine
/> CSS3 Machine makes the most advanced CSS3 styles simple to implement and fun to experiment with. You can create stunning gradients, drop-shadows, and 2D- and 3D-transforms. CSS3Machine can even builds WebKit animations in seconds.
/> Price: $4.99
These are just a few of the most unique apps available to freelancers today. If you’d like to check out a few more app ideas you can view our showcase of unique iPhone apps. Although this is not an exhaustive collection peruse the gallery for any hidden gems.
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