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Chapter 7. Saturday Night Special: Speci... > Attaching a Note to a Photo

Attaching a Note to a Photo

If you need to add a caption to a photo, you could just backscreen an area or create some reverse type, but with this effect you can create stronger visual interest for your caption, drawing the reader's eye right where you want it to go.

STEP ONE: Open the photo you want to use in the effect. Press Control-A to select the entire photo, then go under the Layer menu, under New, and choose Layer via Cut (or press Shift-Control-J) to cut the photo from the Background layer and copy it onto its own separate layer (Layer 1).

BRAND X PICTURES

STEP TWO: Go under the Image menu and choose Canvas Size. When the dialog appears, turn on the Relative checkbox, enter 2 inches for both Width and Height, and choose White in the Canvas Extension Color pop-up menu. Click OK to add some white space around your photo.

STEP THREE: Choose Stroke (Outline) Selection from the Edit menu. Set the Width to 15 pixels (30 pixels for high-res, 300-ppi images), set the Location to Inside (to give your stroke straight corners rather than the default rounded corners), and click on the Color swatch to choose a light gray in the Color Picker. Click OK to apply a gray stroke around your image area.

STEP FOUR: Go to the Styles and Effects palette (found under the Window menu) and with Layer Styles selected, choose Drop Shadows from the palette's top-right pop-up menu. Click on the Soft Edge icon, and then in the Layers palette, double-click on the Layer Styles icon (it looks like an “f”) to the right of the layer's name. In the Style Settings dialog, increase the Shadow Distance to 10, turn off the Use Global Light checkbox, and click OK.

STEP FIVE: Create a new layer by clicking on the Create a New Layer icon at the top of the Layers palette. Press the letter M to switch to the Rectangular Marquee tool, press-and-hold the Shift key, and make a square selection in the area you want your note to appear. In the Toolbox, click on the Foreground color swatch and choose a “Post-it–like” yellow color in the Color Picker (I used R: 255, G: 255, and B: 161). Fill your selection with this yellow by pressing Alt-Backspace, then deselect by pressing Control-D.

STEP SIX: Press U until you get the Custom Shape tool from the Toolbox, and then press the Enter key to bring up the Custom Shape Picker onscreen. From the Picker's flyout menu, choose Objects to load a new set of custom shapes. Scroll down until you find the Paper Clip shape and select it. In the Toolbox, click on the Foreground color swatch and select gray in the Color Picker. Now, click the Custom Shape tool near the top of your yellow note, then press-and-hold the Shift key and drag the tool to create a paper clip. Press the V key to switch to the Move tool and position the paper clip at the top of your yellow note.

STEP SEVEN: Click on the Foreground color swatch and choose a dark blue in the Color Picker, then press the letter T to get the Type tool. Add your message to the note (the text here is in the font ITC Bradley Hand). Go to the Layers palette and link the paper clip, note, and Type layers together by clicking in the second column of each layer (the Link icon will appear) so you can move all three layers as one group.

STEP EIGHT: Press Control-T to bring up Free Transform. Move your cursor outside the bounding box and click-and-drag to rotate the note slightly. You can click-and-drag inside the bounding box to reposition the note. Press Enter when it looks about right.

STEP NINE: Next, you'll add a metallic look to the paper clip. Click on the paperclip layer in the Layers palette to make it active, then go to the Styles and Effects palette (found under the Window menu), and with Layer Styles selected, choose Wow Chrome from the palette's top-right pop-up menu. Click on the Wow-Chrome Textured icon and your paper clip will get a metallic look. Now, go under the Layer menu and choose Simplify Layer to change your paper clip Shape layer into a regular image layer.

STEP TEN: Press the letter E to switch to the Eraser tool. In the Options Bar, click on the brush thumbnail, and in the resulting Brush Picker, choose a small, soft-edged brush. Erase the inside part of the paper clip (along with some of the shadow areas) to make it appear as if that part of the paperclip is behind the note and photo. Now, click on the yellow note layer, then choose Drop Shadows in the top-right pop-up menu in the Styles and Effects palette and click on the Soft Edge icon. In the Layers palette, double-click the Layer Styles icon, turn off the Use Global Light checkbox in the resulting Style Settings dialog, and click OK to complete the effect.


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