How to Create Web Graphics 9
Creating Web Graphics
If you have an artistic streak and would enjoy Creating Web Graphics yourself for your Blogs and Websites, then I would recommend you invest in getting the right tools to develop your knowledge and skills. While I use other programs to create my digital pictures from scratch, there’s no way around Adobe Photoshop to edit, retouch, refine until the final stage is reached and you publish your article not only with original text content but also your own digital images.
That’s my personal view.
My series on “How to Create Web Graphics” is aimed at creative people who’d like to get some hints and inspiration to see what’s possible and who’d like to embark on a Photoshop Safari :)
It still needs your determination to go through everything step-by-step, follow tutorials and move towards your goal of mastering your graphic tools with consistency and dedication. Like a piano player practises each day, so you will have to do a minimum daily to exercise and keep improving. I’m far from knowing it all – but I know definitely that the more I practice
the more I achieve… and teaching something is always a way to solidify one’s knowledge and skills.
Free Graphic Tools
A last thought:
If you use free graphic tools – like Gimp – you may find similar applications, but you’d have to look for them. What I show you here is Photoshop-oriented and an invitation to look, maybe comment and ask… and come along as I proceed in my own research, continued learning, applications and creations.
How to Edit your Pictures
In “How to Create Web Graphics 7″ we went through a few basic ways to edit and adjust your pictures – but by far not all.
When my ISP once again cut the connection during yesterday’s Ycademy Call and I ran a scan as the PC had significantly slowed down all of a sudden – due to a Trojan attack despite my updated AV as I found out rather soon -, I tried to drown my frustration in experimenting with the other adjustment modes. We never use all the features on a daily basis – but we have to know them in order to get the results we want when we need them. What’s a landscape here may be a portrait or a photo there – it’s about principles and how we use our tools to achieve the results and effects we want.
Remember, all I show you here is always based on the same simple original Seascape in a yellowish light… meaning I am influencing existing colours in my image. I invite you to do the same, applying the same image adjustments to your own test picture or photo.
How to work with Levels
We were there … now let me show you something more!
Open your program, pull up your test picture and go back to Image > Adjustments. Click on “Levels”.
On the “Levels – Popup” you will find the various Channels with a dropdown menu. What you do now is move the central triangle underneath the graph to the left or right and watch what happens on your picture.
Of course, the black graph will change and so will the Input levels – let this not distract you. Focus on your image only… and work with a sensitive hand.
Important: to see the changes you need to check Preview.
This is just a demonstration. When I edit an image, I go through the various colours until I have the colour or effect I want – then I Save the layer… and if I want to use this picture as is, I save it for the Web.
But now comes the kicker:
Click on “Auto” and see what you get now… and learn from this. The more often you practise the more experience you get – until you start playing your graphic toolbox like a musical instrument.
I think the result is pretty neat so far and reminds me of the windswept and isolated areas around our coastline where time becomes visible… burnt into rock in fascinating geological layers.
If you want to continue playing… click on “Options” and experiment with the Algorhythms and the Shadows, Midtones and Highlights by changing them to other colours and always observing what’s happening on your image.
You can always click “Cancel” if you don’t like the result – and go back and continue where you left it.
Enjoy… and watch out for more!
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