Image Effects

There are lots of little tricks to add special effects to images. This tutorial shows a few of the popular ones, done in Paint Shop Pro 7. Below is the image we'll be working with, taken from my free photos archive.

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Grid Overlay

A nice addition to images, usually when used in layouts, is to add a grid layer over the top. When the image you want to add a grid to is open in PSP:

  • Go to Effects>Texture Effects>Blinds.
  • Click on the Auto Proof button so you can see what the effect will look like.
  • Make sure "Horizontal" is checked.
  • Play with the options until you find the effect you want. I set the width to 1 and the opacity to 30.
  • Click Okay.

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  • Now the image is Interlaced. To complete the grid, go to Effects>Texture Effects>Blinds again.
  • The settings you used last time will have been remembered. All you need to do is uncheck "Horizontal".
  • Click Okay. Now you have an image with a grid.

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Selected Areas

If you make/edit graphics often, you're familiar with the selected area look, with the dotted lines, or "marching ants". You can incorporate this look into your actual graphics.

  • Select the area you want to show as selected, using either the Magic Wand or Freehand Select tool.
  • Once it looks the way you want, press the Print Screen (Prt Scr) key on your keyboard.
  • Then press Ctrl+V on your keyboard, or go to Edit>Paste>As New Image.
  • Crop the resulting image to the area you want, and save it. That's it!

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Semi-Opaque Text Areas

If you're using a background image that is too bright to have text put over the top, you can add a semi-opaque text area to the part you want text to be readable on, like this:

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  • To do so, open your image, and go to Layers>New Raster Layer.
  • Set opacity to whatever value you'd like. The higher the opacity, the easier the text will be to read.
  • Click Okay. Then click on the Shape tool.
  • Set your foreground color to null (click on the black arrow) and your background color to white, or whatever colour you'd like the text area to be.
  • If you haven't got the Options toolbox open, click on its icon to open it.
  • Select the shape you'd like the area to be. Make sure "retain style" is unchecked.
  • Click and drag to draw the shape on the image layer. It may take a few tries to position it right.
  • When you've got it the way you want, go to Layers>Merge>Merge All (Flatten), so you can save it as a jpeg.