Part 2: The ribbon

Now for the ribbon around our present. This will be harder. It involves vector selections. But it is a good skill to have. It may take some time to perfect getting your perspectives right but just keep at it, practice makes perfect. You will be using some of the skills you learned making the box for the present as well.

Picking up right where we left off with our graphic.
1. Create another layer and name it ribbon. We will be working with this layer for right now. In all your layer palette should now look like this:

2. Using your rectangular selection tool create a long rectangle on your image. It doesn't really matter what size as long as it is longer than it is wide. Now floodfill it with a gradient from your materials palette. I like to use the metal steel gradient. Use the settings shown in pic:

You should now have something that looks like this:

3. Click the Vector Selection icon on your tool palette and select Free from the Mode drop down menu. Like this:

3a. Your gradient filled rectangular selection with now have a box around it with 8 nodes and a rotation arm. What we will be using is the nodes. It will look like this:

3b. Place your cursor over the little circle in the middle of your gradient and drag it over box we made. Now, as soon as you grabbed and dragged it PSP will have converted it to another layer called Promoted Selection. That is fine. You will also see that the orginal gradient is still there on the ribbon layer. Just leave it there for now.

Creating the proper perspective is key if you want your ribbon to look good. (Zooming your view can help you find the edges if you have trouble.) Grab the lower right hand node of your selection and drag it to your lower right side of the box edge to about where you want it. The selection will warp as you do this.

3c. Grab the lower left node and drag to the same edge and place as shown:

3d. Repeat process with the upper right and left nodes matching up to the upper edge of the box. When done it should look like this:

4. Go to your layer palette and select your ribbon layer. The nodes, box and rotation arm will now appear around the gradient. Repeat the same process on the front of the box. This is how it should look when done:

5. Now go to your layer palette and right click on the promoted selection layer and rename it ribbon2.
Then create a new layer named ribbon3. Using your rectangle selection tool create a rectangular selection that is short and wide for the top ribbon. Now floodfill it with your metal gradient. Using these options:

5a. Click on the vector selection tool. Using the same 4 node technique we used in step 3c place the ribbon on the top of your box, bringing 2 of the nodes to meet the ribbon already placed on the side.It should look like this:

5b. On your layer palette right click the promoted selection layer and rename it ribbon4. Now click on your layer named ribbon3 to activate it and drag the vector selection matching the edges to complete the top ribbon when it's done it should look like this:

Now to finish it off we need to put a bow on it and cast a dropshadow. I have made a bow to match my ribbon but PSP has included a beautiful bow tube you can use. I will write a tut for the bows sometime soon. It invloves like 20 layers! :o) Click on your ribbon4 layer. Create a new layer and name it Bow. Click on the tube icon in your tool palette.

5c. You can change the size of the bow by changing the Scale of your tube on the tool palette. Now click on your image to place a bow. You may have to use the undo button a few times to get the color or size you want. When you get the bow you want click on the Move tool and click and drag the bow around till it's right where you want it. Your image should now look like this:

6. Now for the drop shadow. We need to click on the Box Layer. Click the magicwand tool and click anywhere in the blank area around the box. Now go to Selections>Invert. Or you can hit Ctrl+Shift+I on your keyboard.

Back to Selections>Modify>Contract and choose 1 pixel. Now we can add our dropshadow. You could use the dropshadow feature that came with PSP in the Effects>3d Effects>dropshadow. But I like Eyecandy's better.
Go to Effects>Plugins>Eyecandy 3.1>dropshadow. Use these settings:

7. Now we can export it as a Tube of our very own. First we will de-select the box by going to Selections>None. Then we use the crop tool and click and drag an area around our image. When you let go there will be a box around your image with nodes on it and the area to be cropped off will be grey'ed out. Adjust the box until you like the area around your image. You want to be close but not too close to your image. Then double click inside the box to crop it. It should now look like this:

7a. Now go to Layers>Merge>Merge Visable.

7b. Then we go to File>Export>Picture Tube. Choose these options but naming it what ever you like:

8. Now you can create a new image with what ever background you like and use your new present tube! Here is my finished image:

This Tutorial is ©Cinnamon2006 and may not be sold in part or in whole, nor may it be copied and reposted somewhere else. you MAY link to it. The graphic and tube you create are YOURS.